Rudi’s South

Kicking Horse Terrain Expansion

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[UPDATE] Now with 30% more facts and 42% more speculation!
Great journalism gets people asking questions. Stupendous journalism gets people emailing you the answers. After the following article was written, posing questions about the accessibility of Kicking Horse’s legendary backcountry, our good friends at Kicking Horse Mountain Resort reached out to provide some reassurance that everything is still awesome. So, here are the facts:

Ozone South, Mini (Middle) Ridge South and Mini Ridge North will be open to public after avalanche control is needed. Until they are open, boundary closures are similar to what is the current political closure.

Rudi’s South and Ozone North will remain backcountry. Access will basically be the same as always. Leave the area boundary behind Whitewall to access Ozone North and Tour up from G7 corner to access Rudi’s South. When Mini Ridge is open, the new cat road will provide quick and easy access from Fuez Bowl to Mini Ridge and then you can continue on quickly to Rudi’s South and beyond.

The new stats are saying Kicking Horse has 4314 feet of vertical gnar that you can jump, turn or ballet your way down. With it starting at 8218 ft elevation in the cold Purcell Mountains, that’s 4314 ft that you will actually want to ski too. Check out more fun stats over at: https://kickinghorseresort.com/blog/new-season-new-terrain/

From the Horse’s mouth: “All anyone needs to really know is that accessing the backcountry will not be affected any more than is was in the past. And of course anyone going there should be trained, have the correct avalanche and self rescue gear and be experienced.”

Booyah.

Kicking Horse Mountain Resort, located above the iconic town of Golden, BC, has always been known for having epic slack country and oh-so-tempting permanent closures. A recently announced terrain expansion, makes some of this terrain is that much easier to get your hands on.

Ozone South

Ozone South. Brian Coles Photo

The expansion includes Ozone South, the permanent closure used in the Freeride World Tour, Mini (Middle) Ridge, and Rudi’s South. All this terrain is to the North of Feuz bowl and return’s to the resort via a cat road that is currently being built.

Access to the permanent closures of Ozone South and Mini Ridge South are exiting as these faces have tempted people for years. Details on the logistics of this expansion have not been released yet but it is clear there will be no lift and access will be by foot. Mini Ridge North, a mini-golf heaven, and Rudi’s South, a 25 degree open pitch will be ridden the same as usual but with avalanche control and the closures associated with it.

Rudi's South

Rudi’s South. Evan Pitman Photo

The big question with all of this is, how does it affect back country access? Ozone North, a legendary bowl of gnarly chutes and ridges is now located in the operating tenure. Will it become a permanent closure or will boundaries be set up to keep it in the backcountry while keeping users safe? How will access to Rudi’s North happen if Rudi’s south is a controlled, inbounds slope? The brass at Kicking Horse have always known the value of the back country and done an amazing job keeping it accessible so here’s hoping it all goes well.

Details aside, this terrain expansion includes some amazing terrain that will retain it’s powdery goodness late into the afternoon due to the limited accessibility. Keep your eyes peeled for Ozone South being showcased by the best skiers and snowboarders during the Freeride World Tour on February 2-9, 2019.

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