Whistler

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Whistler rail station like most things in the ski town is located in a new development, specifically Nita Lake Lodge. The station opened in 2007 after rail service began again with 2006 as the first season of the Whistler Mountaineer Sea to Sky Climb and the Rocky Mountaineer Fraser Discovery Rainforest to Gold Rush Route. In season (mid-May to late September) the stop sees service five days a week (daily except Tuesday and Wednesday) with round-trips from North Vancouver arriving mid-morning and departing mid to late afternoon with many using the train just for day trips. There are also weekly trips (departing in 2012 on Monday mornings) on the Rainforest to Gold Rush Route to Jasper via Quesnel. Returns arrive on Friday nights. The station is located on the mainline of the single track Pacific Great Eastern Railway that sees minimal enough freight service that the train can block the entire main line when it is in the station. Rain Forest to Gold Rush trains half to deadhead between runs 35 miles south to Squamish to be serviced and wyed at the yard their between runs. The Whistler Sea to Sky Climb trains use a wye on the otherside of town between runs on daytrips.

The station, even though almost new, is just a strip of concrete quite far away from the train as it goes around quite a bit of a curve. All trains don't just use stools but genuine silver units of two stairs that are placed directly on railroad ballast. The platform is also extremely short with only about 5 cars actually platforming. This requires vestibules to be shared to allow the rear and front most passenger cars to platform. There is a small garage style non-public building right on the platform. Towards the platform's northern end is a walkway that leads to a bridge across a creek that connects Alpha Lake to Nina Lake. This is the only way passengers can access the platform and at the other side of the bridge is a gate that restricts entry until the train has fully arrived in the station. This area is at a turn-around area where the motor coaches wait for transfers and the station house is that is modern with a rustic decor. Inside is decent sized waiting room with a Rocky Mountaineer Station desk (that is the text beneath) and quite a few wooden benches. A table is set up by the hotel with tea and coffee (including genuine china cups) for morning, waiting passengers for the Rainforest to Gold Rush Route. Attached to the station is an enclosed overpass called the bridge (with a staircase and elevator) across the railroad track that provides a view of the station platform and connects to developments on the otherside of the tracks. The Valley Trail, a multi-use train through the Whistler Valley, passes around the station.
All photos taken on 28 or 29 September, 2011

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4 steps on the train and two more on a step unit are required to get off of a 1950s Whistler Sea to Ski Climb Class Service Coach
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Passengers get off of the Sea to Ski Climb
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The wheelchair lift on the station platform
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The Henry Pickering, open air observation car
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Looking back at the Henry Pickering
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Passing Whistler Dome Service cars on their last day of operation, the cars will all be used in Silver Leaf service on the mainline routes in 2012. This will give the Whistler train just one class of service
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Looking back as the last passengers of the 2011 Season step off of last Whistler arrival
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Single level Silver Leaf dome cars
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The bridge across to the platform exit
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A striking on board attendant greets arriving rides that walk into the station house first before their motorcoaches
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Train Station signage for the Rocky Mountaineer
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The station entrance there is a crossing gate out front and drop-off loop like a hotel
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The walkway through the station/hotel towards the platform
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Another crossing gate blocks off the buses that serve as hotel shuttles
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Home<Canada<Rocky Mountaineer<Whistler
Rocky Mountaineer

Last Updated: 14 November, 2011
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