I met Ryan at a contest in Fairbanks a while back and he’s a pretty awesome dude, we kept in touch a little bit and eventually I got him involved with no bikes. Ryan’s pretty quiet but when he talks, it’s usually something interesting, or funny and I like that. In a time when people seem to be specializing more and more, he’s one guy I know who can still ride everything well; he doesn’t really follow the trends, it’s just straight up solid riding. This is a short interview we threw together.
Name, age and where are you from?
-ryan harley, 20 years old, and I was raised in pennsylvania, but moved up to north pole just before I turned 13.
When and why did you make the transition from riding flat to ramps, street and everything else?
-When I started riding into the actual city of north pole and seeing people like kinkaaron jumping stuff and grinding bikeracks, I just thought it was awesome. I still rode flat all the time back then, but I caught the bug. Then I moved to fairbanks and there was so much more stuff close to me. I had some buddies that would only really dirtjump, so that’s what we would do, hitting ledges and stuff on the way to the jumps. Then I started hanging out with the Fleagles/Natuffs, and those guys got me really into just riding everything.
Do you still ride flat? Can you compare the different riding styles at all?
-I do every once in a while when I’m by myself. Flatland is actually a lot more painful than you’d expect, and it takes a lot of time to do stuff, but that good feeling you get from landing a trick lasts longer because you’re not just landing a trick that’s it it’s over, you’re doooing a trick.
How do you deal with riding in what is probably the northernmost bmx scene on the planet? How many months of the year do you guys have snow?
-It’s actually pretty nice, because (most of) the people don’t care too much about stuff like fancy parts, style wiggles, or fashion crap, so riding is just riding and doing sweet tricks instead of showing something off and bragging.
There’s normally snow on the ground for seven months or so. It sucks, but that last month when it’s the perfect temperature and stuff is staring to clear off is awesome.
What are some of your interests outside of riding?
-I like making noise with the bass and drums, but I normally don’t like when people can hear me so it’s kind of a secret. I should snowboard more, but I’m not going to pay $30 every time I want to play. If I lived in a warm place I’d be out trying to catch animals and stuff, but that’s not really an option up here. I also play a lot of davemirrasfreestylebmx2 on the playstation. The course editor inspires me?
Who do you ride with on a regular basis? Is there anyone up in Fairbanks that we should keep an eye out for?
-I haven’t been riding with anybody specifically lately, just at joels place, but Tim and Andrew Fleagle are both awesome, Jesse’s good with the street stuff, and Icepick nick is crazy when he actually rides. Darrel’s real good too, and aaron’s always got something cool to do. Tommy’s super good too.
How often do you hear/read the phrase “CONSPIRACY!” and where did that originate?
-I only get that one from bmxboard, and one kid who reads it. He’s just jealous though. I made some threads pointing out why I think our government is responsible for what happened on 9/11. Operation Northwoods, PNAC, and wtc7/the salomon brothers building are evidence enough if you ask me. There was some alien stuff too, but even that was on cnn just recently, pilots and military officials trying to force the government to reopen investigations, so I’m not just some lunatic.
Anything else you want to add?
-If what I just said sounds ridiculous, look it all up for yourself instead of just blindly accepting someone else’s stories. Googlevideo/youtube aren’t just for the crazies
I don’t know if I’m supposed to thank people or not…Thanks for the interview Aaron
We do have some photos to go along with this, I’ll post them when I get home.