We often talk about outdoor skateparks on this blog and we tend to leave the street aspect of skateboarding aside. Even if it's what we love doing the most on our boards! Today, get ready for an expedition in the streets of Montreal with 5 spots where you won't get kicked out and where you can simply skate the whole day without thinking about anything but your own fun.
The cool thing about Downtown is that everything is close. By bike, skate or metro, it's easy to go from spot to spot without wasting time. The only problem is that the majority of downtown spots are "busts". What does that mean? That means there will be security guards who will prevent you from skating as soon as your wheels hit the ground. Good thing we have places where skateboarding is tolerated, and even sometimes encouraged!
To know what Montreal spots you can skate all day without ever getting kicked out, continue reading.
For street skateboarding fans, the Peace Park is an ideal spot. The park has a bunch of obstacles ranging from classic marble ledges around the park to bumps over cans, steps, metal ledge and flatbars. This spot, although perfect, has several difficulties. The ledges are pretty high and a little round after years of skateboarding, the ground rolls well, but there are still some cracks here and there. That being said, all these difficulties make it so that if you are able to land your trick at Peace, it means that you can do it anywhere.
The spot, located at the corner of St-Laurent and Ste-Catherine Streets can sometimes be populated by street people, so it is not recommended to go there at night if you are new to the place. Among the spots where skateboarding is tolerated in Montreal, the Peace Park is the only spot that is really 100% legal. Thanks to David Bouthillier, former Mayor of Montreal Denis Coderre and the SAT for allowing the legalization of skateboarding at this legendary spot.
Although skateboarding is not "legal" there, it is possible to skate at Parc Laf all day long without getting harassed. The park has several spots spread over its entire surface. And no matter where you skate in the park, no one will bother you. Just be nice to pedestrians and bikes and you're good for hours of skating!
As for spots, let's start with the fire flatground, wallride and perfect marble bench located on the south side of the park, just in front of the hospital on Sherbrooke Street. Keep walking West along the park on Sherbrooke and you will come across the famous Gap to Ledge that we see in all Montreal skateboarding videos.
Inside the park, close to the lake, is a natural bump after which one can place a bench to skate over or use it as a rail and finally, near the small bridge in the middle of the park are two sets of steps with rails and skinny banks to drop down. *** No one has ever skate the rail so far. ***
Square Dorchester and Place du Canada
If you're heading further into Downtown, Dorchester Square, or Peel Park, is a destination of choice where you're almost certain to never get kicked out. This park has all the obstacles to please the biggest street and technical skating fans: Manual pads, high ledges, tiles you can prop up, good flatground and other more funky set ups around the various statues on the site.
On the other side of the street is Place du Canada, which also has a lot of fun spots like a perfect little manual pad, another ledge and some cannons to pop tricks over, among other. Located at the corner of René-Lévesque and Peel streets, parks are sometimes quite busy so if you want to keep skating, pay attention to the pedestrians. If you skate in a respectful way, the people around you will respect you too!
Peel Alley Spot
After a fiery session at Peel Park, you can always stop at the classic alley bank spot right next to the park (exact location below). This spot is definitely skatable no matter the time of the day and nobody will ever bother you. The spot consists of a small and long transition type bank on which you can slide or grind from one side to the other. Thank you Josh Clark for making this spot a must in Montreal by adding concrete! Spot is a little hard to skate, but really fun once you get the hang of it.
There are, however, a few things you need to know about this spot. If you are sensitive to odors, take a nose clip as the alley always smells really bad. The stench comes from the containers where all the nearby restaurants throw their garbage. The spot can also be quite difficult to skate due to garbage all over the place.
The Olympic Stadium:
Once you have covered enough ground downtown, jump in the metro and go to the Olympic Stadium to end the day. Also a spot where you won't be getting kicked out of (unless you skate the roof), the stadium has so many spots that it is impossible to name them all in just a couple paragraphs. To avoid making this article a 15 pagers, we'll name a few and leave the searching to you once you get to the Holy Land. First, let's start with the Big O. A lgendary ramp-shaped structure that was used as an entrance for Olympic athletes, but has now become dedicated to skateboarding. The O was moved and saved a couple years ago and is now completely legal for skateboarding.
Then, you have the flags part of the stadium, that's also filled with spots. Ledges, wallrides, steps, etc. The ground is less smooth than it used to be, but is still fully skatable. At the bottom of the Stadium, near Pierre de Coubertin Street, there's several other spots such as a bump to rail, a manual pad, steps and much more. Since skating on the roof can be a bust, keep that for the end of the session! Boom! What a perfect way to end a good ol' day of skateboarding in style!