Northeast of Vancouver and west of Pemberton, the Whistler Blackcomb ski resort has 200+ runs spread over 8,170 acres served by 37 lifts that access a maximum vertical descent of 5,280 feet. The Whistler Blackcomb resort is known for wet, mushy snow at the bottom (or even rain) and pow (or ice) up top (along with fog or white out). Whistler Blackcomb averages over 350 inches of snowfall annually.
With the second largest vertical in North America, the massive alpine terrain is comparable to major ski areas in the Alps. There are sixteen magnificent bowls and three glaciers. The steep powder chutes, challenging mogul fields, secluded tree skiing and groomed-to-perfection cruising runs offer snowboarders endless enjoyment.
If you're into park shredding, you'll be pretty psyched with all the options at Whistler-Blackcomb. There are over 190 terrain park features spread over six parks covering 100 acres. The features include 150 jibs and 40 jumps. When you're ready to go big, make sure to check out the top-rated Highest Level Terrain Park on Blackcomb.
Blackcomb Mountain tends to be where snowboarders hang. Try hiking up Blackcomb glacier via Spankys Ladder and ride down staying to the left dropping into Garnet, Diamond and Ruby Bowls. Alternately, hike up the Chimney and then head down Fraggle Rock and Grey Zone. If youre going to explore off the groomers, it is highly recommend picking up a copy of the Snowboard Guide To Whistler by Brian Finestone.
This place is big with some major extremes, so consider hiring a guide. Try the glacier-carved West Cirque at the Whistler summit or hike Diseased Ridge at the Blackcomb Summit. Or for more challenge try the ridges off Peak Chair with cliffs and trees down into Whistler Bowl. Ask the locals about the VD trees and chutes.
So this isn t enough for you? How about checking out Powder Mountain Cat Skiing on Tricouni (2,000 foot vertical) and Cypress (3,800 foot vertical) Mountains (604-932-0169). For a wild party weekend, come in early April for the World Snowboarding Championship. Plus, there's summer snowboarding on the Horstman Glacier!
For apres ski, try Merlins at the Blackcomb base or Longhorn at the Whister base or Dustys at the Whistler Creek base. For nightlife, there are several places worth checking out, but keep in mind that they don’t even open until around 10pm; these include Tommy Africa, Maxx Fish, Garfunkels, and the Savage Beagle all in the Whistler Village.
For first tracks on powder days, take the gondola up at 7:15am for a full breakfeast at the Roundhouse Lodge.
To get to the Whistler Blackcomb snowboarding from Vancouver, there are three options: car, bus (PerimeterBus.com) or helicopter (HeliJet). To reach the ski area by car, plan on at least a 3 hour drive from Vancouver. Head north out of Vancouver on Highway 1 (aka Highway 99). Continue following Highway 99 past Horseshoe Bay heading east.
Overall, Whistler Blackcomb is the 1st most popular snowboard & freeride destination of all 27 snowboarding resorts in British Columbia.