There are few things that define the start of the when-will-it-be-the-ski season here in Whistler other than the annual Turkey Sale, in which locals, weekend warriors and zoners alike take to the shops, ski swap & whistler blackcomb’s base extravaganza to get down in the deals. So here’s this year’s details:
- The Whistler Mountain Ski Club (WMSC) Ski Swap is by far the best chance of scoring kidlet gear, cheap-ass sticks, race planks, and, more often than not, sick deals on locals dumping powder boards, twintips, and other goodies. Then there’s the boots! More than a few local ski reps sneak in a few minty demos for the savvy few to grab. Not to be missed. Includes boots & skis, mainly, all used, including nordix. Conditions vary. At Blackcomb Base.
- Whistler Blackcomb’s Turkey Sale is the big-line, big-selection extravaganza, with all the brands emptying closets and closets of overstock, as well as some choice selection of 13/14 gear. Dig deep, bring the Christmas shopping list, and get it all settled in a few hours. Close to a few bars at Blackcomb Base and Blackcomb usually has some kind of kid’s tent setup (just don’t mix the two).
- Escape Route in Marketplace (across from Whistler Olympic Plaza / the Rings) has a mini-line of its own for more technical gear, including Arc’Teryx, Mammut, Patagonia — basically all the backcountry-but-stylin’ setups — as well as touring skis, bindings, boots, crampons, climbing gear, backpacks, etc. It’s like a corner of MEC going on sale, which is why the patrollers, instructors, and the in-the-know hit this one up. If you’re looking for techie/mountaineering/backcountry level gear to begin with, simply go here first.
- The whole damn Village is on sale, so just stroll. Local shops do sick deals, so support our homegrown and grab some lunch while you’re at it. Don’t forget Creekside too — because many pass it on the drive in, lots of deals go unnoticed here.
Parking. Whistler paved Lots 1–4 so drive on in. Take 99 past Creekside to Lorimer, hang a right, keep going past Marketplace (unless you’re going to Escape Route) though the lights and then turn in on your right. Frankly, don’t bother driving past Blackcomb Base. It’s full already. Save the gas, save our valley air, and just pull in and take that nice stroll through the forest. Bring some cloth shopping bags or backpacks for the small stuff.