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Old 03-29-2014, 11:27 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Talking Whistler / Blackcomb March 16 - 21

One word: Epic. As I sit here and try to come up with the words to describe our first trip to W / B, it is near impossible to find the words that can put the experience into perspective. One can read about how big this resort is, but until you have been there, you cannot fully appreciate the magnitude of what these two mountains have to offer.

First off we were blessed with one of the best windows of weather this season. We were on a 3 days of 4 lift ticket and it worked out brilliantly, pun intended. As is the case on any trip, you can book your vacation, but you cannot book your weather. W / B has a rap on being sketchy for weather and we lucked out. Of our 4 days there, we had sun for three of them.

Not only did we luck into the weather, but I had a buddy of mine who has been to Whistler every spring for about the last 10 years as our guide. No Trail Map required. What a treat!!!!!

The weather afforded all of us the opportunity to experience Symphony and Harmony with fresh powder. Thrill of a lifetime. It was not so deep as to swallow us and leave us digging out, but enough to experience the full float sensation.

My buddy indicated that the new Crystal lift has produced a totally improved experience on that part of Blackcomb. The terrain there was truly exceptional. We did not get up onto the Glacier as none of us has the "T Bar" experience required. This did not look like the place to start !!!!!!

We certainly found Blackcomb a far more comfortable mountain to ride vs. Whistler. As Lamps (again, many thanks ) had posted, Whistler has more runs that "traverse" the fall line and are a little less enjoyable because of that. And, after the thrill of doing Symphony and Harmony, the Green cat track back, Burnt Stew Trail, is quite the quad killer. ( We all ride goofy )

Every mountain is at its best with Bluebird skies. Mother nature served up just that and I know that we could have had cloud, grey, flat light and we might never have seen all that WB has to offer, but I will go again having seen just how magnificent these mountains can be when the conditions are right.
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Old 03-29-2014, 01:30 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Great that you had a blast!
Vacation and good weather is like peaches and cream
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Old 03-29-2014, 01:35 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Having a "guide" on your first trip is absolutely priceless. The thing is huge and if you go at it solo, curiosity can work against you and not let you get the A+ experience. Also, it's really difficult to follow the trails, half the time you don't know where you are or where to go unless you've been a couple times.

Harmony is awesome. Really, i could spend all day there. Also the Tbars are no big deal... even if you screw up, the consequence is mostly embarrassing rather than painful.

Another recommendation to first time goers is: fitness.
Be fit. No ifs about it, i've paid the price. The mountain is huge, challenging terrain and long runs works you out and the day is short, so not much time to sit and rest.

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Old 03-29-2014, 02:52 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Beautifully written review of what sounds like an "epic" four days!
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Old 03-29-2014, 03:14 PM   #5 (permalink)
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As Chomps said beautifully written was a thrill just to read thanks for sharing….
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Old 03-31-2014, 01:30 AM   #6 (permalink)
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I always find it interesting what certain people's definitions of "good weather" is.

Up here in the the Pacific Northwet, I mean Northwest... clouds, flat light, fog... all of these things are a way of life in the mountains. But guess what else? The storm factory in the Pacific provides. All that less than perfect visibility is part of what brings fantastic snow in huge amounts to unbelievable terrain. Storm cycles are the best time to ride, especially at Whistler.

Today it was foggy and a little snow fell. When we weren't riding trees, we were rocking the glacier out here:

(not my photos, obvz)















There was hardly anyone on the mountain at all. We shredded some fantastic glades. Even though it only snowed a few inches overnight, we had big turns on steeeep terrain that had hardly any tracks, and so much sluff it filled any in. I would have never tried hucking a certain cliff that neachdanin showed me in here if it had been a good stretch full of sunny and bluebird days. I have the first bruise I've had in a very long time (I don't bruise easily at all) on my shoulder. After going a little bigger than I had planned and coming over the cliff to see I was headed straight for my partner (with camera in hand) I took a board edge hard to the shoulder as we both went tumbling... oooph!

Most people who come to Whistler with riding as their primary concern, come in search of deep fresh snow, and the vast amount of world class quality terrain. A lot of those people get poor luck and miss the storm cycles that blow through this part of the world so often during most of the year and bring so much great snow here during the winter... sometimes they get lucky. It's nice to enjoy the mountain on a beautiful day, but days like today - this is why I ride! Even losing my iPhone for the first time ever didn't ruin the day.

Glad you enjoyed your time though, Oldman. Not many places like this. I wish I could get out more often and show some of you folks around when you're coming through, it's definitely a crazy place!
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Old 03-31-2014, 01:50 AM   #7 (permalink)
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All i can say is: i got a mint never used bright light Smith IOX lens for sale. Goin' cheap
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Old 03-31-2014, 08:13 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by destroy View Post
I always find it interesting what certain people's definitions of "good weather" is.

Up here in the the Pacific Northwet, I mean Northwest... clouds, flat light, fog... all of these things are a way of life in the mountains. But guess what else? The storm factory in the Pacific provides. All that less than perfect visibility is part of what brings fantastic snow in huge amounts to unbelievable terrain. Storm cycles are the best time to ride, especially at Whistler.

Today it was foggy and a little snow fell. When we weren't riding trees, we were rocking the glacier out here:

(not my photos, obvz)















There was hardly anyone on the mountain at all. We shredded some fantastic glades. Even though it only snowed a few inches overnight, we had big turns on steeeep terrain that had hardly any tracks, and so much sluff it filled any in. I would have never tried hucking a certain cliff that neachdanin showed me in here if it had been a good stretch full of sunny and bluebird days. I have the first bruise I've had in a very long time (I don't bruise easily at all) on my shoulder. After going a little bigger than I had planned and coming over the cliff to see I was headed straight for my partner (with camera in hand) I took a board edge hard to the shoulder as we both went tumbling... oooph!

Most people who come to Whistler with riding as their primary concern, come in search of deep fresh snow, and the vast amount of world class quality terrain. A lot of those people get poor luck and miss the storm cycles that blow through this part of the world so often during most of the year and bring so much great snow here during the winter... sometimes they get lucky. It's nice to enjoy the mountain on a beautiful day, but days like today - this is why I ride! Even losing my iPhone for the first time ever didn't ruin the day.

Glad you enjoyed your time though, Oldman. Not many places like this. I wish I could get out more often and show some of you folks around when you're coming through, it's definitely a crazy place!
Awesome pics, love the second last photo, coming down near surfs up?
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Old 04-01-2014, 12:20 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kwillo View Post
Awesome pics, love the second last photo, coming down near surfs up?
Read the post!

None of those are mine. Just pulled 'em off the Googles.
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Old 04-01-2014, 06:28 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by destroy View Post
I always find it interesting what certain people's definitions of "good weather" is.

Up here in the the Pacific Northwet, I mean Northwest... clouds, flat light, fog... all of these things are a way of life in the mountains. But guess what else? The storm factory in the Pacific provides. All that less than perfect visibility is part of what brings fantastic snow in huge amounts to unbelievable terrain. Storm cycles are the best time to ride, especially at Whistler.
You're right that a day of heavy snow is the best, even if it diminishes visibility.

However, if you're not going to get any snow then the 2nd best day at whistler is a bluebird day - I've had trips to whistler where it's snowed so hard they've only been able to open the high alpine every 2nd or 3rd day, and when it was open it was epic. I've also had pretty long stretches of temperature inversions and blue skies but no fresh, and those days are great as well.

The worst days are when there's no new snow and visibility is like 10 feet. All pain and no gain.
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