Mont Tremblant National Park

Distance from Ottawa to Mont Tremblant 238km

Every trip needs a character building experience. One that pushes you way, way out of your comfort zone and leaves you a stronger person as a result. It seems that our stay in the National Park was it…

Our first day in the Park was great. The sun was shining and even the fact that the nearest supermarket was nearly half an hours drive away, there was no bedding and no English speaking rangers could dampen our spirits.

We knew the cabin we booked would be basic. After all, how much luxury can you expect in a small wooden shack in the middle of a 1500 km2 forest. We were going off grid.

Apart from one other cabin five minutes up the track, we were pretty isolated. With our own lookout, BBQ and canoe we had everything we needed.

Making the most out of the weather, we headed out on the lake and paddled around Lake Assumption before jumping in the lake for a dip*. It was like something from a film.

*It was here that I finally ticked off another of my Thirty Before Thirty list. Skinny dipping! You can bet that after seeing no one, the second I jumped in a ranger in a boat turns up. Great timing.

Sounds pretty idyllicso far right? Wait for it…

Now a bad nights sleep doesn’t ever set you up for a good day does it. After a pretty uncomfortable night under my beach towel, or curtain in Scott’s case, the sound of driving rain was not what I wanted to hear.

After a lazy breakfast and a few chapters of my book, the rain hadn’t given in so we decided to ‘waterproof up’ and head out for a hike.

There was a trail nearby which took you on a 5km loop to a lookout point. That would do.

To be fair the walk was nice, all be it very steep. And thankfully the mozzies stayed away from me, Scott bared the brunt here. I swear that Bug Spray is just clever marketing for ‘tiny can of smelly water’.

The lookout was stunning and although it was raining there was a great view of the National Park.

Time to retreat to the cabin for some lunch and to dry off and count the mozzie bites. Scott 9. Vicky 2.

After drenching ourselves in more ‘bug repellent’ we headed out for another walk. This time a 7km loop.

As soon as we stepped out the car, we should have known. We were like a magnet for all mozzies in the entire world.

We were covered head to toe and all bug sprayed up, we should be ok… fingers crossed.

If only there was a returns policy for when the ‘fingers crossed’ trick doesn’t work.

Again the walk was stunning. It was peaceful, had beautiful views and even some wildlife other than mozzies.

The only thing that disturbed the serenity was my leg slapping dance. For 7kms I performed. One step, two step, slap slap.

I knew I’d been bitten to hell and back. I’m never normally bitten so maybe this is my payback. Some kind of mozzie karma.

When we got back to the cabin it was time for another reccy. Scott 10. Vicky… well I stopped counting at 40. And that was just on my legs.

Needless to say it was an uncomfortable evening and second night under our beach towels. At least a little mouse came to keep us company…

Parc Omega

Instead of heading straight to Montreal. We took a two hour detour to a nature reserve called Parc Omega. It’s a bit like Longleat but on a huge scale!!

The car trail takes you through different landscapes, each carefully crafted for the furry inhabitants.

Feeding elk and wild boar carrots made the day before all worth it! We hadn’t seen any wildlife in the true wild so this was heaven. We got to see countless deer, bison, wolves and bears all in their natural habitat.

If you’re visiting Ottawa or Montreal, I’d 100% recommend coming here! It’s only about an hour and a half from the cities and is amazing!

You can even stay in cabins on site to experience your own bit of Mont Tremblant.

Update: Two days and two pharmacy trips later and my legs are starting to recover. I still look like I have chicken pox but at least I have been able to retire the leg slapping dance.

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