Are Whistler’s Queues Really That Bad?
Posted: 13 July 2006 02:11 PM   [ Ignore ]
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I’m considering returning to Whistler next year. It’s been eight years since I last visited.
 
During my last visit a few bottlenecks were apparent. I have read numerous reports since then suggesting queues are a major issue at Whistler.
 
I am considering visiting in March 2007.
 
Can anyone shed a light on just how bad these queues are?

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Posted: 28 August 2007 08:38 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]
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mid-March is a pretty good time to visit Whistler.  The high-season winter crowds have started to thin out by then and the locals start thinking more about spring than winter.  On the other hand, March is also when US colleges have their Spring Break and so you’ll often find a lot of American college students on vacation there. 
 
The biggest bottlenecks are probably the same ones you dealt with on your last visit 9 years ago.  On Blackcomb, the base of the Glacier and Jersey Cream Express lifts is an absolute zoo as well as the 7th Heaven chairlift anytime after 1015 or so.  The Harmony and Peak chairs on Whistler are magnets for queues and you can expect the lines to form immediately for them on a powder day long before ski patrol finally drops the ropes.  10-15 mins of shuffling along is probably a good estimate on a normal weekend day. No waiting to 5 mins during mid-week. 30+ mins for Harmony/Peak chairs when there’s fresh snow on a weekend.  The lift line indicator boards around the mountain are pretty useful for knowing where *not* to go.
 
I’ve had very good luck in April during the Telus festivities.  Weekend crowds are manageable and the resort offers excellent weekend ski/stay packages (land only) starting in the $100 USD range.
 
Best of luck to you!

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Posted: 03 September 2007 06:43 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]
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Alyn - sorry about the lateness of my response.  I assume you’ve gone already so this comes a little late for you but I thought it might interest other forum readers.  My wife and I were in Whistler in the first two weeks of March 2007 and I didn’t find the queues as bad as their reputation.  On the last day of our stay there, after spring break had commenced and following the first opening of the bowls after several days of first rain and then heavy snow the lift queues for the Harmony chair on Whistler were around 30 mins.  This was about as bad as it got.  The gondola from Whistler village to the Roundhouse lodge gets queues first thing in the morning (probably about 10 mins of shuffling), and as per the above comment the Harmony and Peak chairs tend to attract queues on powder days.  We didn’t find any of the Blackcomb lifts to have queues that were noticeably long.  On weekends, expect to have to wait / shuffle a little bit (the Canadians are far better than Europeans or Australians at forming orderly queues and filling all the seats on chairs etc, though).  On weekdays, it’s rare to wait for longer than 5 mins to get on a chair, the only wait can be the aforementioned queue for the gondola out of Whistler.

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Posted: 25 September 2007 02:05 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]
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Um, I must a grumpy old man, but to me a queue of 30 minutes is very very bad. Any 30 minute queue (other for lift breakdowns) would have me black balling that resort.
 
I wonder what other contributers are prepared to tolerate in lift queues before saying never again.
 
I tend to regard any wait for a lift as unacceptable and 5 minutes as the very limit. My total daily tolerance is probably about 30 minutes in a 6 hour skiing day; that is only 6 5 minute waits.
 
John
 
 

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Posted: 22 April 2008 10:30 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 4 ]
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I think the question of what an acceptable queue is will make an interesting poll on the site - Wendy, are you listening? I’m with you, John - the occasional 5 minutes is about my limit before the grumbling starts ...
 
Chris
 

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Posted: 26 April 2008 03:04 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 5 ]
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Yup - I’m listening, Chris. Good idea.
 
I agree with you guys; I hate waiting in queues - especially when they occur at fast, modern chairs and gondolas (don’t you just hate the mass scrums that surge for each cabin). More particularly, a long wait followed by a slow ride and a short run afterwards….grrr

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Posted: 26 April 2008 07:50 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 6 ]
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Hi,
 
Although Whistler is an excellent resort with an impressive snow record where it is badly let down is that all the runs from Blackcomb & Whistler mountains converge in a central point in whistler itself,so unfortunately at peak times of the day early morning,lunchtime etc it can seem as if the whole resort is packed into an area of about 50 sq metres.
 
As pointed out the canadians run a smooth operation to get on the lifts some waiting time of between 5 and 15 mins can occure.
 
jon

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Posted: 23 December 2012 05:14 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 7 ]
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My tolerance for a lift is about 5 minutes. I don’t travel half way around the world [I’m an Aussie] to stand at the bottom of a hill.
Whistler is over rated and over crowded, it suffers from a lot of fog and can have bad snow, go somewhere else.

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Posted: 02 September 2015 12:57 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 8 ]
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Noup.

Been there twice - early March 2009 and late May 2011.

No ques what so ever. And yes P2P was there already on both trips.

Maybe things have changed a bit, since the queing system is really nice and effective

Teha

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Posted: 18 April 2016 07:26 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 9 ]
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And still nothing BIG..

On sunny weekend 9/10.4.16 the waiting times at 7th heaven were less then 5 min, the ZIPPER system works really well.

After 12 cm official new snow count on 13.4 nothing serius.. All easy Access POW beside the slopes was quickly done,
but lift lines were more/less non excistiing..

Harmony 6 has reduced a bit the lines, but Emerald get’s crowded guite easily, if there’s liftfailure or technical issues.. But ones it’s solved, the lines dissappear smoothly..

Teha

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