Likely knew they were in a scary zone? "Get yo cheese straight" "The more speed the better"
Before I said "possibly over zealous". Now I'll put myself in SB's boots. It's clear from the video that Christian Mares was not the only poacher. Between his 2 friends and the tracks already present in Christian's video it looks like there were at least 5 lines poached. That's the definition of a problem. Put that terrain in clear view of a chair and the definition changes to a big problem. Put that video on the Internet, have it go viral, combine it with the Carson May incident and we have a Donald Trump size problem (Yooooge). From what I can see, rope is not going to stop this. If SB did nothing to Mr. Mares, there's a good argument that they'd have to station an army of patrollers in the area to try to stop a wave of copy cats poaching the area. Prosecuting just Christian (and not his friends) lies in the middle of the range of responses. As best as I can tell from a search this morning, the resort asked the sheriff to arrest Mr. Mares (no word on the status of his two friends). Skiing in a closed area is technically trespassing. As of 2 days ago charges have not been filed pending the sheriff's investigation, but they are expected soon.
Side note: video published by "Heckler"? That kind of invites a certain kind of criticism doesn't it? Just sayin'
With this avie event occurring on the same day as Carson May going missing, it is just as easy to see SB's reaction as PR management as it is to see it as a legitimate concern for skier and employer safety.
What area on the mountain was this? From the trail map, I'm guessing the Palisades. On the map, this says "open as conditions permit". On the map it looks like one needs to ride a ridgeline down to get to this part of the mountain. There's more video shown in this interview. Mr. Mares attempts to prove his case that he was unaware the area was closed by showing additional helmet video that shows the ridge line not marked by closed signs and only one closed sign visible. He said he "went the other way". He also says that because there has been no snow for the past 4 seasons that there was no reason to be over there. While it is still possible to make the case that he made an innocent mistake entering a closed area, the resort's contention that Mr. Mares had to go past multiple closed signs seems more likely. Mr. Mares says he did what any pro snowboarder would do: take calculated risks. There seems to be a strong case to be made that a pro would have known that the area was closed. There also is an extremely strong case that Mr. Mares calculations were extremely faulty. Does anyone care to guess the relative force between his landing and the average avie hand charge? My amatuer guess is "close enough". Anyone want to bet he dug a pit?
Mr. Mares says he only put himself in danger. He's clearly wrong on this count. At a minimum he at least put his 2 friends in danger. He can argue all he wants that his friends chose on their own to be there, but he could have just as easily set off a slide that swept his 2 friends up, his friends were certainly in danger when they rode down to check him and there was no guarantee that the slide he could have set off would not have run all the way down into open terrain and swept up other skiers. He clearly knew that he was doing was risky. It is the responsibility of an expert skier/rider upon entering double diamond rated terrain to know that they are putting patrollers/rescuers at risk should they themselves require rescue in such terrain.
Mr. Mares response to the possibility of spending a couple days in jail for his actions was "whoop de doo". He may change his tune when he finds out that trespassing in California can be charged as a felony (e.g. when others are endangered). Penalties for trespassing can range from 6 months and $1000 (misdemeanor) to 3 years and $2000 (felony). That's 3 years in state prison. If I was a judge hearing such a case I'd be wanting the max cash penalty, some jail time during ski season and some serious 3 part public crow eating harmony for community service. He says he's learned his lesson. I say that class is still in session Mr. Mares.
And, as per previous comments, the resort needs to double check that these kinds of areas can not be reached inadvertently. Roping off the entire area won't prevent all the poaching and would be costly. But it is hard to believe that the resort can't afford to make some changes that would make claims of inadvertent entry much less believable, The resort's statement that "that area has been closed off for years" also sounds a tad bit cavalier to me. Patrol should have expected that area to be tempting for poachers (especially so since it has been closed for so long) and they should have been able to see the first set of tracks that were already laid down and known people were actively poaching that terrain.