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editor's note:
Watsonville

* Outdoor: 'Sphalt / Metal
* Free
* Trannie / Street
* Rating: Heavy Metal

The following pics of the fine Watsonville skatepark are brought to you via submission from Craig Smith - CEO of Ball Hitch Ramps. His company has a "stunt team" and they also manufacture portable and permanent metal ramps. Here's their number - 562.972.9723.

We're interested in metal parks in general. Metal ramps stick around for a while, that means that the park won't wear out in one season - that's a good thing [there are a lot of beater parks, built recently, that are already unskateable...]. Some riders don't like the slipperiness of metal - usually just takes a little getting used to. Other metal parks suffer from blazing hot surface conditions during the summer that can actually brand your ass if you're not careful. For some examples of other metal ramps, check out the following: SkateLab in Simi, CA, the metal park in Escondido, CA, and the McRamp [our term for generic carbon-copy skateparks] collection in the Denver, CO area.

We've got mixed feelings about this type of park. On the one hand, we love mini-ramps. They're awesome. These McRamp-style parks usually build minis, and that's cool w/ us. We like the durability, and the slipperiness can actually allow you stick some tricks that you couldn't stick on concrete. All that's cool.

The drawbacks [besides the heat factor] are usually just in execution. This park, for instance, looks like it has zero flow - they could have set these ramps up a little better so you could string a run together. It's also too small to get too excited about... it's really behind the times compared to nearby parks like Gilroy or Salinas.

However, all criticisms aside, for a lot of communities, a McRamp park is all they're ever going to get. We're guessing that these pre-fab creations are cost-efficient and *do* provide a little fun for riders, especially beginners. Better than the sidewalk, that's for sure...

Directions: Coming from Santa Cruz, take Highway 1 south about 15 miles. Exit at Green Valley Parkway and head north. Make a right [east] onto Main Street. Turn right at the streetlight, immediately after the Target shopping center. The Address is 1301 Main Street.

...scroll down for pics




[ click pix to enlarge ]




^ This is probably
the main attraction
here at Watsonville





^ I've seen kids
have a good time
in parks like these...
but these parks are
definitely limited
and don't really
focus on flow
or creative lines
at all.





^ The lonely quarter-
pipe...



[ click pix to enlarge ]



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