THE Sum­mer Side OF WHISTLER

Whistler Traveller Magazine - - TASTE & FITNESS - STORY BY RE­BECCA WOOD BAR­RETT IM­AGES BY JOERN ROHDE

As the days grow longer and the Whistler Val­ley warms up, it’s time to im­merse your senses in sum­mer. Take deep breaths of pine-scented air on an alpine hike. Lis­ten to the high-pitched whis­tle of the hoary marmot, for which Whistler is named. Dive off a dock into the fresh, cool wa­ters of one of Whistler’s im­mac­u­late lakes. Sip a lo­cally brewed beer on a sun-baked pa­tio. Taste the bounty of pro­duce from lo­cal farms. Take in the sights of the craggy peaks, lush val­leys, rush­ing rivers and clear lakes.

Af­ter a long, white win­ter bun­dled up in toques, boots and weath­er­proof lay­ers, lo­cals are ready to feel the sun’s warmth on their skin and spend ev­ery pos­si­ble mo­ment out­doors — from pa­tio din­ing to bar­be­cues and camp­ing, hik­ing to bik­ing, loung­ing at the lake to fes­ti­val-go­ing, the mild cli­mate makes it easy. Long days of sun­shine are warm, and of­ten hot, yet sel­dom hu­mid. It’s the kind of weather that’s per­fect for ev­ery kind of out­door ad­ven­ture, whether you’re push­ing a stroller along the Val­ley Trail or push­ing your body to the lim­its in one of Whistler’s many ath­letic events.

Whistler of­fers count­less sum­mer ac­tiv­i­ties that are ac­ces­si­ble for the whole fam­ily — from chil­dren to youth to se­niors — which means you can com­bine qual­ity fam­ily time with ad­ven­tures that are fun for ev­ery­one. Con­sider a breath­tak­ing ride on the Peak 2 Peak Gon­dola; an ed­u­ca­tional tour to view Whistler’s black bears; a thrilling zi­pline or en­light­en­ing tree-top eco­tour; or ex­plor­ing one of the area’s water­ways via kayak, ca­noe, stand-up pad­dle­board or white­wa­ter raft. The val­ley’s ex­ten­sive trail net­work, com­bined with Whistler Black­comb’s alpine trails, of­fer hik­ing and moun­tain bik­ing pos­si­bil­i­ties for all abil­i­ties.

While you’re here, stop and ap­pre­ci­ate the sights of our neigh­bour­ing com­mu­ni­ties in the Sea to Sky cor­ri­dor: Squamish to the south and Pemberton to the north. For in­cred­i­ble sweep­ing coastal views of Howe Sound, Shan­non Falls and the Stawa­mus Chief, ride the Sea to Sky Gon­dola. Spend the day hik­ing, tak­ing in the spec­tac­u­lar vis­tas from the three view­ing plat­forms or en­joy a snack and freshly brewed tea at the Co-Pi­lot Café.

If you’re a golf afi­cionado, sign up for 18 holes at one of Whistler’s four lo­cal cour­ses, and ad­mire the views of pris­tine lakes and the tow­er­ing peaks of Whistler’s “other moun­tains”: Arm­chair, Wedge, Rain­bow and Sproatt. The four cham­pi­onship cour­ses were de­signed by in­ter­na­tional play­ers Jack Nick­laus, Robert Trent Jones Jr., Arnold Palmer and Robert Cupp, re­spec­tively, to chal­lenge your abil­i­ties against Whistler’s nat­u­ral water fea­tures and ter­rain.

Whistler also has a full cal­en­dar of high­en­ergy ac­tiv­i­ties and sport­ing events to test your phys­i­cal abil­i­ties and jump­start the adren­a­line. Downhill moun­tain bik­ing on Whistler Moun­tain is sum­mer’s grav­ity-fed an­swer to win­ter’s need for speed. The lat­est tech­nol­ogy in downhill bikes, pro­tec­tive ar­mour, and starter-level trails makes it pos­si­ble for ev­ery­one to give it a try. And you don’t have to be able to ride a bike to en­joy Crankworx, a 10-day moun­tain bike fes­ti­val with some of the most ex­treme rid­ing on the planet.

Through­out the sum­mer Whistler hosts a va­ri­ety of pop­u­lar events that em­brace its moun­tain­ous ter­rain, such as the rolling North Face Whistler Half Marathon, wet and wild Tough Mud­der and Mud­derella, phe­nom­e­nally chal­leng­ing Subaru Ironman Canada, the up­hill climb of the RBC GranFondo Whistler cy­cling race, and the steep­est 400 m run­ning race in the world — the Red Bull 400, which sends com­peti­tors up the Olympic ski jump in the Cal­laghan Val­ley.

Treat your ears, eyes and soul to one of our out­door mu­sic and arts fes­ti­vals. The Pemberton Mu­sic Fes­ti­val fea­tures in­ter­na­tion­ally renowned head­lin­ers who rock out near the strik­ing ver­ti­cal face of Mount Cur­rie by day and the stars by night. The fes­ti­val show­cases eclec­tic mu­si­cal styles in­clud­ing in­die, rock, hip hop and elec­tronic dance mu­sic.

When you plan to visit Whistler, be sure your stay in­cludes a week­end when the Whistler Presents Con­cert Se­ries show­cases live bands and or­ches­tral mu­sic at Whistler Olympic Plaza. Pack a pic­nic and lounge on the lush lawn of the plaza. For an ex­cep­tional week­end for the whole fam­ily, don’t miss the Whistler Chil­dren’s Fes­ti­val, packed with hands-on art work­shops, mu­sic, theatre and dance.

One of the most plea­sur­able senses to in­dulge in sum­mer is taste. Many of Whistler’s chefs pride them­selves on sourc­ing pro­duce and meat from lo­cal farms, seafood from Pa­cific coastal wa­ters, and ar­ti­sanal foodie favourites such as gelato, bal­samic re­duc­tion, roasted cof­fee, cor­dials, craft beer, and vodka from lo­cal pro­duc­ers. Stroll the Whistler Farm­ers Mar­ket in the Up­per Vil­lage, and you’ll find a cor­nu­copia of fresh fruit, vegeta­bles, baked goods and tasty treats, as well as one-of-a-kind gifts hand-crafted by lo­cal ar­ti­sans.

It’s not too early to start think­ing about sum­mer. With a bit of re­search and or­ga­ni­za­tion in ad­vance, you’ll be able to cre­ate the per­fect va­ca­tion and im­merse your senses in all that is Whistler — the scent of clear moun­tain air, as you ex­pe­ri­ence the val­ley’s nat­u­ral beauty, de­lec­ta­ble win­ing and din­ing, heart­pump­ing ad­ven­tures, and out­door fes­ti­vals and con­certs. So start your plan­ning now and come back soon to treat all your senses to sum­mer­time in Whistler.

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