If you’re looking for an incredible snowmobiling experience this winter, we have one word for you: Québec. True to its heritage as the birthplace of snowmobiling, Québec boasts an incredible network of quality trails, enviable snow conditions, and, quite simply, the ride of a lifetime.
Snowmobiling in Québec is the opportunity to come back to where it all began: The first ancestor of the snowmobile, a seven-seater, was made at Bombardier in 1936. They started selling them for real in 1959, and they’ve never looked back.
With average annual snowfalls of between about 10 and 23 feet of high-quality powder and an average of 4 months of serious snow cover per year, it’s no wonder that Québec has more snowmobilers per capita than any other province in Canada. But don’t worry about getting crowded out: when we say this is the place to ride, we mean there’s space, and then some.
The expanse of Québec’s snowmobile network is truly exceptional, with more than 20,500 miles of well-maintained, well-sign-posted, beautiful, natural, wilderness trails. You can ride through any or all of 13 different regions of this fascinating and hospitable province, along the length of the St. Lawrence River and through to the Saguenay fjord, throughout vast natural landscapes dotted by thousand of beautiful lakes and rivers.
The Laurentians, for example, are in southern Québec. It’s a top-notch and reliable snowmobile destination, with warm people, enviable snowfalls, and excellent restaurants. The extensive network of trails in this region links with some of the most impressive natural attractions imaginable, including panoramic views on the summit of Devil’s Mountain. You can follow the old Le P’tit Train du Nord railway line from Sainte-Agathe-des-Monts to Saint-Faustin-Lac-Carré and from Labelle to Mont-Laurier. Or sign up for a snowmobile excursion package from one of the many local companies that specialize in catering to snowmobilers’ needs.
Or perhaps the Centre of Québec, and the Chaudière-Appalaches region, with its 2,485 miles of unique loop- and daisy-shaped trails – maintained by volunteers – that let you ride without ever having to cross the same path twice. Ride through the region’s maple forests, the St. Lawrence River valley and the Appalachian mountains, with their breathtaking views of the area and surrounding villages, and an impressive number of deer.
The Charlevoix and Saguenay-Lac-Saint-Jean regions are always popular, and rightfully so, with 3,230 miles of marked trails along some of the most breathtaking winterscape panoramas seen anywhere in the world. It’s truly awe-inspiring terrain. Take the Lake Saint-Jean tour; ride the Five Summits trail; stop for a Nordic spa or ice fishing at the picturesque village of L’Anse-Saint-Jean in the heart of the Saguenay fjord. The area has seemingly infinite trails and an impressive network of hotels and accommodations, not to mention nearby attractions like Quebec City, the Ice Hotel, and the Charlevoix Casino.
Québec’s maritime regions of the Bas-Saint-Laurent, Gaspésie and the Côte-Nord, offer 3,700 miles of marked and groomed trails with relatively little traffic, spectacular sea and mountain scenery, and snowmobile access to northern landscapes that are otherwise completely inaccessible. Take the breathtaking Great Gaspé Peninsula Tour from Rivière-du-Loup in the heart of Bas Saint-Laurent region, around the peninsula via the spectacular Chic-Choc Mountains and the famous Percé Rock. Cross the Manicouagan River on the longest snowmobile bridge in North America. Take the Northern Trail from Tadoussac to Blanc-Sablon, through the unspoiled wilderness of the Côte-Nord region. Or enjoy the best of everything with the St. Lawrence Tour, which explores sections of the Great Gaspé Peninsula Tour and of the Northern Trail, and which includes crossing the St. Lawrence River by ferry, a unique snowmobiling experience!
Abitibi-Témiscamingue, with its long winters, impressive snowfalls and impeccable top-quality trails, is snowmobiling at its purest. Its wide-open spaces along 2,300 miles (3,700 km) of trails are sure to satisfy true snowmobile enthusiasts. Spectacular scenery, unbelievable sunsets and world-renown trails in an enviable and unique environment is what you will find.
Just east of Abitibi-Témiscamingue, the Lanaudière and Mauricie regions have built such a reputation that they’ve come to be known as Snowmobile Country. With a trail network covering over 2,980 miles, this region has the added convenience of being located close to major centers, being just 90 minutes from both Montréal and Québec City, and including 25 snowmobile clubs. With great convenience, perfect powder and highlights such as touring the highest peaks of Mont Saint-Donat or crossing the suspended “Golden Gate” bridge over the Ouareau River on the way to seeing ice sculptures in Saint-Côme, it couldn’t be easier to plan a fantastic trip here.
For the true adventurer, the fascinating great north region of Eeyou Istchee Baie-James awaits, with its abundant snow, its vast and limitless landscapes, and its amazing diversity of culture and wildlife. See Northern Lights, majestic caribou and the biggest natural lake in Quebec. This 994-mile loop connects to neighboring regions of Abitibi-Témiscamingue and Saguenay–Lac-Saint-Jean for the snowmobiling adventure of a lifetime.
Each of Québec’s regions has its own special appeal, and the variety of landscapes and scenery that are available to you are truly breathtaking: vast fields, virgin forests, rugged mountains – from the southern borders to the far reaches of the north, the sheer variety of Québec’s flora and fauna will amaze you, while you ride through it all with the utmost sense of freedom.
And you can enjoy riding through this beautiful wilderness without having to compromise on convenience and safety: Québec’s snowmobile trail network is dotted with rest and fuel stops, heated shelters, rental centers, accommodation and restaurant assistance, and access to safe parking, among other amenities.
Magnificent, majestic and exciting, but easy and reliable, snowmobiling in Québec really is the best of all possible worlds. Visit snowmobileinquebec.com to get more information about planning your snowmobiling experience in Québec.