An Ode To The Covered 5

The five marble stairs located at the corner of South 6th Street and 3rd Avenue South are familiar to almost all skateboarders in the Twin Cities. The measuring stick for gnarly for many years, the spot is most commonly referred to as Covered 5 because of the overhang it sits under. 

The giant glass windows, red marble walls, and the cool echo when you land in the tunnel all make for memorable clips. The first time I saw footage of the spot was in Fobia's Hatebreeders. Rada Espinoza did a wallride alongside the set which at the time legitimately blew my mind. You see, this was long before Jake Johnson


Over the years the amount of moves that have been done down this legendary set of stairs are far too many to name, although I do want to give a nod to Chad Benson for for doing a manual kickflip down the five, and to CJ Tambornino for rotating his board 540 degrees and flipping it more than once down the stairs. Trying to figure out who did what down the five is a task I am just not up for.  Figuring out who did what going up the long 5 stairs on the other hand, is a more attainable goal.

Last week while posting TJ Moran's Joy of Skating part, I was thinking about how gnarly it is in general to do a trick done up the Covered 5. I've assembled a list of tricks done up the aforementioned set, and have done my best keeping the list in chronological order:

'98: Emeric 'Olu' Pratt does a heelflip up it in Hatebreeders, which despite being done fast and landing extremely solid, landed in the credits of the video. Clint Peterson's backside flip was in the same credits, but being totally honest, unlike Olu's heelflip, it belonged in there. I would call Clint's landing a "credits make". 

'00: Ryan Hansen does the first documented line going up the covered 5, with a switch 180 up, nollie backside flip down. The footage making it into his part from Benji Meyer's video Anonymous.

'04: Nate Compher skips the few logical tricks in between and does an extremely casual looking switch kickflip in Fobia's All In.

'06: Nate then goes back and does a switch heelflip up for his part from Weekend Warriors.

'07: The Girl/Chocolate team comes to Minneapolis on their Badass Meets Dumbass tour, and Devine Calloway ollies a bike rack followed by a backside flip up the 5. Nate switch heelflips up it, again.

'08: Tyler Ryan does a solid heelflip up the set, the clip found its home in the friends section of Boondoggle. 

'10: In his Flow Trash part, CJ Tambornino does a switch pop shove it and a no comply up, this being arguably one of the first game changing no complies, paving the way for it to become a semi-common place trick.

'12: The Covered 5 took a very serious beating in 2012. Zach Moore did a backside flip up it in the winter at night, as seen in Here and There. Kirian Stone does the first frontside flip up it while a security guard stands watching in Homegrown. TJ Moran takes the fakie route up with a fakie big spin for an online Cal Surf part, and Chris Burt creates some serious buzz for his upcoming video NorthCoast with a trailer featuring TJ's second covered 5 banger of the year, a frontside heelflip.

'13: Street Loafers 2D features 2 new lines done at the covered 5. Ryan Yost switch 180'd up it and bigspins down the following stair set, and Zack Goulet does a kickflip up heelflip down. What is notably rad about Zack's line, aside from two very clean tricks, is the complete lack of pushing between the two sets of stairs. 

'14: In the Spring of this year, Joy of Skating comes out and TJ Moran has yet another fakie trick up the set, a straight fakie ollie.

A lot has been done up the stairs, but there's still room for so much more. Some things I could see going down up the 5 are: a wallride up, Tim Huey taking what he was robbed of, a backside heelflip, a straight nollie, and whatever else the little freaks can do these days.

I would also like to note that Elijah Collard ollied up the 5 to manual down to the 2 stair in one of the Roll Videos, and sadly I was not able to find the footage. I am sure I missed some tricks, and I am sure there have been some gnarly soul sessions at the spot, but what we do have here is video evidence of some crazy shit going down, up a five stair. Our future is limitless.