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What you need to start mountain biking in Whistler

If we’re being honest, which we like to be, Whistler is bike-crazy once the snow melts. If you’re not biking up a mountain then you’re certainly getting a lift up (A Line anyone?). But if anyone goes past our Whistler Mountain Bike Park, some might be a bit worried that it’s way out of their league. The good news though? There’s a variety of ways that you can enjoy biking and get into it without getting launching off a 6 foot drop (this is by pure choice only). We came up with a few things that you need to start mountain biking to hopefully lessen the stress and up the fun factor:

THE BIKE

I know this is a given but hear me out because it’s important to distinguish what kind of biking you want to do to determine where to get your bike from. It’s best to rent bikes first and get a sense of whether you like it (we think you will) but ask yourself whether or not you want to pedal up and down the mountain or whether you want a lift to take you up and you’ll pedal your way down. Once you’ve made that choice, then you’ll either get a cross country bike (a pedal bike that’s lighter than a downhill bike so it’s easier to pedal up) or a downhill bike, which tends to be on the beefier side as it doesn’t need to be as pedalling efficient as the terrain can be a bit tougher and you’re using gravity to help you get down the mountain. There are a few places you can rent bikes in town, some hotels offer rentals or you can rent from Summit or Whistler Mountain Rentals under the GLC. That’s just to name a few, there are lots of places to go in town so just ask your hotel concierge or your Google concierge.

 


THE LEARNING CURVE

… isn’t so bad! The reason for this is because Whistler is as bike-crazy as it is, we’re also pro-getting people into the sport so Whistler has developed a range of learning options. Men’s and Women’s nights in the bike park is a great way to get into the downhill side of the sport as it’s gender and level specific and is guided by world class instructors. Not only that, there’s apres right after where you can win prizes! There are also general beginner lessons that happen during the day as well called Bike Park 101. These options are great intro’s into the sport if you’re curious about the sport. Now moving to cross country, local biking organization WORCA hosts a variety of bike rides throughout the week catering to various abilities. Monday nights are geared towards all ability levels and are broken down as such. You have to have a membership but it’s only about $50 for the season and then for each night you bike with WORCA it’s just $2, however this gets you a drink ticket at the sponsored location for apres.

 

Standing room only earlier today at Top Of The World for the #Crankworx Enduro. #CWXEnduro #Whistler

A photo posted by Terry Phillips (@blackcombterry) on


LOCATION, LOCATION, LOCATION

So you have the option to do downhill biking and just use the Whistler Mountain Bike Park, but if you’d like to venture outside of this and throughout Whistler then the options become endless. This would be for those wanting to cross country bike. Lost Lake is the best place to start with a variety of trails for all abilities otherwise if you feel like you want to conquer more you pretty much literally have the entire valley. Check out Trail Forks for an extensive list of trails throughout Whistler. Just remember, like the bike park and like skiing… green means beginner, blue is for intermediate and black is for advanced.

 

Enjoying the scenery on Comfortably Numb. #Whistler #MtnBiking #Biking #whistlerunfiltered

A photo posted by Terry Phillips (@blackcombterry) on

Finally, the number one thing you absolutely need is a helmet. This sport is more than just jumping on your cruiser down the beach (although we advocate helmet wearing even for that) so make sure you protect your head. Other accessories are optional such as a pack and if you try downhill biking then you’ll be given armour for further protection. At the end of the day, it’s something to just have fun with, give it a try or perhaps even an activity to cross off your bucket list. Enjoy!

 

Go Sailing Clinics

3 reasons why Whistler is the ideal summer destination

A number of years ago, Whistler was only ever seen and marketed as the number one ski resort in North America. The thought of Whistler being a year-round resort wasn’t even really a consideration for most people (some probably thought there was snow on the ground year round). But as time has gone on, this little mountain town has grown to become a bustling summer destination, just as much as it is a ski destination. There’s a saying around Whistler that,  “you come for the winter but stay for the summer” and here’s why:

PLENTY TO SEE

The summertime springs to life our Farmers’ Market that hosts an array of local food and art in the Upper Village (base of Blackcomb) every Wednesday and Sunday. Recently, the Audain Art Museum also opened. This grand space holds a variety of traditional art from the province’s First Peoples through to contemporary artists. We also can’t forget the free Whistler Presents: Concert Series that’s held at Whistler Olympic Plaza throughout the summer (see who is playing this year by clicking the link). If you manage to come on a weekend that features one of our many events, you might get to witness the Subaru IRONMAN Canada, Wanderlust or our very own Great Outdoors Festival (GO Fest)!

2015_0516_GOFest_FarmersMarket_018

 

PLENTY TO DO

From a vast trail network for hiking to the Whistler Blackcomb Bike Park there is something for everyone. Right in the Upper Village, at the Blackcomb base, there’s a fun-filled Adventure Zone perfect for the kids to enjoy, such as a luge track and mini golf. You can also access hiking trails and sightseeing from the base of either Whistler or Blackcomb. You can include the Peak to Peak and do the sight see loop! Don’t forget to check out the variety of lakes in Whistler such as Lost Lake and Alta Lake, both perfect for swimming and chilling out on the docks with friends.

PLENTY TO EAT

Whistler’s restaurant scene is just as bumping in the summer as it is in the winter with a few extra additions! Warmer temps mean more ice cream shops along the Village Stroll so don’t forget to swing by and cool down with a scoop or two. This is the perfect place to enjoy some much-missed patio time where you can enjoy a classic caesar or summer salad while you people watch. There are a variety of places to grab a bite or a drink all throughout Whistler, from Function Junction just as you enter Whistler to Alpine Meadows north of the village. Check our Instagram for a few suggestions!

Yum! Thank you @fourseasons #Whistler

A photo posted by E L James (@erikaljames) on

No matter what you decide to do, there is one thing that’s clear: Come and enjoy Whistler in the summertime. There’s plenty to see, do and eat for everyone of all ages. We’re ready when you are!