Kicking Horse Mountain Resort
18 Mar, 2015
One of the best rewards of traveling to new places is the feeling you get when you experience them for the first time. Arriving in Golden wasn’t much but arriving at Kicking Horse Mountain Resort was incredible. It was a good thing I was on the gondola alone because I couldn’t help but smile and laugh at what I was seeing surround me. This wasn’t just a ski resort, this was a ski resort in the Canadian Rockies. It made you feel so in awe, so humble and so tiny compared to the massive mountains that surrounded you when you stepped off the gondola. I couldn’t believe it took me 31 years to snowboard here. It certainly won’t be another 31 before I return…
I followed the lines keeping to mostly blue and black runs, did corduroy laps in the morning and rode the trees when the snow softened up in the afternoon. I rode some steep stuff but didn’t do the hike-to terrain since I was riding alone and didn’t know the mountain conditions as well. Quite frankly the mountain intimidated me in a good way and I knew that I’d want to return to ride the really good stuff (especially on a powder trip).
I’ve been testing the 2015/2016 Roxy Radiance and loving this board. It’s a 154cm but it can handle the mountain. We played in the glades along Redemption Ridge when the snow softened in the afternoon.
One of the best parts about Kicking Horse is the accessibility and ease. It was really easy to get to, easy to park, easy walk to the gondola, and easy mountain to get around. When traveling alone, the unknowns kinda freak you out cause you don’t know what to expect but with Kicking Horse everything was super clear. It was relatively quiet on the mountain, no lines and everyone just did their own thing.
Around the mountain, I heard talk from the locals about not having the best snow year but man, if this is a bad year then I really wanna return during a good snow year. The snow conditions on the upper mountain were a blast to ride while the lower mountain did show signs of the lack of snow but it was still very much rideable from top to bottom.
At the end of the day I was able to see the Ski Patrollers training the avalanche dogs at the top of the mountain. Later, as I rode up the Stairway to Heaven lift, I watched the same dog following his ski patrol trainer and charging down Think Twice. Truly incredible animals, so smart and important to avalanche training.
Unfortunately all good things must come to an end. I called it a day so I could hit the highway and continue my road trip going to Banff. There’s no doubt I’ll be returning to Kicking Horse for redemption with some shred buddies.