Special to the Record
Hundreds of years ago slavery amongst the coastal tribes on Vancouver Island was common and was carried out by enemies attacking in canoes from the sea. When the Comox people where threatened in this way, they took their women and children to the (Forbidden) Plateau for safekeeping.
Once, during a raid by the neighbouring Cowichan tribe, the women and children vanished without a trace. The Plateau was believed to be inhabited by evil spirits who had consumed those they had sent. From that point on, the tribe elders forbade anyone in the tribe to visit the plateau; hence the name “Forbidden.”
The mountain lay in complete silence for 200 years and then the interest in Forbidden for winter recreation evolved with the sport of skiing and around 1949 a ski lift was installed. The facility became known as Forbidden Plateau with a combination of steep, rugged lines and mellow, rounded hills and snow-carpeted meadows.
This natural terrain became ideal for skiiers through the ’50s, ’60s and ’70s and snowboarders later on through the ’80s and ’90s. For many Vancouver Islanders Forbidden remains in fond memories as the oldest ski area on the Island where they learned to ski and snowboard. Unfortunately, in the epic winter of 1999 the lodge collapsed due to excessive snowload and the facility closed down. That’s when JumpCamp moved in.
Established by a group of local hardcore snowboarders, JumpCamp was created for shredders who want to have fun and progress their skills, especially in the park and backcountry. “Our mountain that we grew up snowboarding on went under due to some unfortunate circumstances so we said ‘lets take over this place!” said coach Patrick Kitto.
With their trucks and snowmobiles loaded up the JumpCamp crew in the last 10 years have taken this abandoned mountain and created a private park and training facililty rivalling other resorts. “Forbidden is an ideal setting for JumpCamp. Undiscovered and unmolested by the masses.” says coach Olaf Larsen.
JumpCamp’s terrain park consists of hips, straight jumps, gaps, quarter pipes, rainbow rails, kinked rails, flat bars, a slam wall and they all vary in size so campers can start on the small ones and work their way up.
The JumpCamp sessions are kept small to maximize the camper’s fun and progression. From the beginner “shred” to the experienced, the coaches help sharpen the freestyle skills of each camper on a personal one-on-one level.
“Do you want to hit the big booters in the snowboard park!? Do you want to slide those hand-rails downtown in the streets, drop a steep chute or plop down a 10-set of pillows with confidence!? Well, you’re gonna need some tips and coaching to make that happen like right now,” says coach Doug Hardy. “With the snow pack La Nina’s brought this year Forbidden is looking absolutely amazing for the JumpCamp sessions.” he added.
Information and registration is available at Onethirtythree board shop, online at www.jumpcamp.com or by phoning Patrick at 250-898-8891 anytime.
If you’re looking to improve your boarding skills, sign up for one of this year’s JumpCamp 2011 sessions, and see what a weekend of riding with the JumpCamp crew in their private shred playground on Forbidden Plateau can do for you.