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Whistler/Blackcomb questions?

post #1 of 14
Thread Starter 
I am going to be in Whistler the 25th through the 30th of March. If any Bears would like to get together for some runs or to apre ski some please let me know.

I have never been there for Spring skiing. Any ideas on how the weather might be, favorite eateries and/or brew pubs, etc. please help out.

Deals on lift passes, best places to by groceries, and best or favorite ski shop.

Thanks, hope to see some of you there.
post #2 of 14
Bring really good gore-tex. Try the Keg,
Sushi Village and Uberto's Trattoria. Kevin
at Fanatyc really know's how to fit boots.
post #3 of 14
7-11 has discount lift tickets but if you can broker a deal with group rates/multiday passes that is the way to go. Contact your local ski travel agent or book a land only trip via daman Nelson.

The local's recommend for casual dining,

Uli's flipside,
Zeuskis (sp?)(if you like ethnic Greek)
I ate at the first three and all were very good.

If you like soup for lunch, Blackcomb Rendevous lodge. It's cheap, good and self serve so you can dredge the bottom for stuff and not end up with only broth(other locations were served for you). Also it was the least salty of all the locations we tried on the hill. (whistler and blackcomb)

Great Glades, Take the Crystal Chair, head out the "ridge runner", and get into "the outer limits".

For fun stuff with the kids, try "Twist and shout" or Rock 'n Roll" just past "outer limits" and Arthurs Choice"

Only a few choices for Groceries. IGA (in the marketplace area of the village)and Hearthstone (right near the Whistler Gondola/clock tower). (I guess there are some smaller little stores) but the village shuttle stops right behind the IGA and they have everything you could want. Great selection of just about every type of groceries. (you can even find all the fixing to make Thai food or Japanese food)

Boot fitting, Wild Willies.

Tuning, Carleton lodge Repair shop or Blackcomb Day Lodge. They both have those multimillion dollar computer controlled stone grinders. The price is right, they can do overnight tunes and grinds and if you have a discount card (check with your travel agent or lodging company) I think they will give you another 10% off.

By the way, if you do get a discount card, flash it everywhere you shop. Even if the shop is not a participant of the card you are holding, they will often match the discount or give you a small break.

On GST..

Make sure you get the Government GST form. (I believe it has the Canadian flag on it) not the Maple leaf ones or other ones. They take a commission on any refunds you get. Also when you purchase items, Keep in mind there is a minimum "per reciept" of 50.00 CDN in goods purchased. If you purchase $49.99 (before taxes) you can not claim a refund so if you are shopping with friends pool your purchases to get them over the 50.00 minimum. The items have to be hard goods you are returning to the states with or short term lodging. and you need a minimum of 200.00 total in purchses.

Although the forms say you must get the receipts stamped at customs before you leave the country, The customs agent tells me you can send them in without the stamp and they will process. it just takes longer. If you plan to have them stamped, do this before you check in. If you are going through Vancouver, the customs office is way down at the end of the terminal. Once you get passed Check in, there is no turning back. you must proceed directly through immigration, customs and to the gate.

Also since 9-11 you now can not check in too early. 3 hours max. I had to go through the line 2 times : because we were at the airport 4 hours before our flight time.

Save 10.00 CDN if you are flying through Vancouver for the airport tax. And use a Credit Card for everything you can. You get the best rate with the CC. (they will take Credit cards at the on hill restaurants with no minimum. we charged all our lunches as low as 10.00 CDN!)

That's most of the wisdom I learned in my 2 trips there this winter...

<FONT COLOR="#800080" SIZE="1">[ March 05, 2002 12:12 PM: Message edited 1 time, by dchan ]</font>
post #4 of 14
Restaurant favorites include the Keg, Sushi Village or Sushi-Ya. Larger grocery store near KFC has good selection and is about 10 min. walk from the Westin.
As far as ski shops Summit ski in the base of the Delta Whistler resort has been the best for me as far as tuning, waxing, mounting and renting. Knowledgable staff and service oriented.
I've never been in late March but Goretex sounds like a very good idea. Should have lots of good coverage unless it rains a lot.
ski doc
post #5 of 14
Dining, suggestions I agree with:

Zeuski's was Good in the Village for Greek such as Lamb Shank.

Trattori di'Umberto (not the one on Village stroll but the one in the Holiday Inn behind the Pan Pacific) - good basic Italian Fair.

For more upscale Italian Fair, Quattro at the Pinnacles Hotel is very good. Quattro also has a nice wine list.

Val de'Sere at the Bear Lodge is worth a try for french food. We had a special dinner there with our Dave Murray Camp so we had a selection of only a few items but it was good. We didn't have enough time to go back to try their full menu (well not all at once).

Ski Shops and Boot Fitting

My wife had good work done by Snowcovers (recommended here on Epic Ski). It is located on Main Street near the IGA/Marketplace. They did boot planing for her and some other adjustments. She's very happy with the results.
post #6 of 14
Eating - Earls or Portobello at the the Chateau Whislter (don't worry very reasonable prices and a great deli as well.)

Gear - the big Can Ski store out by the market place, has excellent boot fitting and b.s. free sales advice.

Terrain - any of the bowls of off Peak Chair on Whistler. For peace and quiet Spanky's ladder on Blackcomb or if you like showing off to tourists try Blow Hole from the top of the Glacier T Bar. In bad weather try the Glades below 7th Heaven Express.
post #7 of 14
Here's more info on GST (and the Commision Free Form)

The Official Form

post #8 of 14
Snow conditions should be great. There's plenty of coverage right now and more snow on the way this week. I was up the first week of April last year and there was a little of everything: sun, snow and rain down in the village. That was a bad snow year, but you could still ski all the way to the village. Spring is fun there. Sunset is later and there's a decent chance of warm conditions down in the village.

Another good on-hill eating spot is the Crytal Hut on Blackcomb for waffles in the morning.
post #9 of 14
Bar: Dubh Linn Gate

Evening Entertainment...The Boot Ballet

<FONT COLOR="#800080" SIZE="1">[ March 05, 2002 04:05 PM: Message edited 1 time, by irul&ublo ]</font>
post #10 of 14
We were there in April last year. For us conditions were great, but bear in mind we come from Scotland so you do not need to have very good conditions for "great" to be appropriate. Having said that it was late on- 2nd/3rd week in April- and there was ample coverage. The runs back to the resort were patchy but at the top, on either mountain, there was plenty. The sun shone when we were there, it snowed when we were there, it was cloudy when we there and it bucketed rain when we were there (at the base)- overa period of 7 days. We had a glorious ride up from Vancouver, great scenery, great views. On the way back it was raining like there was no tomorrow, you couldnt see much out of the bus window.

When it rained at the base you could see a line where it turned to snow higher up (not that much higher up) si=o you just go up and it is snowflakes.

Crowds ok tho weekends were busier.Depends what you are used to. Lift lines civilised ie not very Continental European in style. Busy in on mountain eateries at lunch. That was towards end of season so you were limited to cafeteria type eating- not a problem for us but if you are looking for a long/stylish lunch then you may have a problem.

We stayed at Delta Village Suites and by memory Zeuski was across from that. Greek food in Greece is not a favorite so I did not try the Canadian version !! There was a very good steak/fish/burger place attached to our hotel.

Best foodshopping was in the big supermarket in the square near Mcdonalds tho there was a decent one near the gondolas/lifts which had a good liquor store across from it- which is shut on Sundays as i recall so watch out for that.

Basically you cant turn round in the place without falling over another restarant/ cafe

It has a reputation for rain but I wasnt that affected by the rain we had- no worse than a day back home and once you got out of the base it went away anyway.We had several sunny days which were glorious. last year they moaned about it being a bad year- again depends against what you test it. Last year in Whistler in April there was significantly more snow than I saw in Italy this year in January- but it was a bad time there as well. Having said that Italy is better now, but they are still a long way behind Whitler then let alone now, where Whistler posts a base of 107 at mid mountain. Few if any of the European resorts are near that.

We go again 3 weeks on Saturday, so I like it !!
post #11 of 14
For boot work I like SnowCovers (near the IGA) the owner Jay Taylor is a great guy. They do boot planing which is hard to find in the US.
If the cover is adequate go up Spanky's Ladder to Ruby, Garnet and other bowls. You might also want to try the Great Beyond and the Blow Hole. At Whistler there are some nice runs off the Peak Chair..The Cirque, West Bowl etc.

Earls Bistro is ok along with the Keg, Mongolie Grill and the BrewHouse. More upscale is Quattro (Italian) and the RimRock Cafe (Whistler Creekside). Dustys at Creekside is a great place to have a beer if you want to avoid the main village.

Keep me posted as to your plans for Crystal.
Have fun.
post #12 of 14
<BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Lucky:
Dustys at Creekside is a great place to have a beer if you want to avoid the main village.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Good point. Dusty's is a cool place to go for lunch, too. Ski from the top of the Peak chair about a vertical mile down to Dusty's. You're ready for some food and drink after that [img]smile.gif[/img] It's probably less crowded than the on-mountain spots, too.
post #13 of 14
Don't freak if its raining in the villlage. It usually means that its snowing in the alpine!!! [img]smile.gif[/img] Also, that will probably be the only time you won't have to deal with crowds! At the end of the day, you may want the option of downloading on the gondola. The snow at the bottom is wet and "sugary" and everyone comes down the same trail!

I had to learn my lesson the hard way, but having to prove my dumb "machisma" by skking a top to bottom! [img]redface.gif[/img]
post #14 of 14
OK, drink:
Dubh Linn Gate, also Longhorn or Merlins.

Food: Go over to Blackcomb, to the Thai One On Restaurant - very good food.

(Hey, I made a post mentioning something other than drink!)

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