Photos & Words: Aidan Ouma-Machio
Camera: Fuji GA645
Film: Kodak Portra 400 120

During what seems to be known as the wettest season in history for Sydneysiders, it only makes sense that skateboarders will do anything in their power to avoid the agonising predicament of what to do when the sky is crying. For the New Balance crew, the best bet was to gamble with the gods and try their luck upstate in the crusty steel city that is Newcastle. 


Day one was met with the usual struggle of finding our feet from the lack of skating we’d done in our own city but matched equally by our impulse to explore the new terrain. Sean (Better known as STR or The Worm) is a renowned Newcastle local. We were fortunate enough to have Sean as our tour guide for the trip – with every car ride a little history lesson of Steel City skateboarding and insight into Sean’s trials and tribulations growing up in town.

Riwaz, Jett, and I trekked up to Newcastle a day earlier than the rest of the NB# team with STR to make use of the somewhat dry patches rumoured across the weather apps. To our dismay, Jett sprained the hell out of his ankle at the second spot, was benched for the remainder of the weekend and dubbed the team cheerleader.




Saturday. With the entire crew now accounted for, caffeinated and ready for the day ahead, Connor Reeve (another Steel City local) took centre stage at the first spot in The Hill. Handling business, Sam Coady reviews the fruits of Connor’s labour and we make our way to Merewether Beach. Despite the constant dribble of rain at this unforgiving barrier into the bank, Riwaz and Noah (Fuzi) triumph against the elements and walk away appeased by their results. 





 At Newcastle Beach Connor seemed to defy gravity with what was undoubtedly the trick of the weekend. If you ever find yourself visiting Estabar in Newcastle, try and imagine skating over that bump to bar let alone switch. Later that night lurking the Civic while many others sought entertainment at a boozy establishment, Karl (Dorman) decided to bring the show to us by attempting the unthinkable at this almost vertical bank (below). 

Come Sunday, following a few more missions around the CBD the team slowly peeled off back to the real world, Sean’s family treated us to some Mexican food, and we too proceeded to return to our saturated lifestyle.

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June 08, 2022