Day Five/ Grouse Mountain

Trip Start Dec 17, 2011
Trip End Jan 14, 2012

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Flag of Canada  , British Columbia,
Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Today we decided to go to Grouse Mountain, after the recommendation of a waitress at Steanworks.  Apparently is is beautiful and we have been saving up this trip for today, which is meant to be a sunny day. 
Grouse Mountain (the pronunciation of which, is unconfirmed.  Gross Mountain? Gr-ow-se Mountain?) is a boat trip and a long bus trip away.  Once we arrived at the base, we had to take a gondola up to the top.  We were all under the impression that we would take cable cars, quite like SkyRail up, but there were just two cable cars that held about 50 people standing up, so were were packed right in there. 
Grouse Mountain is beautiful.  There is no accommodation on the mountain, so everyone has to take the gondola up, as there is also no other transport to get up there.  It is designed to look like Santa's village, complete with a reindeer pen and Santa's workshop.  It almost looked fake, as if Hollywood used it as a set for a Christmas shoot.  You can ski at Grouse Mountain, but it is mostly for beginners, and very, very little runs.  There was a large snow plough which was used for the ski patrol, and it was constantly going up and down the mountains, rescuing the injured.
We first went to the theatre there, where they had kids short Christmas films.  We thought that we would be watching a documentary on the Northern Lights, but we ended up watching Alvin & the Chipmunks, a 'Chipmunked' Christmas, which bored Dad to tears.
We then went outside to take a sleigh ride, which was a free activity at the Mountain.  Unfortunately, we lined up during the 'pee wee' drop-off time, which meant that all the little, inexperienced skiers got to jump the queue and jump on the sled to take them to the runs.  it was really annoying to be waiting in the queue for an hour, and to have kids and their parents walking up to the front and forming their own queue, in front of ours. By the time we were near the front, more people jumped the queue, but they were kicked off the sleigh.  That was secretly really satisfying.
The sleigh was pulled by a plough, so it was more like a motorised sleigh ride.  It held about 24 people, with 4 in a row. They gave us a little tour of the mountain, including chainsaw-carved statues, flying foxes
We then went in for lunch.  We were told that it would be a 25 minute wait, but we ended up waiting for over 45 minutes.  We even saw 3 other groups of 6 be allowed in before us, which was frustrating.  We were finally allowed in, but by this time, it was almost 3pm. Luckily the view from the restaurant was absolutely breathtaking.  Vancouver is an aesthetically very pleasing city, with all the lights, the water, the snow. 
We lined back up for the gondola, and made our way back home.  We stopped off at some cutesy tourist shops.  We also bought a cake for Dad's birthday, and picked up a pizza to eat in the room.
Tonight is our last night in the beautiful Vancouver, and though we are sad to leave, I am so excited to visit Sun Peaks! 
Happy Birthday Dad!
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Steve on

Happy Bitrhday Andie

Kate on

Poor Dad - his birthday and he had to watch Alvin :(

Dick on

Happy birthday Andy for yesterday, sound like your having a great time. Get plenty of video on the go pro.

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