Chuck Vogt has always been interested in skateboard construction. As a kid growing up in Baltimore, Maryland, he took his first pair of roller skates apart to make a skateboard. He said his grandmother was really upset when she found out, because the skates had been a gift.
But the true gift was the enjoyment Vogt got from riding downhill. As he got older, the mountains started calling to him, and he decided to relocate to Tahoe, where he started riding at Squaw Valley.
“We were riding shortboards down hills when snow melted,” Vogt said. “The summer of 1996 was when we totally got into it, riding around all the hills barefoot and making homemade skateboards out of plywood … cutting out a ton of different shapes and riding them. We’d be flying down these hills and the boards would be cracking under our feet.”
Vogt started experimenting with different skateboard shapes and setups for Tahoe’s steep, rough roads and he shared those boards with his friends.
“When we moved here, we started making the Tahoe longboards,” Vogt said. “The reason that came about was we didn’t have skateparks back then. The streets were rough here.”
Word got around about the locally made longboards, and after the owner of Tahoe Dave’s said he’d sell the boards in his store in 1997, Tahoe Board Company was born.
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“Back then, we were making them by hand,” Vogt said. “We’d have friends sitting around our living room with Dremel tools and carving out the lake by hand.”
As cross-discipline athletes like Shaun White were winning Olympic medals and training at Lake Tahoe, Vogt’s grassroots skateboard company was growing. His website, tahoeboardcompany.com, showcases…
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