With progression at the top of mind, the Whistler Mountain Bike Park at Whistler Blackcomb is excited to announce plans to significantly transform the riding experience at the world's top rated lift accessed mountain bike park. This summer the Whistler Mountain Bike Park is renewing its commitment to offer progressive riding experiences that appeal to returning park riders, welcome new riders and stay current with the latest developments in bike technology and riding preferences. From starting fresh on brand new trails to redesigning what's already there, to offering complimentary bike park tours for newcomers, the 2015 season will mark the beginning of the next stage in the evolution of the Whistler Mountain Bike Park. Here is what is on tap for this season:



Trail Upgrades

An early valley snow melt has allowed trail crews to get a jump start on this direction. Even though the Park's opening day has been pushed forward two weeks, trail crews have given both Crank It Up and A-line full makeovers. Paddy Kaye and his team of builders and shapers from Joyride Bike Parks have resculpted Crank It Up from top to bottom. The new and improved Crank It Up has been designed to provide a smooth introduction for riders getting familiar with Freeride style bike trails. New shapes and features have been created that will be enjoyable on both All Mountain and Downhill bikes and for a broad range of ability levels. Later this summer, riders will be able to progress to Crank It Up More, a brand new and more challenging 1.4km trail, where riders can take to the air after they have mastered the jumps of Crank It Up.

"We wanted to create a middle ground for riders who have mastered the easier trails but aren't quite ready to ride with the pros," says Brian Finestone, Whistler Mountain Bike Park Manager. "The changes we've made, including the modifications on Crank It Up and the up-coming addition of Crank It Up More, will allow opportunities for riders to build up their skills while still challenging the advanced riders, and keep everyone progressing through the Park at their own pace."

At the same time, the Whistler Mountain Bike Trail Crew have taken on the challenge of making one of the world's most iconic trails even better. Dave Murphy and his team of trail artists have reworked the classic A-Line trail to adapt it to current riding preferences and styles. The finished product will guarantee a new level of fun and entertainment for the Park's A-line addicts. A-line will offer multiple approaches to many features allowing for a true black diamond experience with a variety of more challenging options.

As the season progresses and snow melts on Whistler, trail crews will continue to work their magic while moving their focus up the mountain to select trails in the Garbanzo Zone. Further details on trail changes can be found at http://update.whistlerbike.com/.

Free Orientation Sessions

The ongoing evolution of the Whistler Mountain Bike Park goes hand in hand with encouraging newcomers to visit the Park. This summer, the Bike Park is putting a strong focus on educating guests on basic skills and bike park etiquette to create a fun and welcoming experience for all. A new Learning Centre at the top of the Fitzsimmons chairlift will offer complimentary Bike Park Orientation Sessions giving new riders the opportunity to speak to a Whistler Mountain Bike Park Guide. Guides will advise riders on essential skills, appropriate trails for their ability levels and recommendations on lessons or programs. Orientation sessions will run daily from May 2 to October 12.

"This summer we want to focus on creating an inviting environment for newcomers in the Bike Park to keep this sport growing for years to come," says Tom Radke, Whistler Mountain Bike Park Program Supervisor. "By providing easily accessible information to guests we are hoping to encourage proper progression and keep riders on manageable trails for their skill level."

The Whistler Mountain Bike Park is offering new multi-day pass options this year to provide guests with more choice when it comes to enjoying the Bike Park. Season Passes, Five Day, Ten Day, Twilight and Top of the World Passes for the Whistler Mountain Bike Park are currently available at early bird rates until May 17. Single, two, three and four day tickets will also be available when the season begins. The Whistler Mountain Bike Park will be opening on May 2, 2015. For more information or to purchase passes visit bike.whistlerblackcomb.com.

Guests looking to plan a trip to the consistently rated No. 1 Mountain Resort in North America can visit whistlerblackcomb.com/deals_packages or call 1-888-403-4727.