It's safe to say that Jake Johnson counts as a modern day skate-anomaly--rare sightings, low social media presence, and jaw dropping tricks that always seem to be kept under wraps. He did one of the heaviest tricks of the whole trip on the first day. Not only has his skating always been mind-blowing ever since we were kids--he's always been one of those people who is just interesting to be around. Jake was always doodling in this notebook he had with him, and ended up doing one of the more accurate portraits of my dome-piece I've ever seen. Thanks for that one Jake.
Words by Joe Monteleone
Photos by Sam Muller
This school (above) was described to Sam and I as the Tony Hawk's Pro Skater school. There were roughly six spots on the grounds and they all looked like they were at completely different locations. This was the most hidden section, and the last spot in the school we skated. Jake started to toy around with this over the rail into the extremely rough ground but it was only a matter of time before he was rolling away. Ollie into WW3 chunk.
This bank spot above is basically a mountain on the side of the highway on the way to Dallas. When we showed this spot to Vincent Alvarez, he was super down to go hit it. We pulled up around 9 a.m., and he had the jam box ready to go. The worst part about the spot was that if Vin lost his board down the hill, it had a 95% chance of smashing into these pillars, which it did, almost every time his board got away from him. All that aside, he took this switch noseblunt-slide back to switch.
Vin loves his Jambox. The man has it going as soon as the van starts and doesn't shut it off until he's back in his room. I told Vin that when I was a kid, I wanted entrance music anytime I went into a store--Similar to Stone Cold's glass shatter for all my wrestling nerds out there. He responded by telling me that he pictured that every time we got out of the van with the Jambox. Vin did not stop skating on this trip, he didn't stop moving, skated every spot, everyday, with boards that looked like a 12-year-old's first board. "If it goes in the garbage it belongs there". One of the most pure street skateboarders on the planet and having fun the whole way.
Adrian Adrid is one of my favorite people on the planet and one of the most talented skateboarders I know. He was a no brainer for me when it came time to add people to the team, and having him on the trip made it that much better. Style that's untouchable, landing everything he tried efficiently and perfectly--backside flip into the sunset.
Ronbo was sick the first two days of the trip so he had to catch a flight to meet us for the last few days–but oh did he make up for it. Ronnie skated every spot and got clips everywhere we went. He put on a 10 a.m. demo at a backyard ramp one morning with some of the best inverts I've ever witnessed in person. Street Ron even came out in the iteration of a rare handrail session. He was handling business, but at the end of the trip he slammed badly on the run up to what would've been his first bump to bar. He's a true warrior from San Pedro with the second loosest trucks I've ever seen. This Madonna was a thing of beauty and all too easy for Ronbo.
Jake Hayes is a quiet giant and a straight assassin. He rarely walks away from a spot without getting his trick, not to mention in less than five tries. He's really impressive to watch skate, it's all done as proper as you can do it, and phenomenally popped. Jake is the dude who jumps up and over everything like he's going up a curb. This kickflip was back to back with Jake Johnson's switch Ollie, and the last two tricks to go down on the trip. Stoked you're part of the family, mate.
The hometown hero, the pride and joy of Fort Worth, Texas, skateboarding, the newly pro Auby Taylor. Auby was an honorary tour guide on the trip, giving us stories about all the tricks he did at every spot we went to, telling us tales of his childhood and later life--and we even got to meet his mom. He was constant comedy and really excited to be home skating with all his friends. In the last year he has turned himself into quite the tranny skater, and was seen doing Hewitt-approved eggplants. Auby takes it to the distance with a backside 50-50 gap out.
Before I met Peter Hewitt, I didn't really know what to expect from him, and honestly I was kind of nervous, as he's a pretty legendary guy. Over time I got to know Pete, and even more so on this trip, and found out he's a big kid and a bit of a joker. He set the tone with support for almost every spot we went to, kept the vibe fun, and I found out he's honestly one of the radder dudes you could travel with. Wallride to flat at over a Texan Grand Canyon.
Texas tour video coming soon!
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