Whistler: A must-ride MTB destination 


21.03.24 at 1:44 pm

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Nestled amidst the rugged landscape of British Columbia’s Coast Mountains lies a mecca for mountain biking which is firmly slapped on every rider’s bucket list – Whistler. Renowned for its world-class trails, vibrant biking culture, and legendary riders, Whistler draws mountain bikers from every corner of the globe to experience this incredible destination and live the life of a mountain bike legend for a few days. Join us as we delve into the detail of Whistler’s iconic trails, world-class events, and the incredible riders who’ve left an indelible mark on this mountain biking mecca.

Whistler’s bike park is known for its incredible trails, from huge jump lines to legendary race tracks and technical rooty terrain. With trails for every level of rider from beginner to professional, you will have a vast variety of trails to choose from whilst riding here. 

The trails

At the heart of Whistler’s mountain biking universe lies the legendary Whistler Bike Park, a gravity-fed playground boasting over 70 kilometers of trails accessible via chairlifts. From adrenaline-pumping descents to flowy berms and technical features, the Bike Park caters to downhill, freeride and jump fans alike. Key trails include:


An iconic trail revered for its massive jumps, tabletops, and high-speed berms that leave riders grinning from ear to ear.

Crank It Up

Perfect for honing skills, Crank It Up offers a playful descent with progressive jumps and rollers suitable for riders of all abilities.

Original Sin

Step away from the jump lines and you’ll find some rooty, techy fun in Whistler Bike Park. Original Sin is a tech trail with roots, rocks, and a touch of North Shore for that true Canadian feel.

Mountain bikers riding a trail in the Whistler bike park
Whistler Mountain Bike Park, Creekside Zone


Top of the World

For those seeking an alpine adventure like no other, Top of the World delivers an unforgettable experience. Accessed via the Whistler Gondola, this trail offers panoramic vistas of snow-capped peaks before descending through rocky terrain, lush forests, and exhilarating singletrack. It’s a bucket-list ride that encapsulates the essence of Whistler’s mountain biking allure.

Mountain bikers riding over rocks in Whistler bike park

Lost Lake Trails

On the outskirts of Whistler Village lies the tranquil oasis of Lost Lake, home to a network of cross-country trails that meander through verdant forests and alongside serene lakes. These scenic trails provide a perfect escape for riders of all ages and abilities seeking a more leisurely cycling experience.


Beyond its awe-inspiring trails, Whistler pulsates with energy during its world famous mountain bike events, where riders come together to celebrate their passion for the sport. Foremost among these is the renowned Crankworx Mountain Bike Festival, an annual mtb event held each August. From gravity-defying jumps to pump track showdowns and adrenaline-fueled whip-offs, Crankworx showcases the pinnacle of mountain biking while fostering a sense of camaraderie and community that’s second to none. If you are lucky enough to visit in August (it is very busy) then you will see some of the best riders in the world at top speed and high altitude riding their hearts out! 

A concert in Whistler
Summer Concert Series

Fox Air DH is a downhill race which is part of the Crankworx Whistler festival also and is known for its high-speed descents and big jumps. Riders compete against the clock as they navigate the technical terrain of the bike park. The Canadian National Downhill Championships is often hosted in Whistler also, attracting elite downhill riders from across Canada to compete for the national title.

The Enduro World Series occasionally includes Whistler as one of its stops. Enduro racing involves timed downhill stages combined with untimed climbing segments, testing riders’ all-around mountain biking skills. Let’s hope we see the EWS (now EDR) continue past 2024 as it seems the new owners are intent on killing it!

mountain biker in the air
Official Whip-Off World Championships, Crankworx 2016. Photo by Justa Jeskova


Whistler’s allure extends beyond its terrain to attract some of the most legendary riders in the sport, each leaving an indelible mark on its trails. Let’s shine a spotlight on a few of these iconic riders. 

Hailing from nearby Squamish, Brandon Semenuk is a freeride virtuoso revered for his jaw-dropping tricks and creative line choices. Whether he’s sessioning the jumps in the Whistler Bike Park or crafting mesmerizing edits in the backcountry, Semenuk’s influence on Whistler’s biking culture is palpable, inspiring riders of all levels to push their limits and redefine what’s possible on two wheels.

A true powerhouse in the world of mountain biking, Jill Kintner’s illustrious career spans multiple disciplines, from downhill racing to pump track competitions. With an impressive array of podium finishes to her name, Kintner is a force to be reckoned with on Whistler’s trails, inspiring riders of all ages and abilities to chase their dreams and embrace the thrill of the ride.

Whistler’s biking community mourns the loss of one of its brightest stars, Stevie Smith, whose untimely passing in 2016 left a void in the sport. Known for his fearless riding style and infectious passion for mountain biking, Smith’s legacy lives on through the memories of those who had the privilege of witnessing his talent on Whistler’s trails, forever immortalizing him as a legend of the sport.

what you need to know

The age long question of which bike is best suited to Whistler bike park continues and there is no specific answer. Do you take a Downhill Bike or Enduro Bike to Whistler Bike park? Ultimately, the best bike for Whistler Bike Park depends on your riding style, skill level, and personal preferences. If you enjoy fast descents and hitting big jumps, a downhill bike may be the best choice. If you prefer a more versatile bike that can handle both descents and climbs, an enduro bike could be more suitable. Trails like top of the world and lord of the squirrel require an enduro bike to get to the top, others like dirt merchant are straight DH bike, big rig territory. 

Another very important question is how much does beer cost in Whistler, you could typically expect to pay around $6 to $9 CAD (approx. £3.50-£5.20 at current exchange rate )for a beer at one of the on-site restaurants or bars which is not too bad considering where you are in the world. Food can be expensive but there are so many options to choose from so do some research and find your favourite pre and post ride hang out. 

Traveling to Whistler from the UK involves several steps, including international flights, transfers, and potential visa requirements. Here’s a general overview of what to consider:

Flights: You’ll need to book flights from the UK to Vancouver International Airport (YVR) in Canada, which is the closest major airport to Whistler. Many airlines operate direct flights from London Heathrow, London Gatwick, and other UK airports to Vancouver. The flight duration is approximately 9-10 hours.

Transfers: Once you arrive at Vancouver International Airport, you have several options for getting to Whistler. The most common and convenient method is to take a shuttle bus or private transfer service directly from the airport to Whistler. Alternatively, you can rent a car and drive to Whistler, which takes about 2-2.5 hours, depending on traffic and weather conditions.

Visa and Entry Requirements: As a UK citizen, you may be eligible to enter Canada without a visa for short stays (usually up to six months) for tourism and business purposes. However, you will need to obtain an Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA) before boarding your flight to Canada. Make sure to check the latest visa and entry requirements well in advance of your trip.

There are tour companies who will take car of all this for you however so make you check out Atlas Ride Co and their Whistler and Beyond MTB Tour.

Whistler stands as a testament to the power of mountain biking, offering an incredible blend of adrenaline and natural beauty that captivates riders from around the world. Whether you’re tackling the gravity-defying trails of the Whistler Bike Park, soaking in the vistas atop Top of the World, or paying homage to the legends who’ve carved their mark on Whistler’s trails, one thing is certain – a journey to Whistler is an experience like no other. So, heed the call of the trails, embrace the spirit of adventure, and embark on your own Whistler adventure – where legends ride and dreams take flight.

A scenic view of whistler


If you’re interested in joining a Whistler MTB tour with Atlas Ride Co. or any other tour company, we recommend visiting their website or contacting them directly for more information about their offerings, pricing and availability.

If you’re thinking about visiting Whistler, don’t forget, Yellow Jersey provide cycle specific cycle mountain bike travel insurance which covers emergency medical expenses, trip cancellation, trip abandonment, repatriation along with a whole host of other benefits.  Worried about crashing your bike, or worse still, your bike being lost by an airline, then you’ll be needing our mountain bike insurance. If you need any assistance, we’re super easy to get through to-just give us a call on 0333 003 0046 or message us on live chat.

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