Québec Winter Adventure
This February 2023 , TotalAdventure was invited by the Adventure Travel Trade Association to join an ATTA market activation program in collaboration with Alliance de l’Industrie Touristique du Québec and Bonjour Québec and their regional partners.
On February 8th, I arrived back in Montréal for the first time in five years. I had a free. day before the delegation arrived , so I set out to explore the snowy city, which I know fairly well. I walked from our excellent Hotel d’Uville to the beautiful Mont Royal Neighborhood.
‘Notre Dame de Montréal.
A Painting Of Early Quebec settler and First Nations life in Eglise Saint-Jean-Baptiste. It is a very politically charged subject for good reason.
Afterwards I enjoyed an excellent Moules Frites in the Vieux Cite. That evening the rest of the delegation arrived.
Early morning Friday, February 10th, our bus departed for the Lanaudière Region for the first of several snowshoe adventures. I had not been on snowshoes in 30 years – on the old ones that looked like giant tennis rackets. The new kind are simple and sporty – allowing for fast tracking over very deep snow – usually two meters or more.
We enjoyed a delicious lunch at Auberge Lac-à-l’Eau-Claire, in Saint-Alexis-des-Mont. Afterwards we went ice-fishing – see in the video above , even getting to eat our catch afterwards , flash cooked on the spot.
At days – end , our crew was welcomed at the Sacacomie Hotel overlooking frozen snowy Lac Sacomie- with. maple whiskey in carved ice shot glasses. After downing the shots ,we threw the shot glasses over the side, towards the lake.
Winter Sunset over the lake.
Early Saturday morning, a bright sunny – 14 C ( about 9 F) we were off and running – with the dogs ! They are pure intelligence, enthusiasm and strength – nothing delights them more than pulling a fully loaded sled through the woods ,across the lakes and over the steep hills. The dogs have small houses – but rarely sleep in them – they prefer the warmth of a burrowed hole in the snow. They eat twice daily – a small breakfast before mushing – then later a large pot of hot meat and water – many calories to sustain their strength.
Eager To Run !
The next morning we were off to Quebec City – truly France in North America.
The Winter Carnaval. Quebecois love the outdoors in winter – they enjoy it as much or more than summer.
Quebec A Nuit.
Here the Fleur de Lis takes precedence over the Maple Leaf.
Above the mighty St.Lawrence – linking the Great Lakes to the Atlantic.
After First Nations storytelling at Ekionkiestha’ longhouse in nearby Wendake, we had incredible First Nations cuisine at their restaurant.
On Monday morning, February 13th, we explored Parc national de la Jacques-Cartier. First we biked , then we hiked, then biked again. Uphil in every direction — or so it seemed. The snowy forest was spectacular and silent. It was TotalAdventure’s first time Fat Tire Biking. I found it much like being on a stationary bike at the highest setting – great workout.
Each guest room has different theme – you can see them all in the video above. One thing in common though – it is cold – the room temperature is about -4 or 25 F. Understandably almost all the clientele are couples.
The season lasts into March . Then a movie shoot will take place before dismantling and forced melting by April. While winter lasts well into April and perhaps May, the warming sun can weaken the structure.
A Cold Way To Fry !
On Valentine’s Day, The Adventurers voyaged to our most remote area of the trip , Saguenay-Lac-Saint-Jean, stretching northward from the St.Lawrence. While some did back country skiing, we did cross country skiing on the Saguenay River.
The water underneath the ice is 100 meters. Fresh water on top and salt down below- allowing a unique opportunity to catch both salt and fresh water fish in the same spot – inside a nice warm hut warmed by a wood stove, where you can cook your catch.
The next two nights were in the igloo village of Imago Village.
Our final day outside was in the Vallée des Fantômes. Named because the forest looks so ghostly in the deep deep snow that covers the five meter trees by more than half.
Cat wheels are the only way mechanized transport can bring people into the park.
On the final day , in Chicitoumi, at La Pulperie de Chicoutimi , TotalAdventure met with
TotalAdventure spoke on a panel discussing sustainability requirements . TotalAdventure is highly committed to sustainability with minimal development.
And the next day, we flew from Bagotville to Montréal to our respective destination in the USA or Canada. Only US and Canadian companies were invited to participate. Quebec is ideally situated from fly or drive vacations from the Northeastern USA – it’s only 5 hours from New York, and borders Maine !