In Whistler for the Summer Season? Don’t Miss these 10 Adventure
Whistler in the summer has to be experienced to be believed. Long, balmy days are just the beginning as the mercury begins to rise and the lush, temperate landscape springs into life. The area is, of course, famed for its Bike Park – the world’s largest, but there’s so many other adventures to discover too.
Be sure to find time to squeeze in one or two of these ’10 Unmissable Whistler Summer Adventures’ we have on our to-do list this summer.
Hiking the Peaks (or the Valleys)
The hiking trails in Whistler are certainly varied. From paved, Valley Trail wanders to high alpine scrambles, there’s a hike for every adventure-seeker. One of our favourite jaunts is just an hour long and very easily accessible. The Trainwreck trail is perfect for all abilities and is even good for children too.
Located slightly south of Whistler Creekside, the trailhead can be found in an area known as Cheakamus, close to Function Junction. The trail itself is very straightforward with minimal elevation gain but lots of interesting things to see. This includes a fun suspension bridge and, of course, the infamous Trainwreck itself.
Be sure to take a camera on this one. Explorers are able to get up close to the abandoned carriages, going inside each as they like. In addition, artists have left their mark on the site with colourful murals applied to the twisted metal. It’s absolutely a sight to behold! Learn more about hiking in Whistler by checking out our post: Explore Whistler | Hiking Edition.
White Water Rafting
Second on our list is an opportunity to really get the adrenaline pumping! A white water rafting experience on one of Whistler’s wild waterways is definitely a bucket list item for many adventure-seekers. We love nothing more than the thrill of the rapids and there are a number of tours available.
We’d recommend reaching out to tour operators to get better insight into current conditions and what to expect. We would have to say that our favourite spot for white water rafting is the Cheakamus River. Being glacier-fed, the river runs a vivid turquoise colour as it makes its way among old-growth forest and soaring rock faces. This tour is sure to deliver the true Canadian experience that you’re no doubt searching for.
Golfing the Greens
Did you know that Whistler is home to three world-class golf courses? It’s the perfect way to spend an afternoon or a day of “down-time”. Each course is very easily accessible offering plenty of car parking as well as rentals, retail and dining.
A golfer with a low handicap may find some challenging terrain at the award-winning Fairmont Chateau Whistler Golf Course, which is home to some uphill tees and narrower fairways. For beginner golfers, we’d recommend checking out Nicklaus North Golf Course for more wide-open spaces and lots of level greens.
Here’s three things that it’s worth remembering when teeing off in Whistler:
- Whistler hits the high twenties in summer and so it’s important to remember your SPF.
- Whistler in the summer means bears and Whistler’s golf courses are home to several. A bear bell is a good deterrent to take along for the round and make sure food and drink are securely stowed on your cart.
- Bug spray is always an asset, especially in the morning or early evening.
An Afternoon at the Lake
Whistler is home to a number of great lakes and so it makes sense that we include them in our list of ’10 Unmissable Whistler Summer Adventures’
If you like to get out onto the water on a canoe, kayak or SUP, we would recommend Alta Lake. Here, there are a number of docks to launch from and plenty of space to enjoy the water. There’s also a great lakeside lawn area with picnic benches, BBQ facilities and even volleyball.
If you prefer somewhere a touch more mellow, perhaps to read a book or engage in an afternoon snooze, we love Lost Lake. The area here is very enclosed and feels deep in the forest. We also enjoy swimming in Lost Lake as it typically maintains a slightly warmer temperature than glacier-fed Alta Lake, Nita Lake and Alpha Lake.
The River of Golden Dreams
For a true, locals’ experience, we have to direct you to the River Of Golden Dreams. One of Whistler’s original summer activities, the River Of Golden Dreams takes you from Alta Lake to Green Lake among neighbourhoods, forest and beautiful wildflowers. You can expect beautiful mountain views around every bend.
One way to complete the course is to commandeer a dinghy or a tube to float your way down with minimal effort and enjoy the summer sun.
Alternatively, navigate your way in a kayak or canoe, which can be rented from Backroads Whistler. This is super useful because these guys will also pick you up from the other end and return you to Whistler Village.
A Float Plane Tour
A great way to see Whistler in summer is from the air. There are two options to choose from – helicopter or float plane – and both have their merits.
A helicopter trip has the flexibility to get slightly closer to the mountains and navigate down valleys that may stray away from familiar flight paths. There’s also an opportunity to land a helicopter in the backcountry (usually on a glacier). At which point you may disembark and explore the vicinity – sometimes seeing ice caves, wildlife and stunning alpine meadows.
Having said that, we think there’s something poetic about taking a flight on a float plane. Experience unforgettable views of the Coast Mountain’s peaks, valleys, glaciers and volcanoes as you take off from Green Lake – home of Whistler airport. We’d recommend arriving slightly before your flight time to watch the planes land. It’s always impressive to watch
Race through the Trails on a RZR Tours
Next up, we invite you to bring out your inner need for speed with an RZR tour in Whistler’s backcountry. Strap on your helmet and set off in either a 2-seat or 4-seat off-roading vehicle designed to tackle some of Whistler’s toughest terrain.
RZR vehicles are fast, agile and super exciting to drive. You’ll be kitted out with all of the necessary safety gear, including a full face helmet and goggles. A guide will be assigned to ensure you get from point A to point B, but essentially everything in between is fair game
Expect incredible scenery and lots of dirt as you hit the trails for this adventure into the wilderness.
Wander the Vallea Lumina at Night
Returning in 2019 is Vallea Lumina – an incredible nighttime, multi-media experience, which takes visitors on an illuminating journey in search of hidden wonders. Set in the forests of Cougar Mountain, Vallea Lumina is the brainchild of Moment Factory, a global leader in video, lighting, sound and special effects.
Tickets may be purchased in advance with a complimentary shuttle on hand to deliver adventure-seekers to Vallea Lumina’s “Basecamp”. The experience follows an accessible trail, led by Rangers, and is great for all ages. This interactive activity will leave even the most grown up grown-up struck with awe.Relax on a Patio with a Cold Brew
If you didn’t have a Caesar, did you truly experience Whistler in the summer? We think not. Which is why we’re rounding off our list of ’10 Unmissable Whistler Summer Adventures’ with a spell on one of Whistler’s incredible patios.
There are plenty of patios to choose from in Whistler. There are slope-side terraces from which you can watch mountain bikers, to lakeside retreats where you can indulge in some quiet and recharge your batteries.
While you’re enjoying the summer weather, we’d recommend Canada’s national drink – the Caesar. Vodka or gin are muddled with Clamato juice, Tabasco and Worcestershire sauce in this intriguing concoction, which we guarantee will leave you refreshed
Whistler in the Summer
Well, there you have it – our ’10 Unmissable Whistler Summer Adventures’ for you to add to your itinerary. And it doesn’t stop there! This list is just scratching the surface.
As a hub for adventure, Whistler packs more into one day than you could ever imagine. Plus, you’ll find the resources that you need to try something new. Whistler in the summer is the perfect opportunity to get outdoors, broaden your horizons and create your own adventure.