Whistler is a mountain town getting very excited, and with good reason – the Winter Olympics are now just over two weeks away. The final touches are being made throughout the resort to welcome the world’s media and the some of planet’s very best winter sports athletes, with Whistler playing host to the alpine skiing, Nordic and sliding events at the Games.
The grandstand has been constructed at the bottom of the Dave Murray downhill course into Creekside, and looking up from there the course looks pretty daunting; huge rollers dominate the bottom third, before dropping away to the final pitch of the course where the athletes will hurtle past giant Olympic rings and over the finish line. Work has already begun on preparing the course itself, and course engineers can be seen injecting water into the snow pack to make it as solid as possible for the racers.
The medals plaza area is almost complete too, and Olympic banners are starting to be hung from lamp posts throughout Whistler. It’s hard to get close to the sliding centre at the moment, but what can be seen looks very impressive, not to mention extremely scary. It is said to be the fastest bobsleigh track in the world.
So far the weather gods are smiling on Whistler too – a foot of fresh over the past 48 hours means it’s over a meter and a half of powder in the past two weeks alone, making for great skiing – and all that on the back of an already excellent snow season.
There’s always a real buzz here in this amazing resort, but right now it’s almost tangible as the local community embrace the opportunity to showcase their mountains to the world.
Here is the BBC’s new TV trailer for their coverage of the 2010 Winter Olympics.