Vail Resorts Invests in the Heart of Whistler Blackcomb
Vail Resorts, Inc. announces that the Company plans to make an historic investment of CAD$66 million (USD$52 million) at Whistler Blackcomb for the 2018.19 season focusing on three new lifts at the heart of the resort.

Get ready to enjoy more time on the mountain. Vail Resorts has just unveiled an historic announcement at Whistler Blackcomb, the investment in faster lifts and a new Blackcomb gondola for the 2018.19 season. The $66-million CAD project will be the heart of Whistler Blackcomb, cutting wait times at the core of each mountain.

On Whistler, a new six-person Emerald Express chair will make life in the Family Ski Zone easier, while a high-speed, four-person Catskinner chair adds laps to your day on Blackcomb. Access to this mountain will also be faster, warm and dry, as well. A 10-person gondola, from the Upper Village to the PEAK 2 PEAK Gondola connection, will open the first fully-sheltered route up Blackcomb year-round. Sightseeing or climbing the Ascent Trails? Extend your stay. There’s a covered cabin for the ride down.

And we didn’t forget the mountain bikers. Loam lovers will be shredding fresh trail in Creekside as the Whistler Mountain Bike Park reveals its most extensive expansion this spring!

  • Stay warm and dry in Blackcomb’s new 10-person gondola.
  • Cut the kids’ wait time for Emerald Express with the new 6-person chair in the Family Ski Zone.
  • Add more laps and improve faster with Blackcomb’s new 4-person, high-speed Catskinner lift.
  • Be the first to shred Creekside’s new trails in the Whistler Mountain Bike Park.
  • Join us on the 60-seat deck at the Roundhouse Lodge Umbrella Bar
  • Traverse from The Peak to West Ridge on the suspension bridge, then enjoy a 360-degree view from our new cantilevered viewing platform on West Ridge
  • Grab the family the Mountain Skills Academy Cliff Walk, a lateral via ferrata over Harmony Bowl

Whistler Blackcomb Overview Map

Construction Updates


Lift Investment Construction Project Wrap Up
Lift Investment Construction Update: Blackcomb Gondola Opens


Catskinner Express & Emerald 6 Express will be ready for opening day, winter 2018/19. The Blackcomb Gondola is scheduled to open December 14, 2018.

The Blackcomb Gondola is a dream project and has on the books for many years. The speed of this new lift will make year-round access to the mountain more efficient, and the ride up more comfortable for a wider variety of guests. Want to check out the 7th Heaven view? Ride up for a day of sightseeing in the rain or download after climbing the Ascent Trail without shivering on the chair. And every winter, the kids in ski school will now stick with their instructor from the bottom to top as the cabins have capacity for a whole group, unlike the existing chairs.
The goal is to improve traffic flow by expanding our upload capacity. Less bottlenecks means a better experience on the mountain today, but it also sets the stage for future growth. From skiing to biking, hiking to sightseeing, the projects selected for this upgrade are cornerstones of our vision and stepping stones for tomorrow.
No. We want to see our existing guests use the terrain to its full potential. By improving traffic flow on the hill, we can provide a better guest experience and serve our community better.

No. The investment is based on our success, not future sales.

Our in-house planners worked with our contractor, Eco-sign, to explore all possible routes, but in the end, they could not find a safe fit for both lines. This said, their work left us confident the new gondola mid-station will still serve those skiers and riders doing mid-mountain laps well, and the new Catskinner chair will naturally shift traffic to an under-used area of the mountain, further reducing pressure on the mid-station.

Catskinner will move below the Magic Castle on Connector and continue to serve the park and learning zone. It will not start any lower than it does now, but moving it will open up underutilized terrain for faster upload times.

Our summer camps will still be running full steam ahead. Access will be via the Whistler Village Gondola and PEAK 2 PEAK Gondola, rather than straight up Blackcomb.

The Whistler Village and Creekside gondolas will both be open for sightseeing this year, and Red Chair will service the 13km of new trail added to the Bike Park out of Creekside. Alpine access will be open from both routes, and the PEAK 2 PEAK Gondola will help skiers and boarders get to the Summer Glacier Camps.

We will close the new Ascent Trail on Blackcomb, as it runs through the gondola construction zone. It will re-open for business next summer, 2018-19.

Yes. Summer operations remain the same, with the market adjusting to skirt the construction zone in the Upper Village. Market hours will remain the same, but expect the construction noise a project of this scope creates.

Market Days

Sunday               May to October                  11 am – 4 pm

Wednesdays      July & August                     2 pm – 7 pm