Thursday, June 27, 2013

Forrest Huber: "Forrest Does Downtown" in the June SLUG Magazine

Here is Forrest's cover, and article from the June issue of SLUG Magazine.
Photos: Weston Colton
Words: Weston Colton, Sam Milianta, and Jovi Bathemess

For this article, Forrest Huber, Jovi Bathemess, Sam Milianta, Gabe Dusserre and I met up near the library Downtown. We parked our cars, and set off on our boards to skate and shoot spontaneously––organically, if you will. While Forrest is the focus of this piece, I think it is important to note that we were rolling as a small group of friends. The friendly dynamic and atmosphere that was created helped some of these tricks come to life. These photos were all shot on two Saturdays in downtown Salt Lake City. We didn’t get all the photos we wanted to––sometimes a spot gets the best of you, sometimes you get kicked out before you even get a chance to skate––but we had fun, and that is all that really matters.

“I really got to know Forrest Huber about two years ago when it was decided that he was going to start working at BC [Surf and Sport] Sandy. It was immediately apparent that he has a great energy about him, is outgoing and up for any task at hand. Those qualities that make him a great employee also make him an amazing skateboarder. Since he started working at BC, we have become great friends. Whether it’s a trip to Vegas (where he had to get his picture taken with every street performer), skating Downtown as he’s blasting over every fire hydrant, or selling skate product, he has the ability to make everything more fun with his contagious, high energy. His ability to push himself and try new things also helps motivate everyone around him. Forrest skates for BC Surf & Sport, Toy Machine, Bro Style, Pig Wheels and Dekline footwear.” –Jovi Bathemess

The ollie is the foundation of nearly every trick in skateboarding. Forrest finished off the second Saturday with this Trolley Square bar hop on the edge of Downtown

I’ve always loved wall rides––they remind me of Natas and Mark Gonzales from the first skate magazines I ever read in 1990. With timeless style, Forrest easily handles this high-to-low wallride.

This is the one exception where we left Downtown. We drove up to the University of Utah to skate this bump to bar. Forrest got an ollie and this frontside 180 before the campus police rolled up on us and put a stop to the session. That ended the day, and we headed to Este for some pizza.

Forrest, backside 50-50. “When street skating finally became an acceptable form of skateboarding, skaters started to venture away from the backyard ramps and mall parking lots of the suburbs and into the city. Spots began to consist of alleys, hydrants, metal loading docks and every other inch of Downtown. Forrest is the embodiment of this. There are no real spots or lines. The entire street is the spot, and what happens between stoplights is the line.” –Sam Milianta


The super-smooth concrete at skateparks has made us all soft. Street skating brings all sorts of challenges to getting a trick. Rocks, cracks and scantily-clad club girls in the alley were all obstacles Forrest dealt with when he did this frontside 50-50 transfer into the bank.

Downtown is constantly growing and evolving. New spots are popping up all the time, sometimes only for a few days. Other spots have been around for years, but haven’t been skateable for one reason or another. If you keep your eyes open, you might find some new concrete has been poured, and suddenly, that rail you’ve looked at forever is perfect for this feeble transfer into a driveway bomb.

I think Chong did a manual off these ledges back in a ’90s Dirty Hessian video—Deth or Stigmata, I believe. It’s likely that Chong skated these ledges before Forrest was born. I love the look on kids’ faces when I tell them that Mark White kickflipped the IBM stairs over 15 years ago, or that there used to be a handrail down the middle and DJ Chavez boardslid it with huge, soft wheels. Downtown has a rich history of skating. It’s quite possible that this sandstone ledge has been 5-0’d before, but that’s not important. Forrest had never done it before. You just hit spots and then move on before you get kicked out.

Forrest, backside 180 nosegrind. “We live in Utah, home of the greatest snow on Earth. Snow just happens to be an enemy of the skateboard, so, to adapt, most of us have become accustomed to skating garages and indoor spots. At this point, it’s just another way that street skating has had to adapt over the years.” –Sam Milianta

"Skateboarding downtown has a lot to offer that can't really be found elsewhere. For me it's the spontaneous nature of it that makes it so enjoyable. You never really who you are going to see, the traffic you will have to deal with, or what you are going to skate. Generally all that is really known is the starting point because downtown lends itself to be one big skate spot. Why pick a single spot to drive to, or confine yourself to the controlled environment of the skatepark, when you can fully utilize the freedom that skateboarding is intended to give you when skating downtown?" -Jovi Bathemess

Check out the full issue here.