BEST NIGHT SKIING
BY: Gordie Bowles
Gateway: 40 km from Québec City Nearest town: Beaupré Vertical: 2,526 vertical feet Annual snow: 670 centimetres Trails: 52 (including glades) mont-sainte-anne.com
Part of the RCR family, Mont Sainte Anne lies in the Laurentian mountains. The ever-improving resort opened its first lift (a gondola) in 1966 and ever since the locals and mountain operators have strived for improvement. Today with 69 trails, an average snowfall of 475 centimetres and a solid vertical drop of 2,051 feet, Mont-Sainte-Anne has become a stand alone ski destination. One other feather in the cap is the resort has the highest vertical for night skiing in Canada.
APRÈS-SKI AND NIGHTLIFE
Right at the base of the mountain is the Chouette Bar, a good hang out pub with pool tables, music and dancing. The nearby T-Bar at the Chateau Mont-Sainte-Anne is a good party spot, with a slightly more mellow atmosphere. But if you have the energy after a big day on the slopes, Québec City rivals any ski resort in North America.
BEST BOUTIQUE HOTELS AND CULTURE
Gateway: 30 minutes from Jean Lesage International Airport Nearest town: Quebec City Vertical: 420 metres Annual snow: 6 metres Trails: 39 trails on four mountains. 19 trails cover 16 km. ski-stoneham.com
A short drive from downtown Québec City, skiers have plenty of options en piste, with 39 trails, an Olympic halfpipe and four large snow parks that cover three mountains.
Like its neighbouring Mont Sainte Anne, it has one of the largest night skiing terrains in the country. Stoneham is also renowned for the vibrant atmosphere at the Bar Le Quatre-Foyers and the delicious food served at the Feu-Follet Restaurant. It’s an ideal combination of skiing, great food and après.
Auberge St-Antoine: You’re in Quebec, you must stay in the old city! This charming hotel oozes history, with stone walls from a 19th-century warehouse surrounding your every move. Artifacts dating back to the 1600s, many of which were found during an expansion are now encased in glass dis- plays in the public areas and guest rooms. Antiques and contemporary pieces fill the bedrooms, some with fireplaces, large ter- races, or river views.
Shopping and fine dining are an art form in Old Québec. Stroll the rue Saint-Jean and rue Saint-Louis, where European charm adds A DASH OF FLAIR TO ANY OUTING.
THE BEST OF THE REST
BLUE MOUNTAIN, ONT.
Ontario’s largest mountain resort which is spread over the Niagara Escarpment, Blue has over 250 acres of skiable terrain. Located 90 minutes from Toronto, the village is developed like a mini Whistler village with a terrific selection of restaurants, bars and cafes. bluemountain.ca
LE MASSIF, QUE.
Less than an hour from the uber-charming Québec City, Le Massif has skiable terrain and slopes that seem to plunge straight down into the sea. With the highest vertical drop east of the Canadian Rockies the mountain is also renowned for its impressive annual snowfall. The best option for lodging are the many charming boutique hotels, however there are options for the larger luxury hotels or cottages closer to the mountain. lemassif.com
MONT TREMBLANT, QUE.
Tremblant is a picturesque resort set in the breathtaking Laurentian Mountains in Quebec. Over 600 acres of skiing serviced by 14 lifts and plenty of lodging and après options. Vibrant and energetic, Tremblant also embraces its rich history that dates back to 1939. tremblant.ca
MONT ORFORD, QUE.
Consisting of three summits — Mont Giroux, Mont Orford and Mont Alfre Desroches— this stop in the Eastern Townships (a few minutes from Magog, Que.) has vast terrain options. The main summit, Orford, is served by a state-of-the-art hybrid chairlift that brings skiers and riders to the best slopes on the mountain. Orford is home to Olympic medalist Nicolas Fontaine. orford.com