Ski Reports

Sommet Saint-Sauveur - April 18, 2022

What a perfect day on the slopes! The temperature was just right, and the sun was shining. Today I visited Sommet Saint-Sauveur, a ski mountain that holds a special place in my heart. There is just something magical about every visit, and this time was no different.

With an early departure at 8am from Gatineau, I arrived at the mountain at 10am. The parking was already starting to fill, despite having only opened at 9am in the morning. Gearing up at the car, and strategically parking close to the Côte 71 chairlift, I started skiing shortly before 11am. I must confess, this is my first visit back to Sommet Saint-Sauveur in around 3 years. The arrival of our child and the pandemic put a temporary pause on my skiing. Having skied at Saint-Sauveur for many, many years (feeling like a second home every weekend), I had impatiently waited for quite some time to return and see what had changed... so that was what I quickly did before heading up for my first run.

No doubt, the two biggest changes are the new Sommet Express (six-pack detachable chairlift with heated seats) that replaced the legendary Atomic Express back in 2019. The old customer service building, which originally housed a double chairlift, way back when, was replaced this year with a new Atelier Les Sommets, regrouping part of the boutique with the ski shop and the lockers. It also features a small café and an outdoor terrace, only steps away from the Sommet Express. I also noticed that Red Bird (the main beginner trail) now has permanently mounted snowmaking guns from top to bottom, which is great news and will surely help get that trail open sooner, and ensure great conditions all season long. Long story short, the mountain is always improving and innovating, with an emphasis on the ski experience. 

Finally, it was time to hit the slopes.

I started with La Plagne (beginner trail) which passes alongside many beautiful homes. I proceeded to work my way across all the trails towards La Dévaleuse at the far left of the mountain. I was stunned, all the open trails (which consisted of nearly all the trails except the glades) had virtually full snow coverage. Sure there was the occasional bare spot here or there, but that was minimal. You could easily believe it was mid-March, but here we are in mid-April 2022 where anything is possible.

Of course, the standout trails are the usual ones, such as Côtes 70 Est and Ouest, Jay, Côte 68 and Dévaleuse. But in all fairness, you can't go wrong with any trail at Sommet Saint-Sauveur. For those wanting a quieter experience, Epervier and Tom Barbeau are wide-open trails that always seem less frequented than the surrounding trails. A small snowpark with modules and jumps was set up in the SilverPark (located between Côtes 70 Est and Ouest). For those looking for moguls, the Stadium trail (accessed to the right near the final pitch of 70 Est) had big deep bumps for you to enjoy. I even saw a skier take them telemark style!

Overall, the trails were well-groomed, and as the sun warmed up the air and snow, the slopes became softer as the day progressed. The snow held up quite nicely until I called it a day around 3pm. It was important to bring a change of clothes or to layer so that as the temperature and sun-warmed up, you could remain comfortable without getting too hot. Lineups at the lifts were minimal, with the Côte 71 and Flèche d'Argent having no wait loading all day and the Sommet Express having at most a 2-3 minute wait during the busiest moments of the day. 

A fantastic day out on the slopes, which likely will be my last for the season. Having said that, Sommet Saint-Sauveur has no shortage of snow and will easily make it into the month of May. I would expect this week and next weekend to be the last for many of the ski trails before they concentrate on the traditional final two, that is Côte 70 Ouest and Nordique.

Once the skiing ends for the day, the ambiance at the mountain base takes you in. The half-moon terrace with a barbeque, DJ and plenty of picnic tables out in the snow let you enjoy the spring sun amongst family and friends.

As the sun sets on another ski day, I wonder what new improvements and innovations the mountain will have in store for next season. 

Take care and happy skiing!

Below are some photos of this visit. You can go further down below to see videos taken on all the main ski trails (which also give a great indication of the ski conditions).

The famous spring ambiance
Côte 70 Ouest
Côte 68
Stadium moguls as seen from the Sommet Express
The snowpack of Côte 70 Ouest
Côte 71
T-Bar 70 terrace
The summit of the Sommet Express
Red Bird
Jay
The moguls of Stadium
Côte 70 Ouest
Côte 71
Côtes 70 Est & Ouest and Nordique
Top of Côte 70 Ouest and Nordique
Dévaleuse
Côte 70 Est
Côte 70 Est
Top of 70 Ouest
Côte 71
The half-moon terrace before everyone showed up.
Côte 70 Ouest
Dévaleuse
Côte 70 Est
Côte 70 Est
Nordique

Sommet Saint-Sauveur - Ski Trail Videos
April 18, 2022

Mont Orford - April 6, 2022

Related to this Article

 
Comments (6)
This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site
Wow! Super report! Looked like an excellent day. It's amazing to see the conditions like that, and so many runs still open at this time of year. I see where all the snow went. If the weather co-operates they could easily make it to May as per usual. I like the videos as they show you how the trail is and what to expect. I haven't been on all of them, but it does tell me what I am in for the next time I get there. Great photos too. Love skiing on sunny bluebird days like that.
Paul Giddings
This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site
I honestly wish hills here in Ottawa made that much snow. A 6 month+ ski season is honestly insane. Obviously, blowing that much snow would cost the less frequented hills of or region a fortune, not to mention the lower spring turnouts here, compared to the laurentians. I checked the webcams at Mont Saint Marie the last 3 weekends in march and april they were open. Empty. I understand MSM is generally a quieter mountain, but the usual Saturday crowds and slight lineup was gone. No one was skiing or riding the lifts. MSM kept saying "We ran out of skiers before snow" in their email blasts. Anyways, that was just something I found odd.
Matteo C
This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site
Matteo C to me this is a marketing issue. Edelweiss or Camp Fortune for instance could blow snow on a run to keep it going like MSS does, for example it would be great to see Skyline running into late season. But I find there is never really enough promo to draw other skiers whose mountains have closed. Most of the people still going at this time of year are passholders, but I think they could draw a lot more people and revenue by just dropping the ticket price and partnering with other mountains to promote. For example, Killington used to give a discount to anyone who showed up with a pass for any other mountain. Something like that could help keep it going. Then again, we don't want *too* many skiers and long lines ;)
Leslie McLaughlin
This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site
Seeing the videos (in particular Cote 70 Ouest), the snowbase looked to be at least 6 feet, in mid-april! Do you think they snowmake all season long? Snow this deep could not all have been made in December and lasted up until now. To be honest, I always wondered why most mountains quit snowmaking in January, by making more snow in February/March, the season could last an additional few weeks. Not sure if it is economically viable though.
Matteo C
This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site
They make extra snow later in the season for 70 Ouest, and sometimes Nordique. 70 Ouest is the first to open and the last to close each year. They have permanent snowguns all along the trail from top to bottom and spaced as tightly as they are allowed. The amount of snow present is about average for them at this time of year. The bottom pitch, which I did not take a picture of, would likely be comparable or have a bit more thickness to it from past experience.
Shane Séguin
This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site
@Shane Séguin­ you definitely picked a fantastic day to be there. I was there that day as well but only for the last hour due to work. Still a few more weekends to go, and they've extended the closing date!
Leslie McLaughlin
There are no comments posted here yet
Leave your comments
Posting as Guest
×
Suggested Locations