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Kicking Horse

Kicking Horse Ski Resort Guide

Kicking Horse, Canada

Rated: 3/5 (from 6 ratings)

Ski Area Highlights
Recommended ForExpert Skiers, Beginners and Snowfall.
Highest Lift2,450m8,038ft
Resort Height1,310m4,298ft
 Nearest AirportGlacier Park
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Kicking Horse

The owners of Kicking Horse is the remarkable remake of the former Whitetooth resort. Installation of a POMA-built 8-passenger gondola with floor-to-ceiling glass and new quad chairs has given Kicking Horse the second biggest vertical in Canada. A new restaurant, the Eagle's Eye, Canada's highest, has been built at the gondola's top station. Although most lodging and additional facilities are currently in the nearby town of Golden, more and more facilities are being added at the resort base.


The Canadian ski resort of Kicking Horse is at an altitude of 1,310m4,298ft.

Kicking Horse has direct access to 64 marked pistes, served by a total of 3 ski lifts.

With ski lifts as high as 2,450m8,038ft, snow cover is generally reliable.

Snow and Weather

When will it snow in Kicking Horse?

The next notable snow forecast is 4cm2in, expected on 7 October.

See our long-range Snow Forecast for the latest update, or   Join our Snow Mail Here

Snow this week

Snow Forecast by day for Kicking Horse

Ski Area Stats

Kicking Horse Ski Area

Piste and Lift Stats
Black Pistes
Expert Trails
Red Pistes
Intermediate Runs
Blue Pistes
Easy Trails
Cross Country
Total Length
25km16 miles
Ski Lifts
Number of Lifts


Kicking Horse Ski Area Heights

Lift Heights and Resort Altitude
Highest Lift2,450m8,038ft
Resort Altitude (Kicking Horse)1,310m4,298ft
Lowest Piste1,190m3,904ft
Max Vertical1,260m4,134ft

Ratings & Suitability

Ratings for Kicking Horse
Expert Skiers

Kicking Horse Overview

The owners of Kicking Horse have spent huge sums on a seven year project to transform the former provincial Whitetooth resort into a major destination resort with one of he biggest lift-served verticals in North America. Kicking Horse opened in 2000, the first 'new' Alpine resort in the Canada Rockies for 25 years. The project has proved highly successful with investors from all over the world snapping up property as its construction is announced.

The resort is located in the Golden Valley region of British Columbia in an area that embraces two rivers, three mountain ranges and six National Parks. Kicking Horse Mountain Resort offers a part of the Canadian wilderness that was previously only accessible by helicopter (or extremely athletic individuals).

On the mountain the renaissance began with the installation of a Poma-built eight-passenger gondola with floor-to-ceiling glass and the construction of additional quad chairs. These have given Kicking Horse the second biggest vertical in North America. A restaurant, the Eagle's Eye, Canada's highest, has been built at the gondola's top station.

The resort is named after a kicking horse that is now famous in the Canadian West. The history goes that in 1858, the Imperial Government sent one John Palliser out to find a feasible route through the mountains for the railway. A geologist, named Sir James Hector, was among those on the expedition team.

Hector was camped out at the Great Divide when one of the team's packhorses got loose and crossed the river. Sir James jumped into the water and swam after it, eventually rounding the horse up. While trying to tie it to a tree near his own horse, the two animals became enraged and started fighting. During the ruckus, Sir James suffered a vicious kick from his own steed. After recovering, Sir James explored the valley and discovered the pass that became the route through the mountains. IT was named Kicking Horse after the event that led to its discovery.

Build-out of Kicking Horse Mountain Resort will be completed in 2010 including 3,000 bed units - a mix of town homes, single family residences, condominium lodges, hotels and B&Bs - as well as a multitude of shops, bars, restaurants, other commercial amenities, additional terrain and a variety of recreational opportunities.

 Notable Ski Runs

The longest possible descent in Kicking Horse is 10km6 miles long and the most difficult run is the 'Whitewall'.


Kicking Horse has rapidly built a reputation for its light, champagne powder snow, aided by natural advantages including north-east facing slopes allowing excellent snow retention. Mother Nature chips in to provide enough high-level moisture, sun, temperature and super-dry, low-level air to create and normally preserve Kicking Horse's perfect powder.

As new runs open every season the terrain mix keeps changing. However there are now more than 100 trails spread across three giant bowls and the ridges in between the. Resort management is intent on trying to maintain a balance; and has been adding more beginner and intermediate friendly terrain to the formidable amount of runs currently rated advanced or expert. Trails are up to 10km long and there are easier runs to be found.

One of the best ways to get to know the trails is to participate in a scheduled Ski Tours. These can be tailored to suit everyone from beginners wanting a scenic tour of the slopes to advanced skiers looking for new thrills.

Heliskiing is available through Purcell Heli-Skiing which has been offering its guests the ultimate deep powder heli-skiing experience since 1973. The company's aim is to provide less demanding skiing at a more relaxed pace rather than encouraging vertical descent records.

Freeskiing Clinics are staged at the resort in and are geared towards adult (18+) intermediate and advanced skiers looking to take their skiing to the next level. Each Clinic covers the technical aspects of freeskiing as well as improving skiers technique on a variety of terrain so that they will become stronger all-mountain skiers.

For cross-country skiers, the Dawn Mountain Nordic Ski Trails provide 14 kilometres of classic trackset trail. These trails range from gently rolling beginner loops to more challenging routes for the advanced skier. Included in these trails are 1.5 kilometres of skating track. One kilometre into the trail skiers will come upon a cozy 8-10 person-warming hut, complete with a wood-burning stove. If you choose, ski for an hour or two and then return to the fire-warmed hut

There are a variety of pistes to suit all levels of skier ability, from Beginner to Expert.


Although there is so far no organised terrain park, boarders will enjoy the great powder and abundant natural hits at Kicking Horse. The fast spacious gondolas all the way up is good for easy access to it all too.

Location and Map

Where is Kicking Horse?

This ski resort is in Lake, Montana, Canada.


Tap Show Map in Full Screen for Full-Screen, or see J2Ski's Resort map, showing Hotels and Ski Shops.

How to get there

 By Air

The nearest airport to Kicking Horse is Glacier Park, 91 minutes drive away.


Ski Lift Capacity

The three ski lifts are able to uplift 8,000 skiers and snowboarders every hour.

Snow Making

Snow-making is available, on 1km1 miles of ski runs, with 2 snow cannons.

Season Dates

When is Kicking Horse open?

We don't currently have confirmed season dates, but hope to soon.

Usual opening is early December, and usual closing is Early April.

NOTE:- Ski area, lift and piste opening is subject to Current Snow Conditions.

COVID-19 / Coronavirus

We don't yet have specific details of the COVID-19 precautions being taken in Kicking Horse, but they are likely to include most of the following :-

  • Face masks required on lifts, and in shops.
  • Social distancing in public areas.
  • Reduced lift capacity.
  • Extensive disinfection / sanitization.

French Ski Resort COVID-19 Measures describes further measures that may also be applied.

Visit the Kicking Horse Tourist Office for the latest.

Talking about Kicking Horse

Mentions in recent J2Ski News Items and Snow Reports from our users...

Aprés Ski

A major highlight of the lodge is the mini-Scottish pub in the Highland Lodge, specializing in the finest Scottish single malt whiskies as well as cognacs and wines from around the world. A large deck will be located directly by the pub with a stone patio area to the side, providing the perfect nook for outdoor lounging.

Kicking Horse