Hitting the Slopes Early

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Hey gang! Okay, so the title is a little misleading. All the same, this post is about a little trip we recently took to Mont Tremblant. This trip was a week and a half ago, and was Alix, Matt, Jody and I who spent the weekend there. The weekend was actually a thank-you prize that I received at this year’s Quest for a Cure as a result of being the team that raised the most money for the Ottawa Regional Cancer Center. I was given a free weekend at a 2 bedroom condo at Hotel du Lac, a resort located across Lac Tremblant . The reason we had to wait so long to use the prize is that I’ve been too busy with races and such up until now. However, now that I’m on my month of fun, it was a prime time to get out there. If you’d like to do so, check out a whole pile of pictures we took over the weekend.

The first thing you’ll probably notice about these pictures is that a whole bunch of them were taken in the pool and hot tub, including underwater 🙂 Yup, this was my first chance to try out the new Olympus camera that I’ve picked up for my upcoming trip to NZ. I must say, after playing with it, I’m very impressed with the fact that it can do that. Overall, I’d have to admit that the picture quality overall of that camera isn’t all that great, but just the simple fact that this thing can go underwater and is shockproof makes it worth it to me. Anyway, on with a few little bits of excitement from that weekend.

We headed out to the resort after work on Friday night. Lucky for us, Alix volunteered to do the driving, so I got to play some tunes and do the navigating. Unfortunately, the weather was pretty crap, so the drive out took longer than we had hoped. By the time we actually checked into the resort, it was almost 10pm, and we were pretty hungry. A quick tour of the village of Tremblant uncovered the fact that when it’s the ‘off season’, all the food places shut down at or before 10pm, so we were pretty much out of luck. Luckily, there was a quickie mart, and we picked up some frozen pizzas and burritos (to go along with the giant beers we’d bought on the way up). We headed back to our condo, cooked up the food, and played some dice games while we drank a bit. Pretty low key, since it was already late.

Saturday morning rolled around, and we were glad to see that instead of the rain that we had been expecting, it was merely overcast, which meant we’d probably have a pretty decent day to tour the ski village and the hill. If it was too nice, there would be throngs of tourists in the village. However, before heading out for the day, I wanted to take advantage of the area and get out for a run. Luckily, Matt was still dead to the world, and I was sure I’d have about an hour to kill. So I threw on my shoes and jacket, and headed out for a run. Oh yeah, I also put on my GPS and carried my camera, to put together another little custom map. You can check it out by clicking this link. I still haven’t gotten things exactly the way I want on these yet, but it’s a start. Eventually, I’d like to have a little summary box of the run with vital stats, as well as a link back to my maps directory on the website. I’ll figure that out before I hit the road I hope.

After I got back, and had a shower, Matt was still fast asleep. Luckily, Alix gave me permission to wake the little guy up. So, just to make sure that he would be up totally, I went in and jumped up and down on his bed until he clearly wouldn’t sleep again. Once we were all organized, we headed over to the ski village to explore. Oh yeah, that and eat. We were pretty starving. We found a nice cafe where we had breakfast. Matt had a ‘bowl’ of coffee. Literally. I had a nice BLT sandwich to keep me going. That night, we were planning on having a nice Racelette and Fondue, so cheese was off the menu for now. After eating, we all split and did some shopping. Well, actually, Alix and Jody went shopping, while Matt and I wandered a bit. However, we quickly got bored of that, and went about deciding our next moves. We found a cool waterfall a little ways up the mountain, as well as a micro brewery in the village. We gave the ladies a little longer, then decided to do a little whining.

From there, we went for a great little nature hike, which was a little wet due to the rainstorm the night before, but was still mighty pretty. From our lookout a bit up the mountain, we could clearly see across the river to our condo. Sweet. We also got up close and personal with the waterfall, and some other primo nature ;-). A little later we also came across an aerial park. Cool. I was tempted to climb up and goof around, but figured we’d get in trouble, once I realized there were in fact people in charge not far away. Oh well.

As a reward to ourselves for being all naturey, we headed straight to the brewery as soon as we hit the village again (even without TomTom guiding us Rob!). Our timing was impeccable, as it started raining just after we got in. We tried a sampling of a number of their different beers. I had the seasonal ‘Oktoberfest’ beer. Yum. We also had a light lunch before agreeing it was time to hit the resort and take advantage of the pool, hot tub, sauna, and outdoor spa! What a great idea, don’t you think? It was also a prime time to start sampling some of the many bottles of wine we’d brought.

We had a bit of an adventure actually finding the spa, as it wasn’t indicated anywhere, and we wandered all around the property, looking rather silly in our bathing suits with big cups of wine. I finally got up the nerve to stroll into the reception area and just ask. Turns out it was just outside the reception, in a bit of a courtyard by the bar, overlooking the lake.Hee hee . It was well worth the effort to find it though. The four of us settled in there, and watched the world go by. It was raining at one point, but that didn’t bother us. We had goblets of wine and had a waterproof camera! You can see some of the pics on flickr of course. There were even some awesome rainbows. Some of the most intense rainbow colours I’ve ever seen! We also spent a good deal of time clowning around the pool, much to the lifeguards’ chagrin. You could just tell how impressed she was to be there, and the fact that she had to stay there until 10pm. On the way out, Matt and I assured her we’d be back.

Of course, now was the time for cheese-fest ’07. We sparked up the grill and fondue set. Matt and I took care of the prep work, sort of gaining a couple brownie points we’d no doubt need later. The food was awesome, and we took our time, polishing off several bottles of vino as we gorged ourselves on the finer things in life. I’d also hooked up my ipod to the TV, so we had decent tunes. Oh, and did I mention I’d brought Guitar Hero? That came in handy as well. After the meal, we cleaned up for a little bit, and drank some more vino as well as played some board games. Matt and I squeezed in a quick bit of GH for good measure. We decided we wanted to hit the water sports again, but the ladies weren’t so keen. We tried to lure them with various promises. We even offered to wear their bathing suits, and they could wear ours, but it turns out that was a little self-serving 🙂 Either way, they opted to stay back and drink wine and coffee while Matt and I got up to no good.

First stop, back to the pool to Ms. Surly the Lifesaver. She wasn’t really happy to see us… not! She barked out that we only had ten minutes till the pool closed, to which I retorted that we had fifteen minutes, as clearly shown by the clock. She responded that they were going to shock the pool at five to the hour. Although I didn’t particularly care, I decided it was best not to push her too hard. We had a bit of fun, then hit the sauna and hot tub for a bit for good measure. We strolled out of that area promptly at 9pm, since at least the spa was open until 10pm. We weren’t the only ones at the spa this time, and a couple was just leaving. We soon found out why. The damn thing was boiling! I’d upped the temperature a couple degrees earlier, to make sure it would be warm, but didn’t realize just how hot it would be. Well, we totally lobstered on this one. Neither of us could stay in very long. Oh well, it was still fun.

We got to watch the helicopters flying to Tommy Hilfigers pad (scroll to bottom of link to see a picture) across the lake. What? I didn’t mention that? Oh yeah, so apparently he has a place over there, and must have been having a party, as numerous helicopters kept flying and landing there to drop off guests. The next morning around ten thirty, the helicopters returned to pick them up again. Must be great being his neighbour! Anyway, enough with the spa.

We returned to find Al and Jody still up, having finished another bottle of wine. A mini-struggle ensued, where Matt wanted to play GH2, and the girls preferred watching a movie, and me on the fence. In the end, we opted to have a rousing round of Scotland Yard, with Jody as Ms. X. It was actually a lot of fun, in spite of the fact that none of us were really in shape to play the game. After that, we cranked up the video game, and the girls eventually drifted off to bed. We stayed up until every last drop of wine and Schnapps was gone. Apparently we were kinda loud, but luckily, there were no neighbours up that weekend. Hee hee.

The next morning, I still managed to get up without too much difficulty. Jody and I were up first, and puttered around a bit before Al and Matt arose. Sadly, it was time to pack up and leave the place. We agreed that we’d love to do it again some time, even if it wasn’t completely free. Back into town for a delicious meal of Crepes at the creperie, and then back on the road home. Matt took the wheel this time, and we made pretty good time. We stopped in Plaisance , Quebec, so I could take the gang to some cool waterfalls that I’d seen before in a race in the winter. It was well worth the stop. If you’re ever in Plaisance (just past Thurso), do drop by the falls. They’re off the main strip, but an amazing sight to behold.

Back home, and set to work unpacking and getting sorted out again. All in all, a fantastic weekend in a great area. I’d only been to Tremblant once for skiing years ago with everyone, and hope to return again sooner this time. Winter or summer, it was a cool place to be. That’s it from me for now. Take it easy, and chill! Not hard to do with the temperature dropping, is it?

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