Centre de Ski Le Relais in Quebec, Canada, is a popular destination for skiers and snowboarders. As part of a series on ski resorts, Huffington Post Travel offers our guide to Centre de Ski Le Relais, featuring all the key information snow lovers need to know before they hit the slopes.
The BasicsCentre de Ski Le Relais is located about 15 minutes from downtown Quebec City, Canada. Le Relais is known for high-quality tracks that are illuminated at night. The mountain shares the Quebec-area spotlight with three other ski fields, Mont Sainte-Anne, Le Massif and Stoneham. The Centre is about 17 miles from the nearest airport in Quebec City.
The MountainWith a summit of just 1,407 feet, snowfall at Le Relais rarely reaches the epic amounts seen at some famous resorts such as Vail and Mammoth mountains; Le Relais averages 134 inches of snow per year and supplements the natural stuff with powder of its own. The ski center, which covers 173 acres of terrain, features a 672-foot vertical drop. The longest run measures 6,742 feet. With the cold Canadian climate and the mountain's advanced snowmaking capabilities, the season at Le Relais typically begins right after Thanksgiving and runs late into the spring.
Trails And LiftsCentre de Ski Le Relais offers 29 trails, 25 of which are open for night skiing. In spite of the short stature of the mountain, the bulk of these trails are for experienced skiers only, with 55 percent of the runs categorized as advanced or expert. Twenty-three percent of the runs are intermediate level, leaving 22 percent for beginners. Le Relais has seven lifts to carry skiers to these runs, consisting of a double lift, quad chair, high-speed double, detachable quad chair, magic carpet and two single lifts. In addition to night skiing, the ski center offers a terrain park that includes rails, jumps, a quarter pipe and a wall-ride for skiers and snowboarders of all abilities.
In The NewsCentre de Ski Le Relais, opened in 1938, was the first ski area around Quebec City. Since then, one of the primary focuses of the resort has been on ski instruction. Le Relais was the first Canadian resort to host a women's-only ski school, and has since gone on to host a number of national and international competitions. In February 2000, Le Relais hosted the World Junior Championships and the Nations Cup, attracting a global audience. Le Centre National d'Entrainement Acrobatique Yves Laroche, an aerial ski center, also calls Le Relais its home.
CostTicket prices at Le Relais are quoted in Canadian dollars; adult day tickets cost $36.87. Discounted tickets are available for seniors, students, children, youths and night skiers, as well as for three-hour tickets and multiday passes. Le Relais offers standard rental options of both ski and snowboard equipment, with the traditional full-day ski package rental going for $30. The extensive snow school program at Le Relais offers a wide variety of instruction options, from group lessons to private lessons to a "skiing under the stars" training program. Costs are similarly varied, with the standard adult group lesson running about $155. Season passes of varying types are also available, with adult passes costing $599.
Apres-SkiLe Relais offers a calendar of events held at the ski field, but the center is more about skiing and less about nightlife. On-site, the resort offers a cafeteria, bistro and bar for hungry guests. Le Relais relies on its proximity to the cosmopolitan city of Quebec to offer traditional apres-ski activities to its guests, lying just 15 minutes away. The town of Lac Beauport, which plays host to Le Relais, offers small-town amenities for skiers looking for less active pursuits.
WATCH: Centre De Ski Le Relais
Night skiing is a big draw at Le Relais.