Hall of Famer

Hugh Smythe

Affiliated Discipline(s):Alpine
Hometown:Whistler, BC
Induction CSHF:2010
Induction Category:Alpine: Ski Area Operator
Hugh Smythe (center), one of Whistler’s founding fathers, celebrated the 50th Anniversary with two long-time locals sporting a lifetime of season passes. PHOTO: Robin O’Neill. Photo Powder.

Hugh Smythe has seen Whistler Blackcomb mountain resort through its first half century of history. On January 15, 1966, when the mountain opened, he was an 18-year-old volunteer ski patroller, driving up on weekends from Vancouver. It was the beginning of a career that has seen Smythe play a central role in the development of what’s arguably North America’s most successful mountain resort.

“This is pretty great, isn’t it?” enthuses Smythe, looking out the expansive windows of Christine’s restaurant on Blackcomb for a mid-day meal break. Though long retired from the helm of Whistler Blackcomb, Smythe still takes to the slopes 70-plus days each season. “I like to experience Whistler as a local now,” he says, although he can’t help but run a critical eye over the workings of the mountain.

Read Hugh Smythe’s story at: Nuvo / Whistler Blackomb: The Canadian Giant

by Claudia Cusano


Please Note: The ski information gathered here is compiled from a number of sources; it may not be inclusive of all accomplishments.

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[L-R] Al Raine, Debbie Smythe, Nancy Greene, Hugh Smythe. Photo Sun Peaks Resort.

Blackcomb’s President and General Manager Hugh Smythe shows Whistler Mayor Pat Carleton the new ski runs from the base of Lift 2 during a tour by the mayor of the Blackcomb facilities. Whistler Question Collection, 1980. Photo Whistler Museum.

Mayor Pat Carleton and Hugh Smythe load the first chair to head up Blackcomb. Whistler Question Collection, 1980.

This is Whistler Blackcomb | The Ski Channel

It all started in 1960 when a group of Vancouver businessmen attempted to hunt for a location suitable for the Winter Olympics. Today, Whistler Blackcomb is one of the most well-known skiing and riding destinations in the world – and for a good reason. Listen to the veterans of the famous winter resort like Jim McConkey and Hugh Smythe describe the early days of steep verticals and deep powder.

Whistler Blackcomb | 50 Years of Going Beyond

Snowsport legends recount Whistler Blackcomb’s greatest contributions to skiing and snowboarding in this 50th anniversary documentary.