Most people who ski and/or snowboard have heard of Whistler Blackcomb. Since 1997, when Whistler and Blackcomb mountains joined forces, the resort has attracted well over a million skier visits every season.
The resort is well known for its incredible variety of terrain, insane average annual snowfall, vibrant village and an après scene that bucks the trend of North American conservatism. This is obviously a ski and snowboard Mecca but how do you make the most out of what is on offer?
At Ski Independence we have been sending guests to Whistler Blackcomb since 1994, before the two mountains joined forces, so have a unique perspective on what turns a good trip into a great one. The key is to make the most of the incredible facilities that the resort pour millions of dollars into every year, whether that be the fleet of new lifts and gondolas that have adorned the mountains in recent seasons, the new terrain that these lifts access or the new Radio Frequency ID passes designed to get you up the mountain more quickly, Whistler Blackcomb are committed to maximising your experience.
This is your hard earned holiday though and no matter how much the resort invest in making the mountain perfect there are a few things you can do to maximise your enjoyment. I have listed a couple of these below for your convenience:-
- Book your mountain product early – Whistler Blackcomb offer very aggressive early booking discounts on all their mountain products – lift tickets, rental equipment and ski school. The best of these deals expire on the 31st of August so get in touch well before then to add these to your holiday booking, it could save you as much as 80% over in-resort prices!
- Take a lesson – Whistler Blackcomb ski school boasts over 1000 instructors who provide over 250,000 lessons every season, so they know what they are doing! There are programs to suit all abilities with specialist camps catering for everything from race technique, ladies only lessons, private instruction and back country skills alongside the more traditional group lessons. Many guests believe that lessons are only for beginners but I took a lesson when I was there in April 2015 and, despite having skied and snowboarded for over 30 years, I came away with an array of new skills and the new found confidence that only an excellent instructor can imbue.
- Rent your equipment – With the airlines charging ever increasing supplements for carrying sports equipment more and more of our guests are choosing to rent equipment locally rather than take their own. In Whistler Blackcomb we use over ten different locations ensuring that there is a rental location close, often attached to your accommodation. There are a number of different types of rental available ensuring all guests can rent equipment suitable for their ability and the terrain they are going to cover.
- Kids – Family skiing is central to the Whistler Blackcomb ethos and, as you might expect, they make it very easy for families to make the most of their visit. There are ski schools for children aged from 3 years, with different age categories so that children are always learning with children of a similar age and stage. These lessons start earlier than adult lessons leaving plenty of time for parents to drop their children before heading to their own class. Whistler Blackcomb are one of the few resorts that allow us to pre-book their childcare facilities for our guests, this service is available for children between 18-48 months in all three of Whistler Blackcomb’s base areas – Blackcomb, Whistler Village and Creekside. We can also recommend a local nanny service for younger children.
- Après – Typically people think of après as a couple (!) of drinks at the end of the ski day, and Whistler is well served by establishments dedicated to providing this service. However, there are many other ways to amuse yourself and your family away from the hills with spas, tasting experiences, zip line adventures & sleigh ride dinners being just a few of the options available.
- Heli and Cat Skiing – For those skiers looking to tick the bucket list boxes, Heli and Cat skiing offer the pinnacle of ski experiences. Swap the chairlifts and gondolas for helicopters or modified grooming machines (piste bashers!), fellow skiers for experienced, enthusiastic guides and the groomed pistes for pristine, untouched powder snow for an experience that has guests coming back again and again. If Ski Independence staff had the opportunity, this is what they would do all day, every day!
So, it’s all out there waiting for you! Find out more about what’s on offer in Whistler. If you want to make the most of it give us a call on 0131 243 8097 and we can talk you through the options that are right for you and your party.