Sainte-Anne-de-la-Perade is located in the Les Chenaux County of the Mauricie Region, near the mouth of the Ste-Anne River along the King's Road, a historic segment of Quebec 138 Highway that stretches from Montreal to Quebec City.
It has a population of about 2 thousand. This land was granted as a seignory to Edmond de Sueve and Thomas Tarieu de Lanouguere (or Lanaudiere), 1672. In 1693, the Parish of Ste-Anne-de-la-Pérade was erected and in 1855, the parish municipality was established. Today, its population is of about 2000 permanent inhabitants. The community is renowned as the world capital of Tommy Cod Fishing. In fact, during Tommy Cod season, from late December to mid-February, dozens of thousands of tourists come to Ste-Anne for ice fishing.
A fishing village is built on the frozen waters of the Ste-Anne River. Atlantic Tomcod has an elongated and slender body and its average size is of about 15 to 20 cm, up 45 cm. Its reproduction is in winter, December and January. The tomcod ice fishing phenomenon is not just recent. According to a number of documents from the first French pioneers, the ‘‘winter fish’’ in Trois-Rivieres and in the St. Lawrence River took place in the early 17th century.
When the tomcod left the St-Maurice River, which was polluted because of industrialization, it adopted the Sainte-Anne River as a safe place to spawn. Nowadays, tomcod fishing in Sainte-Anne is flourishing. The school of fish is only exploited for tourism and recreational activities.
You'll find comfortable fishing shelters with heat and electricity on the place. A whole range of different outdoor activities are offered and the clientele mainly consists of families. The originality and the singularity of the event have attracted more and more European visitors.
All 500 fishing shelters on the St-Anne River are alike. They are heated (most of them with wood), have electric light and have at least one socket. The fishing equipment is already installed and is ready to use. Shelters are furnished with a small table, some chairs, a seat (or a couch) and some benches in front of the fishing lines. However, they aren’t equipped to sleep in. It is also possible to cook if the stove has a small cooking surface.
However, guests must bring their own tableware and cooking utensils. Guests can visit as well a masterpiece of Quebec religious architecture, Ste-Anne-de-la-Perade Church, a Catholic church near the banks of the Ste-Anne River, modelled after the Notre-Dame Basilica in Montreal.