Snowboards are hot items for thieves | SierraSun.com

Snowboards are hot items for thieves

Kara Fox
Sierra Sun

Thieves with a taste for snow are prowling resorts for snowboards, particularly Burton brand boards.

Of the 24 reported snowboard thefts from Nov. 24 to Dec. 10 at Boreal, the majority were Burton boards, according to the Nevada County Sheriff’s Department. Of the boards, one was recovered and another was lost. No skis have been reported missing from Boreal yet this season.

Four of the five snowboards reported stolen at Northstar on Dec. 16 were made by Burton, according to Placer County Sheriff’s Department reports.–

“Unless you have a way to secure them, they can disappear,” said Placer County sheriff’s Tahoe Capt. Jeffrey Granum.

Most of the area’s resorts have preventive measures against snowboard and ski theft, including video cameras, security guards, signs and free day storage. However, thieves are wise to those methods and items will disappear if they are not in the sight of their owners, Granum said. Officials urged owners to never leave gear unattended.

Suzanne Webb knows what can happen when a board is left for just a minute. The Australian was enjoying Christmas at Soda Springs when she spotted someone with her husband’s board in the parking lot.

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Having worked at ski resorts for seven years, including Northstar, Webb, whose husband is a ski patroller at Soda Springs, said board thefts have been a problem over the years.

“Get a no-name board,” Webb advises.

Jessica VanPernis, communications manager for Northstar, said the resort offers free basket check and overnight storage in the village for free and a $5 fee on top of the mountain. She also noted that security guards and parking lot employees watch the area.

“Unfortunately, their eyes can’t be everywhere,” VanPernis said. “It’s a problem everywhere.”

Squaw Valley USA has security guards who patrol the base of the mountain 24 hours a day, according to spokesperson Savannah Cowley. The resort also offers lockers and coin operated locks to its guests.