Trip Reports: March 2009 Archives

Trusted Travelers go to Whistler

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We recently became Trusted Travelers in the eyes of the US/Canada border through the NEXUS program.  At $50 for five years it's sort of a "good deal".  You just cruise through the border crossing with minimal/no questions asked.  This was our first trip flexing it—while we didn't hit peak hours, pulling up to the border agent and just getting a "have a good one" was great.

Our route for the weekend:


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We bounced out of Seattle pretty late on Friday night after the Water 1st – Beer 2nd fundraiser.  We were headed to Pitt Meadows, BC for the night—a free Ramada stay in the boondocks east of Vancouver (thanks to the fantastic Wyndham BRG program frequently mentioned here).  We got extremely lost getting there, but were eventually saved by a teenager at A&W Root Beer giving us directions at 12:30am.  It was a nice and clean hotel for the middle of nowhere.

On Saturday morning, we began the drive up the Sea to Sky highway towards Whistler.  The lone stop en route was at the Sunflower Bakery Cafe in Squamish, BC for hot cocoa and pastries.

The initial plan was to do some backcountry snowshoeing north of Whistler, but the avalanche forecasts were off the charts—no thanks, we played it safe.  So our recreation destination was Callaghan Country just south of Whistler.  For $8.50/person, they have some nice snowshoe trails (that are dog friendly).  Pleasantly surprised to only bump into two other groups of people on snowshoe and loads of fresh, fresh snow to stomp around in.

 

Then we were off to check out Whistler Village and check-in to the Fairmont Chateau Whistler.  A cheap rate of $93 including taxes was the impetus for this trip—this hotel is usually well north of $350/night.  It was rather nice to stay at a posh hotel with absolutely nothing on the agenda for the night/next morning.  And it was a classy place—pulled up the Matrix, valet handed us the room keys, and we walked into the room to find a dog bed and bowl awaiting Zizou's arrival.

Zizou enjoyed watching the children at play outside:

To try to save some ducats, we grabbed some take out dinner at Pasta Lupino—quite good and only set us back $20 CAD.  Lillie then settled in for a 12-hour nap…

It was pretty nasty weather on Sunday morning, so we made a leisurely drive back south to Vancouver.  Made a stop at Murrin Provincial Park where Zizou jumped into a frozen lake for a swim.  It was painful to watch, but he sure was enjoying himself.

We had lunch at Japadog (worth clicking on this—"Our English is very poor. The followings may make mistakes. We are sorry.")  And later had dinner with our Vancouver friends at Shanghai River in Richmond—second trip and second grand slam.  A reservation or fist full of Hong Kong dollars is a must to get a table here.

A quick 2.5 hours later we were home in Seattle…will flex the NEXUS again, soon…