Come for Crankworx | Stay for More Adventures
August 9-18 in the Sea-To-Sky is all about Whistler Crankworx as it returns to it’s birthplace. Since 2004 this incredible festival – the world’s largest of its kind – celebrates all things mountain bike and includes amateur races, young rider contests, and pro-level bike park feats.
Known as the highlight of the mountain biking calendar, Crankworx Whistler 2019 is certainly a sight to behold.
Welcome to Whistler Crankworx
Whether you’re a spectator or you’re considering being a participant, the festival is guaranteed to be action-packed. The main hub of the action is split between Skiers Plaza in Whistler Village. From here you can watch riders ascend the mountain via the Fitzsimmons Chair and Whistler Village Gondola.
Events include the Red Bull Joyride, RockShox Ultimate Pumptrack Challenge, and Garbanzo Downhill.
One of our favourite events has to be the Clif Speed And Style. Prepare for breath-taking speed and mind-blowing tricks as athletes vie for the fastest speed with the most flair.
The only ticketed event at Whistler Crankworx is the Red Bull Joyride. Starting from $119, the VIP experience is your exclusive front-row ticket and includes refreshments.
Here’s 3 top spectator tips to enjoy all the action at Crankworx Whistler 2019:
- Get to know the Crankworx Whistler 2019 schedule. It’s the only way to plan your day and ensure you don’t miss anything.
- Keep an eye on the weather. Expect temperatures in the high 20s celsius and be sure to pack plenty of water and some SPF.
- Chat with a Village Host or event volunteer to learn the best vantage points.
Another useful tip to catch a unique view of the action is to ride the Whistler Village Gondola. Summer operations provide the opportunity to purchase a sightseeing pass. As you ride the gondola up to Whistler Peak, you’ll soar above the bike park as athletes hit the jumps below. This vantage point also allows you to catch glimpses of trails as they emerge from the tree line before snaking their way back in.
Crankworx also offers a unique opportunity to learn more about mountain biking and discover exciting new products. If you’re a mountain biker, Expo & Demo is likely the place for you! During Crankworx Whistler 2019, the Village will become home to a number of tents and pop-up experiences where the big brands can showcase their gear.
If you’d like to sample a new ride, Demo is your chance to get your hands on the latest Trail, Downhill and Freeride bikes. Brand reps will also be on hand to answer any questions you may have and provide recommendations on the right gear for you.
Beyond Crankworx – What Else to Do in Whistler
After a day full of Supermans, backflips and barspins continue the festivities with happy hour on one of Whistler Villages many patios. Get in amongst the action with one of the many parties in Whistler Village. If you fancy taking things down a notch, we recommend heading to Whistler Creekside or the Upper Village.
If you find yourself keen to explore more of what Whistler has to offer, here are our top five ways to find action elsewhere in Whistler:
Axe Throwing – A great way to spend an afternoon has to be axe throwing. Forged Axe is open seven days a week and can be found in Function Junction – a short drive south of the Whistler Village area. New for 2019, Forged Axe now offer a shuttle bus service too making it even more accessible.
Ziplining – Escape the madness of Whistler Village and enjoy a spectacular zip lining experience with Superfly Ziplines. Take to the skies above Cougar Mountain on a network of tandem lines and take in breath-taking mountain views as you soar above old-growth forest. Available year-round, zip lining with Superfly is one Whistler activity not to be missed.
Blackcomb Helicopters – Get an unforgettable birds-eye view of Crankworx with Blackcomb Helicopters. These exhilarating tours take in glacial lakes, soaring mountains and dormant volcanoes as you explore the Coast Mountains from the air. The Whistler Explorer package starts from $179 and gives you a unique perspective of Whistler Blackcomb that so few will ever experience.
Vallea Lumina – One of our favourite ways to spend a summer evening, this mesmerizing multimedia experience, launched in 2018, is a massive hit with locals and visitors alike. Lights, lasers and holograms illuminate the trail as you follow along in the quest to find two missing hikers and uncover the enchanting magic of the Vallea Lumina.
Hiking – Enjoy a moment of serenity and reconnect with nature by hiking in Whistler. The valley is home to a number a trails with varying terrain. Explore Whistler’s neighbourhoods with a wander on the Valley Trail or adventure into the alpine on the High Note Trail atop Whistler Peak. There’s a hike for everyone.
Avoid the Crowds – the 4 Best Trails Outside of the Bike Park
If you like to ride, you’ll know that there’s a large number of biking trails in Whistler and the surrounding area. Whistler Crankworx is the perfect time to expand your horizons and try one or two new ones. Our top 5 trails outside of the bike park are:
Lost Lake – The perfect spot to get a feel for Whistler’s trails is Lost Lake. A short ride north of the Village, trails here include cruisey greens and intermediate blues. Ascents here are great for beginners and there’s plenty of signage to direct you on your way. Many of the trails here are two-way, too, which makes it easier navigating the network. We love “Grand Wazoo” because it has a great flow and a couple of easy-going bridges to add interest.
Cheakamus – A 10-15 minute drive south of Whistler takes you to Cheakamus and the Riverside Trails. Weaving their way through old-growth forest adjacent to the glacial-blue Cheakamus River, there’s a variety of terrain to cover here. The Riverside Loop is a nice option for a quick afternoon rip. We like to ride “AM/PM”. It’s a more advanced trail with some technical features including rocks and fast-flowing berms.
Alice Lake and Highlands – Make the journey down to Squamish to really escape the crowds and lose yourself in the trails at Alice Lake and Highlands. The world is your oyster here with a whole plethora of trails to choose from. From green to double black trails, Alice Lake and Highlands will test the mettle of even the most experienced rider. One of our favourites is blue trail, Man Boobs (who thinks of these names?!). It’s a great route to get some speed on and is packed with berms.
Westside – Also known as the Sproatt Alpine Trail Network, Westside is located directly across the valley from Whistler Blackcomb. Accessed from the Flank Trail, Westside is more difficult to reach but absolutely worth it for the spectacular views! One of our go-to trails in this areas is the infamous Lord Of The Squirrels. Find your flow as you make your way from alpine to valley on this fun blue run.
Get a Guide for the Best Ride
To really make the most of your time on the trails, we recommend engaging a Mountain Bike Guide. Having insider knowledge of trails and conditions is useful when setting out on two wheels in Whistler. A guide can tailor the route to meet your needs and ensure you maximize your mountain biking adventure.
Don’t have any gear? Don’t worry – there are options to hire everything you’ll need from high-performance bikes to helmets and pads.
You may think that Crankworx is for bike park junkies, but the truth is that there’s fun to be had by everyone. Whether your a silent spectator stunned from the sidelines, or a gear-crunching go-getter, celebrating mountain bike culture in the home of Crankworx Whistler 2019 should be top of your BC agenda this summer.
With hundreds – perhaps even thousands – of kilometres of trails to explore between Pemberton and Squamish, the Sea-To-Sky corridor is the ideal place to get out on an enduro bike and get your heart-rate pumping.
Whether you’re gingerly setting out on your first ride or ripping laps on Comfortably Numb, there’s a mountain bike experience for everyone in Whistler. All that’s left to say is “happy riding” – We look forward to seeing you on the trail!