Never been skiing before and somehow ended up in the largest ski resort in North America? Don't worry; you're not alone. Numerous people make their first turns on skis and snowboards every day here in Whistler. Maybe this video of me from two years ago struggling to go down the green run next to our hotel can provide you with some comfort.
Now that you know learning how to ski in Whistler is possible, let's talk about where to start and where to go once you have mastered the bunny hill.
The Bunny Hills
Blackcomb Beginners Area
The Blackcomb beginners area is the place to go if you are learning how to ski for the first time and it is conveniently located just beside our hotel. Get on the magic carpet to get used to the feeling of standing on skis. Once you master that, the Magic Chair is great for learning how to get on and off lifts because it is slow, and the operators there are used to helping novice skiers. Lower Merlins, the run beside the hotel which I was skiing on in the video, and Yellow Brick Road are both in the area, and they are wide and smooth, perfect for learning how to turn on skis. Additionally, the Blackcomb Beginners Area is usually less crowded than the Whistler Beginners Area because most snow school beginner classes happen on Whistler. That extra space you have on the slope can be the difference between crashing and turning when you are a beginner.
Whistler Beginners Area
The Whistler Beginners Area is located at the mid-station; it is a good option for first-time skiers during early and late season. That's because of the higher elevation and more consistent snowfall. Similar to the Blackcomb Beginners Area, they have a few magic carpets and an easy-loading chair lift. Since they have more magic carpets, children might find this beginner area easier to navigate.
The Green Runs
Once you can consistently turn on the slope and know how to use the chair lift, it's time to get off the bunny hill and get a taste of adrenaline on the green runs in Whistler. These gentle slopes offer a perfect progression for beginners who have mastered the basics. Here are some recommended green runs to explore:
The Emerald Chair Area (Whistler Mountain)
Upper Whiskey Jack to Ego Bowl to Emerald Chair lift was my go-to green runs after graduating from the bunny hills. These runs are open and offer stunning panoramic views, with the ideal slope for novice skiers transitioning from pizza turns to parallel turns. These runs are all long and wide; a novice skier could stay in this area all day and not get bored. Plus, the Emerald Express is a 6-person lift, making the lift line short and quick.
Easy Out (Blackcomb Mountain)
Take the Blackcomb Gondola, and when you get off at the top, you will see the Catskinner chair lift on your right. Easy Out is a mellow and wide green run that goes underneath Catskinner. You can either connect the run back to the chairlift or gondola, or if you keep following the green run, you can ski back to the hotel.
Now you know where to go on the mountain, go out there and shred. Stay safe and have fun!