The Canadian Ski Marathon: A Celebration of Canada’s Winter
(CSM) is North America’s longest and oldest Nordic ski tour. Unlike most ski events, there are no winners or losers in the Canadian Ski Marathon: it is not a race. The event offers something for everyone, regardless of age, endurance or ability. Tourers and families who ski less than the full distance make up about half the participants. Each skier can select his/her own level of challenge and try to achieve it. One can ski as little as 12 km or up to the maximum of 160 km over the weekend.
The CSM takes place in February on a trail that is only groomed once per year between Lachute and Gatineau, Québec. The trail winds through mostly privately owned land in the picturesque western Laurentian mountains. There is an over-night stop in Montebello, home of the famous Château Montebello, one of the largest log-built hotels in the world.
The CSM is a two-day, 160 kilometer ski event that is divided into 5 sections each day, with an average of 16 kms per section. Skiers of all ages and abilities are welcome to participate and can do so safely. There are feed stations, first aid and toilets available at the end of each section, as well as shuttle buses that run between accommodation and checkpoints throughout each day. The CSM alternates its direction each year, from east to west one year and then west to east the next.
This wonderful weekend in February can be enjoyed by all. Not sure if you are ready, or just want to enjoy a few kilometers of this once a year course, or perhaps you want to ski the last section with someone who is completing their first CdB or their 4th gold Bar and are reaching ‘Permanent Bib’ status? Then check out our CSM-Taster category.
For those of you who want more than a single section and aren’t ready for a full 160 kilometers of skiing, but would love to try an event that covers two successive days, then you’ll want to enter our Half Marathon category.
Our most flexible and most popular classification is the “Touring” category. Now you can define your own ‘marathon’, a single day or two days, a single section or as many as you can cover. Put together your own challenge and then make it happen, it can be done in the Touring category.
Of course our prize jewel is the Coureur des Bois category. This is the ultimate winter challenge; it covers the entire 10 sections over the weekend for a total of 160 km of classic Nordic skiing through woodland forests, rolling fields and even through a barn yard or two. Do you have what it takes to become a Coureur des Bois ?