Unfortunately, I have no pictures as I was short on batteries and prioritized the GPS to bring back a track.
Bear in mind this track is not a continuous record and has been (only slightly) completed post-hike. Battery issues...
Following my introduction to a peakbagger's group on Facebook, I asked if there was interest for a day hike during the week-end. Mostly everyone was unavailable, but I received a positive message from Serge Massad
. We agreed on a hike on Sunday and I started to plan for a hike towards mont du lac de la Hache and mont du lac Évanturel, two nearby summits. While planning, I also noticed mont du lac de l'Hirondelle in my lists and, in order to scout for the next day, I decided to go grab it on Saturday, hike which is described here
On Sunday morning, I woke up early and Serge arrived around 06:45 after driving in from Montréal. I was already mostly packed and only needed to finish eating a quick breakfast before transferring my gear in the car. We took the road around 07:00 towards Baie-Saint-Paul. It was, like the day before, a very quiet drive where we got acquainted with each other. We made it to RTE 62 around 08:35 where many of the trucks I had seen the day before were still parked. We found a spot in the line and after getting geared up, left along the road towards ZEC des Martres' Barley gate around 8:45. There was still a well packed snowmobile trail on the forest road and it was an easy hike not requiring the snowshoes. It didn't take long before we reached the first junction where we turned left, heading north. The road followed a very straight valley in which the wind picked up slightly. The road followed easy rolling terrain with no meaningful altitude gain and we soon angled east, making it into a patch of open country. At the other end of this large logging area, the second junction towards our first goal turned left and started ascending steadily north.
We soon angled left and slowly made our way around the steeper slopes, past another logging road that I knew could be used to reach a large logging patch that did lead closer to the summit. We still decided to follow the road and when it angled north again, a very nice view of the Laurentians to our west and north opened up. I could see a yellow road sign ahead and as we got closer we noticed it advertised cell phone signal. After a short pause there, we kept going along the road but when we saw it dipping downhill and away from the summit, we diverged from my planning and went straight towards the summit, along a skidder swath. At the end of the logging patch, we had to climb up in the trees up a slight bump and then emerged in a roughly flat area. When we gained an obvious high spot, I marked it and we went a little bit further east to another slight bump where we saw the terrain only descended from there.
We then turned around after a celebratory fist bump, backtracking all the way to the road. Now with a head wind, it felt quite cold and my face quickly started stiffening up. It didn't last too long and we were back into more clement air, in the strong sun, as we neared the second junction. From there, we took a right towards lac Évanturel, going past a cabin and onto the lake ice itself. This is where mont du lac de la Hache's ascend ended and the second part
of our day hike started.