Whistler behaves, TV didn't, for Royal ski-a-thon Blackcomb is picked for first ski day, but are William and Henry goofy or regular? By Chris Woodall The three princes, Charles, William, 15, and Henry, 13, strapped on the planks for Blackcomb Mountain for their day of skiing on their holiday, Wednesday, March 25. The day didn't begin well when three Vancouver TV camera crews — from Global, VTV and CBC — "just happened" to be at the base of the Wizard Express, indirectly violating the "leave them alone" agreement between the news media and the Royals’ handlers to give the three princes space for a private holiday. The Palace was not amused and said so during a media debriefing at the Whistler Conference Centre mid-morning the same day. "The skiing party weren't happy about seeing the TV cameras," said Mark Bolland, deputy secretary to Prince Charles and the Palace spokesman at the debriefing. "It's not a big deal, but it could develop into one," Bolland said. The rest of the press corps accredited for this tour were rather miffed, too, that the actions of the three TV cameramen, Wednesday morning, could jeopardize media access to the Royals the next day. "If they are bothered at all we could think of cancelling the photo opportunity," the spokesman said of a Thursday morning arrangement to satisfy a media request for photos. A reporter with one of the TV stations said the three crews just happened to be at the Blackcomb Day Lodge shooting footage for other items when the royal ski entourage came by to board the chairlift. "We were asked by the RCMP to move away, which we did, and kept shooting until Amanda (a royal tour organizer) told us to stop," the reporter said. "We recognize that there is obvious interest in the world of what the Royals are doing," the spokesman acknowledged. The Royals are in Whistler until Saturday (March 28). "Leave them alone. Don't stake out where we're staying. If they see cameramen hanging around, it is quite upsetting," the spokesman said. Whistler, on the other hand, behaved well for the first day of the Royal Visit. "I am surprised at how quiet Whistler is," Bolland said. "Whistler strikes me as a very calm and civilized environment," he said to some laughter among the press who had asked about evidence of Vancouver-esque hysteria occurring here. "We can't ask members of the public to not take pictures, but there's been so much said by the Palace about the nature of the visit that I think everyone in Whistler knows to give them their privacy," the spokesman said. As for Princes Charles, William and Henry (but you can call him "Harry"), "they're all very excited" to be here. Just what they'll do here is a flexible topic, the spokesman said, although there was some hint at heli-skiing. The Royals are good skiers who can handle all black diamond runs. Asked if they snowboard, Bolland said William and Harry can, but he didn't know if they would here. Not being a skier, much less a snowboarder, the palace spokesman certainly didn't know if the Princes were goofy or regular. The Windsors are here on the invitation of billionaire bread maker Galen Weston, who — with Whistler Mayor Hugh O'Reilly — greeted the Royals when they landed in two Canadian Armed Forces Griffin helicopters at the Whistler heliport, Tuesday evening. A third helicopter carried security minders. The Royals fly in two aircraft because Prince Charles and Prince William are one-two in line of succession to the throne.

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