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Riley Hawk’s Skate Faves

Where to Ride in San Diego

Ready to drop into San Diego’s skate scene? Grab your board and let pro skater Riley Hawk lead the way. San Diego has always been an awesome place for skaters and skate fans, and Riley is showing off the spots that he loves.

Riley’s Favorite… skate park in San Diego

  • Head to Encinitas Skate Plaza—known as Poods’ Park to the locals—on any day and you might find Riley and his friends tearing it up. It’s a big, open park that draws people of all skill levels. Riley likes the big range of everything—from ramps to spines to rails, even a bowl—and says it’s a great skatepark to learn new tricks.

Riley’s Favorite… childhood skate park

  • Riley grew up going to the Carlsbad Skate Park, which was then the only skate park around. It was the stomping ground for Riley and his friends, the place where he grew his skills. He loved that the park had lights, so he could skate well into the night.

Riley’s Favorite… place to skate that’s not an actual skate park

  • Riley’s expertise is street-style skating, so he spends plenty of his time finding cool new parts of San Diego to skate: sets of stairs, hand rails, curbs—all of these seemingly unassuming structures offer new and endless possibilities for a skater like Riley. His favorite places are ones with concrete ditches, which act almost as tiny halfpipes.

Riley’s Favorite… post-skate grub spot

  • After a day of skating, nothing hits the spot like a burrito. Riley recommends Lola’s in Carlsbad. In fact, he’s been refueling with their burritos since he was a kid.

Riley’s Favorite… San Diegan skate brands

  • San Diego is a breeding ground for skate brands and companies, like Transworld Skateboarding Magazine, Birdhouse Skateboards (co-founded by Riley’s dad, Tony) and more. Since Riley was little, he was a big fan of Zero Skateboards and Fallen’s skate shoes. He used to look up to the Zero and Fallen skaters, watching them shred it at the local parks.

Riley’s Favorite… San Diego skate shop

  • Where there’s great skating, there are great skate shops. One of Riley’s favorites is Asylum, right by the Oceanside Pier. He’s also really excited about a shop in Vista that a few of his friends (who he affectionately calls “true skate rats”) recently opened up, called The House of Vista.

Riley’s Favorite… skater hangouts

  • “Most of the bars along the coast are pretty rad,” says Riley. He’s more of a dive bar type of guy, so he likes hole-in-the-wall spots like Larry’s Beach Club in Oceanside, where the live bands are great and the drinks are cheap. He also likes Pour House, another spot that attracts some great bands.

Riley’s Favorite… surf spot...?

  • While Riley is a skater by trade, by blood (hi, Tony!) and by passion, he’s also a San Diego kid—meaning he surfs, too. He doesn’t have a specific favorite spot, but just likes to cruise down the coast and find a little break without many people. Each time he goes out, he says he finds a new favorite surf spot. That’s Riley’s life—from one board to the next.

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