It is always frustrating at the end of the winter season when the snow is still clinging to the high peaks, but all the resorts are closed. Tahoe hasn’t had a chance to compete with notorious summer training facilities such as Mt. Hood and Whistler, until now in the form of Woodward Tahoe.
“Tahoe is such a big winter sports area, so it is great to have a place close to home where skiers and riders can go train off the snow,” said Rebecca Roberts, a freshman on the Sierra Nevada College freestyle ski team and coach at Woodward Tahoe. The ski and snowboard teams will certainly benefit from their proximity to the new Woodward Tahoe establishment.
Find more photos from Woodward Tahoe here
(Photos provided by Jake Pollock, Caitlin Khoury, Danny Kern and Holly Shankland)
The deal went through almost 2 years ago with the help of Boreal Marketing Director, Jon Slaughter, and has been gaining momentum ever since.
“A ton of new people are coming up especially with the skateboard and BMX included,” said Slaughter. “It has changed the face of Boreal.”
From start to finish, the venue coming into being was quite a miraculous thing to witness, according to Boreal Park Crew Manager Lane Knaack. The production of Woodward Tahoe was like watching a time-lapse video right before your eyes: it just kept smoothly progressing towards completion.
“Ideas turning to drawings, to a hole in the ground, to a fully enclosed building has been a long journey,” said Knaack. “Eric Rosenwald, the youth action sports director and the rest of those involved with the process have done a great job.”
The bunker provides for endless fun and entertainment for participants and spectators alike. With six trampolines, one super tramp, tons of foam pits, a resi mat and fly beds, the gymnastics features are top-of-the-line. Introducing Woodward to Tahoe was a genius yet inevitable collaboration benefiting both parties, progression being the guaranteed outcome.
Opening day of summer 2012 was a hit, according to Knaack, even though nobody on his crew had done anything like it before.
“Summer camp is a whole different beast dealing with warm weather like that, and my favorite thing was the whole learning experience of summer camp on Donner summit,” said Knaack. “That and seeing kids progress at the rate they all did was amazing; all the kids seemed to be very pleased with a line of features and a chairlift.”
Being a coach, Roberts was able to get insight on the crucial (both positive and negative) community feedback for the establishment’s improvements.
“It is a super fun camp, and the kids got to learn a lot,” said Roberts. “I know that compared to some other camps the coaching is not as tough: at Woodward Tahoe they are a little more laid back, but they still have great experience and insight on coaching.”
Also, safety can never be taken too seriously at any new extreme sports summer camp facility.
“Making sure that all of the liability issues are taken care of before any of the kids get to use the facilities is important,” said Roberts. “I only worked there for a little this summer, but I would just say that keeping kids safe is probably their biggest concern.”
Knaack has news of good predictions and goals regarding Woodward and Boreal’s upcoming seasons.
“The parks will always be getting better with new features and set ups,” said Knaack. “It’s always rewarding to see everybody having a blast while improving; I hope to see a lot of that up here in the future.”
There already has been a lot of that, especially with SNC athletes calling it home for their competitive and personal progression.
“I plan to use the facilities at Woodward as much as possible during the pre-snow season so that I am more prepared when winter comes, and keep going all year so that I am able to keep improving,” said Roberts.
The whole Woodward package of park riding, powder slashing and summer camp slaying can finally call Tahoe home.
“I just hope that people keep coming up to enjoy all the mountain has to offer,” said Knaack.
With bunker passes flying off the shelves, this winter promises for a killer combo of indoor and outdoor progression.