A MegaRamp is the informal name given to any large-format vert ramp structure, often used in skateboarding and freestyle BMX. The name distinguishes a second generation of ramps which became increasingly popular during the 1990s-2000s transition years. They are so called to distinguish them from the more modest classic ramps used throughout the preceding decades of these sports and which were, at most, half-scale versions of these newer and larger ramps.
The first such giant ramp structure was conceived and built by BMX freestyler Mathew “Mat” Hoffman in his Oklahoma home backyard between 1991 and 1992. It was a single 6.3m (21′) tall vert quarter pipe ramp, with no roll-in ramp, from which Mat would launch and air after being towed into at speed by a motorcycle. In such way, in 1992 Mat set the Freestyle BMX air record at approximately 7.05m (23.5′). Mat later went on to build a full vert half-pipe ramp with similar dimensions, including a 12m high roll-in ramp from the top of the roof of his warehouse.
Danny Way thought up the now common “MegaRamp” setup, a specific type of giant ramp arrangement consisting of the roll-in ramp, the gap jumps, and the final quarter pipe ramp. This setup was first seen at Point X Camp in the OP King Of Skate pay-per-view special in 2002. It was introduced again and was officially called the MegaRamp in the 2003 DC Shoes video release “The DC Video”, where Way set two world records in the same run – Longest jump (75 ft) and highest air (23.5 ft).
In 2005, Way used a MegaRamp again to jump the Great Wall of China and became the first person to jump the wall without the help of a motor vehicle and land successfully. This was also the largest ramp structure ever built. After one practice attempt, he landed the jump across the gap over the Wall four times in front of a crowd of Chinese dignitaries and officials, along with his family, friends, and thousands of locals. In 2012, Tom Schaar used a mega ramp to land the first-ever 1080, breaking Tony Hawk’s record 900 (landed on a vert ramp) set in 1999. 2016 Bob Burnquist shows the world his Dreamland part and takes the Mega Ramp to the next level, skating it like a regular skatepark. In August 2019, Mitchie Brusco used a mega ramp to land the first-ever 1260, breaking Schaar’s record, and now a whole new generation is seeking even more.
These ramps have brought us much more than enjoyment, they have brought literally a whole new level to skateboarding!