In Quebec, many alpine enthusiasts have hit the slopes over the past few days.
The tracks are now open on several mountains, and according to the Weather Network, the forecast is favourable for a long season of skiing.
Six resorts across the province have kicked off the ski season, including Ski Saint-Bruno, Camp Fortune, Mont Habitant, Ski Montcalm, Mount Edward and Mont-Vidéo.
Saint-Sauveur Summit launched its season even earlier than others, with activities starting on Nov. 8.
The cold temperatures and unusual amount of snowfall in the first half of the month created ideal ski conditions, according to Simon Pagé, director of customer experience for Saint-Sauveur.
He added: “We’re used to opening early, but temperatures of -7 degrees or -8 degrees during the night allow us to create very high-quality snow and open up a lot more tracks, and over the next few days, the area will continue to grow.”
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In 54 years, this marks the first time Mont-Vidéo started its activities so early. Last year, the mountain in the Abitibi area welcomed its first skiers on Dec. 9.
“It’s historic, and we had a lot of people at the station,” said Kathy Lévesque, director of administration at the resort.
At Mont-Saint-Bruno in Montérégie, 10 out of 18 tracks were open this weekend.
“It’s a great start. We had almost 7,000 people between Thursday and Sunday at noon,” said marketing director Stéphanie Grenier. “And to see the number of people — everyone is excited, it’s going to be a very beautiful and long season this year.”
A long, snowy winter
To the delight of snow sports enthusiasts, the Weather Network is predicting a long and snowy winter.
“It’s going to be a good season to practise winter sports. Last year, the rain made sports difficult, but it should be better this year,” said André Monette, head of the meteorological service in Paris.
However, while a lot of snow is on the horizon, cold spells could spoil the pleasure of athletes.
“The cold air dome must not stagnate too often in Quebec,” said Monette. “If the cold drafts are long, it will be more difficult (for winter sports).”
— With files from Global News’ Kalina Laframboise