Al Kristmanson has been with the Whistler Golf Club for 23 years but he still gets visibly exited the day before the course opens. Amidst a hectic morning of meetings, phone calls and final course updates he finds the time to sit down and share the stoke.
“We open tomorrow! Earliest ever,” Al says, pointing to his office wall calendar with a big red circle around Friday April 24. “We’ve only ever opened in April two times and never this early but with this warm spring we’ve been able to get lots of work in, everything is nice and dry, the bears are out… it’s go time.”
And just like that, Whistler golf season begins with both the Whistler Golf Club and Fairmont Chateau Whistler Golf Club leading the charge by opening Friday but Nicklaus North Golf Course, slated for an April 30, 2015 opening, is kicking things off with a bit of a party.
“We’re calling it the Craft your Golf opening weekend,” explains Nicklaus North GM Mike Zuccolin. “We’ll have craft beer stations set up throughout the course featuring all local Sea to Sky breweries with food as well and a big BBQ at Table Nineteen afterwards.” That event happens Saturday May 2, 2015 and is just a taste of things to come as Nicklaus North celebrates their 20th season of operation.
Up the road in Pemberton Big Sky Golf & Country Club will start welcoming golfers sometime between May 8-15, 2015. “We took advantage of the warm weather to redo all our greens,” explains Big Sky General Manager Woody Bishop. “The new grass needs 6-8 weeks for the root structures to really set in, otherwise we would be open already. “
Big Sky’s new greens are the latest and greatest bent grass available and Woody is excited to see how they will play compared to the original greens put in 20 years ago. “It should be superb,” he says. “The rest of the course is in amazing shape and our atmosphere up here is just so tranquil –no houses or roads or trains around—it’s just you and Mount Currie.”
LEFT: Big Sky Golf & Country Club with Mount Currie in behind. RIGHT: The Fairmont Chateau Whistler Golf Club also opens Friday April 24, 2015.
Back in Whistler with both the Chateau Whistler course and Whistler Golf Club just hours from opening, Al Kristmanson seems most excited about his new monogramed golf bags, or more specifically the ultra-vibrant yellow colour of the letters. “It’s called ‘Volt’,” Al explains. “Colour is the theme this year. Guys need to get rid of all the black. If you look good you will play good and new kicks and a new outfit will knock 5 strokes off by the end of the season, that’s real advice from a certified CPGA Pro.”
Bold promises, but who wants to argue with a guy who’s knocked down a hole-in-one in competition and has a framed picture of himself and Tiger Woods in his office?
Whistler Golf is here, have fun.
Book a Whistler golf vacation before April 30th for the best value and availability. Find more info at Whistler.com