DAN ATHERTON: Build Your Own Skatepark - Ride UK BMX

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DAN ATHERTON: Build Your Own Skatepark

Mountain bike badass boss man Dan Atherton and friends built their own skatepark. That’s winter absolutely sorted! This looks decent, with some good quarters, a big vert wall and plenty of jump boxes. Proper trails-style set up.

For those who aren’t familiar with Dan Atherton, let us fill you in…

“Dan’s riding career began when he started racing BMX in Somerset when he was fourteen years old and it wasn’t long before he had siblings Gee and Rachel ( both multi-World Champions in Downhill Mountain-Biking) hooked too. 

Dan has had top flight results in BMX, Enduro, Downhill and Four Cross  (including a National Championship, numerous World Cup and EWS podiums and a 2008 World Cup win) But in 2010 his love of Dirt Jumping led to an accident which threatened to end his career when he broke his neck at C1 vertebrae. He says that he ’s “a rider rather than a racer, happiest putting in hour after hour of laps at the skatepark” or working with collaborators and friends like Robbie Meade to produce spectacular moving images.”

This park looks fun! With the help of Silverline Tools, Dan and the crew put together this fast set up with some reclaimed ramps:

“BMX is where everything started for us and riding skatepark was a huge part of that. Obviously living in UK with the shit weather there’s a huge motivation to build somewhere to ride in the winter so we have some of the best indoor skateparks in the world. Where I live in Wales it’s amazing for mountains and riding downhill but it’s a long drive to The Boneyard or Jason Carpenter’s Rampworld, so we found ourselves a barn, and a farmer willing to rent it to us.

“We knew we were never going to build a big corporate skatepark, that was part of the attraction – just renting a shed and getting stuck into building ramps.”

We knew that what we were going to build here was never going to be a big corporate skatepark, that was part of the attraction, renting a shed and getting stuck straight into building the ramps. We had a massive piece of luck, I managed to find a load of second hand ramps that had been seized by a bailiff. We brought back two full loads of an articulated lorry but only about six of the ramps were actually going to work for what we needed, all the transitions were too tight, even the ones that weren’t right though we took to pieces for their raw materials which saved us loads.

I got shit loads of advice from Jason Carpenter, I was texting him all day, every day, the guys at the Boneyard, were great too, we knew the ramps that we liked and they were really chilled about giving us the dimensions, all they wanted was to come and ride it. The great thing about being part of such a strong biking community in the Dyfi is that there was a crew of friends more than willing to help with the creation, we are lucky to have Olly and Chris as part of that crew, both of them really good carpenters so slowly our skatepark started to come together, very slowly! Everyone was super-excited when Silverline sent us a screw-gun, that speeded it up loads! Those guys also need a huge shout out, their support with all the tools for the build and funds towards buying ply, OSB and cross members made sure that the whole project got off the ground.

“I see the thing evolving now, piece by piece with people adding the things they’re excited to ride.”

In a way building the skatepark was almost more rewarding than working with dirt, it’s more immediate. As soon as you finish building you can ride – there’s none of the after care and waiting for it to settle like you have with dirt. In fact that’s why it’s not finished – the skeleton is there but we’ve still got to add a final layer of ply, God knows when we’ll stop riding long enough to do that. Chris is building a bowl in the corner because that’s what he likes to ride, and there’s another couple of small things were talking about. That’s how I see the thing evolving now, piece by piece with people adding the things they’re excited to ride. More of the local kids are being pulled in to ride with us so it’s lucky we’ve got the space to keep progressing the build.” – Dan Atherton

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