The place to be...
"There's karma in this place", said legend
Steve Alba once about his long gone home spot,
Pipeline Skatepark in Upland, aptly nicknamed "The Badlands".
If I understood him right, having never been
there myself,it was an attempt at describing a
place that is not just another skate spot,
and is almost impossible to describe just because
of that.A place where you have to pay your
dues, spiritually as well as physically, and which
gives the lucky few able to experience it-and in the best case ,dominate it - something
remember for the rest of their lives.
Poolriders know when a place is special.
Ask the Z-boys what made the Dogbowl special
and they'll probably tell you that its
surroundings and history was as important as
its size and shape.
Most skaters have places that mean a lot to
them, but in this case, we're big-headed enough
to tell you that we have more than
This is the real thing.
This place could be called "Animal bowl" or
"Trap bowl" just because of the amount of interesting
creatures you end up finding on the flat
bottom.Imagine this : you show up for a session, head
across the field with Dominique to the bowl
and hear him go:"looks like we have a visitor".
You look down and you're like to see snakes,
rabbits, birds and the occasional dog or cat.
In the summer, any animal who stupidly slides
down the roll-in channel is done because the heat
kills him within a few hours.
It is a good place to study behavioural
science.It seems like the bowl brings out the beast in anyone,
including white rabbits.Just like a gnarly
skater using some anger on the coping, the little things go
nuts in there.
You come to rescue them and they try to
attack you ! No joke, even if most of you are probably
laughing at the thought of some furry little
animal trying to bite you. You have to be careful,
the owner knows.Ask him about his last
encounter with the vert rabbits from hell.
The snakes "dry" very quickly in the sun, so
there's not much to fear .But the most interesting discovery
we ever made was a huge eagle-like type of
bird.The poor bastard decided to land at the bottom because
he had found a rat to chomp on. By the time
he was done , he didn't have enough space to spread his wings.
That tells you about how tight the place
is.Let's just say that the firemen freed him, and seriously thought the
bowl was designed to be a trap.The horses
were smarter, luckily for us. But imagine what it feels like to come
up on a frontside grind and meet up with a
horsehead.Even if they are gone now, the more-known visitors
who came thirteen years ago still
At night, the boars come out and do a lot of
damage to the surroundings.If one of them ever gets too curious,
you're in for one of the best french cuisine
dinners in your life...
The place where we test all the