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Bobsledding at Whistler

The Whistler Sliding Centre, a venue for the Olympic Games, has opened its thrilling bobsled run to amateurs.

You'll want to hang on tight to the handles as the bobsled can reach speeds of over 80 mph.
Photo caption
You'll want to hang on tight to the handles as the bobsled can reach speeds of over 80 mph.

Goggles and helmet, ski jacket and gloves, and a taste for speed, and you’re ready for a thrill of Olympic proportions. This winter, the Whistler Sliding Centre–a venue for last year’s Olympic Games in Vancouver, B.C.—opens its bobsled run to amateurs.

Starting halfway down the track, you and two other passengers climb in behind a hired pilot. You cinch your helmet strap, grip the handles, and hang on as the sled banks through 10 sharp
turns in about a minute, reaching speeds over 80 mph. You’ll hear the runners grind against the ice as wind and g-forces buffet your face and body.

“It’s like a really exhilarating rollercoaster ride,” says marketing manager Patricia Leslie. “It’s a thrill, but you feel very safe.” You don’t need Olympian skills to reach the bottom, but Leslie says it does take a little energy to stay in your seat. About $140. (604) 964-0040, whistlerslidingcentre.com.

Photography courtesy of Coast Mountain Photography/Whistler Sports Legacies

This article was first published in January 2012. Some facts may have aged gracelessly. Please call ahead to verify information.