The return of Jibassic Park
Boreal Mountain Resort’s claim to fame more than a decade ago was its designated area on the hill consisting of man-made jumps and rails.
The idea was progressive and the reality of it almost unheard of.
That was 1992, when Big Bear Mountain Resorts in Southern California was the only other resort to boast such a thing, said Boreal terrain park director Eric Rosenwald.
But Jibassic Park, as the new feature was named, soon became one of many parks popping up across the globe. The trend continued to spread, to the point where Boreal lost its reputation as a leader in the terrain park field.
Jibassic Park became a name foreign to the next wave of young skiers and snowboarders.
“The name used to be pretty notorious,” Rosenwald said. “It’s time to dust off the name and bring it back.”
Thirteen years after Jibassic Park’s inception, the small resort on Donner Summit received an invigorating shot in the arm in the form of $700,000, all for a new-and-improved and much larger terrain park, Rosenwald said.
The funds and the proposal to make Boreal the only all-mountain terrain park in Northern California, came from POWDR Corp., headquartered in Park City, Utah and owner of Boreal, Alpine Meadows, Soda Springs, Mt. Bachelor, Ore. and Las Vegas Ski and Snowboard Resort in Nevada.
“It was a smart move on their part,” Boreal mountain operation supervisor Brian Reardon said of POWDR Corp’s investment. “There’s going to be a lot of happy kids.”
The company’s decision also meant a busy off-season for Reardon and Rosenwald, who together designed, welded and painted each of the slew of rails and boxes of various shapes and sizes sitting in the parking lot at Boreal. In all, Rosenwald said, there will be 100 new features, with 50 to 60 rails scattered about the mountain. About 10 percent of the rails and boxes will be advanced.
In addition to the new features, Rosenwald said the resort is adding four BR275 Terrain Master Park Cats, a Zaugg pipe cutter to shape its 450-foot in-ground superpipe and a park development staff of 20.
Leaping from two employees a year ago to 20 this year, Boreal’s park crew is now the largest in the Lake Tahoe area, Rosenwald said, and is third in the country in size only to Mammoth Mountain and Big Bear.
Rosenwald, who worked at June Mountain for three years before coming to Boreal last season, said he quadrupled his fabrication skills building the rails and boxes this summer.
“It was a lot of fun,” he said of the busy summer. “It was a lot of hard work, too, though. But it’s all worth it. It’s not often that an opportunity like this comes up. The sky is the limit.”
The Jibassic Pro Rail Invitational, which will be made possible through 500 cubic feet of shaved ice and man-made snow if cold enough, Rosenwald said, will bring local rippers and professional snowboarders and skiers out to the base area of Boreal the night of Oct. 15.
There will be three sets of rails from the deck of the lodge to the base of the steps, as well as three filmmakers on hand shooting future ski and snowboard videos: “91 Words for Snow,” “White Shine” and “As if,” an all-women snowboarding film, said Boreal public relations manager Rachael Woods.
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