All-Time Spots

Neil Harrington:

-The tight and small quarter that was at the old Tank skatepark in San Antonio, Texas. It was super fun just to play on and feel the transition. The coping also sounded great when you grinded it (like when you break a light bulb to hear the pop). And there was a wall ride behind it and plenty of space at the bottom to roll fakie without busting your butt on another ramp.

-The vert wall at FDR in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Why are vert walls my single most favorite geometric objects to roll on? That one is nice and tight and molds into other walls so you can go fast or slow and just fiddle with it.

Neil Harrington has a lot more than tech rail tricks up his sleeves, just look at the list of his favorite spots, none of them include rails.  credit: Jeff Zielinski

-There’s a certain water park in my hometown of Houston, Texas, but I won’t mention the name. We rode there in the winter with weather as good as it can get in Texas in my opinion. Anyway, there’s this pool in the shape of a “B, and it was the landing for a water slide so it was like ten feet tall all around. Every wall had plenty of tranny to climb to the top and the corners were mellow enough to carve, but sharp enough that two of them would shoot you up when you leaned in. The back of the B was really wide so you could just shoot up it or carve across it and shoot back into a turn. The cement was a grainy texture so it was super grippy too. And as if that wasn’t enough, there was this water slide you could ride that was like a descending 450-degree turn...super fast!

-The volcano at the skatepark of Albuquerque in New Mexico. That thing is just fun to boost from all sides and it’s not too close to anything else to make it crowded.

-We put some cement on the bottom of a Jersey barrier in downtown Austin that is fun because it’s sort of a tranny wall with a deck. I love to fiddle on it because it’s a whole different feeling then a quarterpipe, but you can do quarter tricks on it. And we constructed it ourselves so it just adds to the appreciation. It’s like riding bikes on a woodshop project.

Vic Murphy:

-My favorite spot ever was the Tijuana cement park in Tijuana, Mexico. It was cool to cross the border and get some 25-cent tacos and get chased by three-legged dogs on the way to the park, and if you got wounded you had to get back to San Diego to get medical attention! We had to drag several dudes out of that place!

-San Diego ditches are always super fun and challenging. And since it hardly ever rains you can ride them most of the year.

Vic Murphy at a skatepark just North of the border.  credit: Jeff Zielinski

-As I write this I am in Portland, Oregon, and have to say that Oregon never lets me down! With locals like Shad Johnson, how can you go wrong? And with tons of cement and trees--I could get used to this scene.

-I went to Mexico City this year with Rich Hirsch and that place rocked! The riders there are super cool with no attitudes and they have all kinds of crazy jib spots all over the place. The pyramids are cool too!

-I don’t dirt jump much anymore, but back in the day we spent years at Mission Trails in San Diego. I have a lot of really good memories from that place and I learned how to do tables there. That has to be on my top five list, even though I spent so much time there that I don’t really care that it got torn down! R.I.P.

Brian Tunney:

These are in no particular oer and it’s not really a top five of all time or anything, just some random things that popped in my head…

-The Indy track in Vancouver, BC, Canada.
This is my favorite place to ride flatland. It has flat and slanted sections, no bumps or cracks, and constant entertainment from the Tent City adjacent to the track.

-The 89 degree wallride at Rampworx in Liverpool, England.
It’s just a wallride, but the one-degree below vert makes you stick really well.

Not far from favorite spot number one, Brain Tunney.  credit: Jeff Zielinski

-The Centennial Ave. curb island, Piscataway, NJ.
It’s just a curb island in the middle of a parking lot that makes a perfect manual pad. I’ve spent hours upon hours there and never seem to tire of it.

-Broadway, Manhattan, New York.
From Times Square to lower Manhattan, New York City: I know it’s not a spot, but a street overly-congested with everything from people selling rugs with bears on them to a store named Rat Bastard. I like to get on this street and pedal my ass off until I get to the end of it. It’s an added bonus if you make all the green lights and don’t have to stop, and weaving in and out of speeding traffic is a big bonus.

-The dirty metal fullpipe, South Amboy, NJ.
Just a tight fullpipe that gave me the best aerobic workout of my life and I miss it dearly.

Jeff Zielinski: -The pyramids, triangles, or the “ledges” at Montclair State University in Montclair,New Jersey. This was the spot for anyone who loved to do grinds, the ledges varied in height, and there were a lot of potential lines for long runs through the entire courtyard. Couple that with the fact that it was a college with cute girls and you’ve got one sweet deal. On a bad note though, about three years ago the school built giant planters over them. After the loss of those ledges, all I’ve really ridden has been banks.

-The “Hackensack bank-to-wall” in Hackensack, New Jersey. Although they were pretty far from each other, my friends Adam Weber, Frank Wesoly, and I would ride wallride and then make the drive to the Montclair State ledges almost every day a few summers ago. This wallride is still there, but now it’s always blocked because somebody bought and then opened the empty store adjacent to it.

-The “White Rail” in Clifton, New Jersey. We just had the most obvious names for all our spots, didn’t we? Anyhow, it was super-long, square, and only about a foot and half tall. There were also some fun curb islands next to it to play on as well. Back to the rail; you could try any tech trick you could think of and not have to worry about getting seriously hurt. It was also really fun to try to feeble grind the whole thing too. One last thing: this spot was recently removed as well. (There go all the Grizzle spots).

-The streets of New York City, everything from the spots, dodging taxis, seeing crazy people, the chicks, to the euphoric feeling of knowing that you probably couldn’t be in a crazier or busier place anywhere else in the world. As for the spots, you’ve got the Brooklyn banks, the China banks, the new “World Trade” rails, all the metal ledges on the lower West side, and probably the best thing is all of the one hit, there for a day, nibble spots that the NYC street scene is famous for.

-The 605 ditch in Los Angeles, California. This ditch runs for miles and there’s a bike path that runs the entire length of it. In the ditch there’s banks that go up to a wall which gets increasingly higher and then there’s a rail on top of that--you follow me so far? To my knowledge, a few sections of the rail have been cut off on two different occasions--making a perfect bank-to-ledge. Although they’ve been replaced now, when that bank-to-ledge was rideable the ditch offered every type of obstacle I enjoy riding the most. Wallrides, small and big banks, a bank with a curb on top, and of course, the bank-to-ledge. With the combination of all of those obstacles, the relatively short drive from Long Beach, and the guarantee of not getting kicked out, I couldn’t ask for a better place to spend my free weekends.

Dave Parrick: It used to be so damn easy. Nowadays just finding a way to ride a spot is more difficultthan the moves you want to do there. Unfortunately, most of the places on my list either no longer exist or you’re risking a hefty fine or even jail time just to session them.

-P.O.W. House, Westminster, California.
These were some of the sketchiest, but by far the most fun ramps that I have ever ridden in my life. A six-foot mini ramp, hips, wooden berms, and a shady ass wooden Hell Track-style starting hill. This place was THE SHIT! Not to mention the neighborhood tweakers, strippers, and various other lunatics that you could find there on any given day. This place was sessioned by every BMX superstar in the sport at the time, and the list of influential Pros that came out of there is long. To me it represented everything that BMX was all about.

-The Benches, Long Beach, California.
Before they were skateproofed, this spot ruled for grinds. Back to back ledges that went slightly down hill so you could keep your speed. When I first moved to Cali I lived about five blocks away from there. I had seen them in skate photos, but couldn’t even believe how fun they were. At the time it was Heaven- R.I.P.

Think of all the videos that featured incredible riding from this spot...Dirty Deeds, BMX Inferno, Nowhere Fast, etc. It’s a shame to see a spot that had such an impact on street riding disappear.  credit: Dave Parrick

-7th St. School, San Pedro, California.
With banks and fiberglass picnic tables and benches that you could move around anywhere you wanted it was kind of a build-your-own street park. It also included a bank-to-fence, hips, and a wheelchair ramp with rails and a gap. This place seriously used to be unlimited fun. Now it’s a bust. Chained up benches and a $80 fine if caught.

-U.T. Campus, Austin,Texas.
Tons of good stuff here! Rails, gaps, and ledges...this place has it all. Back in the day you could ride here all day, every day and nobody gave a shit. Now, supposedly, it’s a FELONY! You WILL go to jail, possibly for a long time.

-The Original Sk8Street, Ventura, Ventura, California.
I usually don’t have too much fun at skate parks. And if you’ve been to any of the mall type skateparks in Southern California then you probably understand what I’m talking about. But this park was an exception; it pretty much had it all--banks, bowls, ledges, and hips. I had tons of fun sessions there. Really cool and supportive people work there, too. (Note: the current Sk8street is also really good and they support bikers, so you should support them).they’ve been replaced now, when that bank-to-ledge was rideable the ditch offered every type of obstacle I enjoy riding the most. Wallrides, small and big banks, a bank with a curb on top, and of course, the bank-to-ledge. With the combination of all of those obstacles, the relatively short drive from Long Beach, and the guarantee of not getting kicked out, I couldn’t ask for a better place to spend my free weekends.

Dave Parrick: It used to be so damn easy. Nowadays just finding a way to ride a spot is more difficultthan the moves you want to do there. Unfortunately, most of the places on my list either no longer exist or you’re risking a hefty fine or even jail time just to session them.

-P.O.W. House, Westminster, California.
These were some of the sketchiest, but by far the most fun ramps that I have ever ridden in my life. A six-foot mini ramp, hips, wooden berms, and a shady ass wooden Hell Track-style starting hill. This place was THE SHIT! Not to mention the neighborhood tweakers, strippers, and various other lunatics that you could find there on any given day. This place was sessioned by every BMX superstar in the sport at the time, and the list of influential Pros that came out of there is long. To me it represented everything that BMX was all about.

-The Benches, Long Beach, California.
Before they were skateproofed, this spot ruled for grinds. Back to back ledges that went slightly down hill so you could keep your speed. When I first moved to Cali I lived about five blocks away from there. I had seen them in skate photos, but couldn’t even believe how fun they were. At the time it was Heaven- R.I.P.

Think of all the videos that featured incredible riding from this spot...Dirty Deeds, BMX Inferno, Nowhere Fast, etc. It’s a shame to see a spot that had such an impact on street riding disappear.  credit: Dave Parrick

-7th St. School, San Pedro, California.
With banks and fiberglass picnic tables and benches that you could move around anywhere you wanted it was kind of a build-your-own street park. It also included a bank-to-fence, hips, and a wheelchair ramp with rails and a gap. This place seriously used to be unlimited fun. Now it’s a bust. Chained up benches and a $80 fine if caught.

-U.T. Campus, Austin,Texas.
Tons of good stuff here! Rails, gaps, and ledges...this place has it all. Back in the day you could ride here all day, every day and nobody gave a shit. Now, supposedly, it’s a FELONY! You WILL go to jail, possibly for a long time.

-The Original Sk8Street, Ventura, Ventura, California.
I usually don’t have too much fun at skate parks. And if you’ve been to any of the mall type skateparks in Southern California then you probably understand what I’m talking about. But this park was an exception; it pretty much had it all--banks, bowls, ledges, and hips. I had tons of fun sessions there. Really cool and supportive people work there, too. (Note: the current Sk8street is also really good and they support bikers, so you should support them).