I’m a creature of habit, especially when it comes to running. I genuinely love running the same routes, the same roads, the same trails. I seem to find variety in the consistency, if that makes any sense. I can usually find something different to focus on, look for or listen to, therefore I’m able to avoid boredom.
I’ve got some favourite Whistler routes I’ll share with you. Maybe you are already familiar with them and they are part of your routine; maybe I’ll introduce you to something entirely new.
1. Lost Lake
When I worked a 9-5 Whistler gig, this place was a sanctuary for me. It offers it all: flat, hilly, wide, narrow, quiet, busy. You can link together anything from a 2km gentle, ’round the lake loop to a killer 90 minute single-track sufferfest. Taylor made for any kind of run, really.
All of Whistler’s golf courses offer an opportunity to run around them. Stick to the cart paths or the surrounding valley trail and keep your head up and ears open for the tell-tale call of fore!
Golf courses offer a unique opportunity to run some fartleks; push your pace up the hills, recover on the dips. Or do the opposite, drive your shoulders forward and work on your downhill running. If things get too hairy, you can always tuck and roll onto the green!
South of Whistler Village, you’ll find a myriad of trails that can lead all over the place. I’d consider them a slightly more challenging Lost Lake-type trail system that has the option to lead one far off the beaten path, if one so chooses. Bring your camera; it’s well worth it. And maybe some kind of wildlife repellant.
4. Highway 99
Ok, so you may question my sanity here, but bear with me for a minute. If you are training for longer distances such as the marathon, the point-to-point run from Whistler to Pemberton is actually very nice. Be organized for this one: drop water along the way (or have someone do it for you) and have an end point in mind with a change of clothes, food, etc. (seems obvious, but I’ve forgotten to do so, and it was not ideal). You’ll be surprised at how different the road looks from the vantage point of your feet versus your car. Wave to the drivers who will give you funny looks!
5. Save the best for last: Singing Pass
Far and away one of the most beautiful runs in British Columbia (I’d say the world, but what do I know). Talk some friends into joining you, be prepared for all-weather eventualities, bring money for post-run, stuff your face goodness and enjoy this gem. Annually, we start at the bottom of Whistler Mountain, make our way up Singing Pass to the Musical Bumps and through the back bowls of Whistler Mountain to the Roundhouse. By the time we get there, we are daydreaming of food and drink and looking forward to a leisurely ride down the Gondola. Who knows, maybe this is the year we run down, too.
What are your top 5s?