Kicking Horse has beat out some great ski resorts to make it into round 3 of Powder Magazine’s Ski Town Throwdown, including Whistler and even our very own family member, Fernie Alpine Resort. Once again WE NEED YOUR VOTE! Help us make it to the next round in the 4th annual Ski Town Throwdown by voting for Kicking Horse on the Powder Magazine website – your vote can make a difference!
Vote now! Voting only goes until Thursday night at 7 pm MST!
Well, Boo declared it back in September, and it looks like his natural instincts were spot on. Boo started his preparation for his winter hibernation early, leading his trainers to believe we were in for an early hit of winter.
The snow started coming down back in September and while it took a little hiatus during October, it’s back with more in the forecast!
This could be your ‘office’! We’re having recruitment sessions in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan and Toronto, Barrie, Waterloo & St. Catharine’s in Ontario from September 13 to 22. Pre apply for an interview on our Employment section.
Check out ‘We’re not funny‘ on our Youtube channel to see how much fun you’ll have working here!
Vast terrain, untouched powder, awe-inspiring views, exciting flights: all to be shared with only a few other skiers. Kicking Horse is the perfect warm-up for even bigger backcountry adventure.
Purcell Heli-Skiing has been taking skiers and snowboarders to the pristine summits and powder heaven of the Purcell mountains for over 40 years. Ever gazed beyond the top of Kicking Horse at the vast winter wilderness beyond? That playground can be yours.
Skiers and riders confident on the black diamond terrain of the Horse are ready for heli-skiing, even if you’re new to deep powder.
Purcell’s beautiful day lodge and heli-pad are a short 20 minute drive from the resort, just opposite the slopes of Kicking Horse. All guests meet there for morning briefing and gear set up in front of panoramic views of the Purcell mountains.
For large groups, heli pick-up can be arranged right from our heli-pad at the base of the resort.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
What kind of terrain do we ski and how steep is it?
Depending on the weather, visibility and snow conditions on any given day, groups will enjoy anything from open bowls and glaciated runs to subalpine glades, trees and lower elevation cutblocks (area opened by logging). A single run can take you through all of the above.
Avalanche stability and participant ability guide the steepness of terrain choice, but most is comparable to the pitch of black diamond runs at Kicking Horse, but with the natural variety that comes with natural, uncontrolled, powder-filled terrain!
Will I be grouped with people of the same ability level?
YES. Participant ability is best measured by demonstration, in the moment, so our program is designed to adapt. Each group is composed of 9 guests and 3 guides, which can be split into two smaller groups to best match skier pace. A faster sub-group can ski ahead with the lead guide, and do another lift ahead, while newer powder skiers can take their time to enjoy without pressure.
How many vertical feet/metres are skied in a day?
Packages include five runs, at an average of 700 vertical metres (2300 feet) per run.
What happens if the weather is bad enough that we cannot fly?
If heavy fog, high winds or extreme conditions force the cancellation of your heli-ski day, you may reschedule to another day within your holiday, or receive a 100% refund.
What are the safety precautions?
Your safety is our number one priority. Guides are highly trained, ACMG certified and have extensive experience in our terrain. Heli-ski pilots are some of the most experienced in the industry, and are very familiar with mountain flying in winter conditions. All guests receive a thorough but concise safety briefing before heli-skiing, to feel informed and confident in their surroundings.
How far in advance should I reserve?
If you’re thinking about late February or early March, you should reserve NOW! That is our busiest time and spaces book out well in advance, so plan early to avoid disappointment. Outside of that time, we still recommend inquiring about your preferred date at least 60 days in advance.
Make it an unforgettable all-adventure package with Kicking Horse lift tickets, ski-in/out accommodation, and a day of heli-skiing. For more information about heli-skiing trips, call 1.877.HELI.SKI or visit the Purcell Heli-Skiing website.
Words & Photos by Purcell Heli Skiing
The Farmer’s Almanac predicts we will have a ‘harsh & cold’ winter. Boo, our resident bear, seems to agree – he’s been eating and getting ready for hibernation earlier than usual, being about a month ahead of schedule on his winter weight gain leads the experts to believe not only will it be a harsh and cold winter, it will also come early. While some people might not be happy about this foreshadowing, we hope it means a winter season filled with lots of powder for skiing and riding!
Jack Burnett, editor of the Farmer’s Almanac appeared on CTV’s Canada AM recently and said we are in for “the T-Rex of winters”. To check out the full predictions visit this CTV article.
Here’s to hoping that prediction holds true, help motivate Mother Nature and start doing your snowdance. Post your snowdance pics & videos using #thishorserules and start the anticipation of winter now!
Fun fact: Boo gained 25 pounds over the past 2 weeks, he’s currently eating about 40,000 calories a day preparing for his winter sleep (that’s the equivalent of 65 Big Macs)!!
If you think ski resorts are only to be visited during the fall and winter months in Canada, you would be very wrong! (Arguably), some of the best fun to had at a ski resort is in fact during the summer months. Fernie Alpine Resort in Fernie, B.C and Kicking Horse Mountain Resort in Golden, BC both offer unique summer experiences for the extreme adventurer, the not so overly adventurous and families!
Take a Hike or go for a Bike
What do ski resorts have that almost no other places have? Chairlifts & gondolas! At ski resorts some of the best hiking is at the top of the mountain; access these scenic trails as well as mountain biking trails through the lifts at Fernie Alpine Resort and Kicking Horse Mountain Resort. Both resorts take special care of their trails in the summer to ensure they are a smooth ride down on your bike or a safe walk along the ridge with the family.
Photos: New lizard Bowl viewing platform at Fernie Alpine Resort with spectacular views of both the bowl and town, access via summer road hiking trail and biking with the family at Kicking Horse Mountain Resort.
Fly through the Trees or Scale the Mountain Face
In Fernie, BC you can fly through the trees in the Aerial Park (think a series of obstacle courses in the tree tops), both kids and adults have a great time attempting the features! Don’t worry if your child doesn’t meet the height or age requirements, there is also a FREE mini kids park located nearby (parental supervision required). For an even more extreme adventure, hit up the new Via Ferrata at Kicking Horse Mountain Resort and brave this ‘iron road’ by climbing along a series of steps on the Terminator mountain face, only after you cross the suspension bridge!
Don’t worry about a thing! Both our air activities include instructions, qualified guides and of course you’re harnessed in.
Photos: Aerial Park at Fernie Alpine Resort and Via Ferrata at Kicking Horse Mountain Resort.
Go for a Bite on a Mountaintop Patio
With the gorgeous British Columbia weather on our side, there are a variety of mountain eateries as well as top of the mountain patios for you to stop by during your adventure or for a lengthy lounge session! Here is a short list of not to miss, fully licensed, patios (there are many more places to eat at both resorts as well as in town);
Lost Boys Café in Fernie (open weekends and located at the top of the Timber Chairlift)
Eagle’s Eye Restaurant in Kicking Horse (located at the Top of the Gondola)
Lizard Creek Lodge patio at Fernie Alpine Resort (located at the base of the Resort)
Peaks at Kicking Horse (located at the base of the Resort)
Photos: Lost Boys Cafe at Fernie Alpine Resort and Eagle’s Eye Restaurant at Kicking Horse Mountain Resort.
Learn about Nature
The mountains are an amazing opportunity to enjoy the outdoors while learning important safety information about the environment surrounding us. New this summer at Kicking Horse Mountain Resort are the ‘Rambler’s Hikes’, with 3 themes to join in on in March including staying safe in bear country, geology on the trench and nothing but photos. While at Fernie Alpine Resort, make your way up the Elk Chair to Nature Bob’s Interpretive Centre to learn about the flora and fossils found in the region. Guided Hikes with Nature Bob are also available where you’ll learn about our trails, trees and berries including which ones are safe to eat and which ones aren’t!
Photos: NEW Ramblers Hike at Kicking Horse Mountain Resort and Nature Bob’s Interpretive Centre at Fernie Alpine Resort.
In Canada we know the summer season is short, but we still have time! So don’t delay, book your summer trip to a resort today!!
Words & Photos by Andrew Findlay
The only thing between me and countless free falling vertical metres of alpine air are some rungs of steel drilled into the rock, and a climbing harness tethered to steel cable. I grasp a rung, scuff a boot onto a ledge as wide as a deck of cards, then pause to study the quartzite in front me, its surface checked and split like a well used map.
I’m clinging to the face of Terminator Peak following what the Italians refer to as a via ferrata, or “iron road.” It’s the latest addition to Kicking Horse’s menu of summer alpine experiences and it’s a winner and today one half of an alpine duathlon of sorts – via ferrata in the morning, bike park in the afternoon. Via ferrata originates from World War I when Italy clashed with the Austro-Hungarian forces in the rugged Dolomite Mountains that divided these two powers. Italian soldiers equipped the mountains with fixed lines and ladders, an ingenuous and much safer way to scale difficult or otherwise un-climbable cliffs. When fighting ended the via ferrata was forgotten, until mountaineers began restoring and repurposing these routes for recreation, launching a new form of mountain adventure. Via ferrata consist of steel rungs drilled and glued into the rock, suspension bridges, and steel cable bridges spanning chasms that can feel like tiptoeing a cross a thread of silk. With a harness, a leash that’s connected to the cable for safety , some sturdy hiking shoes, helmet, and a little coaching from an experienced guide, pretty much anybody from grandmothers to grandkids can experience the thrill of scaling alpine rock.
“We hatched the plan to develop a via ferrata last year, and our crews started working last spring scaling loose rock from the route, then drilling and installing more than 800 metres of steel cable,” says Max Cretin, director of business development and guest experience for Kicking Horse Resort, who has joined me on this new via ferrata.
I pause on a ledge and turn to face the precipice below. The roof of the Eagle’s Eye Restaurant is a splash of red next to the gondola top station. A group of hikers, ant like from these heights, follows the trail descending from Eagle’s Eye to the meadows and alpine pools at the foot of Terminator. I’m accustomed to climbing mountains the conventional way, burdened with an arsenal of shiny metal tools and implements. This is only my second kick at a via ferrata, and for the first 15 minutes I feel sort of naked. However soon I’m enjoying the fluidity and relative unencumbered simplicity of the activity. Grab the metal rung, step upwards until the specially designed aeroligne carabiner slides up the paralleling cable and passes over the steel plate affixing the cable to the rock. At the crest of a 10-metre slab of vertical quartzite I hesitate, to rest my calves.
Kicking Hores offers two via ferrata options. Ascension delivers you to the summit of Terminator Peak. For the less ambitious, or beginners, Discovery provides a shorter option that exits lower down Terminator’s easy ridge. However both routes start with an exhilarating crossing of a 30 m long suspension bridge that spans a steep chute that skiers know as Think Twice in wintertime. After two hours, we top out on Terminator’s summit, with time left to scramble down the ridge and back up to Eagle’s Eye for a 12:30 lunch reservation. I keep it simple, a juicy Alberta beef burger and garden salad, accompanied by a glass of cabernet sauvignon.
After lunch I switch modes for the second half of my alpine duathlon. I strap on some shin and elbow pads and full face helmet, then saddle up a DH bike for the 4000 foot vertical descent to the base village. My guide Ryan Harvey, who works mountain safety in the winter and patrols the bike park in summer, has a route planned, that showcases what Kicking Horse’s park is renowned for – sweet alpine riding. After a quick zip down the loose and rocky cat track, It’s a 10, we roll into smooth and flowy Pipestone, which feeds quickly into the swooping burmed chicanes of Dragon Chaser. Western anemones and Indian Paintbrush blossom trailside. Chute to View drops us into the subalpine forest, followed by Home Run and then Showdown, which descends in big loops skier’s right of the Gondola. By the time I pause to summon courage at the top of the black diamond- rated Rock and Roll, a steep rock slab, my forearms burns from squeezing brake levers. I’m an XC rider at heart so I do whatever it takes to keep the rubber on the ground. Next up is LYM, built by Harvey and his crew; it’s a fantastical corkscrew of elevated ramps that defies logic but works. It’s 2:30 pm when we roll to a stop in front of the Black Diamond cafe. I opt to perk up with an afternoon espresso, before reloading the gondola for another ride. Why not? It’s summer, the days are long and this alpine duathlon isn’t over.
For Immediate Release: July 17th, 2015
KICKING HORSE MOUNTAIN RESORT & GOOSE ISLAND present BREWMASTER’S DINNER
Golden, B.C. – People don’t come to Kicking Horse Mountain Resort to tackle the same old thing, they come for the adventures and mountain experience, and we have plenty. This summer, at Eagle’s Eye Restaurant, enjoy our ‘Brewmaster’s Dinner’ on July 25th where you’ll sip on beverages from Goose Island Beer Company, paired perfectly with the exquisite 4 course meal. Be whisked away on the gondola, to 7,700 and take in the amazing views of 6 mountain ranges and 5 national parks with your meal.
Tickets are available online or by calling 1-866-SKI-KICK.
Eagle’s Eye Restaurant
Discover Canada’s most elevated dining experience and most talked about culinary experience. This crown jewel of resort dining, at Kicking Horse Mountain Resort in Golden, B.C overlooks 5 National Parks at once, enjoy our Chef’s new summer creations this year! More info & reservations.
For more information, please contact:
Golden, BC – Ski Magazine has just announced to the world what Golden locals and everyone at Kicking Horse have been thinking for years. Check out the October 2013 issue of Ski Magazine to see Kicking Horse named in the Top 5: Challenge ski areas in North America! What does challenge mean? Throw in deep champagne powder, mix with 80 Chutes, add in 4 big alpine bowls and top it all off with the Top 4 biggest vertical in North America and that is thigh burning, challenging fun!
Golden, BC – With the first strike of snow, the countdown to another exciting winter has officially begun! Cultivating innovation, Kicking Horse Mountain Resort is thrilled to introduce its New Family Zone; a 100 acre sheltered haven featuring gentle cruising runs off an ingenious system re-routing the downhill traffic from Catamount Top towards the mountain base. Before venturing on steeper slopes, upload Catamount Chairlift with the kids to enjoy a safe mid-mountain environment.
Kicking Horse Mountain Resort has been active this summer with the goal of dazzling our guests; whether they are family cruisers or seeking extreme adventure.
- Enhancing the resort’s grooming program, a new snow cat track into Terminator will allow wide carving turns and high speed downhill shredding.
- The Redemption Ridge traverse has been extended to provide comfort and fluidity to those who are looking for untouched chutes and deep powder – from now on traversing will be smoother than ever!
- Glading is underway on South Redemption, opening unprecedented lines and four new chutes into Crystal Bowl. Kicking Horse Resort now boasts 90 unparalleled inbounds chutes.
- Lastly, the patch of dense trees at the base of Crystal Bowl has been thinned out enlarging the riding zone leading up to Stairway to Heaven. Skier and borders alike will certainly enjoy this extended playground.
Winter is around the corner! Stay tuned for more updates.