Ski Reports

Mont Orford - February 16, 2022

Today with the day off I got out to Mont Orford for visit number 2 of the season. I arrived at the mountain at 8:15 and the parking lot P2 was filling up quickly! On a Wednesday! I still managed to get a decent spot so the walk wasn't too bad. It was a fresh -14 degrees under a cloudy sky. While I was booting up at the car, you could hear the wind blowing around the mountain. The wind wasn't bad at the base. The Hybride, The Giroux  North & East Quads, and the Alfred Desrochers Quad were in operation today. 

Normally I would have taken the first run up the Hybride to warm up, but this time I did something different. I rode the new Alfred Desrochers Quad for first run. The ride is quite nice on this new lift compared to the old Double Chair. The first run was down the Tousisski. The wind was blowing a bit up near the top of the ride. The conditions were of groomed packed powder over a firm base. Coverage was really nice. From there I crossed over to the Hybride for the one and only ride to the top. 

The Tousisski:

The ride up the Hybride was slower than usual as there was a strong wind in some places on the way up. With the wind it made for a cold ride but being dressed appropriately, it wasn't too much of an issue. Once at the top, I skied the 4km for my one and only trip to the summit. Here the trail was well covered with more groomed packed powder over a nice firm base. Once I arrived at the bottom, I took a short break to warm up, and to adjust a few things. The cold doesn't normally bother me, but today with the wind it was. I don't think the humidity helped out the situation.  

Middle part of the 4km Trail:

After break it was back out for more, so I headed up the Giroux North Quad to the top and skied the Familiale, and then over to the Slalom for a ride up the Giroux East Quad, Again the summit of Giroux was breezy, but once you skied off the summit, and down the trails, it wasn't as bad. The Familiale, and the Slalom were well covered with more groomed packed powder. At this point the sun decided to make a short appearance, through the cloud cover. I spent quite a bit of time on Giroux North & East, more than I usually do. Then it was time for another break.

The Familiale in the 1st pic and the Slalom in the second:

After the second warmup break, it was back up he Giroux North to combo the Familiale, the bottom of the 4km, and the underneath the Hybride to ride the Alfred Desrochers Quad for the last leg of the day. This has always been by favourite sector of Orford as it was not always busy, and it was on all natural snow. Now the Alfred Desrochers sector not only has a new lift, it now has snowmaking! I missed out on this sector last season, and with the improvements, it was a pleasant surprise. Here I finished up the morning on the Grande Allee, The Ookpic, and the Tousisski. The last time I skied the Ookpic, it was a few years ago, and it was an ungroomed natural snow bumpy run. Now there is snowmaking, and grooming which makes the trail smooth. The coverage in this sector was really good, and consistent with everything else I skied today. 

The Grande Allee & the Ookpic:

I finished skiing for the day at 12:30 after about a dozen runs. The skiing was really good today, and it felt good to be out. Wait times at any of the lifts were minimal. All the lifties, and the outside attendants were all really friendly, and kept everything moving efficiently as always. Another great morning of skiing was had, and hopefully a few more at Orford before the end of the season.

Here are a few more scenes of the day:

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Comments (2)
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Great to see you made it back out to Orford Paul. The mountain looks to be in great shape. Hopefully the rain today doesn't do too much damage and we do get some natural snow as is forecasted.

The Alfred Desrochers sector looks amazing. I've never skied it but from your pictures it looks to be a lot of fun. The Grande Allee trail is the kind of slope I really enjoy.

The last time I was there was in 2018, and I remember doing Giroux Est and I believe the Sherbrooke trail. The mountain was a bit icy that day and I found Giroux Est to be a bit more challenging than the other trails I had experienced during that visit. Slalom doesn't look too bad but I don't think I did more than one or two runs on Giroux Est before I went elsewhere on the mountain.

I'm looking at the trail map now and a little confused, was there not a magic carpet near the bottom between l'Hybride and Rapido triple? I thought there was one back in 2018.

Lots of questions, but Orford definitely interests me.

Shane Séguin
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Shane, The Alfred Desrochers sector has always been my favourite especially in spring when the brooks are starting to open up and flowing. The sounds are nice while riding the lift up. I seem to remember a Carpet lift where the Snow park is now. That would be just below the Rapido, and to the left of the Hybride. I believe they removed it when the new double carpet with the dome was installed, and the beginner hill was reorganized a couple of seasons ago.

Giroux East has a series of glades to the right riding up the quad. The Sherbrooke is a challenging trail, and should be skied early, just like the top of Orford if you want to ski the Trois Ruisseau, Maxi, or the Grande Coulee. The Slalom is usually my route down to the bottom of Giroux East when I go. It's rated as Intermediate and has some interesting fall lines all the way down.

Paul Giddings
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