Le Massif

Its complete name is Le Massif de Charlevoix and is located in the village of Petite-Rivière-Saint François in the Charlevoix region of Quebec province. The region has the reputation of receiving a large amount of snow every year and is able to retain it for a longer time than usual. If you think that the ski resorts in the British Columbia province only have terrain fierce enough for advanced skiers, think again. Le Massif is famous for having the steepest trails east of the Canadian Rockies and is a favorite among downhill skiers in the entire country and other parts of the world. Its skiing season is from December to late April.

Skiing was already available in Le Massif since the 1970s. The decades that followed saw changes in the transportation system used to tow skiers from the base to the top of the peaks. A road was built in 2001 to reduce the distance between the resort's summit and Quebec City. During this time, the La Charlevoix downhill trail was also created and eventually became a site of an alpine training center for the national athletes. It is the only training center of its kind east of the Canadian Rockies. In 2011, a tourist train from Quebec City started operations with stops at Le Massif during the winter.

The resort has a total skiable terrain of 401 acres or 162 hectares. Its highest accessible point is 770 meters or 2,527 feet. Annual snowfall in the area averages at 672 centimeters or 22 feet. It has a total of 52 runs, most of which range from intermediate slopes to difficult and further on to extremely difficult. Its steepest trail is La Charlevoix, which is considered one of the hardest downhill runs throughout the world.

The resort is a favorite among skiers, especially those who are into powder skiing. What's more, Le Massif has runs that make skiers think they are going straight into the St. Lawrence River! Not many of the resort's terrain can be considered extreme but the resort has a lot to make advanced skiers enjoy their visit there. Many consider it as the best skiing terrain in eastern Canada. Although the resort's terrain is not exclusive to skiers with advanced skills, it's best if beginners give the resort a wide berth.

Most of the resort's clienteles are singles or those who are newly married, so don't expect it to be as family-oriented as some of the other ski resorts. Most of the guests complimented the resort's food, which is of course French and comes as no surprise since the resort is in Quebec. However, it is difficult to find satisfactory accommodations in the resort so if you are planning to go there, better look for lodgings in the nearby communities.

The resort is a clear favorite among serious ski enthusiasts and not much for travelers who are just thinking of a carefree winter vacation. If you are thinking of perfecting your skiing during your vacation, keep Le Massif de Charlevoix in mind.