Some of the best whitewater rafting on the Kicking Horse River and you'll be flying in a helicopter to get there. Can it actually be true?

It sure is! Heli rafting on the Kicking Horse River is a thing, offering two amazing adventures in one.

In this blog we'll cover what heli rafting is all about, the different trips we offer and the 5 reasons we think it's an experience everyone should try at least once.

Let's get into it.

Heli Rafting - the Ultimate Whitewater Rafting Experience on the Kicking Horse


About to get in a helicopter to heli raft in Golden British Columbia

This could be you! Getting ready to fly in the helicopter to go whitewater rafting on the Kicking Horse


Hop into a helicopter and fly through the beautiful mountain ranges of Golden BC. You'll arrive at the riverside of the Kicking Horse where our rafts will be waiting for you. Get ready to depart down the famous stretch of white water known as the Lower Canyon.

The Lower Canyon is world renowned for it’s 4 km stretch of continuous class 4 four whitewater.

It’s very rare to have this kind of continuous whitewater in a commercial rafting trip, so as far as extreme rafting goes this is as good as it gets.

If you’re someone who’s always looking for the biggest adventure, the fastest ride, the most adrenaline and the biggest thrill, heli rafting is for you!


Class 4 rapids in the Lower Canyon of the Kicking Horse River

Getting drenched in the Lower Canyon. Class 4 rafting at its best!


Whitewater rafting the Kicking Horse River offers amazing views. Wide valleys, big peaks, tight canyons, rich forests – a trip down the river offers a unique perspective of the Canadian Rockies.

Being down in the canyon looking up makes you realize how big the peaks are, and this is vantage point most people get.

But how about seeing those same peaks from above?


Heli Rafting in Golden, BC

Want shotgun in the helicopter? This could be you!


Showcasing our mighty river and mountains, the quick – but spectacular - helicopter ride (approximately 5 minutes) winds through the canyon giving you a taste of the rapids you’re about the raft.

Check out this video for a little peak of heli rafting.


Helicopter Rafting in Golden, BC - Full Day White Water Heli Rafting on the Kicking Horse River


To experience the Lower Canyon you have two options.


Heli Rafting Tour Options

1. Ultimate Heli Adventure

The Ultimate Heli Adventure is the most complete rafting experience on the Kicking Horse, as it’s the only trip that rafts all 3 sections of the river. It starts out with the calmer Upper Canyon and builds into the big class 3 and class 4 whitewater of the Middle and Lower Canyons.

The Ultimate Adventure rafts 32 km on the river so if you want to get the most adventure out of your day, this is the trip for you.


Whitewater rafting the Kicking Horse River in Golden BC

A little taste of the amazing whitewater in the lower canyon


Your day will start at 9:15 a.m. at our base where you’ll meet with our guides to get a rundown of how the day will unfold. You’ll have plenty of time to change into your wetsuit in our on-site change rooms and then our bus will transport you to the river for the first leg of your journey - the Upper Canyon.

The Upper Canyon is the more peaceful section of the river so you’ll be able to relax and enjoy the landscapes.

It includes a short walk up to a beautiful waterfall, a swim in the river if you’re up for it, and then it’s time for our big riverside BBQ lunch.


Swimming on a heli rafting trip in the Canadian Rockies.

You have the option to go for a swim in the upper canyon if you want to


Wondering what’s for lunch? You have the choice of a hamburger, veggie burger, chicken burger or smokie (big hot dog). We also offer some different drinks and desserts.


Preparing a hot BBQ lunch for all rafting guests in Golden, BC

Lunch time! Hot food from the grill to fuel you for the day


After lunch comes the big whitewater of the Middle Canyon. This section of the river is known for continuous rapids and non stop laughter, with water crashing into your boat over and over.


Crisp, glacial fed waves during a Kicking Horse River rafting trip in Golden BC

Someone is about to get wet! Lots of boat swamping rapids in the middle canyon


It's 12 km of excitement before heading to shore to meet your ride to the Lower Canyon - hello helicopter!

You’ll be working with your guide to maneuver through an intense 4-kilometer stretch, along with many other rapids, before ending with a scenic float back through the town of Golden.

This trip offers you the chance to charge down the river through some of the best and most continuous commercially rafted class 4 rapids in Canada!


Rafting the Kicking Horse River in Golden BC

4 km of class 4 rapids in the lower canyon


Our guides have rafted the river 100s or 1000s of times and they still get excited about it every single day.

After rafting the most whitewater we can offer you in one day, you’ll return to our base. A hot shower, refreshing beverage, and a celebration of an epic day of adventure awaits.

Glacier is the only company to raft all three sections of the river. We can only take 32 people per trip so it’s an exclusive opportunity.


Friends ready to heli raft the lower canyon of the Kicking Horse River

Ready to fly in the heli to the lower canyon of the Kicking Horse. Can you tell they're excited!


To read more about this trip, and to see some other photos, head to the Ultimate Heli Adventure page on our website.

If you're feeling amped and know you want to try this, book your seats here!

If you’d like to experience big whitewater, but prefer a half day option instead, Pure Heli White Water is what you’re after.


2. Pure Heli White Water

Pure Heli White Water rafts the two biggest sections of white water on the Kicking Horse River – the Middle and Lower Canyons.

It’s exactly the same as the Ultimate Heli Adventure trip described above, except it starts after lunch. It doesn’t include the calmer Upper Canyon so you get right into the action.

If you want lots of continuous class 3 and 4 rapids, a ride in a helicopter, only big adventure and the chance to sleep in, this is a great choice.


Rafting the Lower Canyon of Kicking Horse River

Non stop action in the lower canyon. Exclusive access to 4 km of continuous class 4 rapids!


This trip starts after lunch and it runs from 11:00 a.m. – 5:15 p.m.

To read more about this trip, and to see some photos, head to the Pure Heli White Water page on our website.

Know you want to try this? Book your half day heli rafting adventure here.

There is no better way to live an adventure then by scratching two activities off your bucket list in one go.

BUT, if you're still not sold on heli rafting, here are our 5 reasons that may convince you.


5 Reasons to Experience Heli Rafting on the kicking horse at least once


1. It’s the ONLY way to access the famous lower canyon

The lower canyon is well known for a reason and when the lower canyon is open it’s as big as it gets. This amazing stretch of river is ONLY accessible by helicopter. If you want to experience the biggest there is, this is the way to do it.


2. Experiencing something NEW will make you feel alive

We know how easy it is to get stuck in our day-to-day routines, to become swamped and overwhelmed. We definitely fall into this trap from time to time, but we know when we make the time to experience awesome new things it gives us perspective on what’s really important. A new experience is good for a soul and it will put a smile on your face.


3. We’ve tried to make it the most affordable way to get you in a heli

Have you ever been in a helicopter? Dipping and diving and buzzing through the air is one of the coolest feelings! Heli flights can be expensive so we’ve done everything we can to make it as economical as possible.


4. It’s all about doing something great for YOU!

We know how hard you work. Whether it’s running a business or caring for kids, working long hours, a daily commute, or a never-ending to-do list. We get it! Life can be busy, and because of all the hard work it’s extra important to squeeze in a bit of ‘me time’ too. Add some fun to the list!


5. There’s nothing else to do except have fun

Once you get on the river you leave your commitments, concerns and cell phones behind. When you’re in the raft it’s adventure time! Boat swamping rapids, glacial water face shots, river swims (voluntary of course), and laughter. Always lots of laughter. It’s time we all need more of!


In the heli ready to fly to the lower canyon of the Kicking Horse River

This wasn't in the list, but getting SHOTGUN IN A HELICOPTER should be right up there too!


If you have any questions at all about heli rafting or whitewater rafting on the Kicking Horse, please get in touch. Leave us a comment below or email

Come live an adventure!

Cheers from all of us here at Glacier


Know you’re keen for this awesome adventure? You can reserve your seats for whitewater rafting the Kicking Horse online.

To confirm your Ultimate Heli Adventure trip, BOOK HERE

To confirm your Pure Heli White Water trip, BOOK HERE