There is a lot of information - and misinformation - out there at the moment surrounding the highway project east of Golden, BC. The most important thing to know is there will be no daytime Highway 1 road closures due to the Kicking Horse Canyon project.

Let us say that again,

There will be NO highway 1 road closures during the day for summer 2020 - 2023. rafting is not affected by the Kicking Horse Canyon project

What does this mean?

You should still come rafting! It will be business as usual for whitewater rafting trips on the Kicking Horse River in Golden, BC.

White water rafting Kicking Horse River Golden BC

Rafting will not be affected by the Highway project starting in 2020. You can still experience the awesome Kicking Horse River!


important driving Details for the highway project

Kicking Horse Canyon Phase 4 is a construction project that will upgrade 4.8 km of Highway 1 east of Golden, B.C. We’ll provide some more info on the project further down, but first, here's the important stuff:

  • Work on the Highway will start in fall 2020
  • There will be NO stoppages, delays or closures related to this project in summer 2020
  • There will be NO daytime stoppages, delays or closures in summer 2021, 2022 or 2023 either
  • It is from June 1st - September 15th that there will be no daytime stoppages or closures. They know TransCanada Highway 1 is far too busy to have delays during this time.
  • Any required closures will occur in the middle of the night, or in the off seasons. Off seasons are early spring and late fall.

If you’re planning a trip to Golden outside of June 1 - September 15, head here to the Contractor's website to see if you may be affected.


summer driving information - no daytime road closures on highway 1

Here’s a recap, directly from the Contractor's website. It emphasizes there will be no delays or closures affecting your drive to Golden, BC in 2020, or the 3 summers that follow.

Spring & Summer 2020 - The Trans-Canada Highway through the Kicking Horse Canyon will be open without interruption from the Kicking Horse Canyon Project until after a contract is awarded in late summer 2020.

Summers 2021, 2022 and 2023 - During daytime, the highway through the Canyon will remain fully open and free of interruptions, other than momentary traffic control for turning vehicles.

**Bolding and italicizing added by us for emphasis

This information and additional details can be found on the Contractor's website.


What is the Kicking Horse Canyon Phase 4 Project?

The Kicking Horse Canyon Project is a series of 4 construction phases designed to improve Highway 1 through the Kicking Horse Canyon.

The first 3 phases are already complete. They transformed 21 km of highway into upgraded four lane, 100 km/hour highways.

Phase 4 is the final and most difficult project, and it’s what we’ve been describing above. Starting in fall 2020, Phase 4 will complete the project by improving the last 4.8 km.

The section of Highway they’ll be dealing with is east of Golden, BC, from the Golden Hill to Yoho Bridge.

Kicking Horse Canyon Phase 4 Map - no daytime road closures on Highway 1 with this project

Map showing 4 Phases of Kicking Horse Canyon Highway Project. Phase 4 will be starting Fall 2020


What are the main objectives?

  • Upgrade 4.8 km of highway through the canyon to improve safety
  • Realign 13 curves and widen the highway to four lanes with median barrier
  • Mitigate rock fall and avalanche hazards
  • Add wildlife exclusion fencing and wildlife passage opportunities
  • The improvements will be built with a focus on safety, cost-effectiveness and as little disruption as possible to highway users and the community.

The total project cost for Phase 4 is approximately $601 million. The project is cost-shared, with the Government of Canada contributing $215 million.


As stakeholders in this project, we have been very involved in the planning process. We were nervous when we heard Phase 4 was about to begin, but from our perspective everything is as positive as it can be.

We know you rely on Highway 1 to get here, and we rely on Highway 1 to get you to the river. With no stoppages or delays from mid May - mid September (which mirrors our rafting season exactly!!), we couldn’t be happier.

To re-emphasize, here's what you need to know:

  • Will the Kicking Horse Canyon Project close Highway 1 in the summer? NO
  • Will you still be able to make it to Golden throughout the summer - without delays or stoppages - from 2020 - 2023? YES
  • Should you still come whitewater rafting on the Kicking Horse River? ABSOLUTELY


We’ll be running business as usual for the next few years, and we hope you can join us for an awesome day of rafting on the Kicking Horse River in Golden BC!

Cheers from all of us here at Glacier Raft Company