The Mauricie National Park
The Mauricie National Park, created in 1970, invites visitors to a close encounter with the Laurentians Mountains, the chain flanking the northern shore of the St. Lawrence River.
A haven of conservation where learning, playing and dreaming come naturally, this park covers an area of 536 square kilometres (205 square miles). It gives off an air of serenity throughout its gently contoured terrain.
The park is located on a vast plateau of rolling hills intersected by valleys and dotted with many lakes and streams. Animal life moves here in perfect unison with nature and the park is home to a stunning variety of flora. Only the changes of the seasons mark the passage of time, retouching the landscape with subtle strokes and calling visitors with a promise of activity and relaxation. Guests enjoy the most spectacular panoramas, along with an appetizing array of outdoor activities that include hiking, canoeing and kayaking.
The Mauricie National park has safeguarded the integrity of this richly endowed land, protecting it as a representative sample of the southernmost part of the Canadian Shield. Actually, the Mauricie region abounds in green spaces where it is always good to breathe some fresh air. You can explore the 63-km-long Parkway and witness the beauty of the Laurentian panoramas, taking adavantage of the intepretation panels along the road.
Abord a Rabaska canoe, relive the history of the park or delve into a lake's mysteries. Take a cruise on the Saint-Maurice River or enjoy one of the evening talks given in the park's amphitheatres. At la Mauricie, you're always welcome to get close to Laurentian nature.
Besides, if you are fascintaed by forests, you can try out the nature hunt at Lac-Étienne. It's a special guided interpretation activity that's accessible to all, including visitors in wheelchairs. Read the brochures and intepretation panels to pack more plesaure into your excursion over a multitud of designated trails from 1 to 75 km in length, let the stillness of this vast territory work its charm on you and discover the secrets of the forest in pleasant company. The Anticagamac Lak in the backcountry is a small jewel, as well as Pimbina Lake witrh its enchanted scenery.
You can paddle across tranquil lakes and portage over the same trails once used by Aboriginal people and the coureurs des bois.. You'll be carried away by the magic of the Laurentians.
Thus, a few other parks and two major nature reserves - Mastigouche and Saint-Maurice - form the backdrop to some of the Mauricie’s most breathtaking rivers.
When fall arrives, you can contemplate the multicoloured canvases put on display by the Laurentian forest. During the winter, given the ideal snow conditions offered up by the region, visitors can add ice fishing, cross-country skiing, dogsled and skating to their menu.
In winter, enojoy the 80-km network of marked and groomed trails, whether you're a beginner, intermediate or expert skier. There are heated shelters every 5 km. Glide on through winter!
A visit to the Mauricie National park of Canada is an excellent opportunity to connect with the history of the people who shaped the identity of the St. Maurice Region.
The parks offers designated campgrounds located in wooded areas, such as the Rivière-à-la-Pêche campground. You should reserve your site as early as possible, from spring onward.
You'll get your trip off to a good start by visiting the Visitor Reception and Interpretation Centre in Saint-Jean-des-Piles, featuring exhibitions, interactive games and sildeshow. A copy of the park's discovery map is available there. You can stay in the region's various bed-and-breakfasts, inns, and hotels, taking advantage of cozy, comfortable lodging year-round. For example, you can stay at the Wabenaki and Andrew Lodges and relive the glory years of the fish and game clubs. These heritage buildings are located at the heart of a vast network of trails and lakes.