Fitzsimmons Creek is a short (10 km) but fast-flowing torrent originating from the Fitzsimmons Glacier in the Fitzsimmons Range of the Coast Mountains. The glacier-fed creek runs along the Fitzsimmons Fault zone that cuts between Blackcomb Mountain and Whistler Mountain, then through Whistler Village and eventually into Green Lake.
This watercourse was long considered a debris-flow geohazard for the village; it has been tamed for natural disasters through debris-barrier infrastructure paired with an IPP micro-hydro installation that now powers part of the Whistler Blackcomb resort. Four-hundred metres above the creek, the two peaks are connected by a world-record 4.3-kilometre gondola, making the creek a significant cultural site as well.
Protection and guardianship are at the heart of the Geopark philosophy. We ask that you treat the land with the same reverence as its original inhabitants, and not remove anything from a site but what you’ve brought to help preserve it for future generations.
Fitzsimmons Creek is visible many places in town but can be safely viewed during spring freshet from the covered bridge that spans it from Ross Rebagliati Park/Peace Park to Whistler’s Upper Village.
50° 6.9442' N 122° 57.002' W
50° 6' 56.6496" N 122° 57' 0.1224" W
Geosites of the Aspiring Geopark lie wholly within the unceded traditional territories of the Líl̓wat Nation and the Sk̲wx̲wú7mesh Nation. The nations have lived in—and shared parts of—these territories since time immemorial, with many landscape features and geological events woven into their cultural and oral histories. We are grateful for, and committed to, the opportunity to learn and share these perspectives of the land alongside its original stewards.
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The Fire & Ice Aspiring Geopark comprises four main geological pillars referenced in all interpretive material: (M)ountain Building, (G)laciation, (V)olcanism and (C)ollapse.
Mountain building can involve several processes that contribute to the formation of mountains, such as the collision of tectonic plates that result in folding, faulting, metamorphism and the creation of subduction zones associated with volcanic activity and igneous intrusion.
Glaciation refers to landform phenomena associated with the formation, movement and recession of glaciers and ice sheets. In temperate latitudes such as British Columbia, montane glaciation at higher altitudes is the norm while continental glaciation occurred during Ice Ages like the recent Pleistocene.
Volcanism is the eruption of subterranean molten rock (magma) and gasses onto the surface of the planet and includes the production of volcanic landforms and the effects of eruptions and flowing lava on pre-existing surface formations.
Collapse is a term that refers broadly to both slow processes of destabilization and erosion by wind, water and ice, as well as rapid processes like rockfall and landslides.
Whether acting as primary or secondary forces, one or more of these processes figure in the creation of each geosite.