Status of Gatineau Park’s Cross-Country Ski, Snowshoe, and Snow Bike Network, and Grooming Operations
Overall ski conditions
Snow precipitations are a rare thing these days, which complicates the grooming operations. The compacted base is minimal and varies between 2 cm and 10 cm depending on the sector. Some trails can have exposed sections or debris such as gravel or branches.
After conducting a few tests, we have come to the conclusion that maintenance on the forest trails poses a risk of deteriorating the ski surface. The circulation of the grooming machines on these trails, without using the tiller, brings up debris and gravel to the surface, making these trails unsuitable for skiing. That being said, we have taken the decision to try our luck and try to groom trail 1 between the Champlain Lookout and Wolf Trail. We will be evaluating the result today. Despite the thin base, grooming of the parkways will continue as usual. A few trails were compacted by snowmobile on Thursday, condition on these can vary and they are only recommended for skating.
The base is very thin in the lac Philippe sector, we cannot groom this area. Trail 50, between P19 and P16, was compacted by snowmobile. This trail was patrolled and is now recommended. Please note that a long section, the first kilometre from P16, contains gravel.
The recommended starting points are P1, P3, P5, P6, P8, P9, P10, P16 and P19.
The condition on these trails is marginal. The presence of ice and exposed rocks force the professional patrol not to recommend most of the backcountry trails. At least 10 cm to 15 cm of new snow will be needed for this network to be recommended.
Keep up with the evolution of the ski trail conditions on our Website.
Snowshoeing, snow biking and winter hiking
The snow cover is relatively thin on the snowshoeing and snow biking trails. The snowshoe network is currently recommended. As for snow biking, expect variable conditions this weekend. We recommend checking to see if the base is firm enough (tracks no deeper than 2.5 cm) before going in.
All trails dedicated to winter hiking will be groomed during the night from Friday to Saturday, except the Lauriault Trail where the snow cover might be too thin.
Different trails for different activities
Be courteous to other users. Use only the trails dedicated to your activity.
Please be safe and enjoy winter activities in the Park!