We, the Quebec snowmobile enthusiasts, often find ourselves thinking about our upcoming snowmobile season in the middle of summer. And we are not the only ones! Laurent, a Frenchman who lives about two hours from Bordeaux, got hooked on snowmobiling several years ago. As a result, he often comes back to Quebec to snowmobile.
In the middle of August, he contacted Daniel, a friend he had made on previous snowmobile trips. He asked him to plan a week-long trip for him and five other French people. Some of them had never driven a snowmobile before. To ensure the smooth running of this adventure, Daniel called on his friends Marc, Yves who lives in New Brunswick and me. Without hesitation, we all accepted. Daniel who is also called “The Explorer” takes care of the itinerary and the reservations.
All we have to do now is wait for the date of February 2nd, 2023.
Motoneige Gero St-Jean de Matha—– Kanawata Shelter 250 km
Here we are, the rental was made at Motoneige Gero of Saint-Jean de Matha. Our friends are feverish, they put on their rental equipment and take possession of their snowmobile. We take the time to explain to them the whole snowmobile and good driving habits.
It’s a start, Daniel is at the front of the group as a guide and leader. Marc is his second for the direction of the trails to take. Yves is “Mr. Solution”, while I am the last of the group to make sure everyone is there.
The first twenty-five kilometers are done slowly while everyone gets used to their bikes. Then, Daniel accelerates the pace, because we still have about 250 km to go. The day is splendid, sunny with -10 degrees. At supper, we announce to the group that there will be a small change tomorrow morning, the weather forecast announces that the next two days will be extremely cold.
Kanawata Shelter——–Hundred Lakes Shelter 250 km
When we woke up, the thermometer indicated -37 degrees Celsius. So, at breakfast, they were advised to put on as many underlayers as possible. Romain, from Marseilles, told me that the coldest he had experienced was three degrees! Imagine his face when he put his nose outside! In a few seconds, his nostrils stuck together. The snowmobiles had gone inside, we wanted to avoid problems with the cold.
When we arrived at Parent for lunch, Romain complained that it was getting hot in his crotch. He had put on under-layers only on his upper body, he was freezing his crotch! Now our cousins know our expression “Y FA FRETTE EN TAB….”.
Unexpected change of Shelter
When we arrived at the shelter that Daniel had booked and confirmed two weeks before departure, he was told that he was expected next month… Daniel called the Hundred Lakes Shelter, which was about fifty-six kilometers away, and fortunately, they could accommodate us. Despite the intense cold, we got back on our mounts to go to the Hundred Lakes shelter. Fortunately, the welcome was warm and the food was delicious.
Pourvoirie les Cent lacs——–Auberge du Lac Taureau 220 km
The morning was as cold as the day before, but it was forecast to warm up during the day, Yves made masks with Doc tape for those who had cold faces. Having stayed outside this time, our snowmobiles are all gone, but we had to thaw the tracks by stirring them, as they would not turn.
The trails are still very beautiful, but during our trip, a snowmobiler ahead of us missed a curve, as soon as we arrived Yves took things in hand and helped the French who were pulling on the cable, the snowmobile came out of its unfortunate position in a few minutes, the snowmobiler was very happy with our help.
Arriving early at the Auberge du Lac Taureau, the whole group took advantage of the facilities and comfort offered by the inn. In the evening, a few drinks at the bar and a hearty meal allowed us to enjoy our stay.
Auberge du lac Taureau——- Hôtel Sacacomie 166 km
The temperature is almost back to normal and the distance to be done is shorter, which will give us more time to admire nature and take pictures.
We go towards a place which attracts tourists for its architecture in log. Arrived on the spot, we also take advantage of the facilities that the Hotel offers. The evening meal and the lunch are included in our package, which is very well.
Hotel Sacacomie——Gero Saint-Jean de matha 166 km
On the last day of the snowmobile, the day is superb, we take advantage of it to fill our heads and our cell phones with the beauty that nature offers us. We make a stop at the Microbrasserie Nouvelle-France located at St-Alexis- des – Monts for an excellent lunch. We are back to the starting point, we give the mounts to the locator without any breakage, and everybody is happy.
Conclusion of our trip
What a beautiful trip with a little more than 1000 kilometers! We had two days of extreme cold and the group never went back! Despite equipment badly adapted to this kind of temperature, they always advanced without criticizing anything.
Bravo to Daniel for the organization, and hats off to Marc and Yves for the support. Finally, to Daniel and me for bringing all these people back to port. We made new friends and we hope they will come back to share our passion! See you soon…