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2010 Olympics: Getting There, Staying There, Tickets...

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 
Does it seems like there has been very little build-up leading to the Winter Olympics, which are happening in our neighborhood in less than six months? Let's get it started around here!

Who's going, how're you getting around, where are you staying, what venues will you be attending???

Dates: February 12-28, 2010
Where: Vancouver, B.C. 
Venues Map Here

Some information from the Seattle Times:

  • A major light-rail system to move the tens of thousands of visitors expected to attend the Olympics was completed ahead of schedule and is running smoothly. 
  • A second daily round-trip Amtrak Cascades train will begin running between Portland, Seattle and Vancouver on Aug. 19th and continue at least through the Olympics.
  • Hotel rooms are booking for about $1000/night, double occupancy, through the official booking agency for U.S. visitors, CoSport.
  • For more affordable lodging, the Vancouver Board of Parks is opening up beaches and parking lots to RV camping: 

About 365 sites will be available at Jericho Beach and Spanish Bank parks, on English Bay near the University of British Columbia. RVs can be a maximum of 30 feet long, said Philip Josephs of the park board. No hookups will be available, but there will be a mobile pump-out service and restrooms are available by the parking lots.

A campsite will cost about $87 a night, including shuttle service to the nearest station of the Canada Line. "No one will want to drive around Vancouver in an RV during the Olympics," said Josephs.

A Web site for reservations is expected to go online within about a week. In the meantime, RVers can e-mail Josephs at philip.josephs@vancouver.ca to be notified when reservations open up.


Please add your information, comments, photos, etc. to bring us up to speed on these "stealth" Olympics. 
Edited by nolo - 8/15/2009 at 01:56 pm GMT
post #2 of 13
I'm still trying to figure out how I'm going to navigate my way around during the Olympics. Whistler is where I ski 95% of the time, so for me the Olympics is just a major inconvenience which will interfere with my skiing.

There's some good info on Whistler's website http://www.whistlerblackcomb.com/olympics/index.htm which will give you an idea of what to expect as far as mtn accessibility, transportation, accommodations, etc..
post #3 of 13
You're right - it has been very quiet - too quiet.  I just received my volunteer assignment for the Olympics - but I haven't yet figured where I'll be staying. VANOC is not providing accomidations for volunteers.  I live in Seattle and I don't think driving up to Vancouver every day will work - they expect really long border crossing times. From what I've seen, it looks like condo's in Whistler are renting for 1 or 2 week minimum stays, at $1000 +++ per night.  On the plus side, I was in Whistler in May and they have signs posted that says that 90% of Whistler-Blackcomb will be open for skiing during the Olympics.  Although access will probably be a huge problem.  Anyone know how much progress they've made on the Sea to Sky highway ? Last time I traveled there in May, it looks like they did a good job around Horseshoe Bay, but once you get half way to Whistler - looks like they have a LOT of work to be done - I don't know how they'll complete it by February.  I'm picturing one long parking lot between Vancouver and Whisler ?!?!  I'm looking forward to the Olympics, I'm planning / hoping to take my kids to some events - I think it would be a great inspirational experience for them (too late to inspire my dreams !) but logistics will be an issue.  I lived in LA during the '84 Summer Olympics and we were able to get last minute tickets for non-final events and some less popular events at a reasonable cost - also, traveling around was not as bad as people thought it would be.  Back than, many locals avoided the Olympics becasue everyone assumed the worst in terms of traffic.  Getting around Vancouver may not be too bad - but getting to Whistler, where there's only one way in or out - that worries me.
post #4 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by ILOJ View Post

You're right - it has been very quiet - too quiet.  I just received my volunteer assignment for the Olympics - but I haven't yet figured where I'll be staying. VANOC is not providing accomidations for volunteers.  I live in Seattle and I don't think driving up to Vancouver every day will work - they expect really long border crossing times. From what I've seen, it looks like condo's in Whistler are renting for 1 or 2 week minimum stays, at $1000 +++ per night.  On the plus side, I was in Whistler in May and they have signs posted that says that 90% of Whistler-Blackcomb will be open for skiing during the Olympics.  Although access will probably be a huge problem.  Anyone know how much progress they've made on the Sea to Sky highway ? Last time I traveled there in May, it looks like they did a good job around Horseshoe Bay, but once you get half way to Whistler - looks like they have a LOT of work to be done - I don't know how they'll complete it by February.  I'm picturing one long parking lot between Vancouver and Whisler ?!?!  I'm looking forward to the Olympics, I'm planning / hoping to take my kids to some events - I think it would be a great inspirational experience for them (too late to inspire my dreams !) but logistics will be an issue.  I lived in LA during the '84 Summer Olympics and we were able to get last minute tickets for non-final events and some less popular events at a reasonable cost - also, traveling around was not as bad as people thought it would be.  Back than, many locals avoided the Olympics becasue everyone assumed the worst in terms of traffic.  Getting around Vancouver may not be too bad - but getting to Whistler, where there's only one way in or out - that worries me.

The Sea to Sky will not be open to civilian cars during the Olympics - buses from Van only.

The best way to see the Olympics is on the tube. When there was a big FIS race last year, they kept the great unwashed WAAAAY away. Only parts of Whistler will be the cluster, Blackcomb will be open as usual.

Whistler had better hope for a weather miracle, since if people see it in it's normal environment, all socked in with clouds and fog, it'll destroy their p.r. attempts.
post #5 of 13
My wife and I wanted to go, but when I started adding up the expenses it just didn't make sense.  It was easily going to exceed the cost of the two week dive trip week took to Australia a couple of years ago.
post #6 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by snofun3 View Post




The Sea to Sky will not be open to civilian cars during the Olympics - buses from Van only.

The best way to see the Olympics is on the tube. When there was a big FIS race last year, they kept the great unwashed WAAAAY away. Only parts of Whistler will be the cluster, Blackcomb will be open as usual.

Whistler had better hope for a weather miracle, since if people see it in it's normal environment, all socked in with clouds and fog, it'll destroy their p.r. attempts.

 

The Sea to Sky will also be open to those who can show an ID with proof of residence in Whistler or proof of employment at a Whistler business.
And for those who haven't come up here since May, the highway was completed to the south part of Whistler (2 months ahead of schedule) in late August.  The last part continuing to Whistler Village will be finished widening in a couple of weeks.
And thankfully the Olympics are happening in February, when fog is unusual here. Besides, fog would only affect a small portion of the total number of Olympic events.
post #7 of 13
 With the Winter Olympics 100 days away, its time to bump this thread......
post #8 of 13
Lou! Where's Lou?
He knows about this.
Oh...he's in Calgary, hundreds of miles away...still... hey Lou! it's only like a 10 hour drive!
post #9 of 13

i was going to go along with a few people...until we figured out the lodging alone was going to be around 11k...and thats just for the lodging. also the place we were going to stay at was 45 minutes out of vancouver...and thats without traffic.

post #10 of 13
I had the same delightful experience as ILOJ during the 1984 Olympics.  Thus I made the effort to go to SLC for 2002.  I ordered ticket packages online the first day possible (that was a year ago for Vancouver).  I drove from SoCal to avoid airport/car rental issues.  And I was lucky to have a work connection for a place to stay in Salt Lake.   I've been skiing Utah regularly since 1981 and I knew that the logistics of getting around would likely be the best possible for a Winter Olympics.  Over the course of one week I attended 7 events (the infamous pairs figure skating finals, men's moguls, men's downhill/slalom combined, short track speed skating, snowboard GS racing and 2 hockey games) and 2 award ceremonies but missed women's downhill for weather.  I also skied 2 days at Alta and one at Snowbird, totally empty due to typical ski tourists avoiding SLC during the Olympics.

There is a lot of paranoia about lodging costs.  If it's a big metro area, not as much a problem as people think, unless you insist on staying at 5-star properties next to Olympic venues.   Like L.A. in 1984, I have to believe lodging can be found in Vancouver for close to "normal" prices.

The events at Whistler make this Olympics more difficult for visitors than SLC.  There's likely no way around the high lodging costs up there, though as in SLC I'll bet the recreational skiing will be great during the games.  They are probably running spectator buses from Vancouver, but that will be more tedious than SLC, particularly for people who want to mix skiing with attending events like I did in 2002.
post #11 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by snofun3 View Post




The Sea to Sky will not be open to civilian cars during the Olympics - buses from Van only.

The best way to see the Olympics is on the tube. When there was a big FIS race last year, they kept the great unwashed WAAAAY away. Only parts of Whistler will be the cluster, Blackcomb will be open as usual.

Whistler had better hope for a weather miracle, since if people see it in it's normal environment, all socked in with clouds and fog, it'll destroy their p.r. attempts.
 
Sea to Sky is open as mentioned above, with it being harder to 'park' than actually drive on the highway. Speaking of which, it is basically finished, but the stuff left to do isn't necessary. It is more about line marking, and placing a few more barriers in certain places. The road in Whistler itself is a bit more of a pain. Still a bit of work being done, and I think they have had to 'modify' their plans to fit the timeline, but hey, its all okay.

I don't really understand all of your second paragraph, but I hear some people say watching ice hockey or baseball is better on TV in HD, personally I find being there a WAAAAAY better experience. Also, Blackcomb Mountain is fully open all season, while Whistler is 90% for approximately 4-6 weeks out of a 4-6 month season.

Feb 2009 was perfect Olympic weather - lots of sun, cold weather - as it often is in Feb. You never know, but if they weather is the same in 2010, then the PR department couldn't buy better publicity.

I personally can't wait for this season to get started. So many people think it will be super busy, so are not coming here. More powder for me :)

I wonder why the IOC (International Olympic Committee) actually has to pay WhistlerBlackcomb money for 'loss of income due to lower skier numbers' - maybe it is because its a proven fact that the host resort of a Winter Olympics suffers from 'Olympiphobia' and no one goes.
If you are curious to see whether I am right or not, follow my Whistler Blackcomb Snow Report blog
post #12 of 13
Has anyone noticed that Whistler-Blackcomb has been placing 20 page ads in several skiing magazines offering 39% discount on lodging ?  I think that the Olympics have scared people away.  I bet that you might be able to find some last minute deals in Whistler and Vancouver if you wait until the games start and you want to be there during the Olympics.  
post #13 of 13
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