Canadian Cyclist


June 4/04 7:09 am - Whistler Blackcomb to Invest 14.2 Million

Posted by Editoress on 06/4/04

Whistler Blackcomb Expands Facilities
Courtesy Intrawest

Whistler Blackcomb Invests $14.2 Million in On-Mountain Improvements and Introduces Peak to Creek and Flute Bowl - Whistler Mountain's Single Largest Terrain Expansion

Whistler, B.C. Friday, June 4, 2004 - Whistler Blackcomb is rated the #1 mountain resort in North America, and is arguably the best mountain resort in the world. We offer the highest vertical, the most skiable terrain, and the best and most accessible backcountry. But that doesn't stop us from striving to offer more. This year Whistler Blackcomb will invest $14.2 million in on-mountain improvements, introduce 1100 acres of new terrain on Whistler Mountain, unveil a fully redeveloped Creekside base, host the 2005 World Snowboard Championships, and launch a Superpipe on Blackcomb Mountain, lit for night skiing and riding.

Introducing Peak to Creek. The long awaited west side of Whistler Mountain officially opens this season, featuring four runs, 400 acres and hundreds of lines to choose from in the Peak to Creek area. Over the course of 5020 vertical feet skiers and riders will get a taste of everything the coastal BC mountains have to offer: huge alpine bowls, glades, and wide runs cutting through big timbers on the way to the valley floor. Intermediates can carve their way from top to bottom on Peak to Creek, which will be groomed regularly. Advanced and expert riders can find new adventurous routes to the Creekside on Dusty's Descent, Big Timber or Home Run.

Flute Bowl - an inbounds backcountry experience. Visitors to Whistler Blackcomb can now venture into the backcountry without leaving the ski area boundary. After a short hike from the Peak or Harmony chairs on Whistler Mountain, skiers and riders will find themselves in Flute Bowl - scenic and serene, yet still patrolled for safety. Flute Bowl starts in the alpine with deep snow and rolling bowls and transitions into gladed subalpine terrain. The area features 700 new inbounds acres, wide-open spaces, fewer people, and natural snow conditions. Advanced and expert visitors are encouraged to hike up and hike out to discover Flute Bowl.

"Opening Peak to Creek and Flute Bowl is a part of the natural expansion of the mountains," said Doug Forseth, Whistler Blackcomb Senior Vice President of Operations. "As the number of visits increase, we need to expand to ensure a positive experience for our guests. By expanding Whistler Mountain by 30% into Peak to Creek and Flute Bowl, we will offer a better variety of terrain to give people a truly new and unique experience."

Creekside makes a comeback. The original Whistler base re-emerges this year after a four-year face-lift as a quiet, more intimate alternative to the main village. At the bottom of the Peak to Creek runs and the Dave Murray Downhill skiers and riders will find Franz's Trail - a pedestrian-only, family-friendly village with year-round amenities: hotels, restaurants, a bank, a grocery store, retail and rental locations, a liquor store, 1400 free parking spaces, and Whistler's first and favourite après hangout - Dusty's Bar and BBQ.

"Things are coming full circle. In the '60s, Whistler was built with the Olympics in mind, and the first hub of activity in the resort was the Creekside," said Dave Brownlie, Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer for Whistler Blackcomb. "Several decades later our Olympic vision is becoming a reality, and we're going to host the Games in 2010. The Creekside will play a pivotal role in the excitement and animation of the Olympics - prior to the Games families can visit the Creekside to experience skiing or riding on a future Olympic run, and during the Games many of our alpine events will feed right into the Creekside base."


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