Whistler, British Columbia
- This article is about the resort municipality. For the ski resort operation see Whistler Blackcomb.
|Resort Municipality of Whistler|
|Region||Sea to Sky Country|
|Settled||1914 by Myrtle and Alex Philip|
|Incorporated as a Resort Municipality||1975|
|• Mayor||Nancy Wilhelm-Morden|
|• Manager||Mike Furey|
|• Governing body||Whistler Town Council|
|• MP||John Weston|
|• MLA||Joan McIntyre|
|• Resort Municipality||240.40 km2 (92.82 sq mi)|
|Elevation||670 m (2,200 ft)|
|• Resort Municipality||9,824|
|• Density||40.9/km2 (106/sq mi)|
|Time zone||PST (UTC-8)|
|Postal code span||V0N|
Whistler is a Canadian resort town in the southern Pacific Ranges of the Coast Mountains in the province of British Columbia, Canada, approximately 125 km (78 mi) north of Vancouver and 36 km (22 mi) south of the town of Pemberton. Incorporated as the Resort Municipality of Whistler (RMOW), it has a permanent population of approximately 9,965, plus a larger but rotating "transient" population of workers, typically younger people from beyond BC, notably from Australia and Europe.
Over two million people visit Whistler annually, primarily for alpine skiing and snowboarding and, in summer, mountain biking at Whistler Blackcomb. Its pedestrian village has won numerous design awards and Whistler has been voted among the top destinations in North America by major ski magazines since the mid-1990s. During the 2010 Winter Olympics, Whistler hosted most of the alpine, Nordic, luge, skeleton, and bobsled events, though freestyle skiing and all snowboarding events were hosted at Cypress Mountain near Vancouver.
- 1 History
- 2 1968 and 1976 Winter Olympic bids
- 3 2010 Winter Olympics
- 4 Bears
- 5 Transportation
- 6 Directions
- 7 Climate
- 8 Media
- 9 Gallery
- 10 Notes
- 11 See also
- 12 References
- 13 External links
The Whistler Valley is located around the pass between the headwaters of the Green River and the upper-middle reaches of the Cheakamus. It is flanked by glaciated mountains on both sides; the Garibaldi Ranges on the side that contains the ski mountains, and a group of ranges with no collective name but which are part of the larger Pacific Ranges and are essentially fore-ranges of the Pemberton Icefield. Although there are a few other routes through the maze of mountains between the basin of the Lillooet River just east, the Cheakamus-Green divide is the lowest and most direct and naturally was the main trading route of the Squamish and Lil'wat First Nations long before the arrival of Europeans. One Lil'wat legend of the Great Flood says that before the deluge, the people lived at Green Lake.
The first British survey by the Royal Navy took place in the 1860s. These surveyors named the mountain London Mountain because of the heavy fog and cloud typically gathering around the mountain, but the area informally acquired the name "Whistler" due to the call of the hoary marmot. In the late 19th century, a trail was cut through the valley, linking Lillooet via Pemberton with Burrard Inlet via a pass from Squamish to the Seymour River. The trail was completed in 1877, but because of the difficult and unforgiving terrain, it was only used once for its intended purpose, which was to drive cattle. The area began to attract trappers and prospectors (such as John Millar and Henry Horstman) who established small camps in the area in the early 20th century. The area began to gain recognition with the arrival of Myrtle and Alex Philip, who in 1914 purchased 10 acres (4.0 ha) of land on Alta Lake and established the Rainbow Lodge. The Philips had relocated from Maine to Vancouver in 1910, and had heard rumors of the natural beauty of the area from Pemberton pioneer John Millar. After an exploratory journey, the couple was convinced. Rainbow Lodge and other railway-dependent tourist resorts were collectively known as Alta Lake. Along with the rest of the valley bridging the Cheakamus and Green River basins, they became part of British Columbia's first Resort Municipality in 1975.
Completion of the Pacific Great Eastern Railway in 1914 greatly reduced the travel time from three days, providing ease of access from Vancouver, and the Rainbow Lodge gained a reputation as the most popular vacation destination west of the Rockies. The lodge was primarily a summer destination, with boating, fishing and hiking among the most popular activities, and soon other lodges began to open not just on Alta Lake, but on other valley lakes as well.
Appreciation of the outdoors was not the only activity in the valley, however. Logging was a boom industry. During the first half of the 20th century, most of the lower slopes of the surrounding mountains were cleared of old growth. At its peak, four mills were in operation, most located around Green Lake. Prospecting and trapping were pursued as well, though no claims of great value were ever staked.
1968 and 1976 Winter Olympic bids
Until the 1960s, this quiet area was without basic infrastructure; there were no sewage facilities, water, or electricity, and no road from Squamish or Vancouver. In 1962, four Vancouver businessmen began to explore the area with the intent of building a ski resort and bidding for the 1968 Winter Olympics. Garibaldi Lift Company was formed, shares were sold, and in 1966, Whistler Mountain opened to the public.
Later, the town, then still Alpha Lake, was offered the 1976 Winter Olympics after selected host city Denver declined the games due to funding issues. Alpha Lake Whistler declined as well, after elections ushered in a local government less enthusiastic about the Olympics. The 1976 Winter Olympics were ultimately held in Innsbruck, Austria.
2010 Winter Olympics
Whistler was the Host Mountain Resort of the Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympics and Paralympic Games, the first time the IOC has bestowed that designation on a community. Whistler hosted the alpine technical and speed events, the sliding events at Fitzsimmons Creek, the Nordic events in the nearby Callaghan Valley and all the Paralympic events except the opening ceremonies, sledge hockey and wheelchair curling.
The Whistler Olympic and Paralympic Village (commonly referred to as the Athlete's village) housed around 2,400 athletes, coaches, trainers and officials. Post-games, the site has been turned into a new residential neighbourhood Cheakamus Crossing.
Whistler's urban landscape was specifically designed to accommodate the natural environment, as well as to re-mediate a large garbage dump which became today's Whistler Village which had been one of the main non-natural feeding grounds for black bear in the valley. Since the resort's development, black bear populations have gradually recovered. New residents like to say "bears have begun seeking food in settled areas" but this is a tautology. It is people that are settling in bears' traditional food areas. Many of Whistler's bears have learned to do things like open car doors or hold spring-closed gates open so they can reach food. Most are relatively docile and few bear-human negative incidents have been reported. Whistler residents are strongly conservationist, and the official response has relied heavily on behavior modification for both bears and people. Removal or killing are last resorts. BearSmart's and BearSmart Whistler's techniques are being used have been studied and adopted by other municipalities with bear problems around the world.
Attractants range from restaurant waste to unpicked berries. A lot of berry and fruit bushes have been removed from the village and residents in the valley floor and most replaced with non-bear-attractants. Unfortunately some were replaced by Dogwood bushes. The dogwood`s nuts are the only thing bears like better than berries. Since people don't eat this nut they don`t consider it food, the bears sure do. Another Ursine favourite are Rosehips. In the last dozen years if anything there has been an increase in Rose bushes - many people they don`t consider it food, very few of us, in modern times now make and eat rosehip jelly. Even though we don't consider rosehips food, the Bears sure do. Rosehips are persistent, meaning they don't fall off the bushes. If its not a rainy fall and rainy winter, the fruits freeze dry and are around in early spring to give the bears carb's and much needed vitamin C, as they are close to scurvy when they awake from hibernation. They also eat, in the spring the baby rosebush leaves before the chlorophyll count is too high. This has few carb's but fills their bellies and does have a lot of vitamin C too. Recently[when?] Whistler BlackcComb, BearSmart and volunteers are planting attractants in the bears traditional Alpine feeding areas. This should be seen as much needed habitat restoration.
Whistler was clear cut twice in succession. So it is not an old growth rain forest with 1,000s of species, but more a plantation with 100s. The Oregon Grape Mahonia aquifolium (AKA hollyleaved barberry)  and Highbush Cranberry Viburnum opulus were accidentally re-introduced as escaped landscaping plants, and may all be Oregonian Subspecies. All the wild Pacific crabapples Malus fuscawere AKA Pyrus rivularis Douglas and AKA Pyrus fusca dug up by Pemberton Pioneers for grafting Rootstock. It is unclear whether the Chickasaw Plum, Prunus americana was indigenous, or introduced by Indigenous Transcontinental Trade Networks or Western Contact. All the wild Plums were dug up by Pemberton Pioneers for fruit and rootstock. Lingonberry Vaccinium vitis-idaea is no longer found because of the loss of habitat through the clear cutting.
Black bears and brown bears are two commonly used names for the same species: Ursus americanus. Also called the American black bear, black bear, and includes the white Spirit Bear AKA Kermode Bear Family: Ursidae. Though no white bears have been sighted within a 150 mi (240 km) of Whistler, there is a large colour variation: Black bears, all black, with white or tan blazes and/or tan yellow snout, nut brown, to a golden brown*, to Red Cinnamon bears.
Some of these golden brown bears get mistaken for grizzlies, by tourists. Grizzlies are quite distinctive though because of the hump on their front shoulders. There is not currently a viable sustainable breeding stock of grizzlies in the Whistler Valley but it is their traditional habitat. A transient female was spotted: named Power and she is the symbol of hope and despair for the recovery of grizzly bears in southwestern B.C. This adult female crossed Highway 99 / Sea to Sky Highway last fall[when?] in Whistler through the 481,000 acre, 194,650-hectare Garibaldi Provincial Park, south to the Pitt River Valley, where she fed on spawning salmon, Vancouver Sun Oct 16, 2013. Grizzlies are found in the next valley system of Pemberton, British Columbia and Birken. Grizzly Bear: Species:Ursus arctos, Subspecies Ursus arctos horribilis Abr. U. a. horribilis, also confusingly called Brown Bear Family: Ursidae. The Kodiak is another Subspecies of Ursus arctos, Subspecies Ursus arctos middendorffi.
Whistler is located on British Columbia Highway 99, also known as the "Sea-to-Sky highway", approximately 58 kilometres (36 mi) north of Squamish, and 125 km (76 mi) from Vancouver. The highway connects Whistler to the British Columbia Interior via Pemberton-Mount Currie to Lillooet and connections beyond to the Trans-Canada and Cariboo Highways.
Elite-class rail service is only provided between the Whistler railway station and North Vancouver by the Whistler Mountaineer. Regular passenger schedules are no longer available. Rail service through to Jasper is provided by the Rocky Mountaineer, using Canadian National Railway tracks from North Vancouver via Whistler and Prince George. The station for tour passengers embarking from Whistler is in the Southside area, between Nita and Alpha Lakes.
Vancouver International Airport
Pemberton Regional Airport
Pemberton Regional Airport (IATA: CYPS, ICAO: YPS) is a public airport serving Pemberton and Whistler. It is the closest airport for fixed wing non-amphibious aircraft and is 38 minutes north of Whistler. There are no scheduled flights but three charter services operate out of the airport.
Whistler (Municipal) Heliport
Whistler (Municipal) Heliport (TC LID: CBE9) is a public heliport operated by the Whistler Heliport Society. Currently there are no scheduled flights but charter services to/from Vancouver International Airport, Vancouver/Harbour (Public) Heliport and Victoria Harbour (Camel Point) Heliport (TC LID: CBF7) are available.
Whistler/Green Lake Water Aerodrome
Whistler/Green Lake Water Aerodrome (ICAO: YWS, TC LID: CAE5) is a public floatplane base owned and operated by Harbour Air Group and Whistler Air. Seasonal scheduled flights are provided by Harbour Air Seaplanes and West Coast Air to Victoria Inner Harbour Airport and Vancouver Harbour Water Airport. The seaplane base is located at the Nicklaus North subdivision on the South end of Green Lake.
Whistler is located on the Sea to Sky Highway (Highway 99), which goes from the Peace Arch Border Crossing in Surrey, British Columbia to the Cariboo Highway (Highway 97) 10 kilometres north of Cache Creek, British Columbia. North of Whistler is Pemberton, British Columbia, which is about 23 kilometres north of the mountain village. Also north is Lillooet, British Columbia, which is 122 kilometres north of Whistler. South of the village is Squamish, British Columbia, about a 53 kilometre drive. Also located south is Vancouver, which is 125 kilometres south of the village.
Whistler experiences cool wet winters, and dry warm summers. On average Whistler receives approximately 11 days with temperatures over 30 °C (86 °F), and approximately 24 days on average with temperatures falling below −10 °C (14 °F).
|Climate data for Whistler|
|Record high Humidex||7.8||12.8||18.8||38.7||34.8||38.0||42.2||38.8||34.6||27.3||13.7||10.3||42.2|
|Record high °C (°F)||8.9
|Average high °C (°F)||0.6
|Daily mean °C (°F)||−2.1
|Average low °C (°F)||−4.9
|Record low °C (°F)||−28.2
|Precipitation mm (inches)||176.0
|Rainfall mm (inches)||84.7
|Snowfall cm (inches)||103.0
|Avg. precipitation days (≥ 0.2 mm)||18.9||14.9||16.9||16.2||15.0||13.8||10.0||9.2||10.0||17.3||19.6||18.0||179.7|
|Avg. rainy days (≥ 0.2 mm)||10.6||8.7||11.6||14.3||15.0||13.8||10.0||9.2||10.0||16.7||14.5||7.9||142.2|
|Avg. snowy days (≥ 0.2 cm)||13.7||10.1||9.2||4.4||0.5||0.0||0.0||0.0||0.0||1.4||9.7||14.6||63.5|
|Mean monthly sunshine hours||40.3||78.4||123.2||162.4||207.3||204.9||250.6||241.4||194.0||109.0||41.8||30.4||1,683.8|
|Percent possible sunshine||15.1||27.6||33.5||39.4||43.4||41.9||50.8||53.8||51.1||32.6||15.3||12.0||34.7|
The wet West Coast marine temperate climate in the valley floor is characterized by a coniferous mixed forest, with a preponderance of western red cedar—a continuation of the rainforest of the Pacific Northwest.
The slopes are slightly drier and are also coniferous mixed forest with western hemlock (Tsuga heterophylla) and mountain hemlock (Tsuga mertensiana), Whistler hybrid spruce (Sitka spruce and Engelmann spruce). The last is
...a hybrid spruce that is unique to Whistler, aptly dubbed the "Whistler Spruce." The Whistler spruce hybrid is indicative of Whistler's geographic position—we're not quite coastal, but not quite interior.—Robyn Goldsmith, Getting to know Whistler's trees - Museum Musings
A hybrid of the wetter West Coast Sitka spruce (Picea sitchensis) - that ranges from Northern California to Alaska and the drier Interior Engelmann spruce (Picea engelmannii). Others include the Douglas fir (Pseudotsuga menziesii), lodgepole pine (Pinus contorta), endangered whitebark pine (Pinus albicaulis).
The higher slopes transition to many species of scrub juniper, Rocky Mountain Juniper (Juniperus scopulorum), and many species of scrub willow in the genus Salix at the tree line, and to Arctic tundra like conditions in the high alpine above the tree line.
Both the valley floor and the mountain sides are characterized as mixed forest, predominantly conifers, but with a peppering of a few deciduous trees like the Pacific dogwood (Cornus nuttallii), locally extinct Pacific crabapple (Malus fusca) or Pryus fusca, bitter cherry (Prunus emarginata), pin cherry (Prunus pensylvanica), choke cherry (Prunus virginiana), Red Alder (Alnus rubra), Sitka Alder (Alnus sinuata), Paper Birch (Betula papyrifera), big leaf maple (Acer macrophyllum), Douglas maple (Acer glabrum)
Whistler has two weekly newspapers and one monthly community publication. The two newspapers Whistler Question and the Pique Newsmagazine, were originally published every Thursday, until they were both brought under the same ownership. They are now published Tuesday and Thursday respectively. The Lost Duck is a monthly events guide and calendar that lists what's happening in the resort. Other tourist orientated, print media such as FAQ, Visitors Choice and Whistler Magazine are published quarterly, once or twice a year.
|CFTW-FM||88.7 FM||Four Senses Entertainment||tourist information|
|CFMI-FM-1||90.7 FM||Corus Entertainment||Classic rock (repeater of CFMI-FM, Vancouver)|
|CFOX-FM-1||92.3 FM||Corus Entertainment||Active rock (repeater of CFOX-FM, Vancouver)|
|CKLG-FM-1||96.9 FM||Rogers Communications||Adult hits (repeater of CKLG-FM, Vancouver)|
|CBYW-FM||100.1 FM||CBC||CBC Radio One (repeater of CBU, Vancouver)|
|CKEE-FM||101.5 FM||Four Senses Entertainment||Adult album alternative............................................... Alt. Call Sign: Whistler FM|
|CISW-FM||102.1 FM||Rogers Communications||Hot Adult Contemporary (repeater of CISQ-FM, Squamish)...........Alt. Call Sign: Mountain FM|
|CBUF-FM-10||103.1 FM||Radio-Canada||Première Chaîne (French) (repeater of CBUF-FM, Vancouver)|
An internet radio site for the community exists It is designed to be a community radio station showcasing local music talent and interests of relative importance. History: Nov 28, 2003 "Feds shut down local pirate radio station... frequency 105.5 FM in the Whistler area, received a visit from Industry Canada and local RCMP officer", Federal Police. Freeradio Whistler still legally broadcasts over the Internet at freewhistler.com.
Whistler has some locally produced content on Shaw Cable Channel 4: Go! Sea To Sky
Cable television service is served by Shaw Communications, which offer most stations from the Vancouver area, and Telus Optic TV, and Bell Satellite. All the large hotels have their own in house system with cable and pay per view.
The television show Whistler takes place in Whistler. Whistler, the series is a Canadian television drama centring on the aftermath of the mysterious death of a local snowboard legend. The series was set in the ski resort of the same name and aired for two seasons from 2006 to 2008. It was created by Kelly Senecal and developed by Patrick Banister, John Barbisan, Mindy Heslin, and Susan James.
The television series Peak Season is filmed in Whistler and documents the lives of people that live there. Reality Show Fresh Meat II was filmed in Whistler. The community also appeared as the location for Shane and Carmen's wedding in The L Word (season 3, episode 12) Whistler was also featured on The Real Housewives of Orange County and ABC's Extreme Weight Loss.
Reality Show Gene Simmons Family Jewels filmed some episodes in Whistler, it is an American reality television series that premiered on A&E on 7 August 2006. The show follows the life of Kiss bassist and vocalist Gene Simmons, his longtime partner and wife Shannon Tweed, and their two children, Nick and Sophie.
Sophie Tweed-Simmons has her own reality TV series spin off in production. Filming began December 2013, in Whistler, Vancouver Los Angeles and Nashville. Sophie and her mother, model Shannon Tweed, will be the focus of the new show. Producers of the show are Force Four Entertainment, Vancouver. Eight 1/2 hour episodes are to be broadcast on W Network Canada in the spring of 2014.
Kansai TV Japan was produced in Whistler with a 1 1/2 hour TV special, Race to the Canadian Northern Lights. Thirty minutes of footage on Whistler’s winter activities, shopping, Village and spa. The show aired March 2001. It had a veiwership of 3 million and had an estimated public relations value of $2 million.
Stewardess Cops Fuji Television AKA Fuji Network, a popular Japanese drama, shot a two hour special on location in Whistler during the fall of 2001. It was aired January 2002 and had an estimated audience of 22 million.
The Crash Reel, a 2013 documentary and reality film, directed by Academy Award Nominee Lucy Walker, was filmed on location in Whistler. It features top-ranked American snowboarder Kevin Pearce, who because of injuries missed the 2010 Winter Olympics, dealing with his rival Shaun White. It was a selection for the Whistler Film Festival, the Montreal World Film Festival and the Sundance Film Festival.
The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn – Part 1 (2011) and The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn – Part 2 (2012) were not filmed in Whistler proper, but north and south of town. The crew was housed in Squamish and later Pemberton, but the stars were housed in Whistler hotels, hence the reason for all the star sightings in the village.
- The Windows XP codename "Whistler" is named after this community
- The Windows Vista codename "Longhorn" is named after the Longhorn Saloon, a bar at the base of Whistler Mountain. Country Dick Montana died at his drumset in this bar in 1995.
- List of neighbourhoods in Whistler, British Columbia
- Blackcomb Peak
- Mount Cayley volcanic field
- Garibaldi Lake volcanic field
- Population and dwelling counts, for Canada, provinces and territories, and population centres, 2011 and 2006 censuses: British Columbia. Statistics Canada. Retrieved 17 March 2013
- Population 1981/1986
- Short Portage to Lillooet, Irene Edwards, self-publ., Lillooet 1976
- BritishColumbia.com - Whistler, British Columbia
- BritishColumbia.com - History and Heritage of Whistler Mountain
- Get Bear Smart Society
- Bear Smart Whistler
- Darcy Frey (25 November 2007). "The Bears Among Us". The New York Times. Retrieved 2007-11-24.
- Building a berry crop for the bears
- Pacific crab apple
- E-Flora BC: Electronic Atlas of the Flora of British Columbia, Malus fusca (Raf.) C.K. Schneid.
- Vaccinium vitis-idaea L. lingonberry
- E-Fauna BC: Electronic Atlas of the Wildlife of British Columbia, Ursus americanus Pallas, 1780
- Grizzly bears in southwest BC: prospects for survival
- Single female bear brings new hope for B.C.’s threatened grizzlies
- Grizzly Bear Presentation
- E-Fauna BC: Electronic Atlas of the Wildlife of British Columbia, Ursus arctos (Ord, 1815)
- Kodiak bear
- Canada Flight Supplement. Effective 0901Z 24 July 2014 to 0901Z 18 September 2014
- Harbour Air
- Environment Canada. "Whistler". Retrieved 2009-04-23.
- "Calculation Information for 1981 to 2010 Canadian Normals Data". Environment Canada. Retrieved 9 July 2013.
- Getting to know Whistler’s trees - Museum Musings
- Douglas-fir Fertilization with Biosolids: Five-year Results at Whistler, B.C.
- Cytological aspects of seasonal changes in the mesophyll chlorenchyma cells of Pinus Contorta dougl. ex loud ssp Latifolia (Engelm, ex wats) in relation to frost hardiness
- Science under the Peak 2 Peak; forestry researchers use Blackcomb to study future prospects for the whitebark pine
- Malus fusca (Raf.) C.K. Schneid. Oregon crab apple
- The Trees of British Columbia: Native and Naturalized
- Varner, Colin (2002). Plants of the Whistler region (1st ed.). ISBN 1551926024. LCCN 2002096043. OCLC 51086167. OL OL3571927M. Retrieved 17 February 2006.
- Feds shut down local pirate radio station
- Free*Whistler.com Internet Radio
- Life is not always awesome for Sophie Tweed-Simmons
- Japanese getting eyeful of Whistler
- "TODAY in Canada: 20-24 September". Archived from the original on 21 April 2005.
- "Organization". The Whistler Film Festival Society (WFFS). Retrieved 24 July 2014.
- Whistler Film Festival wraps with film about American snowboarder Kevin Pearce
- Ski School
- The X Files: I Want to Believe
- On-location vacations: Movies shot in Canada
- Why Did I Get Married?
- White Fang 2: Myth of the White Wolf
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Whistler.|
|Wikivoyage has a travel guide for Whistler.|
- Municipality of Whistler
- Tourism Whistler
- Whistler Chamber of Commerce
- Official Site for Whistler Blackcomb Mountains
- Whistler Question - Whistler's community newspaper