During the holidays, and heading into what they call the “Deep Winter” season, Whistler can get pretty busy, hosting a drove of tourists, some there to snowboard or ski, and some just there to party at one of Whistler’s infamous bars. This is all good when it comes to hitting the slopes, because, aside from the slightly longer lines at the chairlifts, it means that the hills are buzzing with activity.
Where it gets a little crazy is, as mentioned, in the after hours, where finding a seat at a restaurant or standing room at a bar can be difficult. Now, though, there’s an axe-throwing place that just opened up 45 minutes away in Squamish, and it’s pretty much the perfect accompaniment to a day spent tearing up the slopes. The Backyard Axe Throwing League, or BATL, offers private pitches for large parties, small groups of friends or just drop-ins on the weekends. Between snowboarding at Whistler Blackcomb and axe throwing in Squamish, this has to be the perfect itinerary for a winter’s day – here’s why.
You start your morning early (or however early you can muster), by layering your clothes, packing up your gear and board, and heading to Blackcomb. It’s an intense experience, the wind whipping in your face as you hand over thought to your legs, which roll over moguls easily or send you flying into a face plant. It can be a pretty physically demanding day, but it’s worth it for the fresh winter air and adrenaline rush. When the day’s done, though, you just want to blow off some steam and relax, while not crashing completely – that’s where axe throwing comes in.
Rather than slumping onto the couch, you can inject some excitement into your evening by heading to Squamish with friends to see how good you are at axe throwing and challenge them to a tournament. Oftentimes, snowboarding can be a solitary activity, so a competitive activity like axe throwing provides a stellar counterpoint, one that thankfully doesn’t require much at all in the way of leg strain. Because, let’s face it, your legs get one hell of a workout when you snowboard or ski, and the last thing you want is an evening activity that provides more strain.
You get to throw a freaking axe too, which is pretty cool. And there’s something that just makes sense about it, given the context – you spend the day amid the snow and pine trees, then spend the evenings hurling an axe at a slab of wood. It completes that outdoorsy, BC woodsman ethos. You can get a few pointers, or a more in-depth explanation, from one of the expert axe throwers there, then spend a fun evening trying to one-up your friends on who can hit closest to the target.
BC has no shortage of fun stuff, but snowboarding and axe throwing happen to make the perfect, most iconic Outdoor BC day that you can think of. It’s everything a winter day should be: fun, relaxing, exhilarating, competitive and downright cool. Forget going tubing at the end of a long day on the slopes – you’ll only be met with long lines and minimal thrills. Check out BATL in Squamish after an action-packed day on the hill to keep the momentum going!