Tag Archives: Whistler Question

Whistler’s Answers: August 25, 1983

In the 1980s the Whistler Question began posing a question to three to six people and publishing their responses under “Whistler’s Answers” (not to be confused with the Whistler Answer).  Each week, we’ll be sharing one question and the answers given back in 1983.  Please note, all names/answers/occupations/neighbourhoods represent information given to the Question at the time of publishing and do not necessarily reflect the person today.

Some context for this week’s question: In August 1983, Council decided not to declare three uncompleted construction sites in the Whistler Village as “nuisances”, instead directing staff to work with the developers to clean up the sites before winter. The three sites were The Brandywine Inn, L’Auberge, and the Whistler Hotel and Athletic Club and their neighbours, such as the Delta Mountain Inn, were losing patience with the sites and wanted them cleaned up. The developers of the sites, however, claimed that they did not have the money to do so or to complete the projects before the coming winter. Council worked out an arrangement that requested that the owners of the sites rebuild fences around the sites and remove any loose construction materials.

Question: Do you find the unfinished building sites in the village an eyesore?

Michele Walter – Delta Mountain Inn Employee – Alpine Meadows

I think they should have finished them. The view from the north side rooms (in the Delta) is nice except for that. Some people think it’s going to be a skating rink or a swimming pool. Lots of people don’t like the view of the village because of the sites.

Dave Kirk – Village Store Owner – Alta Vista

Damn right they’re an eyesore. I think council was wimpy. We’ve lived with it (construction in the village) for four years. If there’s no evidence of construction by next year, I hope council would show more fortitude.

Greg Madland – Firefighter – St. Catherine’s, Ontario

I wouldn’t consider it an eyesore. I think skiers would see it as future construction. I don’t really think you’d want to fill it over. Flower pots and fences, like there are, are a good idea. The building trade would look really bad after putting in all those foundations.

Whistler’s Answers: August 18, 1983

In the 1980s the Whistler Question began posing a question to three to six people and publishing their responses under “Whistler’s Answers” (not to be confused with the Whistler Answer).  Each week, we’ll be sharing one question and the answers given back in 1983.  Please note, all names/answers/occupations/neighbourhoods represent information given to the Question at the time of publishing and do not necessarily reflect the person today.

Some context for this week’s question: In August 1983, the provincial government announced a $138 million 12-year plan to improve Highway 99. The program included building debris basins at four creeks to help with flood-control, replacing bridges over five creeks, and expanding sections of the highway to four lanes.

Question: What do you think of the government’s plan to upgrade Highway 99 over the next 12 years?

Hilda Davey – Realtor – Whistler Village

That is what we have all been waiting for. I know a lot of people who are afraid to drive the road during the winter. I think it will be good for business up here. Twelve years is a bit long, but I don’t think they could do it any faster. It is just nice to hear that they are upgrading it.

Bruce Knaack – Computer Programmer – Boca Raton, Florida

I like the windy roads. For the tourists who want to get away from the city, there is some charm and appeal to the road. But for the people who live in Vancouver and have a place in Whistler, it will make it a lot easier for them to get up here. I think it is going to end up causing Whistler to grow.

Kathy Taberner – Businesswoman – Adventures West/Horseshoe Bay

I think it is a really positive step and one that is long overdue. On Friday nights we don’t come up to Whistler if it’s raining. The bridges should be upgraded and the road made safe even in rainy weather. If people want to turn this into a year-round recreation resort, they are going to have to improve the road.

Crankworx Numero Uno

Eighteen years ago the first Crankworx was held in Whistler Village to roaring success. As the Crankworx World Tour is back in town this month we are throwing back to the original Crankworx Mountain Bike Festival, which started in Whistler in 2004.

We cannot talk about the start of Crankworx without first mentioning Joyride and Whistler Summer Gravity Festival. Joyride Bikercross was first organised by Chris Winter and Paddy Kaye in 2001. Four riders simultaneously jockeyed for lead at full speed down the course featuring tight turns and fast jumps. It instantly drew the crowds. Joyride continued in 2002, then was incorporated into the week-long Whistler Gravity Festival in 2003 – combining all the disciplines of gravity-assisted mountain biking including Air Downhill and Slopestyle. In 2004 the Whistler Gravity Festival rebranded to Crankworx.

Crankworx in 2004. Andrew Worth Collection.

Crankworx started as a way to pull together all gravity-assisted mountain bike disciplines and events, bringing all the best mountain bikers together. The idea was also to showcase the bike park. Rob McSkimming who was the managing director of Whistler Mountain Bike Park at the time, approached Mark ‘Skip’ Taylor who had experience working on the World Ski and Snowboard Festival. According to Rob in 2004, “Crankworx was designed so we could strive to be on the progressive edge of mountain biking.”

In 2004, Crankworx took place July 22 to 25, with concerts, pro-rider shows and an expo throughout the four days. Events included the Air Downhill along A-Line which was in its third year. The bike park had newly opened the terrain to the top of Garbanzo and the Garbanzo Downhill was another signature event, along with the BC Downhill Championship and the Biker X.

Definitely the most popular for spectators was the slopestyle. The course, which Richie Schley helped design, featured a road gap, wall ride, massive teeter-totter, step up to scaffolding, and huge gap jumps and drops. Prior to the event Rob McSkimming said of the course, “You should see what they are building for the Slopestyle session. It looks like an Olympic facility. There are some features in there that are hard to imagine riding let alone throwing tricks on.”

There were many memorable moments during the competition. Kirt Voreis left an impression, falling off his bike on top of the teeter-totter. He was able to keep both himself and the bike on the teeter-totter and continue the run after the fall.

Kirt Voreis managed to hang on after falling of his bike on the teeter-totter. Andrew Worth Collection.

Spectators will also remember Timo Pritzel from Germany who went really big, massively overshooting the funbox transition near the bottom of the course and flying over the scaffolding. As the Whistler Question explained, “He did clear the scaffold, but bailed his bike in mid-air and landed the old-fashioned way, which looked to most of the spectators like a guy jumping out of a two story building.” He broke his wrist and ankle in the crash, and placed second in the competition.

In an impressive underdog story, Paul Basagoitia took top honours in the 2004 slopestyle when he was 17 and relatively unknown. He had a background in BMX, no sponsors and no bike, so he borrowed a bike from friend, Cam Zink, and went on to win the contest. In an in interview from Pique Newsmagazine at the time, he said, “It was awesome, it was only like my fifth time on a mountain bike, so I couldn’t be happier.”

Paul Basagoitia during Crankworx 2004 where he came first in the slopestyle. According to an article in The Red Bulletin, following his victory Paul said, “I would like to thank my sponsors, but I don’t have any sponsors, really.” Andrew Worth Collection.

Still on the progressive edge of mountain biking, the evolution of the Crankworx from 2004 to today is evident in the village this week. Whistler has again come alive in celebration of all things mountain biking and no doubt legends will continue to be created.

Whistler’s Answers: August 11, 1983

In the 1980s the Whistler Question began posing a question to three to six people and publishing their responses under “Whistler’s Answers” (not to be confused with the Whistler Answer).  Each week, we’ll be sharing one question and the answers given back in 1983.  Please note, all names/answers/occupations/neighbourhoods represent information given to the Question at the time of publishing and do not necessarily reflect the person today.

Some context for this week’s question: In the August 4, 1983 edition of the Question, an editorial reported that it cost 19% more to buy groceries in Whistler than in West Vancouver, a difference that was also present in other goods. The editorial also suggested that the situation would continue as long as those in Whistler did not shop at the local stores and merchants continued to reflect the high costs associated with doing business in Whistler in their prices.

Question: Do you patronize merchants in other areas rather than Whistler?

Karl Baumann – Professor of History – St. Moritz, Switzerland

I shop here. The prices are a little higher in the grocery store than in Vancouver. The meals are good in the restaurants and the atmosphere and service are excellent as well. It may be a little more expensive but I come from a resort town so I understand that.

Trudy Gruetzke – Hotel Manager – Whistler

I patronize merchants here because I find it convenient. Prices may a little higher, but it costs me money in gas to get to Squamish or Pemberton. And besides, if people don’t shop here, it’s not going to get any better.

Vera-Lee Wren – Housewife – Seattle

If I am coming to stay with my brother, I usually buy my things in Seattle than up here. Prices are higher in Canada and in Whistler, they are very high. It is typical of resorts. There’s hardly anything to choose in the stores and it probably wouldn’t hurt to have a little competition. I have been here a number of times so the high prices don’t shock me anymore.