Peak Experience

Today Mike, Deb, and I had a wonderful experience riding the gondolas from Whistler Peak to Blackcomb Peak. You might remember this pano from a couple of days ago. Today, I've drawn in a red line to show you where the Peak2Peak gondola took us.

We purchased our tickets and first took the gondola lift from Whistler Village to the top of Whistler Peak.

From the top, we could see this view. Here's a panorama. It was nothing short of spectacular. Be sure to click on the image to make it larger.

From there, we could see the gondola system we were about to board. I've marked some of the red gondolas to give you an idea the distance we were traveling. It was impressive.

The red gondolas were the "regular" ones. There were also a few gray ones that had glass bottoms. We were advised to board the regular one for the trip across since the line was longer for the glass bottom. The line for those was shorter from the other side. That seemed like good advice to us, so we hopped on.

It was warm at the top of the mountain, although there was a little bit of snow left on the ground. We were very comfortable with no coats and Deb was even wearing flipflops. Nevertheless, in cold weather, I can imagine this "sniffle station" gets a lot of use.

Here's how it looks starting out.

When we were about halfway across, the view looked like this.

Here are the vital statistics on this lift:

If you can't read this, it says: "The gondola is part of the longest continuous lift system on the globe."

It also says:

"An 8850 metre-long, 46 mm-thick centre haul rope/cable pulls the gondola while two 56 mm-thick outer track ropes/cable support its weight."

The ride was very smooth. We could hear the wind blowing, but there was almost no discernable sway to the gondola. Here's a panorama of the other side when we reached Blackcomb Peak.

While we were there, this little marmot made an appearance. I took a picture of a sign nearby that identified him as a Hoary Marmot or a "Whistler". We don't know if that's how the mountain got its name, but it's a good bet.

Deb tried to entice him with an almond. He decided to take a stand for family members he knows in California by scolding us, saying, "Do you have any idea how much water it takes to grow just one almond?"

Actually, that's not true. He didn't say a single word. I just made that up.

On the way back, we waited a few minutes and hopped the glass bottom gondola.

Daredevils that we are, Deb and I extended our feet out over the glass bottom. That's about all the excitement we old farts can take.

It was a sensational view and a wonderful experience.

When we got back to the Whistler Peak side of the ride, we noticed this medal stand left over from the 2010 Winter Olympics. For most of the folks there, this will be the only chance to stand on an Olympic medal stand. As you might guess, lots of folks were taking pictures, and we got our chance too. Those pictures are on Deb's phone, however, and so I'll have to post our medal moment in a separate post.

After that, we took the final ride down the hill for lunch in the village and a return to the timeshare. Now we're just cooling off for a while.

8 comments from clever and witty friends:

Carla said...

Wow, looks like a fun and beautiful ride. Great pictures.

Junebug613 said...

Beautiful scenery! I don't know if I could do the glass bottomed one. How adorable is that marmot!!

Diane Wild said...

Amazing pics.

Sally T said...

Smitty is looking forward to that wonderful toy you are bringing back to him.

gpc said...

Beautiful! Love the glass bottom!

quiltzyx said...

I never knew how cute marmots were! Terrific views from the gondola. I enjoyed the glass-bottomed boat tour at Catalina Island, but am not sure I'd want to ride in that gondola. Maybe - I guess it would depend on the day. Glad you're having such a fun time!

Kate said...

Gorgeous views!

Brown Family said...

WOW! That looks like a great tour.