With over 8,000 acres of skiable terrain, Whistler, B.C. is an impressive mountain landscape on Canada’s west coast.
Making it a top ski destination in North America featuring three glaciers, 16 alpine bowls, more than 200 marked trails, a terrain park and plenty of backcountry runs, these mountains provide varied terrain for any skill level.
The ski area of Whistler is made up of side-by-side mountains, Whistler and Blackcomb, and was the site of a few of the competitions in the 2010 Winter Olympic Games.
To conveniently get from one mountain to the other, the PEAK 2 PEAK Gondola is an impressive ride. At 1,427 feet above the valley that separates the mountains, it is the longest unsupported continuous lift system of its kind in the world. Breathtaking views are seen for the almost two miles you are aboard the gondola.
While the Alpine skiing is world-renowned, the on-mountain dining features fresh, local and seasonal cuisine with spectacular views of Whistler and Blackcomb mountains. There are 15 restaurants conveniently positioned on the ski slopes, while a few are quietly tucked away and take a little navigating to find.
A variety of selections from local favorites like smoked salmon chowder to international dishes, such as pho, are just some of the food options you will find at each restaurant. If you’re hungry and on Blackcomb Mountain, the Horstman Hut is serving the warmest soups to be enjoyed (weather permitted) on a large outdoor patio of the European-style hut.
As surface conditions change depending on weather, the mountains get an abundant amount of snow during the winter months. But don’t be fooled by the weather at the base of the mountains, the forecast is always different at the higher elevations and an avalanche advisory provides skiers with the most up-to-date conditions of the backcountry.
So check the snow report on Whistler Blackcomb website or on the boards near the base of the mountains before heading out to ski.
While experiencing all that Whistler and Blackcomb mountains have to offer could take days, here are a few of the mountains' “Wonder Routes” worth exploring first:
Powder Stashes Route
These are tree-lined trails. Mostly filled with the freshest powder on the mountains and can be fun runs after a snowstorm. Make your own fresh tacks in one of the three wooded trails at Expressway to Where’s Joe on Blackcomb Mountain or find one of the other seven Powder Stash Routes on a trail map.
Gold Medal Route
Check out these routes and ski like an Olympian on Whistler Mountain. There are two trails on Whistler Mountain (see a trail map), which were once the site of the Men’s and Women’s Olympic Downhill competitions, and are now open to make your own fun.
Top of the World Route
The highest points of Whistler and Blackcomb mountains provide the best views of the Coast Mountain Range. Feel like you’re on top of the world at Top of Whistler Peak on Whistler Mountains or one of the mountains’ other three highest points along the mountain range on a trail map.
The Steep Sampler
Legendary to Whistler, “the steeps” have a little bit of everything to satisfy all different skiing styles. Spanky’s into Ruby Bowl on Blackcomb Mountain is the an impressive run as it gives you entrance into three additional bowls found on a trail map. Paired with double black diamond runs and some wooded trails, "the steeps" eventually all lead to easier runs when nearing the bottom of the mountain.
Size Matters Route
If you feel like going on a long, leg-burning run, take one of the three Size Matters Routes and you will experience the variety and full diversity of terrain that Whistler and Blackcomb mountains have to offer. Whistler Peak at the top of Whistler Mountain will take you the long way around the mountain where you will eventually reach the base of the mountain. That is where you just might have to rest your legs at Dusty’s Bar and BBQ and regain your energy.
Family Certified Route
For beginners or families with small children, there are many designated family areas on Whistler and Blackcomb mountains equipped with easy runs among lodges and tree huts for children to experience their own fun. Roadhouse Nintendo Game Lounge on Whistler Mountain is a popular place for families to hang out. Or for those beginner skiers needing lessons, you can learn the art of skiing in The School Yard on Whistler Mountain.
Coca-Cola Tube Park
For those not interested in skiing, tubing is a fun and snowy option located in Zone 2 on Blackcomb Mountain.
Once off the mountains, here are a few featured things to do in Whistler Village — a quant pedestrian ski village filled with shops, specialty store, restaurants, bars and hotels.
Aprés-ski at Garibaldi Lift Co.
A French term, meaning after skiing, participate in a little fun with locals and travelers alike after a day of skiing for a bite to eat and a drink. Or, if you were a spectator, meet the group you're with inside while warming up by the fire. The large, bright window-filled restaurant offers great views of the mountain, delicious snacks and even better cocktails. Try the waffle fries with gorgonzola cheese dip paired with a Caesar (a Canadian Bloody Mary) for an end to the perfect ski day.
Eat at Sushi Village
The relaxing atmosphere and fresh sushi is a staple in Whistler Village. The sockeye salmon sushi and sashimi is the freshest in the area and the sake margarita is a fun, creative addition to the meal. Offering a variety of Japanese Cuisine from sushi to salads, Sushi Village is an economical choice that will surpass your expectations.
Belvedere Ice Room at Bearfoot Bistro
Vodka tasting in a freezing cold room made of ice might be the most unforgettable experience in Whistler Village. Throw on a winter parker provided to you by the restaurant before you enter the sub-zero tasting room with an icea bar and ice shelves in the walls housing a variety of vodkas from around the world. It's a unique, yet freezing tasting experience, but the it gets busy on the weekends, so reservations for the Belvedere Ice Room are recommended.
Homemade Treats at Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory
This specialty store is filled with everything chocolate. With most treats being made on the premises, you will get the freshest candy open as late as 11 pm. The sea salt caramel dipped in dark chocolate is a favorite along with the homemade pounds of fudge cut to order. You won't be able to leave empty handed.
Whistler offers diverse mountain terrain, breathtaking aerial views and exceptional skiing conditions paired with international culture to make this mountain landscape one of the most impressive ski resorts and a must visit ski area in North America.
Travel tip shared for Traveldudes by FunAsWeGo
Thanks for Tourism Whistler for inviting Traveldudes.
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