/ #biking #cross-country 

Snowfall kicks off Gatineau Park cross-country ski and snowshoe season

_ (via the NCC) _ With this week’s heavy snowfall, the cross-country ski and snowshoe season is officially open in Gatineau Park, the Capital’s conservation park. Outdoor enthusiasts currently have access to 105 kilometres of ski trails and 43 kilometres of snowshoe trails.

 

Gatineau Park boasts one of North America’s most beautiful—and most popular —winter trail networks, located only 15 minutes from Parliament Hill. This more than 250-kilometre network includes 200 kilometres of ski trails, 60 kilometres of snowshoe trails and10 kilometres of hiking trails, winding through the Park’s forests and along frozen lakes and river valleys. In addition, the network includes 10 day-use shelters. The Park also offers 30 kilometres of beautiful scenery for skiers on the parkways.

** NEW: Snow Biking in Gatineau Park ** Snow biking is now permitted on 10 kilometres of trails in the Park (snowshoe trails 64, 65, 66 and 67).The main starting point is from parking lot P1 (Asticou). The rates are the same as those for a snowshoe pass . This pilot project is in collaboration with the ** ** ** Ottawa Mountain Bike Association ** .

** Winter Accommodations ** Skiers and snowshoers can also add to their experience by spending the night in the Park, which offers four cabins, four yurts and four 4-season tents. For those who are more adventurous, there is winter camping at Philippe Lake. Stay during the week and get a 30% to 50% discount. ** Trail Conditions ** ** ** Up-to-date ski and snowshoe conditions can be found by visiting the Gatineau Park website, updated twice daily. The National Capital Commission (NCC) would like to remind users to stay on the designated trails and not to venture onto frozen water surfaces. Pets are permitted on leash on winter walking trails only. ** Ski ** ** and ** ** Snowshoe ** ** Passes ** ** ** You can purchase a season pass
 * 
online at
[
 gatineaupark.gc.ca
](http://www.gatineaupark.gc.ca/)

 * 
person at the
[
 Gatineau Park Visitor Centre
](http://www.ncc-ccn.gc.ca/places-to-visit/gatineau-park/visitor-information)
(33 Scott Road, Chelsea, Quebec)

You can purchase a daily pass

 * 
at the
[
 Gatineau Park Visitor Centre
](http://www.ncc-ccn.gc.ca/places-to-visit/gatineau-park/visitor-information)

 * 
in the parking lots at the starting points of Gatineau Park ski and snowshoe trails

The public can also borrow free ski and snowshoe passes at the following municipal libraries:

 * 
[
 Ottawa Public Library
](http://biblioottawalibrary.ca/)

 * 
[
 Gatineau Public Library
](http://www.gatineau.ca/page.asp?a=culture&c=en-CA&p=quoi_faire/bibliotheque)

 * 
[
 Centre régional de services aux bibliothèques publiques de l’Outaouais
](http://www.crsbpo.qc.ca/)

 * 
[
 Chelsea Library
](http://www.chelsea.ca/?q=node/46&lg=en)

Snowshoes are available for rental at the Gatineau Park Visitor Centre :

 * 
Monday to Friday, 9 am to 2:30 pm (last rental)

 * 
Saturday and Sunday, 9 am to 3:30 pm (last rental)

** _ Gatineau Park Visitor Centre _ ** Winter hours (November 2 to April 30)

 * 
Monday to Friday, 9 am to 4 pm

 * 
Saturday and Sunday, 9 am to 5 pm

** Holiday hours **

 * 
Extended hours from December 26, 2015, to January 3, 2016, 9 am to 5 pm

For more information about Gatineau Park, contact the NCC at 819-827-2020 , 1-866-456-3016 (toll-free), 613-239-5090 (TTY) or 1-866-661-3530 (toll-free TTY), visit gatineaupark.gc.ca , follow us on Twitter @NCC_GatPark or Facebook|Gatineau Park , sign up for our Gatineau Park newsletter , or visit the Gatineau Park Visitor Centre , 33 Scott Road, Chelsea, Quebec.