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Kicking Horse Skiing & Snowboarding Resort Guide

Kicking Horse has beginner and intermediate terrain, and it’s actually pretty good, however, the ski and snowboard resort outside of the town of Golden is known for it’s huge expanse of steep and gnarly alpine terrain. The mountain has a huge 4,133’ of vertical drop and an abundance of unique chutes and spines. Some of these lines are so steep and technical and gnarly that visiting skiers and snowboard might think they’ve wandered out of bounds. Down the mountain, there is lodging available in the village, or down in Golden. Golden is a nice little logging town turned mountain town, with the charm to match. All of this is located about a three hour drive from Calgary, too.

Mountain Overview

Kicking Horse Ski Area

There are only four chairlifts to access the 2,800+ acres of skiable terrain at Kicking Horse. The layout of the mountain is split between the lower mountain, where the resorts beginner and intermediate terrain is located, and the upper mountain. Beginner skiers and snowboarders are mostly limited to the learning area near the base, however, the “It’s a Ten” run does make it’s way all the way back to the base from the 7,700’ peak of the mountain.

Intermediate skiers and snowboarders are also limited somewhat to the lower Pioneer and Catamount lifts.Crystal Bowl off of the Stairway to Heaven chairlift offers a good venue for intermediates to dip their toes in the pool off off piste terrain at Kicking Horse. It’s also some of the only intermediate terrain on the upper mountain.

The mountain opens up to advanced and expert skiers and snowboarders. The Golden Eagle Gondola brings skiers and snowboarders to the top of the ridge that holds the high alpine terrain that Kicking Horse is known for. From the top, the choice is simple, left or right, south or north. Both ways down the ridge there are an abundance of choices. After a snowstorm runs will progressively open farther and farther out from the Golden Eagle in either direction as ski patrol deems them safe. The farther out from the lift, the more hiking required, but this also keeps these lines fresh for longer after a snowfall. These couloirs, chutes and bowls are world class.

Mountain Stats & Kicking Horse Trail Map

Kicking Horse Trail Map
 Total Skiable Acres 2,800+ Beginner Terrain 20%
 Base Elevation3,900' Intermeidate Terrain20%
 Summit Elevation 8,033 Advanced Terrain 45%
 Vertical Drop4,133'Expert Terrain15%
Total Lifts4Average Annual Snowfall295"

Travel Information & Directions

Kicking Horse Mountain Resort sits in the Purcell Mountains, a sub-range of the Canadian Rockies. Driving, Kicking Horse is three hours from Calgary, making it one of the more accessible British Columbia ski and snowboard areas. From Calgary, the drive goes through the heart of stunning Banff National Park. The resort also offers a shuttle from the Calgary airport for skiers and snowboarders that don’t want to drive.
Travel Resources:

Getting to Kicking Horse

Lodging Information

There is a small base area village at Kicking Horse with ski-in-ski-out lodging available. There are hotel and condo options. For more budget oriented skiers and snowboarders there are more lodging options down the hill in Golden. Once again, the types of accommodations vary with preference and price.
Kicking Horse Lodging Overview
Lodging in Golden

Our Favorite Snowboards for Kicking Horse

Local Food Picks

There are some on mountain restaurants and eateries for skiers and snowboarder to grab grub during the day. The Eagle’s Eye Restaurant at the top of the gondola is the centerpiece. Golden is a surprisingly lively town for it’s size. If you’ve worked up an appetite riding the steeps, Wolf’s Den in Golden is a good spot to head, the burgers are huge and tasty. After dinner, the Golden Taps Pub is a hot spot. There is live music aplenty throughout the week, town isn’t huge, so its usually not hard to find either. The Kicking Horse locals are friendly and the welcoming, go out and experience it for yourself.
On-mountain Dining
The Wolf's Den
Golden Taps


Our Favorite Skis For Kicking Horse

Where to Find Lift tickets to Kicking Horse?

Kicking Horse ski and snowboard lift tickets are averagely priced compared to the other large Interior British Columbia ski and snowboard resorts like Fernie and /travel-guides/ski-snowboard/british-columbia/revelstoke">Revelstoke. Children, youth, and seniors all receive discount Kicking Horse lift tickets. Purchasing lift tickets online, at least seven days in advance can save up to %20 off of the window price.
Kicking Horse Lift Tickets

Kicking Horse Conditions & Weather Information

Kicking Horse’s 295” may not be the biggest average annual snowfall in British Columbia, but it is a respectable 24 feet of snow per winter. The quality of snow is very high, however, with light powder being the dominant form of snowfall. This couple nicely with rain being a rarity, to make the snowfall at Kicking Horse very consistent.
Kicking Horse Weather Resources

Kicking Horse Ski Report
Local Avalanche Forecast

For some of the best and gnarliest inbounds ski and snowboard terrain in North America, and plenty of consistent snowfall, Kicking Horse is a great destination. The fun and friendly town of Golden provides a super backdrop and base camp for skiers and snowboarders stopping by on their way down the Powder Highway, or staying for a longer trip.

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