Attention all skiers, if you haven’t made it to the slopes just yet, don’t fret. There’s still time. Spring break is just around the corner and let’s be real, spring in Montreal is basically winter. So why not take a day or a weekend to hit the hills and praise some higher powder. Quebec is known for its unique qualities as a ski destination. Here are a few to check out before the season checks out.
If you’re a last minute type and get the sudden urge to slap on the skis, then be sure to head to Bromont. You can be on the slopes in less than half an hour. Bromont not only has the closest mountains to Montreal, but also offers one of the largest lit areas with 450 acres of skiable terrain. Enjoy 155 trails spread over seven hillsides and nine chairlifts. Bromont guarantees the best conditions, as they have 1200 snow guns to make sure the hills are pristine day and night. Need a break? Indulge by checking out The Beaver Tail stand to make up for all those lost calories. Or find your way to Broumont afterwards, an eclectic après-ski with a huge variety of beer and cocktails.
150 Rue Champlain, Bromont, QC J2L 1A2
Just ten minutes before Mont Tremblant, you’ll find this gem that has a total of 41 ski trails, including bunny hills and beginner learning areas. It may just be Quebec’s favourite family-friendly winter destination. Although packed with fun for children and beginner skiers, advanced skiers need not worry. Mont Blanc has the region’s second largest peak, the Laurentian. For those who don’t ski, head to their SnoZone park, a snowboarder’s paradise, full of jumps, rails, boxes, and new boarder cross and skier cross racing lanes.
1006 Route 117, Saint-Faustin-Lac-Carré, QC J0T 1J3
An hour east of Quebec City lies this advanced skier’s paradise. Its array of off-piste skiing and views of the St. Lawrence River will offer both a stunning and exhilarating ride. With a total of 52 trails, more than half are labeled as black diamond. It’s appropriately called “Le Massif” because it is the highest vertical east of the Canadian Rockies. After heading down their longest trail at 5.1 kilometres, you might want a break. Be sure to check out the summit’s pub, a festive place that hosts great après-ski activities. Warm things up with any of their Happy Thursdays, Lounge Fridays, or DJ Saturdays.
455 Route 138, Petite-Rivière-Saint-François, QC G0A 2L0
Le Massif’s little brother, Mont Saint-Anne, is sometimes overlooked but never forgotten. 71 excellent trails grace the dual-sided mountain, including some particularly epic scenic trails. On clear days, one can almost follow the winding St. Lawrence from Quebec City to the Casino in Charlevoix. Mont Saint-Anne runs nearly constant weekend events including 24 hours of ski competition, World Junior Championships, and other sponsored events. On top of that, every Tuesday (if you can manage a very long weekend getaway) is ladies’ night. Ski tickets and drinks are 2 for 1. Even if Tuesdays are unreasonable, make sure to get yourself up early enough to catch our absolute favourite croissants this side of the Atlantic at Marché Mont Saint-Anne.
2000 Boulevard du Beau Pré, Beaupré, QC G0A 1E0
If taking your passport isn’t a problem, then northern Vermont’s Jay Peak is another excellent option. With 78 downhill trails and more than 100 acres of land devoted to cross-country skiing, Jay Peak earns its place with the big boys. Like Tremblant and Bromont, it has its own self-contained village with everything required for a weekend of debauchery, skiing, and shenanigans. The 4000-foot, dual-peaked mountain overlooks a flurry of restaurants, pubs, an indoor and outdoor skating rink, and even Vermont’s only indoor waterpark. Even better is the village’s kid-friendliness. By that, we mean that they are more than happy to entertain children for an hour or a day while you ski the harder slopes or sip the harder drinks.
830 Jay Peak Road, Jay, VT 05859, United States
Not to be outdone by its counterpart across the border, Owl’s Head is one of the eastern township’s best mountains. Including 44 tracks, the mountain is a solid choice that is decently close to Montreal. It is seldom as packed as the bigger mountains like Bromont and still offers some excellent skiing for all levels. Plus, Tuesdays and Wednesdays are 20$ for the day. For random snow-day skiing with small lift lines, an amazing lakeside view, and a nearby ski hill, Owl’s Head might just be ideal.
40 Chemin du Mont Owls Head, Mansonville, QC J0E 1X0
One of the north’s best mountains, Saint-Sauveur is actually two separate mountains which can both be accessed with the Sauveur pass. Getting lost on the 44 trails is actually quite easy, so be sure to remember which side the car is on. The other side, Mont-Avila, actually has a significant tubing section as well. With several small pubs surrounding the hill, the after party is never too far. But if skiing works up an appetite, check out Sushi Taxi, a staple in the small town and in the world of fusion sushi.
350 Saint-Denis Ave, Saint-Sauveur, QC