Whistler Blackcomb. The Story of Two Iconic Mountains

Whistler Blackcomb is located in the Coast Mountains of British Columbia 125 kilometres (78 miles) from Vancouver, British Columbia.

Whistler Blackcomb is one of the most iconic mountain resorts in the world and North America’s premier four season mountain resort. Whistler and Blackcomb are two side-by-side mountains which combined offer over 200 marked runs, 8,171 acres of terrain, 16 alpine bowls, three glaciers, receives on average over 1,174 centimetres (462 inches) of snow annually, and one of the longest ski seasons in North America.

When Vancouverites returned from the Squaw Valley Olympic Winter Games in 1960 they only had one thought in mind: Why not host the Winter Games in Vancouver?. All they needed was a mountain and they chose Whistler Mountain – a mining claim at Mile 40 on the Pacific Great Eastern Railway. Based on the potential they saw, the Garibaldi Olympic Development Association (GODA) was formed and in 1961 an audacious bid was put forward for Whistler to be the Canadian nominee for the 1968 Olympic Winter Games. A long journey to host the Winter Olympic Games just started.

After six attempts, in 2003, the IOC selected Vancouver and Whistler to host the 2010 Olympic Winter Games.

For the 2010 Winter Games, Whistler hosted Olympic and Paralympic Alpine skiing.

Blackcomb hosted the Bobsleigh, Luge and Skeleton events at The Whistler Sliding Centre. Whistler Olympic Park hosted Olympic and Paralympic biathlon, cross-country skiing, Nordic combined and ski jumping, some distance to the south of the Creekside area in the Callaghan Valley.

The Canadian resort used the Winter Games as a catalyst to achieve its long-term development goals in the local community.

In January 1966 the first lift started operating in Whistler Mountain. The place quickly earned a reputation for big vertical and deep powder snow.

Blackcomb Mountain opened for business in December 1980. The two ski resorts underwent a period of intense rivalry through the 1980s and 90s, with constant upgrades and improvements that were unseen at other resorts.