Gear Guide: 7 items you should bring on the ultimate skateboard road trip

Pro skater Garrett Hill picks the essential gear you'll need for his West Coast skateboard trip

Garrett Hill skating in Los Angeles. | Photo: Garrett Hill

Heading out on Garrett Hill’s ultimate West Coast skateboarding road trip? You’ll want to pick up some essential gear in order to successfully complete the journey. Not only were these items picked by Garrett himself, you’ll find them in his van when he is traveling.

Vans Slip-On Pros

These are by far my favorite shoes to skate in. They offer superior board feel, good flexibility, and enough extra padding to jump down big sets of stairs without bruising your heels. The new Slip-On Pros come with a newly designed insole that is designed specifically for impact absorption, which I appreciate tenfold.

In the toe cap area, which gets the most abuse from your board, these shoes come with a rubberized “grip tape guard” that extends the life of the shoe significantly. Gone are the days of puffy marshmallow shoes made famous in the late 1990s. Get some slip-ons and hit the streets.

Bum Bag

This bag is essential for any skate trip. It’s so easy for all your gear to get lost in the car. With 10 other skaters in the van, good luck deciphering which phone charger belongs to whom. This bag gives you all the convenience of a fanny pack without looking like a kook.

I’ll normally keep a skate tool, some wax for dry ledges, extra bearings (in case one breaks mid-session), my phone, keys, and some sunglasses in there. Plus, these bags are really fun to customize during your next six-hour drive between spots. Hit up the truck stop souvenir section off the freeway and load up on random pins and patches for your purse—I mean, manly man-satchel.

Hotshot Handle

I started this company with my brother Gantry out of necessity. With improvements in phone camera quality, we ended up filming each other more and more on our smartphones and less on professional grade cameras.

After ruining a lot of our shots by either dropping the phone, breaking the screen, covering up the microphone accidentally, or getting the tip of our fingers in the shot, we created this simple but durable handle that would allow anyone to get pro-level shots on their phone while keeping it safe. Hotshot Handle fits every phone, can be mounted to a tripod for stable shots, and also comes with a universal fisheye lens for close-up shooting.

It’s essential for any skateboard road trip.

Color X Books

In the passenger or back seat on any road trip, there is plenty of highway time between stops. I like to bring this skateboarding coloring book to help keep my mind busy, keep my stress levels low, and my stroke level high. ‘Cause nobody likes a grumpy traveler.

Sony A6000

This is an all-around easy point-and-shoot camera that’s simple to operate and convenient to store, as it’s really small in size. If you want great pictures on your road trip, but don’t want to spend a ton on a professional grade DSLR, I’d go with the mirrorless A6000 for sure.

Garrett Hill Pro Model Deck

Gotta have a new deck to ride on your road trip. So why not ride your boy’s pro model?

Stetson Hat

I always bring some kind of western hat with me when I’m hitting the road, and you cannot go wrong with a Stetson. Something about it just feels right. All the people that I look up to wear big hats: Bob Dylan, Chris Stapleton, Clint Eastwood, you name it. What I like most about this crushable hat is that you can cram it into a bag, skate with it, really beat it up, and it just keeps looking cooler.