On this rainy late summer day that is feeling more and more like the start of fall, I was checking out Mont Rigaud's website and noticed that they seem to have updated their trail map.
I'll be up-front, I've never visited this mountain but it's on my short list for the near future. It seems that there is a new trail that was not on the map previously, trail #12, to the right of the O'Keefe trail. It's marked as a glade... Anyone familiar with this mountain know if it's new, or something that previously existed but only now is being recognized on the map?
Where can you find grooming lines at 3:00 PM on a sunny day with a temperature of -8°? Mont Rigaud, of course! What a great afternoon of skiing today! I arrived home early today, and given the nice weather and recent snow, I decided to ski for a few hours at Mont Rigaud. I packed up my equipment, and 45 minutes later, I was snapping on my skis at the base of the chairlift. Therein lies the beauty of Mont Rigaud. For people who live in the West Island and the Vaudreuil region, the ski hill is close enough to enable very short, spontaneous outings.
The weather and snow today were both great. The sky was perfectly blue, and a comfortable temperature of -8 ° made it possible to ski without having to worry about cold fingers and frostbite on your face. It was simply fantastic! The condition of the slopes was also great. Montreal has not seen a large blizzard in quite awhile, but frequent snowfalls of 5 to 10 cm in the past few weeks have added up to a decent accumulation. As such, the groomed trails were very soft with no ice whatsoever, allowing for carefree carving. In the hill's only glade, the O'Keefe, coverage was very good, with only a few sticks visible. Also visible were the structures for Mont Rigaud's tree adventure park, which operates in the summer months, in addition to their mountain biking trails.
The gladed section of the O'Keefe: the widely spaced trees and gradual slope are conducive to learners.
Mont Rigaud's tree adventure park: no customers today!
The number of customers was what I expected on a weekday at a small local hill.
It was certainly not crowded, but there were a fair number of people today. The chairlift was consistently about a quarter full, which, combined with the adjacent snow park, lent a nice atmosphere to the afternoon. In terms of demographics, there was a wide range of people, from teenagers in the snow park to retirees, and even mothers with their young children. Being so close to town, it is easy to come for only an hour or two. I skied today from about 3:00 to 5:00 PM, and managed to get in about 15 runs, which were all greatly enjoyed. Upon my departure, the lights were just turning on for night skiing, which is offered 7 days a week until 9:00 PM.
The school bell was not chiming today, but Mont Rigaud's mission as Quebec's ski nursery was nonetheless present. Multiple private lessons were taking place around the hill, with students both young and old.
Speaking of the hill, it is very well suited to beginners, as the wide, gentle trails aspire to make the learning experience as painless as possible. While you will not find any death-defying steeps or rocky glades, there are nonetheless a few challenging areas, such as the small mogul run, and the Qui-Sait-Tout.
The mogul run, situated the junction between the Qui-Sait-Tout and the O'Keefe.
Nice view from the Pepsi.
As the sun announced its goodbye to Mont Rigaud for the day, I did as well, eager to return soon and enjoy a similar experience.