Photography by: Chris Martin, Dylan Kasson, Jon Archer, & Tyler Wheeland. Copywriting by: Chris Martin & Dylan Kasson.
As we were headed out of Woodward West, we decided we would hit Bakersfield and cruise Kern Side, a local DIY. We got up early to avoid the 100 degree temps, but we still failed. By the time we were riding, it was 106 degrees Fahrenheit. Our shoes would start to melt to the concrete. The locals called this town, HELL.
Tom ended up battling a fakie 50-50 to fakie on the extension of the quarter. He fell on his back with a sigh of relief from resting, but his skin was baking on the concrete. Tom, Jon, Christian, and Tyler survived the heat and landed their tricks. We immediately left anticipating the cooling airflow of the bus.
The drive was almost as torturous as Kern Side. The only plus side was we had a breeze. We stopped off at a rest stop and everyone was barely clothed walking into the bathrooms. Families were boggled by the site of eight shirtless dudes. We made it to the Hella Grip house a little late so we just kicked it and caught up, resting for an eventful day tomorrow.
The first spot had a lot to offer. Tom was going for a rail to ledge transfer that got the better part of him. He battled this trick for around an hour before he was defeated. Jon ended up getting creative with a picnic table. He hopped up on top of the table that was about 1.5 scooters long and then quickly 360 over the railing.
As night was falling, we wanted to cruise around the Hella Grip house to film more. Tyler had plans for a precision ride to ledge, but we got the boot after the first try. We crept further into Oakland where we would find plenty to ride.
The next day we headed to San Jose. The first couple of downtown spots were immediate kick outs, but as the day progressed our odds improved. One trick that blew some minds was Issac’s front smith in this random groove on a hubba. The notch kept Issac’s back wheel in place as he grinded to the bottom, It was a one of a kind spot.
Grant got his 50 quickly, so Tyler pushed him to wall ride the fence. After much debate of the possibility, and ten tries later, Grant's scooter was flying through the air into the forest. As everyone was packing up and heading back, Grant was madly running around in the forest looking for his scooter. The way out of the path was a short climb up a wall. We quickly realized there was a wasp nest where we were climbing, so record time was made scaling it.
Since the Hella Grip guys had to work, we started taking the train into San Francisco. We met up at Embarcadero and from there the only way was up the hills. We usually find spots by pushing to spots we know of. This is how most the team stays loose over 10 hours of riding. It makes for a sore next day, but stretching always solves it.
While we were staying at the Hella Grip house we were moving the bus daily to avoid parking tickets and theft. A Fun fact we learned while doing this is that the 3 batteries that run the bus only get charged when the bus motor is above 3,000 RPM for 10-20 minutes. Because of this, the bus was dead and we needed a special tow truck to come and jump start our batteries.
Once we got the bus running, we drove it to the flower shop and parked it there. It was the best location we could think of to be stuck if the batteries died. From testing the batteries Chris discovered they weren't fully charged. He borrowed Pat’s car and drove around the city buying replacement batteries as the rest of the crew searched for hill spots.
As we were checking out a spot nearby, someone said, “This is a Patrick spot”. A few of us understood right away what they were talking about and others were completely confused.They were pointing out the transfer from the ledge to platform. Some of us didn’t believe it was possible but surely it was. The police arrived so we thought Patrick's long jump attempts were over. We soon realized they wanted to see him do it as much as we did. With the speed of a jet plane, Patrick lept off the ledge and glided in for landing, not once, but twice. Bonking off the platform his legs buckled, then regained composure to land on the ground. All members of onlookers were in disbelief. There are some things that seem impossible before they are done, and possible after someone does it. This will continue to remain impossible even though Pat did it.
Issac’s hill bomb to jump the stairs with a two second power slide to end it all was another treat to watch. Jon was at the intersection blocking traffic but one person blew the stop sign after Issac was already on his way down. The tension was high as he barreled down, but there was nothing we could do at this point. Luckily the car made it through the intersection with time to spare.
Christian was interested in the downhill line, but solving the puzzle of what to film was the real challenge. After he decided on a line, we all looked at Anton. With the impressive downhill work from his latest film, we all knew he could handle filming on such a steep hill. Earlier that day his scooter smashed his toenail trying to tripple whip and it still hadn't stopped bleeding. He was rotating his sock so it would soak the blood up in different locations. Still, enthusiastic as ever he barreled down the hill with a VX in hand. One of the neighbors kindly moved his car for us while we ironically scuffed up his neighbors wall.