Slasher Sam, despite sounding like a villain from an 80’s horror movie, is an incredibly rad human being. Originally from Birmingham, and currently residing down in Bristol, he has some sick tricks, but is mostly a connoisseur of the building block of all transition skating: The Slash Grind.
This is where Sam got his nickname, and he often pulls out some lesser seen variants of a trick I think most people dismiss as being “too easy”. Slash Grinds, especially on crusty transitions, are NOT as easy as people will have you believe, and they feel hella good when you scratch a good one and lock in just right. So, here’s Slasher himself to give you a Slash-Grind-eye’s view of the best transitions. – Ade
All transitions are great, but some are better than others. Here they are: I’ve put these in order of distance from my house, from furthest to nearest. – Sam
5. Moeraki Mini ramp aka Hampden Halfpipe, New Zealand
You can see this ramp getting shredded in the Anti Hero skateboards Body Corporate vid. I think that guy who’s really good spins a 540 on it. I was lucky enough to visit this gem on a road trip I took with my girlfriend and then 6 month old daughter. It’s a great example of the sort of thing that doesn’t get built very often, very wide with a good bit of whip too. It’s virtually on the beach, there’s a campsite nearby, and an ice cream shop with very generous portions. I want this ramp in my garden. I even took pics with Jen standing next to it so I can figure out the height and radius for when I have a big enough back garden.
4. Saffron Walden Skatepark’s Pool
You know how people are always whingeing about how we never get the kind of parks they do in America? Well next time they begin harping on, tell them their prayers have been answered by the good people of Dreamland Skateparks, and quite some years ago too. The whole park is quality, but the bowl is a work of art: perfect proportions, shapely contours, endless lines, and big concrete coping that makes a sumptuous grinding noise that will certainly be heard above all those portable speakers.
3. Crust Ramp, Oldbury on Severn
The Crust Ramp feels like skateboarding on Stonehenge. From my research into various archaeological digs, I have discovered that it was built in the 90s by some of the locals (locals, in this case, refers to the Deliverance kind, not the kind who skate and pledge allegiance to a particular spot or place). It’s made up of concrete sections, some of which are cracked, and some have dropped out of alignment with their neighbours, and some both! Which means you have to pick your line, and not be put off when you inadvertently slip into a ride-on-grind coming up or down the transition.
When we first started visiting, there was no deck and the grassy knoll behind the ramp was lower so to drop in you had to teeter on the lip which added to it’s intimidation. A few years back though, a concerned citizen added concrete platforms and wobbly scaffold handrails making roll-ins possible. I have on occasion searched Rightmove for a house in Oldbury, such is the allure of the Crust Ramp. Beside which, Oldbury has a great pub, a community shop, and a nuclear power station – it’s like a trip to Springfield.
2. Daveside, Bristol
Got to give our own little slice of DIY crust a mention. Partly because it’s where I got the bug for building, partly because it’s a rad spot, and mostly because you build what you like to skate! She’s nice on a nice day, got lights at night (which is when you’ll probably find me down there), with a lovely view of the iconic suspension bridge to boot.
It’s an old train depot with a bike path running through it. We have concreted ramps up to the existing infrastructure from its time as the depot. There’s also now a pump track to warm up on and BMXers have been going nuts on a spot called curb-side under the bridge for when the weather sets in. Just watch out for the self-important, lycra clad cyclists that don’t want the added weight of a bell on their precious carbon fibre bikes.
1. The quarter adjacent to the bowl at Filton Skatepark, Bristol
This little beaut stands a whopping 3ft-ish tall, with tight transition, and nothing on the lip but pure, raw concrete. It is also splendidly wide relative to the height. It’s almost always not being skated by anyone else, so it’s fun to session if the park gets too busy. If the rest of Filton got bulldozed or destroyed in a freak weather incident, I would undoubtedly still visit to get a scratch on this little gem.
- The Rota-Flora, Hamburg – If you’ve been, then you know.
- Eat Shit corner, Swompton, Coventry (RIP) – I once did a grind on the eat shit corner. I am pretty sure it took me a whole afternoon, and I ate a tonne of shit, but it felt like my greatest achievement on a board. We need Swompton MKII.
Thanks for getting me to do this, Ade.
Thanks to all the talented peeps for the pics.
Thanks anyone for reading if you made it this far.
Next time: best banks!