Peak 2 Peak leaves an impression on first passengers 

Record-breaking lift between Whistler and Blackcomb opened today

There's not much that George Huxtable hasn't experienced in his 90 years when it comes to skiing.

But even this avid mountain user was awestruck by the new Peak 2 Peak gondola, which officially opened between the peaks of Whistler and Blackcomb Friday Dec.12.

"You know it really was amazing," he said after arriving from Blackcomb Mountain on the first cabin to make the trip.

He and 22 others, including his son and grandson, were among those voted to take the first gondola ride by the community.

"I thought I died about eight times," he said.

"I enjoyed it. I enjoy everything. That is why I am still skiing at 90."

Said son Gordy: "It was very fun. It was smooth, it has a great view and it was very high up but it didn't fall off. It was spectacular. I think it is a great part of our diversification.

"It certainly makes it so easy and painless to get back and forth. You could have lunch over there and coffee over here. I was amazed at just how easy it was to get back and forth."

Asked if he would ski both hills he replied: "In a heartbeat."

For Whistler dentist James McKenzie and wife Janis, the 11-minute ride from Blackcomb to Whistler on the glass-bottom gondola gave them just enough time to renew their wedding vows.

"We wanted to renew our vows, and it was wonderful," said McKenzie.

Said wife Janis: "It was unbelievable. We got married up on Whistler 11 years ago and this just all fell into place, and we did it in 11 minutes."

Paralympian and coach of the BC Disabled Ski Team, Phil Chew, was also in the first gondola.

"It was smooth," he said.

"You didn't even feel going over the towers, and even though it wasn't the clearest day you could see 1,400 feet down to the bottom of the valley to Fitz Creek."

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