We made it up to Mont Ste Marie just after 9am to find beautiful mind-winter conditions in April! The temperature was around -2C and there was little or no wind and the sun was out. The skiing was so good that we stayed till last chair. The runs were nicely groomed fresh snow with no ice, that gave you the confidence to really rip. Pretty much everything was open with the best runs of the day being Dustin Cook, Formidable and Tornade Bas. I can't think of a year with conditions this good at MSM this late in the season. Usually by now only the Vanier side is open the conditions are slush. Hopefully they will stay open another weekend. Yes its been a cold April but make the best of it people, ski ski ski.... no golf yet.
Looks like the ski season may get into mid April.
This is from Mont Ste Marie's facebook site (April 4th):
SNOW REPORT (Lots of Snow April 6th-8th)
We received 10-15cm last night at the base of the mountain and over 20cm at the summit of Mont Ste-Marie. This is setting up to be the best skiing of the season when we re-open this Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. All runs will be open with perfect ski conditions groomed to perfection.
They also mention that they will be open the April 13-15th weekend.
and todays webcam, another 5cms is expected on Friday.
Tremblant got 16cms over night.
Fantastic bluebird day at Mont Ste Marie, the tallest mountain in the Ottawa-Gatineau region. I always love skiing here, whether it is for the high-speed lifts, or the large vertical drop, or even the trails that have that big mountain "Tremblant" feel... Mont Ste Marie never disappoints.
I was able to make it out in the afternoon when it was starting to warm up in temperature.
Ski conditions were fantastic, with a nice groomed base and virtually no ice. The temperature was a bit on the cool side with some strong winds, a little surprising for weather at the end of March, but it is doing its job at holding the snow in excellent condition. These are no doubt some of the best late March skiing conditions I can remember in a long, long time.
Standout trails today were Serenade on Vanier mountain (for the big mountain feel) and Formidable on Cheval Blanc (for its steep drop and thrilling rush you get at the bottom of the pitch).
A big shout out to Bob Sudermann, Mont Ste Marie's owner, who allows his own passion and love for skiing to infuse the mountain itself with lots of energy, guaranteeing an amazing time and experience for all. Mont Ste Marie may be the farthest mountain in the Gatineau region, but for the extra 30 minute drive time, you are rewarded with world-class skiing, little to no lines (even on weekends) on fast lifts, long trails, challenging and varied terrain, and a pure skiing ambiance.
The best skiing is now, with warmer weather on the way, the end of the season is quickly approaching. You need to come and enjoy the slopes. Here are some pictures of the day if you need a bit more convincing.
Riding up Cheval Blanc.
The base of Vanier.
Looking towards Vanier mountain from the summit of Cheval Blanc.
With a good 10cms of fresh snow on the ground and steady snow falling, we decided a trip to Calabogie Peaks was in order. I usually get up there at least once a season but every time I’ve gone it’s been firm hardpack conditions and a little icy. Today was the opposite. Soft groomers, stashes of powder, glade action and lots a nice off trail features. For the first time we could play in the Lake Glades which had lots of nice natural features to jump off. Exhibition was also totally skiable and filled with untracked powder. In fact, if you were willing to go a little off the main trails lots of stashes could be had. The temperature was around -1c, it was a little windy near the top and the snow would fall heavy all day. Free refills and no lift lines. One bonus of the slow quads is no one is ever on the hill with you. My one beef with the hill though is the painful flats you have to pole across at the top of the Lakeview Quad. Also, the main upper entrance to the glades involves some skating. The best runs of the day were Exhibition, Face of the Tiger, Finnegan and Whistling Paddy. With so much snow most of the other runs were rather slow as they just didn’t have the pitch. Today was great and I plan to return whenever there is loads of snow. Ski on!