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Old Posted Jun 22, 2016, 2:47 AM
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Klazu Klazu is offline
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Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: Above Metro Vancouver clouds
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And here's part 2 from our trip to Whistler two weeks ago. The reason for us driving up there was to check out the amazing giant snow walls on Whistler Mountain in every spring.

The reason for snow walls is a service road up the mountain that the crew has to open for performing summer maintenance for sky lifts. It follows the a ski run called Pika's Traverse which is an easy green ski run down the mountain.

Even though it was over +30C down in the valley, the weather on the mountains was cool and breezy. The snow is also so cold that it cools the air even more so dress warmly!

The further one walks, the taller the walls rise.

During winter this green run is so easy and fast to ski down, but it's a different story heading up. It's a fairly steep and exhausting climb!

The risk of avalances is still possible - in June!

Looking back where we came from.

On a beautiful day the views are out of this world. The Harmony Bowl area in the picture is one of our favorite ski areas in Whistler. Blackcomb Mountain on the opposite side (connection over the valley via Peak 2 Peak gondola, see my previous post).

Last winter Whistler received 12.34 meters (485 inches!!) of snow which is only slightly more than on average. Up here most of the snow is still intact and here is where the biggest snow walls are also located.

It is incredible that all this snow fell during this past winter and all of it will also melt away during the summer. It's quite a transformation in landscape during a year!

I have no idea how they plow the route through this section and how long it takes... Crazy Canucks!

Finally on top!

Black Tusk in the background is a famous local landmark. This was an amazing place to enjoy the warm weather for a moment. Just be aware that it is really bright up there and sunglasses are a must!

I highly recommend checking out the giant snow walls if you are in Whistler around end of May and beginning of June when the ski season has just ended and the service road opens. It is worth it.

Even more spectacular snow walls can be found on Mount Baker, WA where they receive world record amounts of snow and the walls are 7 meters tall still in August. The only thing to take into account is that the road to the parking lot on top doesn't open before July due to so much snow. It's still a nice trip and doesn't require hiking like in Whistler.

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