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Shane

Mont Cascades expansion - A complete resort is coming

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The big news making the rounds on CBC end of January 2015 was the big reveal that Mont Cascades is planning a big transformation, billed to create a mini resort, similar to Mont Tremblant.

You can find the original stories here on CBC (http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/ottawa/mont-cascades-owner-plans-to-expand-on-all-sides-of-mountain-1.2937221) and here on Radio-Canada (http://ici.radio-canada.ca/regions/ottawa/2015/01/30/010-developpement-projet-mont-cascades-ski-outaouais-investissements.shtml).

Currently Mont Cascades has skiing on two sides of the mountain, but this plan will create ski trails on all 4 sides. Additional lifts servicing the new terrain are also planned. At the base, a pedestrian village (similar to Mont Tremblant) will be constructed, complete with restaurants, shops and lodging. These plans have a timeline of 5-10 years.

A new quad chairlift (a $2 million investment) is mentioned to be coming for the next ski season, and has since been confirmed.

Being ever curious myself, a quick Google Search on Mont Cascades expansion yielded some preliminary plans, completed a few years ago, showing the scope of the expansion. These plans, created by Ecosign.com also list a mountain top restaurant, a combi lift (detachable chairlift with gondola cabins) and a pulse gondola, to link the parking with the new village. Also mentioned is an alpine luge attraction, but it is not clear if this is being visioned as a luge similar to the one at Tremblant or the one at Bromont, or even an alpine coaster like the one at Mont Saint-Sauveur. These plans were found on the Ecosign.com website, which is a resort and master plan developer.

It is important to note that the only word on this project has come from the CBC and Radio-Canada reports. Nothing has been made official or announced yet by Mont Cascades. Until such time that there is official announcement or news, this information should be taken as a possibility of development rather than anything confirmed to be moving ahead.

This is definitely a story I will be following, and as new information or something official becomes available, I will share it below.

UPDATES:
April 2015 - New Quad chairlift to replace the existing Double chairlift located between both mountain sides - CONFIRMED.

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It's been a while since I posted anything about the expansion at Mont Cascades, however  yesterday an investment announcement by the Quebec government confirmed that plans are still alive and moving forward.

After the installation of the East Quad chairlift back in 2015, the next phase will occur over the next 3 years. It will see 4 new trails cut on the West side of the mountain, dropping in towards the Gatineau River. A new quad chairlift will service this area. It is reported that it will have a vertical drop of 620 feet, which is approximately 170 feet more than the main side of the existing mountain.

In addition, renovations to the main chalet, and cafeteria will occur. Snowmaking improvements as well as enlargement of the beginners area. The original plans of more trails to completely surround the mountain, and the lodging and real estate are still to come but they are focusing for now on the skiing.

Here is the Quebec press release in French : http://www.tourisme.gouv.qc.ca/medias/communiques/gouvernement-quebec-investit-plus-1-5-m-pour-bonifier-tourisme-hivernal-mont-cascades-2257.html

An article on Le Droit : https://www.ledroit.com/actualites/le-versant-ouest-du-mont-cascades-skiable-dici-trois-ans-52e88cae719112646c159094afe1b408

And here is a photo of the announcement from Mont Cascades facebook page. You can see the plans show the new trails and lift. The new trails go to the right towards the lake.

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Great news that they are focusing on the skiing first.   Those west side trails look long. Hopefully they are black diamonds as the resort really needs more steeper terrain.

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Hopeful too. Of the 4 trails, one seems to take a longer loop outwards from the other 3, which I would assume is an indication it would be a beginner or intermediate, the rest may be more challenging. I have done some snowshoeing on that side of the mountain but I can't recall off the top of my head if it really drops off or what.

Eager to see what happens. Hoping it opens up sooner than 3 years from now.

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Here is a better image of the currently announced expansion, with the new quad chairlift and trails.

Interestingly the map shows the length and vertical of each lift.

The existing lifts are (in feet)

  • World Cup Triple (1840 ft long - 450 ft vertical rise).
  • East Quad (2300 ft long - 380 ft vertical rise).
  • Promenade Quad (2460 ft long - 420 ft vertical rise).

The new lift will be

  • New Quad (3080 ft long - 620 ft vertical rise).

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These are quite good numbers for the new lift and give a good idea of what the skiing will be like on the new west side. It should have quite a good drop to it, very similar to what we have at Edelweiss as the vertical will be pretty much the same.

Interesting side note, I always thought the Promenade Quad had a higher vertical than the Triple chairlift. I guess I was wrong... 30 feet is still 30 feet higher.

Very excited by this development. Really hoping it happens sooner than 3 years from now.

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Heard from a work friend , who was told by a friend who was riding with the owner, that the new lift may be installed in 2021-2022 ish. (I misunderstood so not sure if it will go in this summer or the next or so.) But apparently it is still moving ahead.

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I really hope this happens @Shane it would a great addition to Mont Cascades terrain.  They need a few more black diamonds and extra vertical is always good. 

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