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A Winter Visit to the Mont Tremblant Area of Quebec

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A few weeks ago I was fortunate to have a few days in the Mont Tremblant area of Quebec. Despite growing up just two hours away, I had never visited this part of the province.

It was love at first sight.

But it started well before I reached Mont Tremblant.

As you head north from Montreal on Highway 15 you pass through the towns of St. Jérome, Ste-Adèle, Val David and Ste-Agathe-des-Monts. Each one seems prettier than the next. Church steeples seem to be everywhere. So are ski hills as each town seems to have one they call their own. The drive itself is glorious as it takes you through the beautiful Laurentian Mountains. I felt like I’d been dropped into New England. It wasn’t the Canada I was used to seeing.

"Getting around in Mont Tremblant"

Getting around by gondola in Mont Tremblant

"Skating on a small pond in Mt Tremblant"

Skating in the Village of Mt Tremblant

"Mt Tremblant"

Mt Tremblant

Unfortunately on this trip John and I just didn’t have the time to explore the way we like to. There were no fine meals in the village of Mont Tremblant and nor did we poke our noses into the shops in the pedestrian friendly village. Skating was left for another time. We had really come for the cross-country skiing.

Cross-country skiing at Ski de Fond Mont Tremblant

Superlative cross-country skiing awaits anyone who visits the Laurentians. The number of opportunities for skiing is mind boggling. You can choose to backcountry ski in Mont Tremblant National Park. Or you can ski the old railbed known as Le P’tit Train du Nord. For more ideas you can check out the Bonjour Quebec website.

We ended up skiing a delightful 25 kilometer loop at Ski de Fond Mont Tremblant. What impressed me was the cross section of ages that were out on skis – from 2 year olds to 80 year olds. Families were everywhere.

The skiing was excellent. Trails were well groomed, signage was very good except on one of the backcountry trails we explored, but the biggest takeaway from skiing here was how pretty it was. Rolling hills, big vistas, beautiful mixed forests and a certain joie de vivre combined to provide an outstanding experience. If I lived nearby I would be a frequent visitor here.

Here’s a look at what’s in store should you make it to Mont Tremblant.

"The ski hills at Saint-Bernard near Mont Tremblant"

Trails with a view

"Skiing through the trees  at Saint-Bernard"

Skiing through the trees

"One of the warming shelters that gets very crowded on a weekend"

One of the warming shelters that gets very crowded on a weekend

"Feeding the black-capped chickadees"

Trying to feed the black-capped chickadees

"These chickadees probably look forward to the weekend crowds"

I suspect these chickadees look forward to the weekend crowds

"Beautiful skiing on unbelievably good snow"

Beautiful skiing on unbelievably good snow

"Delightful sections of tree skiing"

Enchanting sections of tree skiing

"One of the open air warming shelters with a wood burning stove"

One of the open air warming shelters with a wood burning stove

"Truly delightful skiing at Saint Bernard"

Truly delightful skiing at Ski de Fond Mont Tremblant

"This was a first! Ring the bell to warn other skiers that you're descending the steep hill"

This was a first! Ring the bell to warn other skiers that you’re descending the steep hill

"Good signage at intersections"

Good signage at intersections – in French

We stayed at Le Grand Lodge Mont Tremblant, a large complex on the shores of Lake Ouimet. Views are terrific and its location, about 10 minutes away from the Village of Mont-Tremblant is ideal if you are there to cross country ski. The trails are quite literally within spitting distance.

And at the end of the day you don’t have to leave the hotel. Enjoy a meal in a timbered great room that’s full of old skiing memorabilia. The food is very good too.

"Wonderful Laurentian Mountain views from our room - just wish the hydro lines could have been buried"

Wonderful Laurentian Mountain views from our room – just wish the hydro lines could have been buried

Have you ever been to the Mont Tremblant area of Quebec?

Disclosure: Tourism Laurentian assisted me with my stay. All thoughts as always are my own.

Leigh McAdam

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Author Hike Bike Travel

Avid world traveler. Craves adventure - & the odd wildly epic day. Gardener. Reader. Wine lover. Next big project - a book on 100 Canadian outdoor adventures.

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Join the discussion No Comments

  • Winter is so much more beautiful when you get away from the city and Mont Tremblant looks stunning! My 10 year-old would be in favour of a visit just to feed the chickadees! I didn’t realize that there was cross-country skiing in the area – I would be willing to do that!

    • @Lisa The cross country skiing is out of this world – really. And although it was cold, it took 10 minutes or less to warm up and on many occasions I was so hot I didn’t have mitts on. Catch a Porter flight o Mont Tremblant and have a nice break one of these days.

  • Rachel says:

    Gorgeous photos.

  • Mike says:

    It’s always fun to “follow” you down the trail on each of your cross-country ski journeys. I always await for to get to the warming hut…ha, ha. What an absolutely beautiful day you had here, Leigh. I love to see that little town when it’s lit up with Christmas lights.

    • @Mike I’d have to say the warming huts here weren’t as good as the other places on our tour – with the overall award going to Gatineau Park and the historic buildings. Still the outside fire was very pleasant and it was fun to feed the chickadees. My inner child comes out in those situations.

  • Nancie says:

    Hi Leigh! This area is stunning. When I was with American Express we had a conference somewhere in this area. It wasn’t winter time, but I still remember how pretty it is. You definitely had gorgeous weather while you were there!

  • Lauren says:

    It is absolutely gorgeous there! We were fortunate enough to stay one night in Ste-Adele this past summer and it was such a lovely, quaint little town! We would love to explore Mont Tremblant sometime to go skiing!

  • Johanna says:

    Wow, the snow looks powder perfect, and the scenery pristine. Somewhere I’d love to visit. Just to soak up the atmosphere and have a hot chocolate in one of the nearby towns too, would be lovely!

  • budget jan says:

    We were around about there but not actually there. Your snow photos are always such a delight to me. The bright blue of sky and crisp white snow is so exotic! This looks like a beautiful area to visit.

  • That blue, cloudless sky is so gorgeous. I also can’t believe that the chickadees are that unafraid of people. I guess they’ve learned that they’re a good source of food. I’ve never been cross country skiing. Is the steep downhill portion comparable to a green or blue run? I’d also like to try outdoor ice skating someday. It’s one of those wintertime fantasies that I’ve always had.

    • @Michele I think these chickadees have figured they have a good thing going with all the food around. The steep portion was the equivalent of a blue. I love the descents as they are always so much fun.

  • I really have to go to Canada one day. It looks so magical in the winter.

  • Marcia says:

    What an amazingly beautiful part of Canada! I used to hear a lot about Mont Tremblant when I lived in Ottawa but never made it there. Really beautiful, Leigh. Glad you were able to make it. Can’t believe you grew up so close by.

    • @Marcia Considering I grew up just two hours away I still can’t get over the fact that this trip was the first – though it certainly won’t be the last. The area is drop dead beautiful.

  • Looks gorgeous. The row of pine trees reminds me of some of the paths I ski in Wisconsin as they planted their trees in a similar fashion years ago. Sorry to see winter starting to lose its grip.

  • Nice blog folks! These photos look amazing! Just followed you on Twitter. Looking forward to connect!

  • Hi Leigh, no I haven’t been to Mont Tremblant but after seeing your photos I’d love to go and do the same thing you did. What a spectacular cross-country skiing trail. Everything is just so picturesque. The photo of the kids with the chickadee is so endearing.

  • That snow is so white and fluffy and gorgeous! And with all that outdoor activity I bet it doesn’t even get too cold!

  • I grew up in Montreal, about an hour and a half away, I also had never been to Tremblant….. until I decided that I didn’t want my children to grow up in the city. I’ve been living and working here for almost two years now, it is beautiful, almost like being on permanent vacation….. It’s a shame you didn’t have time to explore any of the restaurants……. next time anyone of you are in my neighborhood, take a walk through the old village (or a drive if it’s cold) and come join me and my team for dinner at Restaurant Patrick Bermand, you won’t be disappointed!!!

    • @Jessica I have every intention of returning to Tremblant. I feel like I just got a taste of it.I would be delighted t come and try your restaurant and thank you for your suggestion.

  • I grew up in North Carolina where we had hardly any snow, so naturally, I have no idea how to ski. But these gorgeous pics really make me wish I learned how! That town looks so quaint and perfect!

  • Russ Burns says:

    We have been going here for the annual Blues Festival, hiking and biking during the summer the past couple of years. It is a little piece of Europe in feel with wonderful people and cuisine. Love the area.

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