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Friday, November 16, 2012
Updated: December 5, 3:48 PM ET
Lance Mountain's Variflex reissue deck

Lance Mountain and So Cal Skateshop limited board.

Flip Skateboards has released a limited edition skateboard deck through So Cal Skateshop commemorating Lance Mountain's first professional board graphic.

Lance Mountain and So Cal Skateshop owner, Mickey Hirsch, were both ams on Variflex Skateboards in the early '80s. This run of boards was created to pay homage to those early days. Mountain wanted, "To do something special with Mikey, because we were on the same team back then. I have a whole career on Variflex that's unknown, so doing my first board I ever had, it's just to do something special for the shop. It's a super limited thing."

In 1981, after skateboarding's initial surge in popularity, there was a sudden decline. As Mountain explains it, "The pros were gone, they just disappeared, for whatever reason they couldn't afford to skateboard anymore, all the parks were dying, there was no money really."

Mountain and his peers thought that it was over, as kids weren't picking up skateboarding and they took the skateparks closing down as evidence of the end of skateboarding's golden era.

In 1981 there was an upcoming Lakewood Skatepark Pro Contest, but with the sudden lack of professional skateboarders the contest format was changed to a Pro/Am contest, where both professionals and amateurs were welcomed to compete. Mountain recalls, "Basically, we showed up and turned the contest into a Pro/Am. Tony Hawk, myself, Billy Ruff, Neil Blender, just that whole group basically turned pro at that contest."

"That's kind of how it happened, it was really quick and all the companies were like, 'Hey you got an idea for a board graphic?' Neil Blender drew up some ideas and I drew up some ideas and that's how it was." Mountain continues, "So this was a little experimental board that I hand-made to see what a graphic might look like. I rode a couple different ones, because we used to always make our own stuff. So that's what it was, a prototype for an idea and then I went on to another graphic, so it never saw the light of day."

Made on Mountain's custom shape, which measures 9" x 32.5", there are only one hundred of these hand-screened boards available through So Cal Skateshop. Mountain humbly said, "It's for the dudes that might remember that I was riding around on a Bull's-eye at one contest." Skate historians and legions of Lance Mountain fans will be snatching up this rare throwback deck -- so get them while they're hot.