Whistler Mountain Bike Park, Canada
What makes it great?
By its own admission, Canada’s Whistler Mountain Bike Park is unlike any other biking experience you’ve ever had. Whistler
offers world class facilities, a strong social media presence and is demonstratively supportive of cycling culture through the
hosting of annual events such as the ten-day Crankworx festival – the heart and soul of mountain biking. Digital trail maps are
easy to locate, bike rentals are everywhere, and there are top- quality services and facilities to support everything the mtb-ers
Whistler’s path to success
Whistler’s path to success is a ground roots one. Local resident Eric Wright, in 1982 established ‘Whistler Backroads’ offering mountain bike rentals, sales and guided tours. Within the space of three years, he saw opportunity and approached chairlift operators for summer trail access. Ahead of his time, the ski lifts were not yet able to accommodate bikes. However, this soon changed and by 1993 the chairlifts were operating throughout summer to accommodate this newfound activity delivering year-
round tourism to the region.
The key outcomes for Whistler’s local community and economy
Described as ‘the Grandaddy of bike parks’ Whistler is an economic powerhouse. Overnight park visitors spend an average of $655 per person per trip. In 2016, mountain biking in Whistler accounted for:
- $46.6 million in net economic activity directly attributable to mountain biking
- $75.9 million economic activity across British Columbia
- 389 jobs in Whistler
- 102,500 out of town mountain bike visitors to Whistler
Each year, this winter ski resort completely transforms itself to prepare for a summer of mountain biking. Almost overnight the entire resort undergoes a complete makeover, with shelves and window displays cleared of winter sports to make way for bikes and associated products, promotions and offerings. It’s a sight to behold!
In 2015, Crankworx alone generated:
- $16.3 million expenditure in Whistler;
- $26.2 million in economic activity across B.C;
- 126 jobs in Whistler
“There’s no doubt that mountain biking is a growing industry for Whistler. It’s just such a continuing opportunity for us,” said Whistler Mayor Nancy Wilhelm-Morden.
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