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Last day of Skiing is always a party

Despite serving a smokin-hot-deal $5 pancake breakfast all morning today, Merlin’s, at the base of Blackcomb Mountain, can’t legally serve liquor until 11 am. At five seconds past 11, however, the first shot-ski got taken down amidst cheers and some kind of electric siren and Gaper Day 2014 was officially on.

Gaper Day is how Whistler celebrates the last day of ski season. Despite the fact that it’s late May and most outdoor people are more focused on biking or golf or chilling at the beach you can always count on a few dozen die-hards to dress up in crazy costumes and bring the childish joy of riding a mountain to the forefront one more time.

stair skiing is so extreme

Despite some morning rain Gaper Day 2014 picked up right where the last one left off and after a ceremonial group stretching session and a few warm-up laps down the very-snowless stairs at the base of Blackcomb, the costumed crew headed up Blackcomb for one final day of on-snow shenanigans. (At least until summer glacier skiing begins in just over three weeks on June 21,2014).

The skiing is rarely epic but Gaper Day is about silly fun, vintage equipment and not caring if you ding your edges or scratch your bases. It’s about coming together with the people you’ve been riding with for the past six months and saying , “Thank you Winter, Hello Summer!” Let’s do this.

Group Stretch

And check out this video of the Gaper Day 2014 Stair Race.


Feet Banks moved to Whistler at age 12 so his parents could live the dream and ski as much as possible. He ended up living it too. After leaving home Feet did a few good stints in warmer climates and 4 years of writing school before returning to the mountains to make ski movies, hammer out a journalism career and avoid the 9-5 lifestyle as long as possible. He’s been a hay farmer, a hole digger, a magazine editor and has a jump named after him on Blackcomb Mountain, Feet’s Air. It’s tiny.