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Mount St-Joseph

Altitude: 1,095 m (3,593 pi)
Trailhead: Mount Megantic National Park
Trail used: Three-summits loop (without Mount Victoria)
Difficulty: Difficult
Elevation gain: 496 m (1,627 ft)
Total elevation gain: 710 m (2,329ft)
Distance: 13.0 km (8.1 mi)
Time: 4:30
Cost: $8.50 / adult (free for kids)
Interest:
– First dark sky preserve
– Mount Megantic ASTROlab
– Loop possible with Mount Megantic

* This story tells of a hike combining the Mount Megantic and Mount St-Joseph.

Well, what a day it was! We have been waiting for this day for weeks! The snow, the sun, everything was combined for a perfect day! It was while waking up in the morning that I made my decision to go to Mount Megantic in fact. I was already in the area and I had planned to go there only if it was nice and while looking out the window, I knew it would be the perfect day!

So, we prepare ourself in a hurry and we took off. A little too quickly in fact, because arriving at the reception building, I could not find my wallet… I had forgotten it in my other coat home. What do I do? I can not go back to Lake-Megantic. Well, I open my phone and I realize that there is free wifi! Good news. I will therefore see the Sepaq site; I knew we could book and pay for chalets online, can we also pay for daily access? Well, yeah! So I pay it right away, I go to the reception and voila, I have my access for the day!

So without further delay, I take the path that goes up to Mount Megantic. Already at the base there is at least 30 centimeters of snow. It’s really magical because there is even snow on the branches of deciduous trees!

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By the way, there are already several cross-country ski trails that are ready for the interested!

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From the second kilometer, the climb is more sustained. We slow down the rhythm a little until we reach the altitude of 1000 m. From here, the trees are really well loaded with snow, it’s impressive!

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We start to cross a little more people coming closer to the summit and everyone is amazed by the beauty of all this snow on the trees. We finally arrive at the crossing with the trail of the refuge. Surprisingly, all people have taken the path that leads to the refuge so the trail that leads to the summit is completely snowed.

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That does not matter, we go to the trail of the summit following the 2-3 footsteps of the other motivated like me! And this decision was really paying because the landscape was just too wonderful with this powder snow almost immaculate! In short, I let you admire for yourself!

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Very quickly, we finally reache the summit where we can see the observatory between the snowy trees.

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So we took the time to put a few layers to keep warm at the top. There is not much wind but the temperature is around -16 °C (3 F), so as soon as we stop, we quickly get cold if we are not well dressed.

Again, the view from the Mont Megantic is magnificent! Here you can admire the west face of the mountain.

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So we do not hang around for too long because we have to go down to join the path of the pass that will allow us to reach Mount St. Joseph. To do this, we take the observatory road that looks like a road from northern Siberia!

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Then we take the path and we accelerate the pace in the descent. We quickly reach the shelter of the three summits pass where we meet other outdoor enthusiasts.

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About 1h after leaving the summit of Mount Megantic we reach the summit of Mount St. Joseph and here also the snow is there!

Just like on Mont Megantic, there is also a refuge, so I take the opportunity to take a break to warm up and nibble a little before the best time of the day, just before sunset!

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I do not really like too stop in a shelter in winter because I always dread the moment when I will have to go out! Returning to the cold with wet clothes is never very pleasant! But hey, at least we could warm up a little and I feel ready to begin the abrupt descent of Mount St. Joseph.

When I go to Mont Megantic, I often make the three summits loop in this direction because I love to finish at sunset with the superb unobstructed views that we find on the trail of Mount St. Joseph! Is not it magical?

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I love to go down and admire the scenery over the trees!

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The Mount St-Joseph trail is really my favorite because it offers several truly interesting views, unlike that of Mount Megantic which only offers one point of view before reaching the summit. Here, on the ridge, there are several!

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And if you are there for more than a day, I strongly advise you to book one night in the magnificent Pilgrims hut located on this same trail! This hut is perched on a cliff where you can enjoy the scenery all night long!

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In short, the end of the day and this wonderful hike is approaching, but there are still a few kilometers to go through in that beautiful setting!

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So here it was the story of a perfect winter hike! Do not hesitate to comment or go see my Facebook page @4000hikes for other such incredible hikes!

And a last one to finish!

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