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Visitor reviews for Kicking Horse Ski Resort
March 19, 2013
Daveyboy from Canada
I skied KH for the first time on March .10. It was a glorious sunny day.
I was absolutely blown away by the stunning views of the Purcells & Rocky mtns. The double black terrain was unbelievable, truly Warren Miller stuff. And the Purcell powder, simply outstanding. I will return for sure.
Kicking Horse Ratings
Based on 29 votes. Vote
(1) At least one overnight stop, (2) requires a whole day, (3) requires more than half a day – you may have time for a few turns (4) arrive by lunchtime and ski all afternoon, (5) there is a main airport within an hour of Kicking Horse.
Public Transport: 3.3
(1) There are no buses or taxis to Kicking Horse, (3) there are slow or infrequent buses / trains available, (5) getting to the resort is easy with frequent bus / train connections.
(1) An ugly resort in a bland setting, (3) average mountain views and resort, (5) a spectacular setting and a beautiful / historic resort town.
(1) No places to stay in/near Kicking Horse, (3) a few places to stay in the resort, (5) a wide variety of accommodation suitable to suit all budgets.
Cheap Rooms: 3.5
(1) No budget accommodation available, (3) just one or two hostels so book ahead, (5) several cheap hostels and pensions available.
Luxury Hotels: 3.8
(1) No luxury accommodation available, (3) just one or two luxury hotels so book ahead, (5) several up-market hotels in Kicking Horse.
Ski in/Ski out: 4.8
(1) The ski area is located far from any accommodation, (3) a free ski bus takes you to the ski area in a short trip, (5) Ski-in ski-out accommodation is available.
(1) There are no child care facilities at Kicking Horse, (5) the resort has excellent child-care facilities including at least one reasonably priced creche.
(1) Occasionally gets enough snow for skiing, (2) is often closed due to a lack of snow, (3) occasionally suffers from a lack of snow, (4) rarely suffers from a lack of snow, (5) Kicking Horse is snowsure even in the poorest seasons.
(1) Kicking Horse relies entirely on natural snow, (3) there are just a few snow cannons, (5) there are snowmaking facilities on all pistes.
Snow Grooming: 3.5
(1) There are no snow groomers at Kicking Horse, (3) occasionally some pistes are left ungroomed and in a poor state, (5) all the runs at Kicking Horse are groomed daily.
(1) there is nowhere to ski when it is windy or visibility is bad and lifts often shut, (3) there are some trees for poor visibility but main lifts sometimes close, (5) Kicking Horse is mostly in forest where you can ski in flat-light and windy days, lifts rarely close.
Nearby options: 2.9
(1) If snow conditions are poor at Kicking Horse, it will be poor everywhere nearby, (3) there are good alternatives within an hours drive, (5) other locations on the same lift pass provide a rich variety of snowsure ski conditions.
Regional rating: 4.5
(1) Kicking Horse usually has poor snow conditions compared to other resorts in region, (3) has average conditions for the region, (5) usually has the best snow conditions in the region.
Lift Staff: 4.5
(1) The staff at Kicking Horse are rude or unhelpful, (5) lift staff at Kicking Horse are pleasant, cheerful and eager to help.
(1) the resort is always busy and there are usually long lift queues, (3) it is quiet apart from occasional weekends and school holidays, (5) it is uncrowded and lift queues are very rare.
Ski Schools: 4.0
(1) No ski schools available, (2) one or two ski schools but local language only, (3) a few ski schools but book early for multi-lingual instructors, (4) plenty of ski schools and multi-lingual instructors available, (5) excellent ski schools with friendly multi-lingual ski instructors.
Hire and Repairs: 4.8
(1) Nothing can be sourced, not even ski-wax or ptex. (3) there are some ski shops but rentals need to be booked in advance, (5) good quality ski equipment can be purchased or hired and overnight repairs are possible.
Variety of pistes: 4.7
(1) The ski runs are featureless and unvaried, (3) the ski runs are varied but not extensive enough for a week, (5) Kicking Horse has diverse and interesting pistes including forests and high alpine terrain.
(1) Beginners can only watch others ski and snowboard, (3) a few gentle slopes but beginners will get bored in less than a week, (3) Vast areas of gentle terrain.
(1) No intermediate terrain at Kicking Horse, (3) intermediate skiers will get bored after a few days, (5) vast areas of cruising runs.
(1) Nothing for advanced skiers and snowboarders, (3) enough steep terrain for a few days with some good offpiste, (5) Enough steep terrain and offpiste areas to entertain advanced skiers for at least a week.
Snow Park: 1.8
(1) Not even a kicker at Kicking Horse, (3) average sized park quite well looked after, (5) huge park area and expertly crafted pipes, jumps and boardercross trails.
(1) No off-piste worth mentioning, (2) off piste is out-of-bounds, (3) some varied offpiste that stays fresh for one or two days, (5) a vast array of off-piste routes that can stay untracked for several days.
(1) There is nowhere to go for cross-country skiing around Kicking Horse, (3) there are some cross country trails available, (5) the area features many spectacular and well maintained cross-country trails.
(1) No designated luge or toboggan runs, (3) there are toboggan runs that open quite often, (5) Kicking Horse has long and well maintained luge / toboggan facilities suitable for all ages.
Mountain Dining: 4.0
(1) Nowhere to buy food by the pistes, (3) some places to eat up on the mountain but they are often busy and expensive, (5) there is a variety of excellent mountain eateries right next to the slopes to suit all budgets.
(1) Bring your own food, there isn't even a shop. (5) A wide variety of places to eat and drink in the resort, from fast food to fancy restaurants.
(1) Nothing to do, not even a bar, (3) there are a few bars in the resort but nothing special, (5) clubs and bars stay open until very late and have a friendly atmosphere.
Other Sports: 2.1
(1) No sports facilities at all apart from ski lifts, (3) resort has just a small public swimming pool, (5) resort has all kinds of sports facilities, including a full-size swimming pool.
(1) Besides the snow and walking there is nothing to do here, (3) the non-skier will find things to do for few days but may become bored after a week, (5) the resort area is a fascinating place to visit, regardless of winter sports.
Winter Walks: 3.2
(1) Very limited walking and no snowshoe trails, (3) a couple of designated scenic walking/snowshoe trails, (5) extensive and diverse winter walking trails for all abilities.
Ski Pass Value: 3.6
(1) A 1 week ski pass is overpriced compared to the number of lifts available, (3) the ski pass is averagely priced and covers a reasonable number of lifts, (5) ski passes are excellent value for money and cover a lot of lifts spanning a big area.
Value (National): 4.0
(1) Overall, Kicking Horse is one of the most expensive ski resorts in the country and not worth the money, (3) overall represents average value for money, (5) overall offers the best value resort in the country.
Value (Global): 4.3
(1) Overall, Kicking Horse is one of the most expensive ski resorts in the world, (3) overall it offers pretty average value for money compared to resorts from other countries, (5) internationally the resort offers excellent value for money.
Based on 29 votes. Vote
January 22, 2013
BCDon from Canada
Being from Calgary I'm close enough (3 hours door to slope) to do KH (Kicking Horse) as a day trip but I generally make it a 2 day trip. Accomodations can be had for under $60 per person with double accomodations and if you want to pay under $50 you can do that as well.
Having skied a lot at Fernie, Nakiska and "the Lake", I had to get new skis to handle the more difficult terrain at KH. In other words, as an advanced skier, it was easier to get into more advanced terrain at KH than the other resorts and there is more of it. The powder skis I used at Louise needed to be upgraded to handle the steeps and trees at KH. Not that Louise is a bad hill and I have to admit, the new skis work great at Louise as well but my skiing and equipment needed upgrading for KH.
The groomers at KH are, well, groomers. If you like them, similar to groomers at other areas. Difficulty levels are similar to Louise or Fernie (that'd be "more" difficult than Nakiska).
Taking the Grand Kids (who can ski blacks at Nakiska) to KH is fun, there is some nice intermediate terrain for them. The blacks and double blacks are beyond them at this point (although in a couple of years it'll be reversed, I'm sure).
Making a weekend of KH is fun, driving up after work on Friday, staying overnight in Golden, up and at the hill for 9:00 AM on Saturday, then again staying overnight and skiing the next day till 4:00, give or take and driving back to Calgary is certainly a full weekend but a ton of fun.
Something I have noticed, at all resorts in the Canadian Rockies (and KH perhaps more so), is that Saturday is the busy day. 2 weeks ago there was a 20 minute wait on the gondola on Saturday yet only a 2 (yes, 2 minutes at most) wait on Sunday. So, wait times are dependent upon when you ski.
It will be nice if they decide to open up more terrain (by putting in some kind of lift, perhaps to Rudy's peak).
January 16, 2013
Nash from Canada
Kicking Horse offers advanced ski runs for the avid skier and a new beginner ski area that rivals most big mountain resorts for the ski school and what it offers to the family with young children. This lower mountain and chair lift have great groomed and ungroomed blue runs that should suit all skiing levels. The gondola quickly takes you to the top of a great mountain, restaurant and some of the best views and ski areas in North America. The resort offers a very intimate experience and a great place for kids to learn the true love of skiing. After skiing in most major North American ski resorts I can think of no better place to take my family.
December 28, 2012
Mark from United Kingdom
Kicking Horse is a great hill. Definitely for the more advanced skier; the bowls, glades and chutes are awesome. The snow stays soft even days after a dump and you can still find lines in the trees untracked. The lift system is not the best, only 2 of use and the chair is slow and pretty short. The gondola is good and not bad for lines but skiing the bottom half of the mountain is a bit tedious at times. T1 & T2 are a hike but the terrain is awesome. The resort is a bit dead at night with only a couple of places to get a beer after dark.
Great skiers hill, tough but fun!
October 31, 2012
KH Junkie from Canada
KH (Kicking Horse) is a fantastic mountain, and has the potential to stay that way with considerable lift expansion. Now the RCR owns the resort the locals pass disappears, there is no lift expansion (this year anyways) and the lift lines will be way longer than last year. On a powder day it was not uncommon to have lifts lines in the morning taking longer than 30mins and 20min+ for the rest of the day. That was last year! 2012-2013 will likely see 40% (guess) more skiers which means longer lift lines. To pay $90 for a lift ticket and wait half you day in the lift line, no matter the terrain, it's just not worth it. RCR needs to put in two lifts to get the traffic spread out, and then KH will be the best mountain out there.
March 27, 2012
Dave from Canada
I have done a few ski trips to Kicking these past two years and I've fallen in love with the place. There is just so much amazing terrain here. For those used to Louise, think for the chutes off the summit platter, but steeper, more snow, gnarlier drops, and way, way more of them.
This is an expert hill, no question. About half of the runs on the mountain are double black. There are two peaks, T1 and T2, that you can hike to, which gives you access to awesome chutes and glades, making it well worth the effort.
Kicking on a powder day is beyond words. Steep and deep. Just traverse down one of the ridgelines and drop in for some incredible tail surfing. Then cruise the black runs down the bottom half of the mountain.
From what I hear the last two years have been exceptional for snow, so I guess I've started exploring this mountain at just the right time. Regardless, Kicking has some of the best terrain around, and when it gets snow, it's unreal.
February 08, 2012
Rob from Calgary from Canada
Unparalleled, epic, amazing. Use any of these words to describe KHR.
If you really want to challenge your limits and your legs KHR is your best bet. You could try a different chute every hour for 10 days straight and still not have skied or ridden them all. Not for the faint of heart.
January 26, 2012
Glyn from Canada
There's not a lot to say that hasn't already been said, but KHMR has by far the best, steepest & most accessible advanced terrain to be found in western Canada. Living in Calgary it's a long trek out there, but Lake Louise & Sunshine simply can't compete.
There is very little traversing, so I'm not exactly sure what some of the other comments are talking about. From the gondola simply ride along CPR ridge and I'm sure you'll find something tricky enough to be a challenge. From the Crystal Bowl heading up Stairway and over into Feuz bowl there's always fresh powder and some amazingly technical terrain. Heading the other direction there's bowl over & super bowl to choose from, with Terminator ridge offering expert terrain beyond any hill I can think of.
I think most of the negative comments are due to the difficulty of the terrain, the interesting parts are not easy, way beyond the capabilities of a beginner/intermediate rider who would end up riding cat tracks all day. If you're a good rider though, and up for a challenge, KHMR is the best around.
January 26, 2012
frank from Canada
Been skiing here for 6 seasons. Today was one of the good days. No food, no water all day, sick skiing. This hill is my muse. Was a monster park skier when I moved out here. Spent my winters hitting booters and stuff. Came here expecting to be the shitz. First glance, no high fashion riders here, no solid riders here??? A whole lot of duct tape I thought. First I had 2 swallow my pride, then went on a 2 season learning streak. I had skills and ballz back then. But could not ride anything close to what the locals were doing. Then she stopped intimidating me and realized what she had done to me. She turned me into a monster. Steeps, cliffs fastest skiing have ever done was here. Holly f*** try straightlining Showoff when groomed if you think you know what fast is. This hill has no limits, so you need to set your own here. She has dislocated almost all of my limbs, but I keep coming back for more.
I've spent really dry years here and really snowy ones as well. But a big dump here is unreal. Ever heard the word Huckfest. Even when she's dry for a month, this is where you become a solid rider. Traverses, hard pack steep chutes, bumpy high speed runs. Leg burners.
If skiing is important to you and are not afraid to make the commitments needed to push your skiing to levels u did not know existed. If you are not gonna complain about dry days and just build your legs for the pow days. And if you are not gonna complain about skiing 1200m every time you wanna go back up. Well, this is your home.
If you're looking for a big family resort, Banff and Louise are waiting. If u want the soft stuff every day go to Revy. If you wanna push it hard stop by Kicking Horse.
And seriously, for ppl complaining about going all the way down to ski the top, not those whining about the wait lines. U probably should not be skiing here in the first place.
If you're gonna come push it hard here, one word: Recon, get to know the slopes before you go full speed. Once u know go all out but check it out first. The speeds here can really hurt you. Check ridges from below before u hit cliffs, some are ok but some can be death traps.
January 25, 2012
john from Canada
Not sure where another reviewer usually skis or boards. Canada Olympic Park in Calgary?
The longest the lineup was, at Christmas, with record crowds was 20 minutes. I have been here for 8 years and talk to good skiers and boarders from around the world who have skied or boarded some of the best terrain in the world...not in Calgary or Edmonton, and they can't believe the terrain, the snow. They keep coming back year after after year because of the fabulous resort here. Enough said.
January 21, 2012
Snow flakes must die... from Canada
Although the mountain has a ton of vertical, only the top third to half of the mountain has the goods. The lower mountain really doesn't have much to offer for your average powder glutton and really becomes nothing more then a commute as in order to access the upper terrain you need to do full runs to valley bottom. This can be a problem, especially if the gondola line up is a zoo, which it will be during weekend dumps or during holidays.
The consistency of snow is well, not that consistent. Kicking Horse sits on the dry side of the Purcells, and much of the Pacific moisture is sucked out of systems as it crosses this range and dry spells can be common. There can, however, be the odd sneaky snowfall to watch out for... On the plus side, when it does snow it tends to be blower. Also, if a system pugs out the upper portion of the mountain is usually high enough to avoid rain. The slack country is awesome, but it's easy to get in over your head if you're not familiar with the area and the stability of the snow pack tends to resemble it's temperamental cousins found to the east in the Rockies.
I would describe KHR as cross between the cold rocky resorts of Banff and that of the snowier interior. Definitely worth monitoring, you could score a gooder but you're also just as likely to take several core shots and suffer from frost bite if your timing is poor or not flexible. I'd give it 6.5 to 7 out of 10 on the filth-o-meter.
December 04, 2011
Dick Barker from United Kingdom
I have been skiing Kicking Horse every season since 2006 and can honestly say that I have never been disappointed...the terrain is fantastic, the people friendly and Canada always great to visit.
The resort may be small but the chutes and drop-ins within the in-bounds terrain give you 1000 different ways to get down the hill...and the back-country skiing will blow you away. Although a resort with a reputation for the extreme, there is terrain to suit everybody. A lot of the in-bounds skiing looks a lot harder than it is, with things like Terminator and Whitewall being well within the reach of a good intermediate skier, so long as they have a bit of adventure in their belly.
The lift queues can be a bit long on powder days and holidays but long there is relatively short compared to most north American resorts and nothing when compared to Europe. Tip: use the singles line up and you will be on the lift in 20 mins max even on the busiest days.
The slopes are generally empty and most of the time you will have the mountain to yourself...literally.
Kicking Horse and the town of Golden arn't about being a huge party town, but they are about some of the best skiing you can get.
May 04, 2011
John from Canada
KH (Kicking Horse) is awesome, however, if you want real endless powder buy a snowmobile. The sledskiing in Golden is unreal. No lift lines and endless waist deep snow for as long as you can take it in the back country.
April 12, 2011
Phil from Canada
This is my first true season out west and decided to settle in Golden this winter for KH's "gnarly" terrain... Well it didn't disappoint. Thankfully it's been a lucky season for snowfall as well.
It takes a little while to get accustomed to the entire mountain but once you do... My god is it awesome! Even when it hasn't snowed in a while. I'd say 80% of the folks coming in and out of there, stick with the groomers and easy access chutes.
Best runs, treed chutes into bowl over, chutes off of CPR ridge dropping into Crystal Bowl then taking the Stairway to Whitewall, or Fewz if it's closed. T1 both sides, but the north side dropping into bowl over is less tracked and protected facing north. Lets not forget T2!
Lets not forget the slack-country possibilities, with proper gear and knowledge of course! "T3" (f**king epic), T4, Rudy's Bowl (past Fewz) and more. The nice thing about the mountain is that, most of the slack-country will lead you back, or close to the mountains base ( Unlike Revy's conical shape that lead's you astray in the woods for a night).
Most of this terrain (oh yeah, and a lot of cliffs) ain't for the faint of heart but if you're willing to throw down, it will carve you into a solid skier/rider and prepare you for real back-country terrain. Like I said, I've been here all season so most of this stuff didn't come overnight for me.
Bad parts? some white out days and dry cold snaps. Overall, this mountain is worth more than one season of exploration.
April 03, 2011
C. Johnson from Canada
I skied KHR (Kicking Horse Resort) on April 2/11. The conditions were unreal and the lift lines were minimal. This is one incredible mountain, and when they get snow like this year, I don't think you can beat it. It wouldn't be the first place I would take beginner and intermediate skiers/boarders, but it is heaven for advanced skiers/boarders.
January 13, 2011
720D from Afghanistan
KHO (Kicking Horse) is unreal on a snow day. But if the snow is there, the line ups will be too. I was there last saturday: 10 mins to get a ticket, 20+ to get on gondola.
January 13, 2011
Jben from Canada
Great terrain and good vibe at this hill (Kicking Horse) but needs a couple more high speed lifts to spread the weekend crowds. I pray this will happen before I am too old to tear it up!
January 12, 2011
Jason from Canada
Bar none KHR (Kicking Horse) is awesome. I have been skiing/boarding there for 5 years and have become a bit of snow snob due to the fantastic conditions there. What I consider a bad day at KHR is a great day at Louise! The bowls and steeps rock, and then you can open it up on the bottom end for some high speed. Even at the end of the day, you can can still find some great spots even from the Catamount chair. KHR is a mountain that is harder than most. Their blues are blacks at most other resorts. But Catamount is gentle on the beginners.
Have fun and enjoy it!
January 11, 2011
Jeremy from Canada
Having a slow day at work, I have been giving my two cents on some the resorts in the area.
As you can read from the previous posters, KHMR (Kicking Horse), undeniably has the most, and best, advanced/expert terrain out of the resorts in the Canadian Rockies. While all have good expert terrain, the sheer volume of lift serviced/tranversable/hikeable expert runs at KHMR is without peer.
However, I would like to summarize my more balanced thoughts:
- expert terrain
- quick gondola covers the vertical
- dining... I find it the best quality for its price in the area
- has some of the best powder snow (Revelstoke and Fernie are the main nearby competitors in this category)
- I personally like the bottom half... it is more interesting than most bottom halves
- staff are highly variable in their knowledge, demeanor, and helpfulness. Some are obviously just punching the time clock until they can get off and find their own lines - they didn't know even the basics of customer service.
- gondola line can be lengthy.. the alternative, parallel lift line is likely many years away
- on hill accommodation is overpriced, and although new, most is cheaply built/furnished
- when I go with a group of mixed abilities, the intermediates find it difficult to transition from the upper to lower mountain (e.g. narrow, icy/rocky runs/cat tracks).
- limited avalanche control... there is greater onus on the customer to be avalanche aware/trained even for inbound runs.
- very mediocre terrain park
- the nearby town, Golden, competes with Revelstoke, as the lamest and most depressing (IMHO Banff, Fernie, and even Invermere/Radium are much better).
October 22, 2010
Scott from United States
I visited KH (Kicking Horse) for two days of skiing in February of 2009. We had a group of 4 experts, from the east coast, used to tough conditions of the east coast. But also plenty of out west experience, mostly US Rockies (Jackson Hole to Taos and lots in between), but also Tahoe and Whistler BC. We have been fortunate to have gotten around a bit :-). I spent full seasons at both Taos and Jackson Hole and I would describe Kicking Horse as what Jackson was like in the early days that I heard so much about from the "Old Timers", when it was basically just the tram at JH, only way up to the top was Tram...ski to the bottom to get back up to the top. No Thunder chair, no Alta Chair, (the Gondola wasn't there yet when I was living there). Sure sounded great to me at the time! So we end up traveling to KH, (yep, you gotta drive a little from Calgary...) and you are presented with a huge alpine area to explore. Locals do their best to steer you, but regardless of how good a skier you are, looking over a drop-in for the first time, you take your time and you do your best to judge it. Truck loads of those experiences at KH. Conditions: we did not get any new snow when we were at KH, last storm was a week out (8 - 10 inches)...we were a little concerned that we would be getting skunked, and certainly main lines were skied out, but plenty of snow to be found, and actually I read a lot of reviews dissing the lower mountain, but to crafty old timers like us...(nice to be returning the compliment to my mentors from the Hole and Taos :-) that just forced us to explore a part of the mountain we expected to be just pointing to the bottom on...found lots of fun stuff to keep us occupied, and a lot of fresh, dry snow still waiting for turns...which basically illustrates how few people are at this mountain. We didn't fly to BC to just spend two days at KH, we also hit Fernie and Whitefish, both of which by that time had started receiving some new snow (good times at both), and even so, I prefer traveling back to KH, knowing at some point I will hit it with a storm and it will be unbelievable, new chairs or not...
March 19, 2010
grassy from Canada
I've been a fan of KHMR (Kicking Horse) since it's opening...the terrain is second to none in the west...big upper mountain bowls w/ steep chutes and all the air u can muster...the slack country is awesome too!
The problem: Dutch owners whose only concern is real estate development..the on-hill development is deplorable...a fixed speed chair to nowhere? This is 2010 not 1995...short sighted management and poor on-hill development has ruined this resort! Crowds on any snow weekend are ridiculous..30 min - 1hour lineups and local morons cutting lineups without regard to others..
Too Bad - the potential is there but the brains aren't!
March 18, 2010
Jay from Canada
I don't understand why people are bashing the lower half of Kicking Horse. If you really care about that you are a really terrible skier and should stick to beginner hills (cop). Either way I was there last weekend and I know the conditions at the very bottom were way better than Sunshine or Louise have seen anywhere on their mountains all year. Not to mention how unreal the alpine terrain is...I'd say just as good as Whistler and better than Revelstoke. Yeah, they need more lifts but that's just going to make it easier for duds from Calgary to traverse and ruin the good lines that you need to work for right now.
March 12, 2010
MisterSki from Canada
Kicking Horse is formerly a heli-ski site and is a serious hill looking for serious skiers.
If you're after a resort experience with fine wine, diamond, art, and purse shopping, there are better places. Banff, Whistler, Vail, Jackson Hole, all have that area of the market covered.
However, if your after a real mountain experience that will challenge your abilities, then Kicking Horse is a gem.
I've rarely had a bad snow day, and their grooming team is top notch.
Awesome gondola: 3700+ vertical feet in 13 minutes!!
March 11, 2010
John from Canada
Not sure when another reviewer was at Kicking Horse or how many times. I have lived here for 7 years and have seen it rain maybe 2 times of any significance to cause a problem on the lower part of the mountain. No question the resort needs some more lifts. Not sure what he means by a lack of consistent snow? Don't know of any resort that has consistent snow especially ones that have 4 thousand vertical.
March 09, 2010
Taco from Canada
I live in Calgary, ride regularly, and have visited most of the hills in Alberta and BC. I think of Kicking Horse as two hills. The top part of Kicking Horse is a wild place, that feels like a real mountain. Generally it gets decent snow that doesn't get rained on or melted, and the wind can help keep things fresh. Snowfall can be less consistent than some of the other hills in the area, although well ahead of Lake Louise, Panorama and Kimberly.
The bottom half of the hill degenerates into big fields of moguls, or fast cruisers, often with little snow cover due to a tendency towards rain at lower elevations. While it is possible to find some good snow on the bottom half, if you know the hill, you always do it with one eye open for hazards.
The Achilles heal of Kicking Horse is that you can't really ski the top without going down to the bottom. There is one chair on the upper half that you can do laps on, but it serves only a limited amount of terrain. So you end up riding good snow for a few hundred vertical meters, and then having to "commute" a vertical kilometer back down to the gondola.
The hill is best suited to expert skiers and riders. It is worth checking out, if only for the views, and on a powder day, it is hard to beat. But it would be much improved if there were a few more lifts to allow you to stay on the upper mountain. And with all the rain we are getting these days, I shudder to think what the hill will look like with a few more years of warming.
January 25, 2010
Jim from Fort Sask.,Alberta from Canada
I live 600kms from KHR (Kicking Horse) and have skied it approx 20 days in the last 6 years. When I read a neg review below I suspect they have spent one or two days and for an "expert" skier they could have used a map or a local to help with finding the good stuff at the lower levels. I have become a much improved skier since skiing this mountain. It has been forgotten that the "lame-o" lift at the top gets you into Feux bowl (even in the spring this area's snow is plush and wow, White Wall has not been mentioned). 2008-2009 was not a great snow season for the Rockies but this year all 5 days at KHR (Kicking Horse) have been 7-9.5. I find their snow reporting to be honest (not like the spew that Lake Louise has on their website...135cm base at mid??...shame on Charlie L.). I used to call Marmot my main squeeze but I find it is very....er...intermediate in comparison. Best 1-2 punch I have seen yet is KHR then drive (through Rogers Pass 145kms) to Revelstoke resort. If these two do not impress the hard cores then chances are you need to reevaluate the hard in yer core. Do not let yer kids roam alone here. If it is 2 x black you're looking for this is where it is. Let us hope that they can get a couple of new lifts in place soon.
January 16, 2010
Jamie from Canada
Kicking Horse Ski Resort is a truly awesome mountain. It probably has some on the most challenging terrain in Canada. Lots of chutes, open bowls and champagne powder can be found there. It may lack somewhat in apres-ski but it keeps the crowds away. If you a looking for a place to challenge you Kicking Horse is it.
January 06, 2010
bobby jenks from Canada
Kicking Horse is a great resort and is better than a lot of other areas. However, people continue to knock it. You can go fast and hit perfect roller jumps after shredding sick lines up top... Boo to people who disrespect a great resort.. I dare anyone to name one resort better than Kicking Horse.
December 29, 2009
Ken from Canada
I don't think you can find a more challenging ski resort in the Canadian Rockies or in North America than Kicking Horse. Double-heade, Terminator, Race Place, and a few others basically take you to the bottom of the resort on black diamond runs. Sure, maybe the final few seconds are on a groomed run, but at the point you have already skied 4000 ft vertical of black diamond. If you are looking for a bunch of intermediate or beginner runs, you don't go to Kicking Horse. If you are looking to improve your skiing you stay at Kicking Horse. Any other resort is easy after skiing Kicking Horse. Sure, there are some traverses to get to the chutes. But I would think if you ask any real skier/snowboarder they will say the traverses are worth it. If you know how to use edges, it is no big deal. If all you are doing is sliding and taking all the snow with you, you may want to take some lessons first and come back. You can't please everyone.
December 20, 2009
Kevin Lee from Canada
Kicking Horse is a great area to stop at for one day if you're passing through anyway. Their claim to fame it the long (4000 vertical ft) gondola. The problem is every run you have to descend all the way back to the village, which means warping through the blue and green runs at the bottom. This is a problem and something I don't agree with. Experts shouldn't have to ski through a green run to get to the lift. It's dangerous for the little ones and no fun for the expert. Additionally another problem we have at Kicking Horse, if there is a freezing line the conditions could change dramatically for the worse half way down your run, happens all the time. They have one lame-o lift at the top that runs beside a ridge so skiing it means the entire run will be off the fall line. Most of the black and double blacks are very short pitches of only a few dozen turns till you hit the bottom of a bowl then its a log road out to get to the next area that has some good turns.
Kicking horse is definitely a must do resort if you're in the area anyway, but you'll probably want to try something else after you've skied it one day.