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Whistler or Banff

Leeds, United...
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3 posts
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Whistler or Banff

I am completely confused I am planning to go to Canada for a 12 day snowboarding trip in January to chase some powder as year upon year across europe with the exception of 2002 Its been icey or slushy or half the slopes are closed because there hasnt been enough snow.

So for a once in a lifetime snowboarding trip my boyfriend and I want to go over to Canada to find some powder. I have narrowed it down to either the Banff National park area or Whilster. Purely as they are the easiest to get to when coming from England. Price and the cold is not really an issue and I am happy to board in pretty much all weather. As long as there is beautiful snow. Which one should I go for?

Vancouver, Canada
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1. Re: Whistler or Banff

Whistler.

British Columbia...
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388 posts
8 reviews
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2. Re: Whistler or Banff

How about the Banff area to board Lake Louise, and then Kicking Horse in Golden?

Collingwood, Canada
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518 posts
39 reviews
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3. Re: Whistler or Banff

I've been to both and keep going back to Whistler.

Banff is gorgeous and quaint. But it is sooo cold there, ( and I am use to COLD! lol) and very little nightlife, as the town is small ( which is why it is so gorgeous). You can't walk to the hills, like you can in Whistler, and Whistler has an excellent Ski Esprit program. You MUST register for that. I promise you will have the time of your life!

Enjoy!

Vancouver, Canada
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4. Re: Whistler or Banff

i have rode Sunshine in Banff and it was fine. I hear Kickinghorse is killer, with amazing vert and tonnes of pow. It will require a bit of a drive from Calgary though.

The only knock on Whistler, is that if you get a warm spell, expect rain and fog somewhere on the mountain. This year was amazing, tonnes of pow, monster snow pack. For vertical, terrain and bacl country, whistler is amazing.

Overall,

London
8 posts
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5. Re: Whistler or Banff

Ive skiied all the Canadian rockies, Lake Louse is better than banff and closer to calgary ariport too. Big White is really really good and pow wow central but not so steep and pretty quiet town.

When I dream of hitting slopes, I dream of hitting the whistler coolwha off the peak chair, steeped in poeder for the first 3 or 4 runs of the day and then heading out west to ride the trees, i have ridden days on whistler with every run a fresh track, from 7am to 4pm... caters for all levels, people a couteous and friendly, and when you get off the hill head straight into a bar and ask for "a bucket of wings a beer and some butt rub" delicious

Bonaire, Georgia
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49 posts
45 reviews
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6. Re: Whistler or Banff

Whistler. #1 ski resort in North America hands down several years and running. Banff isnt even in the top 10. Much more terrain at Whistler/Blackcomb. Nightlife is awesome there, a younger crowd. Even cooler is it is the 2010 Olympic venue, why wouldnt you go there?

Banff is where families and older people go. I';m sure its nice, but come on, you're a boarder!

London
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25 posts
106 reviews
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7. Re: Whistler or Banff

Hi!

I work for a ski company selling both Banff and Whistler and have been to both quite a few times!

Here are the pluses and minuses in my opinion...

Whistler

+ largest ski area in NA - 2 mountains connected

+ lots of ski in/ski out properties and all others an easy walk/short bus ride away

+ lively apres ski/large choice of restaurants etc

+ could combine with a stopover in Vancouver

- more expensive than Banff

- much lower down - so warmer and can rain

- VERY popular, so expect lift queues on busy dates. However, these move MUCH faster than in Europe

Banff

+ AMAZING scenery

+ cheap

+ high skiing - more snowsure than Whistler

- cold!!

- small town, not great nightlife or choice of restaurants

- 30-45 mins drive/bus ride to the skiing every morning and evening...groan...!

Those are the main ones. I prefer Whistler overall...but it depends what you are looking for from your holiday!

I hope you have a fab time!

Leeds, United...
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3 posts
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8. Re: Whistler or Banff

Thanks guy's you have been super helpful. Not very big on traveling for 30- 45 mins (but a shorter flight is always a bonus) I guess Ill make my mind up eventually. BUT CHEERS GUYS.

Melbourne, Australia
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14 posts
10 reviews
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9. Re: Whistler or Banff

I've never heard anyone refer to Banff as a world-class ski resort and doubt it's even in the same league as Whistler, though it may be more scenic with its towering peaks.

I've never been to Banff. But I've taken a half-dozen trips to Whistler and have also skied Colorado (Breckenridge, Durango, Loveland). Whistler is the best I've ever skied overall, being reliable for snow and having unbeatable terrain. With its vertical drop -- 1 mile -- it's massive. and with 12 days, you're almost certain to get some nice powder days. And there will be a nice deep base by January , barring a freakishly dry winter.

Just a tip re: boarding. Blackcomb is a bit snowboarding friendly, as it has fewer traverses (i.e., flats) where you have to unstrap and skate.

Calgary, Canada
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3,598 posts
18 reviews
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10. Re: Whistler or Banff

I've skied at Banff, and been to Whistler twice in the summer. And there are a couple of points not mentioned here (or that I disagree with).

Banff townsite is more like a 20 minute ride to the hills (plus the gondola if you're going to Sunshine).

Banff is also only about 2 hours from Calgary, Whistler can be 4 hours from Vancouver, depending on construction.

And unless you are a REALLY good boarder, I think the hills at Banff will be sufficiently challenging. My husband and I are a low-intermediate skier and boarder, and we can't see any reason to go to Whistler (and pay those prices) when Banff is just down the street.

As for nightlife, at Whistler, I was too exhausted from the days activities to check it out. At Banff, I have gone for bachelorette parties and been sufficiently entertained until the wee hours.

But Whistler is a resort, with the hotels right at the lifts, and everything within walking distance (assuming you stay IN the village, not NEAR it). I like going to Whistler just to hang out.