Crystal Palace skatepark is finally here! After a lot of chats between council and skatepark designers, south east London now has this concrete beauty to enjoy, with a little street course, interesting bowl and dialled pool...
I headed down there with the South African wild man, loose goose, huck and hope gent, Darren Van Wyk (@darren_deez) to shoot some photos and video clips showing off the main features of Crystal Palace skatepark. Let's take a closer look.
Words, photos and video by Robin Pearson
Crystal Palace Skatepark info:
Crystal Palace skatepark is set into the parkland in a long line next to the Sports Centre. You walk into the park in the small street course – this has a few nice features but it is very small. There's a steep taco style quarter at the far end, faced by a flatbank hip and a pretty whippy pump bump / boob. On from there, there's a small bank with a tiny sub box – only just about big enough to get a peg on. A few other ledges on each side hold it all together but really, this isn't a hugely inspiring street section for BMX. Perhaps it's more suited to the skate guys.
Out of the street and into the bowl, there are some little transitions that can offer you some transfers if the park isn't too crowded. The bowl itself is quite an odd design, actually. While it has a nice deep end (extended, not a level change) and at least one really good hip for the right-foot-forward guys, the rest of it might take a few sessions to find the best way to use it all. There are a few hips and corners that aren't immediately friendly but I'm sure there are some nice lines to be found.
The main hip is one of those triple-sided arrangements where you have to go pretty fast and send it across the whole lot, missing the middle piece. It comes out of the extended section, so there's some uncertainty about where you might take off... All part of the challenge. For the lefties, there's a nice transfer from the centre of this hip into the deep end – if you can find the speed. The transitions are mostly pretty nice, though I found one side of the deepend had a bit of a kink in it.
Beyond the bowl, there's a very nice pool. A welcome addition, there's nothing like this around the area! This thing is smooth. Pool coping all the way, lovely transitions, not too scary, just the ticket. 8.5ft deep end, 6ft shallow.
Anyone who fancies a gnarly transfer could take a look at the options between the shallow end of the pool and the deep end of the bowl... There are definitely some possibilities... Savage. Let's see it!
Free, public park.
Crystal Palace Park, SE20 8DT
Exiting Crystal Palace train station, take a right and cruise down the hill on the road, past the Sports Centre.