Kicking Horse

User rating 9 out of 10

Freerider paradise

Thu 15 July 2004 by David

Ok, so this isn’t a huge resort, there are hardly any lifts and there’s no life in the surrounding town. The upside is that the lack of facilities in the town and its distance from airports keep the crowds away. Better still, as it’s so under-developed, the owners haven’t had chance to piste the hell out of the slopes.

What you’re left with is a free-rider paradise. Kicking Horse (formerly Whitetooth) is basically a row of four or five powder bowls leading down into the tree line. Plenty of scope to get some steep, deep, powder action and take on some natural hits, before charging into a tree run. Don’t bother collecting a piste map, as you can pick out a route you fancy whilst on the Golden Eagle Express gondola on the way to the top - and it’s well worth a run outside the rope.

Unfortunately, the lower areas in the resort consist mostly of unchallenging pistes, but if you pick the right route through the trees, it’s possible to take one of the chairs back up from the midpoint and stay in the champagne powder. If you decide to go right down to the bottom, at least you’ll have enjoyed a vertical drop of over 1,200m, and will be able to take the gondola all the way back to the summit in just 12 minutes.

A great place if you’re up for some balls-out free riding, but not one for the hard boot brigade or anyone wanting to spend the day mincing around town rather than boarding.