Whistler & Blackcomb, Vancouver
If you're a hardcore skiier/rider then you'll want to test out Whistler/Blackcomb's backcountry. To give you an idea of the geography concerning my particular trek: Singing Pass trail leads from Whistler village, between Whistler and Blackcomb mountains, all the way back to Overlord glacier, continuously climbing in elevation along the way. In the summer months this is a great way to get back there but it is definitely a trek and a half. In the winter, the hardcores start out from the top of Whistler's peak chair and traverse across Picolo, Flute and Oboe and continue towards the hut at the base of Fissile. Fissile is a jagged peak looming just to the right of Overlord Glacier and it can be seen all the way back from Whistler's in-bound terrain as jutting out by its lonesome into the sky. It takes a day to traverse all the way back there to the hut. One can overnight in the hut and then attempt the Fissile climb the following day. When I was 19, dumb and gung-ho I clambered up Fissile with no avalanche or safety equipment, trudging along in the footsteps created by wiser, older backcountry fellas that were using ice axes and crampons. It was definitely steep and I couldn't fathom looking down behind me. Nevertheless, in an hour and a half I had scaled Fissile and then proceeded to carve out 150+ turns in untouched, knee deep powder in the month of April - and it hadn't snowed in a month. This was the north face of Fissile (no sun!) and it was the most pristine experience of my life.
Just fyi, the picture here simply shows a very small section at the very base of Fissile mountain. We carved these turns upon arrival at the hut before the main trek to the top. 5 of us made it to the hut but only 2 of us attempted the Fissile climb. Not for the faint-hearted.
BEST SKI RUNS:
Dave Murray Downhill
Rock ’n’ Roll
BEST TAX RETURN:
Save your receipts, If you're from the US you can get a refund on certain purchases.
What purchases are eligible for the Goods & Services Tax (GST) rebate, and how can I claim it?
Non-Canadian residents may receive a 7% Goods and Services Tax rebate on all accommodations, as well as goods purchased, not yet consumed, in Canada. For GST rebates, pick-up a form from the Whistler Activity and Information Centre or contact the Custom House Currency Exchange at 938-1051. For further information on where and how to file a claim, you may also contact Revenue Canada at 1-800-668-4748 (within Canada only) or ask our Central Reservations agents for details at time of booking.
BEST DISCOUNT ON LIFT TICKETS:
Buy tickets at 711 in Squamish and save up to 40%. It’s right on the main hiqhway as you pass through the small town, next to the McDonald’s. I paid $41 per adult ticket in spring 2002, they were $69 at the ticket window. No limit on tickets.
BEST WEATHER FORECAST SITE
For the weather forescast for next five days click here: http://weatheroffice.ec.gc.ca/forecast/city_e.html?wae
BEST INTERNET CAFES TO CATCH UP ON E-MAIL
Peaks Coffee House
The Whistler Library
Soapy's Internet Café
Fondest memory: "My Entire Trip!"
Before you leave make sure you try some of these other fun activities. For more information about them see the website below.
BEST ROAD CONDITIONS REPORT
BEST WEB CAM OF THE MOUNTAINS
BEST TRAIL MAP
Favorite thing: Go to Whistler!! The picture is my friend Nic on Whistler Mt. If you are into snowboarding or skiing it is totally worth checking out. Whistler has been voted #1 resort in North America. The terrain is amazing, the snow is deep, and the village is happening. The drive from Vancouver to Whistler is only 1 1/2 hours, and one of the most scenic drives in Canada.
Whistler is the better place to skis (my opinion) in North America. It's so beautiful there and we have access to 2 mountains which is Whistler moutain and Blackcomb moutain. My trip there was short (4 days) but I enjoy the beautiful view from the Glacier of Blackcomb.
Fondest memory: After 30 minutes to you grow up and after 3 chair lift that you take, you finally arrive the the peak and from the peak the view is so beautiful. You are more higher than the clouds. That's so beautiful.
Favorite thing: Skiing at Whistler/Blackcomb. Whistler is a three hour bus ride from Vancouver airport and is perhaps one of the most picturesque ski areas in existence. The bottom of the mountan sometimes skis wet below the cloudline, stay at the top for the best snow. The ski town is awesome and fully contained. Everyone is friendly, and for Americans, the exchange rate right now is extremely favorable. Molson anyone????
Blackcomb/Whistler are usually packed with people and very expensive. Instead, drive to Mount Baker in Washington, USA in just 1-1/2hrs to avoid crowds and high fees. You can get a cabin @ Mt. Baker that sleeps 4 for only $139/night. Food and beer is also incredibly cheap in Washington. In Whistler $139/night won't get you anything. Or there's other options like Big White ski in /ski out resort. Go to www.mtbaker.us or www.goski.ca
Wear a helmet so you don't end up with a concussion after bailing into a full lip stand into hard packed snow.
Favorite thing: The view again is so beautiful. All trees with snow. It's all white. If you like to skis or snowboarding that's the place to go.
GO SKIING AT WHISTLER/BLACKCOMB!!!!
Fondest memory: Whistler: The incredible size of the mountains, they swallow you up whole.
Fondest memory: Take a breath at the top of Whistler/Blackcomb, by far one of the best ski areas in the world. This picture was taken off the top of the aptly named Seventh Heaven Lift.