Riley Boland Interview

Riley Boland is well-known to most Calgary skaters. He’s been skating for most of his life and skating well. If you’ve ever been at Millennium or Cochrane Skatepark and wondered who the long-haired skinny guy seemingly going way too fast and too big for his frame was, it was probably Riley. Read on if you want to know a little bit more about this all-terrain ripper and contest shredder. Thanks to Jeff Thorburn for most of the photos.

Stalefish - Thorburn Photo

What’s your full name and where were you born?
Riley Boland
General hospital Calgary

Who do you ride for?
Oakley, Vans footwear, Creature, ACE trucks, Power Rider wheels, Insight clothing, The Source Skate Shop

Who do you skate with?
Colin Nogue mostly. John Fearns of course. Drew Merriman, Elliot James, Dustin Henry, Tyler Warren, and Dave Ehrenreich– all these dudes are the best.

Rock to Fakie - Thorburn Photo

Where do you skate? Favourite spots?
I love to skate Mills in Calgary for the most part I try to hit the streets every now and then. The thing about Mills is you can always go there alone and you will always have someone to skate with because of the way Calgary’s scene is. Like when you are in Vancouver you go to a park and there will maybe be someone there but usually not. In Calgs everyone is always at MILLS!
My favorite spot? street it would have to be Amco. No I don’t even have a favorite spot. Mills is where it’s at but Lincoln City, Oregon and Haleiwa, Hawaii are my favorite places to go to skate.

Boardslide Transfer - Thorburn photo

What are your plans for the next few months? Any trips planned?
I don’t really have much plans for the first part of winter. I just got back from Hawaii yesterday; that was an awesome trip and I skated everyday. I have a messed up knee and basically everything else on my legs so I am going to just chill and try to get in good shape.
In the later winter months I hope to get down to Cali some time and there is a Power Rider Wheels trip happening somewhere. Not sure where that will be through though.

Where do you skate in the winter?
Skate? I don’t much that’s for sure. With no Source Park and now my ramp is gone there is no where to skate except for a few indoor ledges in parkades. Other then that I just skate when Mills is dry.


Gap to Boardslide - Thorburn photo

What do you think of the parks in the Calgary area (Airdrie, Olds, etc)?
I have only skated the Airdrie park twice as its kinda far and not nearly as good as mills, and mills is just a few blocks from my house so I just pop over there for a sesh whenever I can. Though Airdrie’s street stuff is super radical. I haven’t been to Olds or anywhere else; I heard there was a new one coming somewhere soon.  Cochrane is always fun but I haven’t even been able to skate there once all year.

You’ve had some photos in magazines. How did that come about?
Hahaha, umm I just skate I guess.

Boneless - Thorburn photo

What do you do when you’re not skating?
I am always working when I’m not skating. I own my own tactical gear company so I am a seamster (not a scenester, a seamster). It’s a lot of work owning your own business. Also go camping as much as I can in my Westy.

What’s your company called?
It’s called Ferro Concepts. If you were around back when Norbeece was in the mix they used to call me “Wey Ferro” and that’s where the name came from. I make military gear like vests, pouches, packs etc.  I started it by making my own stuff and then some for friends for military collection purposes but then people started wanting it and so here I am– running a sweat shop, haha.

Ferro Concepts
Do you film? Where does your footage go?
There are some clips in secret places. Don’t ask me I wish I knew… ask Bacon haha!

What about contests? Do you like doing them? You were in Slam City Jam when it was in Calgary a few years ago. What was that like?
I love contests. All your homies from all over are in one spot ripping. It’s the best sesh all the time.
That was 2006 haha, kinda ancient. It was the last Slam that’s for sure. It was neat to have it in Calgary but it it shouldn’t have left Van.

Ollie - Thorburn photo

What’s up with your set-ups? You ride the loosest trucks I’ve ever seen in my life. How do you get them like that and don’t you get wheel bite?
Hahaha I was just looking at my setup yesterday in the airport and thought “this thing looks retarded, big wheels, skinny trucks, wide board, risers–it looks like a monster truck. But hey, it isn’t about being cool like in snowboarding, it’s about what works and this janky thing works for me.
The trucks have been in the works for many years. I have been riding the same bushings for probably 5 years, though I have to replace one so my one truck is much tighter now.
It’s ankle strength to not get wheel bit but I have bushings to help with that. Still happens when you jump down stuff though.

Do you still skate in slip ons?
Only slips forever! I can’t do laces.

Air - Brock Mitchell photo

If you could change anything in Calgary skateboarding, what would it be?
Have an indoor park.

Any final words?
Thanks for your time and thanks to all the peeps that have helped me skate over the years! Word Fearngully.

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