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October 31, 2005
Whistler, BC - (Press Release) - As October draws to a close and Halloween is celebrated in usual Whistler style, thoughts are more about powder than poltergeists at the resort tonight. Whistler Blackcomb hasannounced that Blackcomb Mountain will open this Saturday, November 5much earlier than planned, in fact it's one of the earliest openings inthe resort's 40 year history. Blackcomb Mountain will remain openthrough the weekend (November 5 and 6) and plans are in place to opendaily as of Friday, November 11. Special opening weekend pricing will bein effect.

A series of Pacific frontal systems over the past weekend brought atotal of 60 centimetres (24 inches) of snow to the mountains at theRendezvous Lodge elevation located at 1,860m/6,102ft, and the forecastis calling for even more snow through the week.

"This is a major boost for early season conditions at WhistlerBlackcomb," says Bob Dufour, Vice President of Mountain Operations. "Thelong range forecast over the coming weeks is for normal, or colder thannormal temperatures plus normal or greater than normal precipitation.This is very good news for us."

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The new snow, a stormy forecast over the next five days, and WhistlerBlackcomb's powerful snowmaking system are lining up to deliver thesolid early season conditions that Whistler and Blackcomb Mountains havebecome famous for. With anywhere from 25 to 40 centimetres (10 to 16inches) forecasted to fall through Friday, indications of what's to comethis season are promising.

"Things are looking very winter-like on the mountains today," says MikeDouglas, Whistler Blackcomb Pro Team member and long time Whistlerresident. "Halloween night is typically one of the best nights inWhistler and I think tonight will be even more fun than usual as localscelebrate winter's return and this weekend's early opening."

Whistler Blackcomb crews have been working hard all summer preparing forthis season. Summer grooming and brush cutting on the runs will ensurethat more runs can open with minimal snow. Increased investment intohigh-tech snowmaking infrastructure provides added assurance that snowcoverage will be solid. "Many of our guns now turn on automatically whenthe temperature dips allowing us to take advantage of every snowmakingopportunity no matter what time of the day or night," says Dufour.

Hours of operation this weekend will be from 8:30am to 3:00pm. Uploadingwill take place from the Blackcomb base. The Wizard Express, SolarCoaster Express, Jersey Cream Express and Catskinner chairs are expectedto open.

Great early season pricing is in effect. Offers this winter include afamily package where kids ski and stay free (must be booked beforeDecember 5). Discover Whistler Days during 11 weeks of the season alsooffer guests many ski and snowboard lessons at 50% off. Please visitwhistlerblackcomb.com to view the snowy conditions and to find out moreabout Whistler Blackcomb's special offers and upcoming events.

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