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Mont Ste Marie - March 17, 2021


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Last season my last day of skiing was March 14th, the next day everything closed and went into lockdown. Well, it's March 17th, 2021, and spring skiing is in full effect. The Gatineau and Ottawa area has gone into a bit of an up-down meltdown. The beginning of March looked promising with a decent snowpack. January and February had brought the goods after a slow start. Now it looks like we might not even make it to Easter. So get out and ski! I hit up Mont Ste Marie midweek. The conditions were a carver's delight. All the groomed trails were open and it was a bluebird day with temps rising to around 7C by the afternoon. The grooming team at Mont Ste Marie should be commended for keeping the trails in great shape.  When you look down into the fields below it's brown grass and grazing deer. I was hoping the glades would still have some coverage so I ducked into one-off Carrousel. They were skiable but you're going to wreck your skis.  The snow has melted so fast this year.  Anyway, the day was perfect, you had the trails to yourself, lots of spring sun and you could ski right onto the lifts. You couldn't ask for more. Enjoy the weekend folks as this might be the last week of full coverage.

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The glades are a little rocky

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Dustin Cook in all its glory.

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Perfect cord

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    • By Gordo
      According to their newsletter and Facebook page:
      Facebook:
      RECORD OPENING DAY this Thursday November 26th. First to open in the Region. The Vanier Chairlift will open for the season 9-4pm. This is the earliest opening in memory due to a combination of man-made and natural snow.....20cm of fresh snow. Remember your mask and that standard covid protocol will be in effect. Awesome! More details on lift tickets on Tuesday.
      Newsletter:
      Historic Early Opening "Arrive together Ski Together"
      The combination of our snowmaking and natural snow (20cm of fresh snow to be exact) has allowed us to open earlier than ever before in this century and the first to open in the Region. The Vanier Lift will be open and conditions will be excellent. Remember to wear your mask and that the standard covid protocol will be in effect for Mont Ste-Marie in an "Orange Zone". The restaurant and bar will be open. More details in Tuesdays e-mail. 
    • By Gordo
      Made it up to Mont Ste Marie for one last spring rip.  The hour drive north from Ottawa was an easy one, though many fields were full of deer.  The coverage on the two mountains is still impressive with all of the 20 groomed trails still open.  Even the off-piste runs had good coverage but they were mostly closed. The snow was just to sticky in the glades.  The groomed trails ripped though.  The snow was soft and fast in the morning then became your typical spring skiing conditions in the afternoon.  I missed the sun of Saturday but with no wind and temperatures just over zero I couldn't complain.  Dustin Cook and Formidable were the best bets on the Cheval Blanc side. On Vanier Serenade and Tornade were great cruisers.  We ducked into the glades on Carroussel but the snow was so sticky that you had to hop turn to get through the trees, not recommended.  Had lunch at the bar where the food and service is always excellent.  Ripped down Cheval for a few more hours in the afternoon till we'd had our fill.  What a great season. MSM plans to be open April 12-14th and maybe even Easter weekend. Looks like snow is on tap for Tuesday!



       









       


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