Whistler Blackcomb is among the best skiing places in North Amerika. Skiers from all walks of life can benefit from the enthralling slopes and enticing attractions that this destination offers.
Stick around to find out the best features of such an enthralling location, and what approach you should have for planning the ski trip.
Location, Weather, and Climate at Whistler Blackcomb
Whistler Blackcomb is situated in Canada, well known for friendly faces and snowy slopes.
This resort has a base record of 16.4ft of snow, which occurred in 1973/1974, and the best time to visit this resort is between November and April, where it experiences suitable snowfall, terrain coverage, and an appropriate overall climate.
|Month||Temperature (High/Low)||Snowfall Depth|
|November||5° / 0°||8.1ft|
It gets incredibly cold, so visitors will need to ensure that appropriate winter gear and clothing is worn, topped with protective measures such as sunglasses, hats, and sunglasses while traveling.
Proper gear such as skiing helmets and goggles will provide protection while skiing, and sunscreen should be worn as well.
Additional measures such as umbrellas are advised while participating in non-ski activities or traveling during snowfall. Check out the Whistler Blackcomb Snow Forecast here for current conditions.
Getting to and around Whistler Blackcomb
The easiest way to reach this resort is by flying in and landing at Vancouver International Airport, after which Whistler Blackcomb can be reached with an approximately 2-hour trip and 75 mile journey along Highway 99, otherwise known as Sky Highway.
Vancouver International Airport can be reached with non-stop flights from San Francisco, Los Angeles, Denver, Toronto, Chicago, New York, London, and Sydney. Check out details on various means to reach this in demand resort here.
One could also fly to Seattle-Tacoma International Airport and take a 4.5 – 5 hour scenic drive to Whistler Blackcomb, or a 2.5 hour drive from Bellingham Airport, and you can review detailed travel by car instructions here.
Your final arrival at Whistler Blackcomb is up to you, like cars, shuttles, limousines, and even helicopters can be arranged. All of these options have varying terms, conditions, and pricing systems. Check out details here.
Accommodation at Whistler Blackcomb
Whistler Village is situated at the foot of the mountains, and its huge pedestrian only area is filled with gripping energy, enthusiastic dwellers, and a truly unique après savvy style.
This area truly has it all, with a vast inclusion of stores, cafés, restaurants, bars, iconic après nightlife, as well as more reclusive and tranquil areas.
It’s topped with a winter wonderland flair, stone walkways, family playgrounds, and an endless amount of sunny patios to gaze over miraculous landscapes.
With the world undergoing an array of twists, turns, and changes in 2020, Whistler Blackcomb has made a few adjustments in order to accommodate and manage the number of individuals on site at any given moment.
This entails that visitors make reservations and hold a pass or ticket in order to access the ski areas. Check out new terms and conditions here.
There are numerous accommodation styles to suit varying budgets and preferences, including luxury hotel suites, townhomes equipped with full kitchens, private rentals, expansive studios, and much more.
The total area is comprised of different divisions in which visitors can stay, in addition to the main Whistler Village, and each area offers a unique amount of selection between all different kinds of lodging.
The upper village sports a wonderfully serene alpine scene, is a short walk or shuttle trip from the main village. This area boasts a wide selection of restaurants, stores, ticket office, kid’s center, and stunning boutiques.
This area offers a blend of relaxation, activities, and entertainment, with 32 different properties ranging from luxury to affordable accommodation options. Check out details and bookings here.
The village north offers a convenient combination of accessible facilities and serene après solitude, and this is a fantastic choice for those seeking more space, or for bigger family vacations.
They have a variety of accommodation styles totaling 17 different properties and offer 1, 2, and 3 bedroom units. Check out details and bookings here.
Whistler Creekside is a secret mini village with 9 properties, boasting more shops, bars, supermarkets, and even its own gondola. This is perfect for those seeking a more quiet and private experience, check out details here.
Whistler Valley boasts Blueberry Hill, which is comprised of 5 unique properties including luxury chalets and snug cabins, with easy access to a variety of additional attractions. Check out this stunning option for friends, families, and couples here.
Pemberton is a short 25min drive from Whistler, offering an array of accommodation selection ranging from luxury to budget-friendly and comfortable options. Here, there are more restaurants and shopping opportunities, and incredible views. Check out details here.
Ski areas in Whistler Blackcomb
The combined area includes Blackcomb Mountain and Whistler Mountain, both of which offer varying terrain and combinations of skiing opportunities.
The total ski area amounts to a surplus of 200km slopes and 50km of ski routes, providing plenty of room for an endless amount of memories and experience, topped with freshly groomed blankets of snow and incredibly versatile skiing runs.
These peaks are connected by a 3S cable car Peak 2 Peak transport system and are separated by Fitzsimmons Creek.
There are 23 total lifts, which transport visitors to various areas across each of these mountains.
Both mountains are accessible from the communal area at the foot of the slopes, at the Squamish Lil’Wat Cultural Center, where there are five parking bays available for visitors, after which 3 more parking areas can be found at slightly higher points on Blackcomb Mountain.
The map showing a detailed visual representation can be found here.
Blackcomb Mountain is a stunning peak which is situated next to Garibaldi Provincial Park as well as Blackcomb Glacier Provincial Park. This mountain reaches up to 8,000ft in altitude.
However, Blackcomb Peak is permanently closed in addition to other rocky areas all over the mountain, with the highest skiable areas being situated at around 7,494ft, and higher areas accessible with the Showcase T-Bar, and ventured down with the Showcase blue run.
There is a range of gondolas and transport systems that take visitors to varying areas across the mountain, with the lower levels providing transport by means of the Magic Chair.
The New Blackcomb Gondola transports visitors to Rendezvous Christine’s, which is situated at an altitude of 6,102ft and features a convenient stop for medical assistance at a central point.
This medical assistance point can be accessed from various locations all over the Blackcomb ski area, including the New Catskinner Express Chair. Crystal Hut, which is situated at 6,053ft in altitude, can be reached with the Crystal Ridge Express.
The Excalibur Gondola takes visitors from the base of the slopes up until an altitude of 3,707ft, after which the Excelerator Express takes boarders to an even higher altitude for access to more challenging runs.
From this area, the Jersey Cream Express can take skiers to the Rendezvous Christine’s area, and the Glacier Express provides travel from Glacier creek at 5,069ft to an altitude of 7,011ft.
From surrounding areas, visitors can venture on and can use the Horstman T-Bar to reach the Horstman Hut area, which is situated at an altitude of 7,494ft. This area can also be accessed using the 7th Heaven Express.
- Green Runs
There is a wide selection of green runs for beginners and novice skiers to select from, all of which offer varying difficulty levels and breathtaking views.
Peering up from the foot of the slopes, the most easily accessible and simple run would be the Yellow Brick Road and the Village Run, and at around 3,800ft, lies a short green run named Gondola Road.
Jersey cream Road and the Big Easy is another short run situated slightly higher, connecting with the Last Resort Road, and this is crossed by 7th Avenue and the Expressway.
There are more challenging green runs with stunning scenery as well, such as Sunset Boulevard which runs along the Ski Area Boundary line towards the creek.
There are also multiple green lines that provide travel all over the mountainous ski terrain, including Crystal Road, as well as the Green Line which encompasses Blackcomb Mountain and leads to various skiing areas or facilities.
- Blue Runs
From the foot of the slopes, the most accessible blue run is the Lower Merlin’s, after which visitors can enjoy the Lower cruiser which crosses with the Cruiser and Stoker higher up, and runs next to the Shorthorn, as well as School Marm situated below the Upper Mainline.
The Glacier Road runs along the boundary line toward the Provincial Parks, and the Lower Gear Jammer runs along the boundary line towards the creek, connecting with the Slingshot higher up, which can be reached via a connector from the Racer Alley and Countdown runs.
On the left of Shorthorn lies the Espresso, which meets with the destination of the Excelerator Express, near Buzz Cut and Honeycomb.
Zig Zag and Rock n’ Roll are connected with the Crystal Glide situated below the Lower Straight Shot, the White Light, and the Trapline which runs from Crystal Hut near the Ridge Runner allowing access to Backstage Pass as well as Twist & Shout.
The Jersey Cream and the Wishbone run along with the Jersey Cream Express, reaching Rendezvous Christine’s, and above the 7th Heaven Express lie Hugh’s Heaven, Lower Panorama, Upper Panorama, Lower Cloud Line, Upper Cloud Line, and Sluiceway, which lead to Horstman Hut.
There are also multiple blue lines that provide travel all over the mountainous ski terrain, including Crystal Traverse, as well as the Blue Line which leads to various skiing areas or facilities.
- Black Runs
There are a plethora of Black runs to choose from, and shorter Black runs include the Sorcerer, Black Magic, Freefall, Undercut, Gear Jammer, Stoker Bumps, Blowdown, Staircase, Dakine, and the Bite, while medium to longer runs includes the Straight Shot, Dave’s Day Off, the Next Level and the esteemed Xhiggy’s Meadow.
There are also plenty of black lines throughout the mountain, and many of these black lines are advanced.
- Additional Features
They have medical assistance locations situated at varying points closer to the peak which is great for safety, and Blackcomb Mountain features special lines including the Highest Level, Grey Line, Choker Park, Snow Cross, SuperPipe, and the Terrain Garden.
They also have a Magic Castle and family area near the Jersey Cream Express line.
Whistler Mountain is a stunning peak which is situated next to Garibaldi Provincial Park overlooking Fissile.
This mountain reaches up to 6,939ft in altitude, and various points of the peak can be explored and viewed from a Peak Lookout point using the Peak Express, or by means of the Symphony Express or Harmony Express.
Some peak viewing areas can also be traversed from using The Saddle, Harmony Ridge, Jeff’s Ode to Joy, and Upper Peak to Creek blue runs, as well as some Black runs.
The Whistler Village Gondola takes visitors from the foot of the slopes straight up to the Roundhouse Lodge at an altitude of 6,069ft after crossing with the Olympic Mid Station where the Olympic Chair lifts visitors to 3,770ft in altitude, and the Garbanzo Express takes visitors to The Chic Pea at 5,453ft in altitude.
The Roundhouse Lodge with offers medical assistance can also be reached using Franz’s Chair, Big red Express, the New Emerald 6 Express Chair, as well as the Peak 2 peak system.
The Fitzsimmons Express provides transport from the base of the mountain to the Children’s Learning Center near the mid-station. The Creekside Gondola provides transport from the foot of the black runs area.
- Green Runs
Offering even more options for beginners and novice skiers, Whistler Mountain features the Upper Fantastic, It Happens, and the Upper Olympic connecting with the Sidewinder and Burnt Stew Trail which is used as a return route from Symphony the Harmony.
The Lower Whiskey Jack, Ego Bowl, and the Papoose connect to The Chic Pea, while Pony Trail, additionally accessible by Porcupine, and Pika’s Traverse connect with the Roundhouse Lodge. Bear Cub offers a great opportunity for a long green run with just enough challenges.
- Blue Runs
From the foot of the slopes, the most accessible blue run is the Lower Fantastic and Crabapple, after which the Tokum and the Ptarmigan can be enjoyed alongside the Old Crow.
The Enchanted Forest runs from the Chic Pea, as does the Banana Peel and Orange Peel which run down towards the Franz’s and Highway 86 stemming from the Upper Peak to Creek, which spans along the boundary line into a Lower peak to Creek.
There are lower blue runs as well, including Kadenwood Trail and Kadenwood which connect with Lower Franz’s.
Above the Peak 2 Peak system lies the Cougar, Jolly Green Giant, Green Acres, Lower Ratfink, G.S, and Rabbit Tracks which connect with Roundhouse Lodge at 6,069ft.
Various shorter blue runs are scattered around this area, including Little Red Run, Fisheye, Old Man, T-Bar Run, Ridge Run, and Headwall. Overhead the Harmony Express lies Harmony Piste and Harmony Ridge which leads into The Glades, and these lines are connected by Krummholz.
Jeff’s Ode to Joy spans along with the Symphony Express, amongst shorter blue runs such as the Adagio and Encore Ridge.
- Black Runs
Closer to the foot of the slopes lies Bear Paw, while Seppo’s, Raven, and Upper Dave Murray Downhill which becomes Lower Dave Murray Downhill connect with The Chic Pea at 5,453ft.
Franz’s Meadows lies closer to Roundhouse Lodge at 6,069ft situated below Surprise, Shale Slope, and Left hook.
The Whistler Bowl poses thrilling skiing opportunities, spanning down from the mountain peak leading to the Grande Finale, Doom & Gloom, West Ridge, and Frog Hollow.
There are various black runs which span from the Upper Peak to Creek perimeter including the Couloir, the Cirque, West Cirque, Monday’s, Cockalorium, and Stephan’s Chute, all of which are designated for the most experienced or advanced skiers.
This leads to West Bowl and Bagel Bowl, and there are more black runs upon Whistler Mountain such as Back Bowl, Low Roll, Kaleidoscope, Boomer Bowl, and Gun Barrels. Dusty’s Descent, Big Timber, and Home Run are great for challenging skiing opportunities at lower altitudes.
- Additional Features
They have a medical assistance area closer to the peak, as well as two locations atop of the peak which is great for safety.
They also have special areas such as the School Yard, Chipmunk Park, Bobcat Park, and Cougar Park, as well as a Family Zone, Nintendo School Yard, and a nifty Tree Fort.
- Restaurants and Bars
Blackcomb features an array of stunning dining facilities, including Christine’s, Dusty’s Bar & Grill, Merlin’s Bar & Grill, Steeps Grill & Wine Bar, Fresh Tracks, and Garibaldi Lift Co. Bar & Grill.
All of these establishments offer a variety of mouthwatering recipes, après drinks and delights, and tons of awe-inspiring views to top off a fantastic day. Check out details on each of these esteemed and hospitable venues here.
However, due to the conditions of reopening the resort, some of these establishments are not currently open for service and will remain closed indefinitely.
So, this will need to be confirmed prior to booking, as reservations are now required for après dining in order to manage venue capacity and ensure safety amongst patrons, visitors, as well as staff.
Ski Schools, Ski Rentals, and Ski Passes
Both group and private lessons are available at Whistler Blackcomb, offering tutored guidance for skiers of all levels. The resort also features a Children’s Learning Center.
Ski Rentals are available at Whistler Blackcomb with varying prices depending on items being rented, and there are many locations situated throughout Whistler Village as well, in addition to shops and stores which sell ski gear and equipment.
Ski Passes are now compulsory for visitors to gain access to ski areas, and Pass Holder Reservation will be introduced in late 2020 for even more convenience. Check-in for updates here.
Apres-ski and non-ski activities
- Scandinave Spa Whistler
Whistler offers an array of relaxation opportunities to ease adrenaline and soothe muscles after a day of feeling the burn.
The spa is located north of the Whistler Village, providing luxurious spa deals in the midst of revitalizing mountain air and refreshing facilities.
They offer hydrotherapy starting at $65 for tension release, improved blood circulation, and promoted the release of endorphins.
They also offer 1-hour Swedish massages and deep tissue massages for optimal relaxation, tension relief, and muscle realignment, and these generally have a starting price of $164.
Booking is required, or there may be a risk of an indefinite waiting list which wouldn’t be relaxing at all. Check out the Scandinave Spa for information and booking.
- Winter Whistler Shopping Sprees
Whistler boasts a stunning array of shopping opportunities for skiers and non-skiers, with a wide selection of stores, outdoor lifestyle shops, and boutiques.
There is quite a focal point on ski gear and equipment, offering everything from skis and snowboards to high performance or specialty items, providing a truly special après shopping experience that simply cannot be provided in the city.
They feature esteemed brands such as Can-Ski, clearance, and showcase sales on ski and snow gear, as well as bike specialty stores and outdoor brands. Check out Whistler shopping for details on what can be found for sale.
- Fire & Ice
This stunning array of lights and movement can complete any skiing day, with an iconic combination of fire and ice topped off with fireworks.
Whistler offers top of the range entertainment with a blend of entrancing music and world-class athletes who flip and twist through rings of fire.
This occurs every Sunday evening at 7 pm as well as on special dates, is hosted at the Skiers Plaza in Whistler Village, is free of charge for all visitors, and they commonly host after parties at the GLC which offers bookable areas for optimal comfort and enjoyment.
For details, check out Whistler Blackcomb Fire & Ice.
- Sliding Center
Whistler Blackcomb offers four person bobsledding opportunities for an enthralling ride down the world’s fastest track. This is comprised of 10 winding curvatures sending thrill-seekers down at a surplus of 125km per hour and is topped off with the Thunderbird Corner.
They also offer Skeleton, which allows enthusiasts to launch headfirst down the fastest sliding track in the world, from Maple Leaf through 6 curves at approximately 100km per hour.
Both of these enthralling opportunities will need thorough guidance from experienced instructors and will necessitate fees of approximately $144 upwards.
The great part is that these attractions are available regardless of the weather, which is an exceptional aspect when planning any fun-filled vacation. Check out Whistler Blackcomb Sliding Center.
- Ziptrek’s Zipline Network
This is yet another addition for any thrill-seeker do to list, offering opportunities or treetop traversing through suspended bridges and high-flying above the legendary Fitzsimmons Creek.
They offer the Eagle Tour starting at $121 comprised of 5 ziplines including a 2400ft line with a 30-story decline and takes around 2.5 – 3 hours.
The Bear Tour starts at $99 and is comprised of 5 zip lines connected by a network of suspended bridges for treetop adventures, and the Treetrek Tour is more educational starting at $45.
The Winter Après Tour starts at $119 and is iconic for leaving visitors mesmerized by the stunning views of sparkling lights flickering into existence as the sun sets over wintery landscapes, and the Mammoth Tour offers 10 zip lines for even more thrill, starting at $167.
Check out Whistler’s Ziptrek Ecotours for details and bookings.
- Snowmobile Tours
For even more thrill and adventure, this classic Canadian leisurely activity can be experienced by visiting groups, friends, families, and even duos, and children under 12 ride for free with beginner packages.
There are a variety of packages which are suited to varying levels of experience starting with the Callaghan Cruiser for beginners for $152, then the Wilderness Run at $152, followed by the Wilderness Ride at $153.
The Family Tour starts at $153, while the BC Tour starts at $175. More lavish packages include the Yukon Breakfast starting at $179, which serves a full breakfast at a rustic cabin.
The Crystal Hut Fondue Tour starting at $205, which is great for couples offering a candlelit dinner, as well as Backcountry X starting at $228, which is an advanced adrenaline junkie’s dream exploring enthralling terrain with extreme rides and topped with a Bearfoot Bistro packed lunch.
Check out Whistler’s Snowmobile Tours for details and bookings.
Pros of Skiing in Whistler Blackcomb
- Amazing range of skiing opportunities for all levels
- Great added facilities, rentals, ski shops, and education
- Stunning entertainment, non-ski attractions, and nightlife
- Opportunity for a serene and tranquil experience
- Great versatility for varying budgets
Cons of Skiing in Whistler Blackcomb
- Quite a distance from other accommodation areas
- Long drive from airports, but the drive is incredibly scenic
This resort boasts phenomenal features, suitable for skiers of all levels, and accommodating individuals with varying budgets. It should be noted that there are terms and conditions when booking, such as the compulsory wearing of a mask, reservations, and bookings.
There is an endless amount of skiing opportunities, alternative attractions, and après experiences that await those visiting Whistler Blackcomb.