Tourisme Bas-Saint-Laurent

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This winter, I'm trying... cross-country skiing

Laura Martin, rédactrice


Laura Martin, she shares her crushes and discoveries with us for our greatest happiness!

Never been on cross-country skis since a snow class in elementary school or a family nightmare expedition as a teenager? It’s about time you overcame your trauma and got back in touch with this magnificent winter sport. 

The Bas-Saint-Laurent region boasts more than 400 kilometers of groomed trails to discover. 

Need a little push to get started? Passionate skier Daniel Talbot, instructor and vice-president of Club Amiski, gives it to you.

Why is cross-country skiing the most beautiful winter sport?

It puts you in contact with nature, right in the forest. You can do it at your own pace, either in contemplative mode to let off steam and watch the birds, or in competitive mode to work up a good sweat. 

It also has the advantage of being very inexpensive and accessible. In our region, anyone can find a trail close to your home. In Bas-Saint-Laurent, we’re lucky to have colder winters and lots of snow. It’s time to take advantage! 


Do you need to be in good physical shape to go out on the slopes?

No, anyone can go. You just need to know how to adapt the intensity and your choice of trail, according to your condition. Even if you haven’t skied for 30 years, you’ll soon notice an improvement in your condition. Then, if you wish, you can push the machine and improve your skills. 

There are so many things to learn, so many technical aspects and imponderables to consider. And at the same time, it’s so easy! 

I give lessons to immigrants who have never touched skis before. I don’t even have to say a word to them, and they know what to do. Skiing is natural and instinctive, like walking. 

Ski de fond à Rivière-du-Loup
Parc Beauséjour @Patric Nadeau

Your best advice for people just starting out?

Choose the right clothing! I’ve seen people arrive in snowmobile clothes and end up sweating. It’s an extremely common mistake. Carry a small backpack and wear onion skins so that you can remove layers as the effort increases. 

You don’t need to buy hyper-technical clothing. You’re surely going to find appropriate clothing in your wardrobe. 


Do I need to bring my own equipment? 

No, many centers rent or lend skis, boots and poles. 

Ski de fond ND-du-Portage @Patric Nadeau

What do you think is the perfect day to go for a ski tour?

Conditions are optimal, with temperatures between -5 and -10 degrees Celsius. It’s neither too hot or too cold. When you’re skiing, every muscle moves, even your toes. So you rarely feel the cold. If, on top of that, the rays of sunshine break through the branches, it’s total bliss! 


Where are we going with our skis? 

In Bas-Saint-Laurent, a normal cross-country skiing season runs from early December to early April. This year, the season didn’t get off to a great start until January, but fortunately there are still a few good weeks left to split the snow and take a stroll among the fir trees.