Seventeen days in the States
Bye bye California, and good night!
look, they have transitions in the ceiling...
Tipsy tired skaters flying home
..and a second round to get rid of our last dollars and coins.
They say jet-lag is worse when traveling from west to east. Macki and I order Californian versions of the infamous Long-Island Ice Tea in hope to be able to sleep onboard the plane.
Oskar won't be flying home until next week, so after our check-in we help him find a shuttle that will take him to his friend in Venice.
the "boobs"... allegedly a good surfing spot.
Landscape along i5.
The 31st of March is our last day of our seventeen days here in the States. In the early afternoon, after some last minute shopping, we thank Mathias, say bye bye, and start our drive to LAX airport.
Beside skating and surfing we've been shopping a lot of stuff. Here's a typical view of a shopping mall.
That is good tequila!
Dude, this is good tequila!
How is it possible to drink that stuff?
After the session Mathias and Macki shop tequila while Oskar and I wait outside.
This is the last skate session on our trip. Coincidently, my back truck brakes.
On the 30th we have our second session at the DC ramp, and another star skater, PLG, drops in for a few rides, in spite of suffering from a cold.
Happy skaters: Oskar, Macki, and I after our first session at the DC ramp.
Here's an overview. Some parts are very high and with unique transitions, like this roll-in, whereas other or most parts have the proportions of a proper vert ramp, and with a few extensions (a couple with around 1,5 meter verticals!). These combinations make this ramp fun to skate. Mathias skates really well in spite of having been injured for a long time, and he seems inspired.
In the foyer, Oskar warming up like Rocky.
Later in the evening Mathias, Macki, Oskar and I pack our gear and drive to the DC ramp.
"Fasten your seatbelts...".The man's got a big car with a huge engine, and he likes to drive it fast!
Mathias takes us out to lunch and recommends some of the local delicacies, for example, cheddar nachos, tacos, and burritos filled with all kinds of good things.
We help Mathias move stuff out from his garage, and while we're there yet another star of skateboarding, Jake Brown, comes by to pick up some things, and we say hello. I come to think of "The Right Stuff", the novel or film, and the life of test pilots in the 1940s. They too lived near eachother, drove fast cars, drank in the same bars, and of course pushed the envelope in their particular field.
..leaving our place in La Jolla.
It is now Sunday, 30th of March, and we've had some eventful days since the last update. However, above you can see a few pictures taken on Friday, the 28th, from when we leave our place in La Jolla to meet the one and only X-Games 2007 bronze medalist Mathias Ringström at his place in Encinitas/Carlsbad. Soon after we arrive we also meet his neighbor and fellow skateboarder Colin McKay.
Marcelo, frontside air, after sunset at Clairemont.
Oskar's nose grind
Happy Karen for making kick flip indy
Marcelo's tweaked air
Today's session (26th of March) was short and late, but it is long enough for Oskar to get a feeling for the ramp. Marcelo and Karen skate as we arrive, and we all skate until there is no more sunlight. I also get to try my new camera for the first time.
Jerry's familiar-by-now invert
Macki's familiar-by-now backside air
oh and skateboarding of course... these were taken a few days ago at Clairemont... see above
and another california sunset
Macki walking back from the Pacific Ocean
I rent this board
Jonas and his surfboard
La Jolla Shores again
After all this we went to have late supper in a restaurant, and around midnight we drove back to San Diego and La Jolla to sleep. Sweet dreams. Here above you can find some beach pictures from the other day.
What is really cool to see are the young girls, some with pink shoe laces, others with hearts on their t-shirt, carving around in that giant combi pool, fast, making proper front side and back side airs, gnarly 50-50s, grinds, e.t.c. Watch out boys!
Happy Macki and friends
Macki shows Bucky and Neal how to make a proper finger flip
After almost six hours of skating I and Jonas are exhausted, and also Macki is about to give in, but then we see Sandro Dias and Neal Hendrix arrive with some friends for a session in the vert ramp. How cool wouldn't it had been to skate with those guys... but I am too exhausted, and so is Jonas, but Macki is inspired enough to skate another two hours! That is sick! Yet, to see Sandro and Neal skate is very inspiring indeed, and Macki skates some of his best lines ever in this ramp.
Bucky with orange helmet, and Tony Mag skating in the pool on his H-Street pro model deck.
After a couple of hours Bucky Lasek arrives with a friend, and later Tony Mag arrives as well for a session in the combi pool. I chat a little with Tony (he says hi to all you guys in Fryshuset), and I make a few attempts to find a line of tricks.
Macki prefers the vert ramp: here in a stale fish over the gap
Jerry invert in the combi pool
Jonas grinding on the edge of the combi pool
26th of March, Wednesday, and Jonas leaves to meet up with a friend of his, and Oskar arrives by train from L.A. But let's begin with some pictures from yesterday, as we went up to Vans skatepark again at the Block in Orange, L.A..
24th of March, Monday, and we've been spending a lot more time on the beach. The surf is consistent and good for both experienced surfers and tourists like I. Jonas is kind enough to give me some instructions and Macki stays on shore taking pictures of life on the beach. Later in the afternoon we skate. More pictures to come when I get the time to upload them. Meanwhile here's a picture Jonas took of Macki flying high above Clairemont.
Andy, fs ollie in the pool, and later he sticks a clean 720 in the vert ramp
..and at the skate park we see these: Chris Miller, Peter Hewitt, and Andy Macdonald.
Beside our parked car we see this little fellow...
After spending about three hours on the beach we leave for a quick bite to eat before going to the skate park.
skimboarder skimming along the shores of la jolla
swim or surf on the right ride of the flag, or else life guards come running after you
"to serve and protect" ..serve us some cold beers, please
parrot about to land on the sand
from left to right: surfer, dolphin (probably), and pelican.
There are plenty of surfers out there in the water, dolphins swim a few meters further away, and pelicans bomb-drop into the water for food.
22nd of March, Saturday, and we decide to spend some more time on the beach, and this time we choose the beautiful La Jolla Shores.
Peculiar habit: people at the bar applaud the sunset... So, good on you, gaseous blob! (..or, earth, for your rotation).
Beach day, people, beer and sunset.
Mr.Shadow stretching out in the pool
the front-side-air-kid showing us how to fly in that pool
inverted I again in the vert ramp
Jonas cruising around in the pool at Clairemont
This place is built by the locals.
Macki and Jonas at Washington Street
Macki flying high above the gap
21st of March, Good Friday, and beach day! We didnt skate this day (gotta rest at least one day, eh) but above you can find some more skate pictures from yesterdays session and the day before. Enjoy!
3 europeans in sunny southern cali
back in the vert again
i wonder whether they will turn blue or purple
Jonas and I continue our explorations of the pool, and after a while I experience my first hard slam here...
after a mexican lunch we went back to clairemont. Macki skates in the vert with the truly high flying Rich Lopez, and later he somehow becomes a proud owner of a new and signed Rich Lopez deck!
of course the bbq is skatable
under the bridge...
20th of March, Thursday, and Jonas shows us the way to Washington Street, and a concrete skatepark built by the local skaters themselves. It is located in the middle of an urban no-mans-land, under freeway bridges, and on one side trains pass by, on the other airplanes land and take off. We took a few pictures.... see above.
masha fs channel air
macki fs channel air
jonas invert in pool
and I in an indy air
inverted I in the vert ramp
19th of March, Wednesday, and this day entrance to the park only costs two dollars for "retired" members, and apparently that includes us hehe. We skate two sessions, and Jonas from the Netherlands and I decide to stick our first inverts in the pool. The concrete surface is very smooth.. partly slippery, but after learning to know some of the proper lines it is not a problem. More pictures to come... Meanwhile above are some of the pictures we managed to take this day.
Now see this!
Marcelo Bastos ..a master of switch tricks, ollies, flips, and spins.
Maurilo should have a pilot's license.
Adam flying high above the extension.
18th of March, and today's session is intense; many of the skaters prepare for the forthcoming competition this weekend in Tampa, Florida. We see Danny Mayer stick a clean 540 kick flip in the middle of an impressive line, Adam Taylor make huge rodeos, and Zach Miller (son of Chris Miller) make his first 360 shove it. For those of you who would like to see more action from the pool area, don't worry, we will soon turn our attention to it. Meanwhile, here above you can find pictures from today's session in the vert ramp.
last picture from today's session: kick flip indy
I fly, but not so high
Macki too knows how to fly high
brazilian air after sunset.
After driving back to San Diego and Clairemont we see some of the locals and a team of brazilian vert skaters fly high above the coping, sometimes spinning in 360, 540 or 720 degrees... and Marcelo Bastos seems to practice flipping the board in mid air while spinning. Another brazilian told me they come from Sao Paolo. There is a girl with them, Karen Jones, and she skates very well, making proper backside ollies, airs, gay twists, grinds e.t.c..
Surfer looking for waves...
17th of March... it's a Monday, and after a late breakfast we drive up to Encinitas and McGill's skateshop. Macki's deck has a nasty crack in its tail and he needs a new one a.s.a.p., and the deck I bought on Friday is warped, which I didn't notice until it had trucks and wheels on it. So both I and Macki bought new decks, and tomorrow, when the manager should be in, I'll ask for a refund for the warped one. So, after our second shopping extravaganza at McGill's we park our car near the beach to check out the surf (among other nice things), and I take a quick swim in the Pacific Ocean.
The Clairemont locals rip like gods of vert. ..indy flips, 540s, rodeos, e.t.c. and yet it looks like they are merely warming up..... The skating we see on our first day here is absolutely fantastic.
El vert at Clairemont es muy bien! It is probably a bit higher than our ramp in Stockholm, and it is a lot wider. Its surface is grippy enough, but seems to have a few bumps, or the like. We skate a few hours in the middle of the day, and after lunch we come back for more, but I am too tired for a second session this day. Macki, however, is inspired enough, and skates for another hour and a half. This ramp will be our daily spot for about two weeks.
We drive from L.A. to San Diego along the interstate 5, and when we reach Encinitas, we see the YMCA skatepark on our left. However, we know their vert ramp is closed, and therefore we turn right and find Mike McGills skateshop. I bought a pair of shoes and a deck, and Macki bought a pair of exclusive Independent jeans extraordinaire and a couple of tshirts. From here we drive along the coast, we see surfers in the water, and after a while we reach San Diego and La Jolla. This is where we set up our place.
In spite of suffering from jet lag we managed to adapt to the vert ramp rather quickly. It is a bit lower, and its flat shorter than our ramp in Stockholm, but its surface seems more grippy, harder and faster. Macki flies high, and I pull some Elguerials before we decide to start our drive to San Diego. However, we will be back, and skate that combi pool as well!
Niklas was kind enough to get us directions to a hotel nearby, and in the morning, after an interesting encounter with american breakfast culture (though I am responsible for burning the toast) we drove back to the skatepark.
At about 5 p.m. while driving along the "405" we are caught in L.A. rush hour. We have an appointment with Niklas in Anaheim, or at the Block at Orange, and Vans Skatepark, but we arrive late and tired, and decide to just take a look, and then go grab a beer and some food. We did however see a couple of vert skaters there, and one of them seemed to be Lincoln Ueda practicing back side ollies on the extension. Inspiring. :)
..and we begin with a "highest air" from Stockholm to London and to Los Angeles. After a safe landing the U.S. border control is fairly quick (30 minutes), and when we get outside, going to the car rental office, it occurrs to me the weather is like a swedish summer, or better, perfect even, for skateboarding!
...here you will find all you need to know from Jerry and Mackis skate trip...more to come