I got into skiing early, night skiing at Camp Fortune during elementary school. During high school, I had a season pass which caused a few skipped afternoons. I kept up skiing in high school with some straight all camber 210cm rockets when many buddies switched to snowboards during the early days of the sport. After high school though I basically stopped downhill skiing. I was based in Toronto for a while then Yellowknife up in the North West Territories where snow machining was the thing to do. Finally, when I moved back to Ottawa I decided to get back into alpine. I love downhill skiing... why had I stopped! Well, I bought some used Fischer Wateas 78's 181cms and got back on the hill. You don't forget how to ski. Anyway, I'm now hooked. Look I'm not some expert free rider or ex-racer but I like to go fast and I'll ski in any condition. I've switched up my skis a couple times now slowly moving to wider skis with more rocker. I've also tried Telemark skiing. I love skiing, I love being outside in winter, I love railing groomers and of course breaking fresh tracks in the powder. See you on the hill.

Camp Fortune - February 24, 2021


Wow, a sleeper powder day! What a way to end a workday. The snow started coming down heavy in Gatineau around noon and didn't stop. By the time I got to the Skyline parking lot, there were 10cms already on the ground. This would be the best day of the season so far. Loads of fresh stuff, almost no lines and creamy turns. Goggles were a must and I fought off some fogging issues. The temperature was around zero and the snow was a little wet but not overly heavy. I had no problem sailing through mashed-up powder. Heggtveit was my first run and how nice it was. If you arrive around 4ish hit Hegg first before they close it for the night. Every run on Skyline was perfect. Later we poled our way to the Valley side. So much untouched powder but then the power went out! I feared I would be stuck in the valley with my car on Skyline. After about 10 minutes they got the lifts going again but the trail lights were still off. We arrived at the top of Slalom in darkness...
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Shane Séguin
Incredible snowfall yesterday. The flakes were so large and fluffy. Happy to see you got up to the slopes to enjoy it. I saw pics... Read More
Thursday, 25 February 2021 10:36
Paul Gordon
The glades between those Meech runs would be amazing today.
Thursday, 25 February 2021 11:09
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Camp Fortune - February 5, 2021

Have they cut down all the bush near the road? The view is a lot better.

Friday morning at Camp Fortune was a great way to end the week.  The snow was coming down hard layering the perfectly groomed runs with 2-4cms of fresh stuff. Even a couple of centimetres has a great physiological effect on your skiing! Once again Camp Fortune has done an amazing job dealing with a very odd season plus low snowfall. All the main runs are open on all three sides of the resort. Only the glades and natural snow runs wait for a couple more snowfalls. I spent most of my time on Skyline and all the runs felt great.  There was little crust under the new snow but nothing a well-tuned ski couldn't handle.  Which reminds me I've been lazy this year and still need to wax! The valley side seemed to have more natural snow and Slalom seemed almost untouched.  I was expecting big line ups but the place was almost empty.  I've been skiing a lot of nights and from 2-4pm it's pretty quiet but then the lines form and it can...
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Shane Séguin
Great report Paul. Conditions look fantastic. Camp Fortune shared this message to your report on Facebook: Hey Paul, the trees on... Read More
Saturday, 06 February 2021 09:44
Paul Gordon
Ah yes that section of the road is pretty bad. Good to know.
Sunday, 07 February 2021 08:13
— Robert Schwin
Fantastic snow. Can't wait to later this week. Skyline looks loaded with snow!
Sunday, 07 February 2021 15:33
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Camp Fortune - December 20, 2020


I rolled into Camp Fortune around 8:45am on a snowy Sunday. This was my first day of the season and probably my latest start in years. Warm weather in November, little or no snow in December and COVID haven't helped! I was directed to the main parking lot in the valley. Then after suiting up in the parking lot you are screened at a makeshift gate. Have you been out of the country? Are you feeling ill? Have you been around anyone with COVID? etc... After getting passed that it was time to ski. Fortune only had Pineault, Marshall and one of the magic carpets open. The lifts spun just before 9am and the first 4-5 runs were great. The manmade snow was well groomed and the natural snow was now falling harder. Considering what Fortune has had to work with you can't complain that much. By 10am though it was getting busy. Unless you are family or from the same household you have to ride the chair lift as a single. Ski team groups which are still running? were slowing things down majorly. All t...
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Mont Tremblant - March 8, 2020


Sunday and the last day of March Break in Quebec. The time change was painful but the mountain was perfect with all 102 trails open. Temperatures in the morning were around -3c and by the afternoon +3c. Bonus, zero wind. We rolled in around 8:30am and stayed till last chair. The day was that good with perfect groomers or moguls and trees galore. The crazy thing is we though it would be super busy, we were wrong. Most lines were less then a couple minutes. Maybe all the March break holiday people left on Saturday? Anyway the snow was soft enough to hit the trees without fear and everything just felt right. Get up here as the next couple weeks maybe a melt down. On the edge of Expo Haute Tension mogulfest Top of Le Edge Me somewhere The Taiga glade is vast. Wow
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Camp Fortune - February 27, 2020


Well, we didn't quite get the snowmageddon that was hyped but the skiing at Camp Fortune was great regardless. 10cms of wet snow had fallen overnight and it would snow heavily all morning bringing the total to close to 25cms by midday. The drive was not great as highway 5 was like a cart track but it was worth the trek. With temperatures around zero, the fresh snow was heavy but you can't complain. I managed to get fresh lines for a few runs on Heggtveit and Craigsmarc before moving to Meech and getting the first run after the Ski Patrol on the La Cache glade. After several powder-filled runs on the Meech side, I moved to the valley. The valley was quiet with the trick park closed off as well as Allen's Ally for a race. Slalom and Duffy had loads of fresh snow though. Back on Skyline things were clumping up fast but my legs were pretty much done by noon anyway. On a sad note just after lunch Fortune had to close because of power issues. Yesterday they were closed for a few hours in the...
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Mont Ste Marie - January 26, 2020


What a difference a couple of weeks and a couple of big snowfalls make. Mont Ste Marie was in peak "Winter Wonderland" mode on Sunday. Over 10cms had fallen overnight and the snow would come down heavy the rest of the day. The 1200ft vertical mountain was 100% open including all the glades. The drive up was a little greasy and we got stuck behind a fleet of plows up oh boy was it worth it. The steeps were deep and the glades were fresh. What else can I say we got soaked and our legs were burned but we stayed till the last chair. Get it while it's good! Dustin Cook is snowed in. Carousel Sous-bois Going into Deep Purple Betsy, I think.
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Camp Fortune - January 19, 2020


17cms of blower came in sideways Saturday night. The result was fantastic skiing Sunday at Camp Fortune. We managed to dig out and make it to the Skyline before 9am. Camp Fortune had groomed on Saturday night so there was a nice layer of light powder on top of a firm base. Conditions of course were excellent. Smooth and smeary. After a bunch of runs on Skyline, we skated over to the valley and then hit the runs on Meech at 10ish. The new glade was open off Paradis called La Cache Sous-Bois. The glade runs from the right side of Paradis down and under the lift exiting North American. The run has a great pitch after the initial flat entrance with two main lines, one steeper and exiting farther up the hill. We spent most of the morning on La Cache before heading back to Skyline. The runs in the valley were also perfect but the place started to get busy with ski schools around 11am. In fact, the entire parking lot in the valley looked full by noon. Skyline still had lots of spots though. H...
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Mont Tremblant - January 4, 2020


Soft turns and fog was name of the game on Friday. We rolled into Tremblant around 9am after a easy two hour drive from Ottawa. The place was busy with almost all the parking lots at capacity. The temperature was around zero and with no wind the top third of the mountain was a total white out. First off the lineup at the gondola was insane because the lift was not moving. We quickly moved over to the Flying Mile and then skied down to TGV to get to the top. The gondola started back up soon after. With 93 trails open there was plenty of options. We started with Laurentienne on the Soleil side. The snow was nice and soft. Tremblant had gotten about 25cms over the week. Options were soft groomers or natural bump runs. The forgiving moguls on Jasey-Jay Anderson were really nice. The fog was a bit of a bummer as you really couldn't rip the steep top pitches as the visibility was very limited. Maybe if we knew the mountain better it wouldn't have mattered. Regardless warm weather and no wind...
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Camp Fortune - January 1, 2020


The new year at Camp Fortune rolled in with 25cms of snow over 24hrs. Fortune must have groomed after the snowfall as everything was perfect corduroy. Skyline is open with Bud Clark, Canadian, Chute , and Sparks. Heggtveit was getting setup for snowmaking once the temperatures drop. The ropes have not dropped yet on Swan Dive or the glades, maybe after another good snow fall. Conditions were great and the lines were small. I managed to get second chair after waiting with a small line of early risers. Every trail in the Valley is open with the exception of the T-bar runs. The Meech lift runs were also open. The temperatures were hovering around zero and light snow began to fall around 10am. Lots of snow on the crossover trail of Humdinger as Fortune made/pushed snow across the trail this year. Overall a great start to the new year.  
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Camp Fortune - December 15, 2019


Quick update on conditions at Camp Fortune. Saturday was grim, cold rain all day but as the sun went down we had a switch over. The snow started around 6pm in Chelsea and 8pm in Ottawa. The result 12cms at Camp Fortune! Instant winter wonderland with the sticky stuff clinging to trees and chair lifts. Note to self I need better ski pants. Anyways, Fortune had 5 runs open in the Valley on Sunday. The conditions were good on Marshall and Clifford, hard-packed groomers with some fresh on top. Pineault had lots of park rails and jumps setup but the wind was blowing unpleasantly uphill. Now that the cold weather is back Slalom and Skyline should be open by the weekend. Slalom has loads of snow whales all over it. Skyline is pretty much ready with Canadian, Sparks and Bud Clark already groomed. A couple more snowfalls and the place should be hopping for Christmas break. Enjoy. 
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Mont Tremblant - December 7th/8th, 2019


Wow, what a killer weekend at Mont Tremblant! I drove up late Friday to meet some buddies from Toronto who had a hotel room a few minutes from the resort. Our expectations were not high as it was early season and there was the 24hr relay race on the south side. Tremblant brought the goods though. They had just gotten 10cms and on Saturday they opened up "Le Edge" for the first time this season as well as the runs off the Expo Express Quad. We had powder skiing on December 6th! along with 49 open runs on Saturday and 53 on Sunday. The temperatures were hovering around -15c in the morning and -8c in the afternoon. Lots of snowmaking was happening. Anyway, after railing some groomers on the North Side we got in a couple of powder runs going down Fuddle Duddle and Windigo then hit Le Edge for more all-natural tree runs. We stayed on the Edge side for a while before heading back to the south side for some afternoon groomer action. Sunday was a repeat with lots of powder stashes left in the ...
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Camp Fortune - November 16, 2019


Opening day at Camp Fortune was a crisp (-12c) bluebird day. This is the 100th season! and people are pumped. Two runs, Pineault and Allen's Ally were open and the conditions were great. The trails are covered in perfect machine made corduroy with about 20cms of natural snow along the edges. There are also a few rails and small jumps setup for the park kids. I arrived a little after 9 missing first chair. I stayed for a few hours and got a bunch of runs in before the place started to get busy. People are very eager. A great first day to a very early start. Snowmaking has moved to Clifford and hopefully by next weekend both Clifford and Marshall may be open.   I bought some swag!  
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Mont Chilly


Mont Chilly is located just north of Fort-Coulonge, in the Pontiac region of Western Quebec. The drive along Highway 148 from downtown Ottawa/Gatineau takes about 1.5 hours. Another option is to drive on the Ontario side and cross the Ottawa River at Portage-du-Fort. Mont Chilly calls itself a "Micro Resort". The vertical drop is 430ft (130meters) with seven runs that have a consistent fall line. The runs include three glade trails and a steep double black bump run. Think of it as a mini Mad River Glen. The hill is serviced by a single T-bar hand-built by Larry Hernberger. The lift pulls you 800ft up in under 8 minutes. The Hernberger family has owned Mont Chilly since its opening in 1966-67. This is truly a family-run endeavour with three generations of the Hernberger family involved at Mont Chilly, from Larry to his son Rick, and his son Kurtis. They alone operate the hill with the occasional volunteer and a single ski patroller.  The Mountain and the Ski Trails The mountain fea...
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Hiking - Parc des Chutes de Denholm - July 14, 2018


About an hour north of Ottawa is a virtually unknown hiking trail near the town on Denholm. Parc des Chutes de Denholm is located on the Paugan road which connects Denholm with Low, Quebec. I drove in from the Denholm side as I was staying at a cottage near by. From the Low side you would have to cross the Paugan dam. The hike consists of a 4km loop plus several smaller side trails. The hike starts at a small falls and climbs quickly and steeply before leveling out. One interesting aspect to the trail is commissioned public art that pops up along the walk. The hike is well marked with a single picnic table near the falls at the bottom and at the first lookout. There is also two rustic outhouses near the small parking lot. If you want to get away from it all this hike is for you. We didn't see a single person for the 2 hours it took us to take in all the trails. The main loop travels mainly through dense hardwoods crossing a creek at the half way point then connecting briefly with a gra...
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Algonquin Park - Kiosk Loop May 17-20th 2018


This year's Victoria Day weekend canoe trip was at the northern end of Algonquin Park. The access point was Kioshkokwi (Kiosk) lake about a 3.5 hour drive from Ottawa along highway 17. Take the 17 up to Mattawa then west along the Trans Canada until to see the turn off for 630 south into the park. Please watch out for speed traps along the 17 especially near Petawawa. There is an outfitter on the corner of 17 and 630 that you can rent canoes from (Algonquin North Wilderness Outfitters). There is also a ski hill 8km north of Mattawa called Antoine Mountain but I didn't have time to check it out. This year's trip would be 4 days, 3 nights in the park doing a loop from Kiosk lake south into Waterclear lake for a night, then Erables and Maple. With the final day paddling down the Maple River. We had very good weather for May with one day of rain on Saturday. The best thing though was no bugs! Like zero black flies or mosquitoes. The fact that the ice had just come off most of the lakes bet...
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