At the invitation of the director-general of the Fédération québécoise des clubs Quad (FQCQ), mr. Danny Gagnon, I participated last week in a winter hiking quad. He wanted me to enjoy the activity as it is today, with the trails and the work of the volunteers of the clubs.
“For us, it is the season of the most popular in terms of number of members, says mr. Gagnon. Over 35 000 new members join with other members to enable us to achieve more than 50 000 followers. The network is very well maintained, with more than 15,000 kilometres. It varies from one region to the other. In some cases, we will remove the snow to the ground due to the forest environment, while elsewhere, the surface of the snow. So there are all sorts of conditions of trails. Fans also have access more easily to areas offering remarkable landscapes. It is also easier to reach necessary services such as fuel, food and accommodation. The atv riders have access to places like here, at Mont Radar St-Sylvestre, where they can practise other activities such as toboggan runs. “
According to the president, these are just a few examples of the opportunities available to amateurs. He wished to mention also the work of volunteers who are passionate and who get to do things that are quite incredible.
To show us the state of the situation, mr. Gagnon had chosen to make us live one exit in the region of Chaudière-Appalaches. For the occasion, I took the opportunity to test the Defender Max Limited, 2020 BRP (from $ 35,000), a vehicle that was provided to us by TY Engine, a member of the group Adrenaline sports. “This is an area where the clubs are working very hard, and most importantly, they do it in consultation. You could discover the gateway Beshro of Sainte-Marie, which enables us to cross safely the river Boiler. It is an investment of $ 2 million, which has been made with various partners. Another example is the purchase of a commercial car wash that prevented access to a portion of the trail. The club has purchased for the demolish and consolidate the trail. This is another example that explains that, in this region, the network of trails is exemplary. “
Indeed, we have been able to see that, in Chaudière-Appalaches, paths and signage enable us to explore this part of Quebec in a very different way. After you have taken the departure of la Cache à Maxime-of-Scott, we went up to the Mont Radar St-Sylvestre, crossing various villages and the town centre of Sainte-Marie, where the atv riders and snowmobilers are very well accepted.
The region of Chaudière-Appalaches offers 2300 miles of trails in the winter. The activities are more concentrated in the portion of the Beauce, Lotbinière and a little of the side of Montmagny.
“It should be understood that in the Beauce, the trails pass by several agricultural land, which are not available during the rest of the season, said Louis Chamberland, Tourisme Chaudière-Appalaches. This allows us to have access to beautiful landscapes that would be inaccessible otherwise. It also passes through many sugar bushes. Access to services is easy. The atv riders do not have to worry about anything. They are never far from what they need. “
As the seasons change, the service companies were able to work together with the clubs of atv riders in order to develop an interesting offer. You can easily have access to accommodation of all kinds, just like the restoration. During our passage to the centre of the town of Sainte-Marie, we have been able to see atv riders a seat at a table in a fast food chain very well known, directly accessible via the trail. The entire network of trails allows you to discover this vast region, passing through the Appalachian chain.
To return to the Defender Max Limited I had been provided, this hike allowed me to push it to the maximum of its limits, while taking full advantage of its great qualities.
Despite his imposing size – he was a six-seater – it has very much pulled its pin of the game in the circumstances. As it is heavier than a quad, it should adjust its conduct accordingly depending on the snow conditions. If the snow is soft, it is necessary to maintain a constant speed, which allows him to float, literally. It is necessary to discover this speed in the first kilometers of the hike, and once we have found the ideal condition speed/conditions of the trails, then this is perfect. There is no shortage of power with the engine of 82 horsepower.
Equipment such as the cabin very well insulated, the heating system and all the other accessories make sure that at a certain moment, you have the impression of being in a small truck.
This vehicle represents without doubt the refinement maximum that one can find in a side-by-side. Even if it is classified in the category of work vehicles, on the trails, this jewel of a Can-Am defends itself very well. In my opinion, it is truly a vehicle dual-purpose, leisure and work, and not only work.