Photos/Text: Ike Taylor

Traversing over the West Seattle bridge towards downtown on yet another street mission I came to a dizzying revelation¿I’m definitely not 19 anymore. It might have had something to do with the fumes pouring in from Chris Eimen’s broken back window, but none the less a revelation is a revelation.

Darrin Read crosses ’em up out of a wall ride.

If there’s one thing I’ve observed in my travels it’s that being in a foreign environment tends to teach you a few things about yourself. In this instance the foreign environment was seven Seattle locals, a beat up Honda station wagon, and a little more mayhem than I’m currently used to. You see, the Seattle locals do things slightly different than the “norm.” They do their own thing their own way on their own time. In Seattle there doesn’t seem to be too much concern for current trends or standards that make up a “cool” BMXer these days. For that matter, the Seattle locals don’t seemed to be concerned with much of anything at all, except riding of course. The man, angry security guards, jobs, money, girlfriends¿they’ll just tell you all that stuff’s brainwash and continue sessioning any obstacle or dirt jump that they can get their tires on.

So as I was drug from spot to spot, one thing became clearer and clearer: These kids are a tad on the wild side. My first indication of this was the way the locals had a slight difficulty with authority figures. By traveling and living with BMXers I’m by no means a stranger to this issue, but these kids took it to a whole new level. This tended to bring about some rather entertaining situations, and I’ll be the first to tell you that hightailing it out of a “situation” with 50 pounds of camera gear on your back isn’t exactly what I call good time. But when it was all said and done, I had to look back and laugh.

A second indication of the locals youthful eagerness was when the locals had me awake and riding by 10AM. In half a slumber I thought back to the days when myself and the majority of the BMX population could only label this kind of action as “dawn patrol.” Low and behold, day in and day out, cranks were turning and spots were being sessioned before most BMXers even bat an eyelid.

After a good day of riding there’s nothing I like to do more than to sit back and relax, but this just wasn’t on the agenda. These kids were always up to something. Bonfires, mischief, night sessions, more mischief… Needless to say these kids kept me on my toes. And just when I thought it was time to relax. I was stuffed in the car on our way to yet another adventure.

Mexi Nick, bus to bus gap with a barspin for good measure.

So in observing the Seattle locals general wildness on and off their bikes, and having a lot of fun in the process, I lived and learned once again. As for the locals, they just kept telling me that if I was here during the rainy season you’d see exactly why they do what they do. And with these guys, nothing seems too inconceivable.