As you already know, if you are following me, we are now back on the east coast of Canada. And since we have to live with winter condition, we started fat biking. But where are the best places to fat bike in Quebec? That is the first question we had to answer, after buying fat bikes. Before you say it, yes, I know, fat bikes are not only for snow. This would be a wildly spread misconception. However, in summertime we are clearly more of Downhill type of riders.
Enough said. This article is about places to fat bike in Quebec. And there are a lot. However, I simply will talk about 10 places we went, or we would like to go this winter. But, as you know, with the pandemic and the lockdown traveling outside the region is not always possible. However, I’m still hopeful we’ll have the chance to visit them all.
Parc National d’Oka
I clearly need to talk about this place first. Why? Simply because this is the first place I tried fat biking. Indeed, this is where I discovered how fun this sport is. And that was back in the winter of 2014-2015. Since the number of trails has grown. And today, they offer over 60 km of pure white fun. There are trails for everyone and they have rentals. This is one of the perfect places to get initiated to the sport.
Le Parc National d’Oka is part of the SEPAQ (Société des Établissements de Plein Air du Québec), so if you have your membership, you only have to pay the fat bike daily fee of $8 for adults to access the trails. This is really not a bad price to have such nicely maintain trails. Otherwise, daily entry fees to SEPAQ parks are very reasonable at $8.90 for adults and free for kids 17 years and under.
Plein Air Chambly
This is a place I just discovered. In fact, I overheard someone talking about fat biking in Chambly. So, one day, that I wanted to go for a quick ride not too far, I made a quick search, and came across this perfect network of small easy trails. Unfortunately, there are no rentals there as this is not a bike park. However, this is entirely free, parking and access. So it’s totally worth it.
Trails are mostly easy ones, but there are a few blue. Nevertheless, the environment is genuinely nice. People super friendly. And most of all, for me it’s very close to home. If you want to initiate someone who is not a cyclist, you should bring them here. Indeed, you’re fairly sure they will like their experience.
Plein Air Sainte-Adèle
When thinking about places to fat bike in Quebec, you have to think of the Laurentians. Indeed, Plein Air Sainte-Adèle is offering biking all year round. Even more it’s offering three great places to satisfy each level of riders during the winter.
Parc linéaire Le P’tit Train du Nord
For those who don’t know about Le P’tit Train du Nord, this is a 234 km multifunctional trail between Mont-Laurier and Bois-des-Filion. However, during the winter only part of it (40 km) is maintained and can be used for activities. Free and mostly flat, this is still a nice way to get some kilometers in by a beautiful winter day. And a perfect place to bring the whole family regardless of their age and ability.
Sentiers du Chanteclerc
This is one of my favorite places to fat bike in Quebec. Indeed, it’s not too far away and it offers every level of riding, from beginner to expert. This is also closer to mountain biking than road biking. Obviously, you’re in the mountain, so a lot of ups, and a lot of descent. Which is, of course, the part I prefer. But mostly, this is a real escape. And with 28 km of free fat bike trails, you will find the right one for your mood.
Parc du Mont Loup-Garou
The “boucle de la Fat Garou” or simply “Fat Garou” is offering the advance riders a 10 km of pure pleasure. Indeed, this trail is fairly new. Built as a one way, it offers some ups and downs that can be challenging. But also has wooden bridges and rewarding descent sections. Very nice place to discover if you’ve never been. However, I do not recommend this one if you have never done any fat bike before. You might find it a little too much.
Vallée Bras du Nord
Vallée Bras du Nord doesn’t need any introduction regarding mountain biking. With its 100 km+ of summer trail, it’s one of the must-biked places. Likewise, it’s becoming increasingly popular during the winter. With a low access price of $8.70 per adult and $6.96 for students and children, this is truly worth the fee. Furthermore, they offer rentals for your convenience.
The 20 km of maintained trails offer magnificent scenery. The Delaney Waterfall turns out to be a satisfying ride for the beginner ones (and all). Still, there are also options for more experienced riders to have their fun. However, it might not be the right place for expert riders looking for steep descent and great obstacles.
How could I talk about places to fat bike in Quebec without talking about Empire 47? Impossible. E47 is offering a whooping 42 kilometers of machine groom snow just for your enjoyment. Indeed, Empire 47 is one of the most popular places to fat bike in Quebec, and for a reason. This is paradise for all levels of riders.
Access to the trails will cost $18.25 for adults and $8.70 for kids. But there are also family and season passes available. And, if you don’t have a bike, they have a great fleet of rentals, including e-bikes and juniors. Furthermore, they offer private and semi-private classes. Empire 47 is worth the detour. It’s a place you ought to discover.
Sentiers du Moulin
A little more expensive than the other places at $13.92 for adults and $10.44 for juniors, they also offer season pricing and rentals. With just under 30 km of snowy trails, Les Sentiers du Moulin is a great destination for thrill seekers. Indeed, the trails here are the closest you can get to the sensation you get on a mountain bike. Thus, making this place more suited for intermediate and advanced riders looking for a nice challenge. If Enduro is your sport, Sentiers du Moulin is undeniably for you.
This is probably the less known places I’m talking about. In the Center-of-Quebec region, this is a secret well kept. However, with its 29 km of free access trails, and growing, it’s a place to discover.
At La Courvalloise you will find your kind of trail that’s for sure. Indeed, they offer machine groomed trails, snowmobile traced singletracks, and snowshoers tapped trails. So regardless of what you like, you’ll be served. White-tailed deer at will included.
Parc National du Mont Orford
One of the other nice places to fat bike in Quebec is at the Parc National du Mont-Orford. This park is part of the SEPAQ, so entry and activity fees have to be paid. However, with about 25 km of mostly easy and intermediate trails, this is truly one of the nicest places in the Eastern Township for fat biking. Only downside, be ready to share the trails. Indeed, this is a busy place on most days. Rentals are available but you better reserve. And with one trail connecting to the ski resort, it makes it even easier to enjoy a day of multiple activities and family fun.
Parc de la Gorge de Coaticook
This is an incredible outdoor center all year round. Trails are supported by a strong local cycling community and tapped by snowshoers. With whom sections of trails are shared. The Parc de la Gorge de Coaticook has a very nice offering of all levels of difficulty and magnificent views. At $6 for adults and $4 for children, you won’t be disappointed. On the contrary, you will very much enjoy your day. And while you’re there, don’t forget to try their ice cream. The Coaticook ice cream is the best one ever!
Here you go, these are 10 places to fat bike in Quebec. Of course, there are a lot more. And each year, more kilometers are added to the offer. If you haven’t tried fat biking yet, I suggest you do. I’m sure you will like it more than you think. Yes, it can be cold. But like with any winter sports if you dress accordingly there’s only fun to have. See you on the trails!
What are your favorite places to fat bike in Quebec? Let me know in the comments.
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