This weekend, Neil and I decided to check out an infamous trail just outside of Whistler. Train Wreck is a black diamond and fairly gnarly mountain biking trail, so if you’re not down with tackling rock rolls and massive ladders on a rainy November day, you can just walk it like we did.
Just five minutes south of Whistler, this unique trail is built around derailed cars from a Canadian Pacific Railway wreck in the 1960s. There isn’t really much info out there about exactly what happened, but it looks like the accident was pretty bad. There are 6 rail cars strewn in about a 300 metre radius, including one carriage that careened towards the Cheakamus River resting on a cliff just above.
It was eerily quiet at the wreck site. The long-abandoned cars are rusty, gnarled and twisted into almost unrecognizable shapes. Some are on their sides and others, though upright, have been ripped apart by the brute force of high speed momentum gone terribly wrong.
There are many signs of humans – the well manicured bike features, beer cans, coffee cups and even a fire pit. This place is no secret. But the largest sign of human visitation is the vibrant and colourful art that decorates the rail cars. Graffiti and pop art brighten the haunting scene – but not enough to keep the hairs from raising on my neck.
When we got home, we realized that some of our photos revealed a very odd white mist that we hadn’t seen while exploring the wreck. Maybe it was the damp West Coast air playing tricks … or maybe it was something else.
Pull into the gravel “parking lot” located at the fancy stone “Whistler” sign on Hwy 99 just south of Function Junction
Head to the south end and look for a tiny sign that says “lower seat post” that’s nailed to a tree
Follow the trail until you get to the railroad tracks
You can take the left or right trail at this point
Once you hit the T intersection, go left on the Train Wreck trail
**Leave about 45 minutes for round trip and sightseeing
Other Blogs about Train Wreck
Snowboarding Train Wreck by Nick Vail Photography