and winter sports in Quebec
not quite the Alps, but Quebec's ski resorts
have plenty to offer
There's nothing quite like skiing in the Alps : the snow, the ambiance,
and the feeling that you really are on holiday a long way from home.
And part of the ambiance is the language. While everyone speaks some
English, you know you're away from home, because the signs are in
French or in German, the shops use a different currency, and the menus
are not the same.
skiing and showshoeing
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But for Americans, skiing in the Alps
is a costly business, involving a flight to Europe and then transfer to
the ski-slopes. So what if all that were available at less cost, and
closer to home?
The great answer to that question is that it is.
Less than two hours' flight from New York city, Quebec
airport is under an hour from two of the best ski resorts in eastern
Canada, at Mont Saint
Anne and Le Massif de Charlevoix a few miles further east.
Even more accessible for American and Canadian
skiers, on account of its multiple
international air connections, Montreal
is another city that is under an hour from the slopes: it's just an
hour north to
the biggest resort in the Laurentians, Mont Tremblant; and less than an
south, back towards the US border, for a cluster of resorts in the Cantons de l'Est,
or Eastern Townships area of Quebec, including Bromont.
Finally, in the Gatinais area, just a short distance north
Ottawa, there are a number of small ski resorts offering good downhill
skiing, but less scope.
About-Quebec.com brings you a varied
choice of the best and most popular ski resorts in Quebec, and also a
couple of ideas for those looking for winter sports areas offering a
more authentic Quebec experience, smaller more intimate ski areas that
cater mostly for people from Quebec with good local knowledge.
Mont Saint Anne
Located just 25 miles northeast of Quebec
City, Mont Saint Anne is a world class ski resort that regularly hosts
international skiing events. With a skiing domain of 450 acres, and a
drop of over 2000 ft, the Mont Saint Anne ski area has over seventy
runs varying from the easy to the very hard, and plenty of lifts and
ski-tows; runs on both the north and south side of the mountain allow
for different skiing conditions at all times. Floodlit slopes allow
skiing well after sunset.
to stay :
There are a number of hotels close to the foot of the runs,
including the Château
Mont Saint Anne or self-catering close by at the Auberge
Refuge du Faubourg which also has a restaurant.
Massif de Charlevoix
is a small but impressive ski resort right at the edge of the
Lawrence, offering great views over the bay. The resort has about 40
runs as well as a ski school, a long sled run, and opportunities for
nordic or cross-country skiing. With a full vertical drop of 2200 ft,
Le Massif has the highest vertical drop in eastern Canada.
And one unusual bonus at le Massif is
that you can take a scenic train to get there and enjoy a
wonderful trip along the shores of the Saint Lawrence from
Paul,to the station at Le Massif, at the foot of the slopes.
Places to stay:
location closest to the ski slopes is Petite Rivière, where
Four à Pain
is fully set up for accommodating skiers, and you can just jump on the
train to go to the foot of the slopes; alternatively, choose the Auberge
de la Côte d'Or, up on the hill, with its fabulous
views. Like other local auberges, they also cater for skiers.
Located in the Laurentian mountains, known locally as les Laurentides,
beside Lake Tremblant, 80 miles north of Montreal and 100
miles east of Ottawa,
Le Mont Tremblant is Quebec's largest and perhaps most
European ski resort, with 95 runs and 14
or tows, covering an area of 630 acres, on the north side and
the south side of the mountain. It is also a great place for a family
holiday, with plenty to do off-piste and in the evenings.
The vertical drop here is over 2000 ft., and the
longest ski run is 6 km, or 3.75 miles. This is a popular
winter and summer resort, and the village at the foot of the slopes is
an attractive pedestrianized area in traditional Quebec style. You
could well imagine yourself to be in an Alpine resort in France or
Apart from downhill skiing, the Mont Tremblant ski
area has areas for snowboarding and freestyle skiing, as well
as miles of marked and graded tracks for cross-country skiing and
snow-shoeing : and of course places for hiring all kinds of skiing
to stay :
Beauvallon - lakeside château hotel with free
shuttle bus to the slopes
Refuge bed and breakfast : Cosy five room b&b in
Saint Bernard suites and apartments - in the heart of the
Mont Tremblant pedestrian village. Public parking.
Photo: general view of Mont Tremblant lake, resort and ski slopes.
Thirty miles or so southeast of Montreal, Ski Bromont ski area was in
2010 (and maybe still is) the largest floodlit alpine ski area in North
America, so a resort that is ideal for people determined to fit in a
few long days' skiing. The ski area covers 450 acres, and is equipped
with 113 trails and 42 glades, offering a full range of ski
slopes from beginners to extreme level, and a ski school. The
vertical drop here is 1300 ft, and the resort has hosted world cup
skiing events. There are plenty of opportunities for snow-shoeing and
for cross-country Nordic skiing in the vicinity, and there are also
three other substantial ski resorts close by.
Other places for winter sports in Quebec
But where else can you go for winter sports in Quebec? To be honest,
the simple answer is almost anywhere, if winter sports for you means
show-shoeing, cross-country skiing, or snowmobiling, anywhere out in
the hills of Quebec will be suitable.
piste powder skiing in the Gaspésie national park
- skiing without the crowds
For anyone really looking for a place to ski
that is off the beaten track, and in the depths of historic Quebec
province, there is little that can beat skiing in the Gaspé
Gaspésie", on the south side of the Saint Lawrence. This
south eastern spur of Quebec,
with its backbone of mountains sticking out towards the Atlantic, is
sparsely populated but has a handful of small resorts, the biggest of
them being Pin Rouge, with its 11 km of slopes and a drop of over 1300
ft. Pin Rouge is located near the tip of Gaspésie, in the
grandiose setting of the Chic-Choc mountains, near the French and
English speaking township of New Richmond.
Also in Gaspésie, the
Gaspésie National Park area, south of Saint Anne des Monts,
is a paradise for cross-country ski-de-fond or nordic skiing and for
Nordic ski trails here culminate at an altitude of 1270 metres (4166
ft.) above sea level, and there is great scope for cross-country
skiing, hut-to-hut skiing, and just enjoying the solitude of this
fabulous mountain area.
For a bit of downhill skiing close by, there is a
small ski area at Cap Chat, beside the Saint Lawrence, an area famed
for the quantities of snow it receives.
stay: You'll need to book your own accommodation
in Gaspésie. So check out:
Just to the north of Ottawa, there is a cluster of
small ski resorts in the Gatinais area of Quebec, while the hills
between Montreal and Mont Tremblant offer a dozen or so small ski
resorts, less than an hour from the city of Montreal.