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Whistler in April, how's the skiing?

Australia
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Whistler in April, how's the skiing?

Hi

Considering taking my family of 5 in the first 2 weeks of April to BC incl a week at Whistler/Blackcomb or any other BC skifields. Looking at most of the ski brochures here in Aus it appears the majority of the resorts close around the 15th, except Blackcomb. Is it risky thinking there's going to be reasonable snow for us?

Also for our second week is a road trip from Vancouver up into the Rockies and Banf NP and then back again to Vancouver too little time. How about a motorhome, V's a car and motels for this trip?

Any suggestions for motorhome rental Co's.

Sorry for all the questions, thanks for any info that may assist us.

Greg

Toronto
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1. Re: Whistler in April, how's the skiing?

No idea about motorhomes and such, but about Whistler in April, see the responses to "Whistler Ski Trip", below, on this forum.

White Rock, Canada
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2. Re: Whistler in April, how's the skiing?

Last year the skiing was fantastic in April. In fact the season was extended. This year so far, the season has been one of the best. Because we are on the "Wet Coast" we usually get a couple of "Hawaiian Expresses" during the year that can bring warmer temperatures and rain. So it is a bit of a gamble. Personally, I love to ski in April, love the sun, but ski early in the day and ski up high. Should be great. Whistler and Blackcomb should be open at least until the end of April. The big Telus Snowboard Festival is always held in April.

Vancouver Canada
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3. Re: Whistler in April, how's the skiing?

You're probably not going to get any good sking in April except at Whistler/Blackcomb. I think Banff skiing will be well and truly done, if not closed by then.

I think one week is enough time to get a road trip to Banff and back. It takes about 12 hours of straight, non stop driving from YVR to Banff.

I tried to rent a motor home in YVR myself a while back. It's not as easy as you would think. Most of the companies were located in Abbotsford, Langly, Maple Ridge (just south of Vancouver).

Try Googling it up and then contact the rental outfits by email. Doing it in advance will probably save you money and I think it's still low season in April.

Toronto
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4. Re: Whistler in April, how's the skiing?

First 2 weeks in April you probably won't even have to ski early in the day. My wife and I are slug-a-beds and usually get the LAST lift of the day rather than the FIRST, and we've never had problems in April.

But nobody should go to Whistler primarily for reliable weather, because that's not what they've got. Anything can happen, in any week or month. We just experienced our first week of 100% clear skies, not a flake of snow, and the week before and the week after both had some peak-to-creek rain! Always a crap-shoot, and if you bring sunscreen AND low-light goggles, you'll be more likely to have fun.

But the snow in the Alpine (and even Mid-Station and Olympic Station in most years) usually considers the first 2 weeks in April to be Prime Time. If the ski-out is warm/soft, just "download" on the lifts after leaving all your energy in the Alpine where it belongs.

NB that "ski-in, ski-out" accommodations (like lots near Blackcomb-base and some at Creekside) are also a crap-shoot at the end of the season. But the beginning of April isn't that late, in a typical year.

Vancouver
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5. Re: Whistler in April, how's the skiing?

Whistler in April should be fine. For the last 3 years I have skiing until the first week in June, so April won't be a problem. You might want to avoid the ski in / ski out accommodation as depending on the weather, it could be hike in / hike out. The top of the mountain is over 1600 metres abouve the village, so there will be plenty of snow there. I rarely ski beyond mid station even in peak season. The snow is always better up high.

- Greg

North Carolina
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6. Re: Whistler in April, how's the skiing?

If you're driving to Whistler from Vancouver for the Telus Ski Festival, will there be snow/ice on the roads, or will the roads be fine by then?

Vancouver
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7. Re: Whistler in April, how's the skiing?

There is rarely snow and ice on the road even during peak season. The road crews do an amazing job of keeping it clear. There is generally only a small amount of snow when it is actively snowing. By April, unless there is a freak storm, there is very little chance that there will be any snow on the road. If the weather is bad, it will more likely be raining along the road.

London, United...
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8. Re: Whistler in April, how's the skiing?

Early April should be fine. I have been there mid-May and the snow was fine. Everyone says this has been a great season so far.

Mazatlan, Mexico
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9. Re: Whistler in April, how's the skiing?

Sunshine at Banff is open until after the May long weekend so if Whistler is closed, for sure you can ski Sunshine.

Vancouver, Canada
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10. Re: Whistler in April, how's the skiing?

The last time I was in Whistler in April was for a free concert back in 1998 and there was definitely no snow in the village, or along the roads. The snow was further up on the mountain, however.

As others mentioned, snow on the roads is rarely an issue even in the height of winter, as they have trucks clearing the snow away as fast as it falls. Only when there's a severe snowstorm, where the snow is falling faster than the trucks can clear it, do you begin to have trouble. Usually traffic is delayed until they do clear it, and everything's fine again.

Also worth mentioning is that the roads don't gain as much altitude when you drive to Whistler. There's not a whole lot of climbing along the way - you're generally at the base of the mountains the entire time - so the lower altitude of the highway helps with the lack of snow.