Mont Tremblant and Lac Tremblant, Quebec, Canada
July 18, 2010
Between 1872 and 1890, from Ste. Agathe to Mont-Laurier, Father Labelle opened twenty-nine counties and twenty parishes, including those of St. Jovite and St. Faustin in 1879. Altogether more than five thousand French speaking people settled in the surrounding river valleys.
Le P’tit train du Nord, without the existence of proper roads, only a rail line from Montreal could ensure the survival of these newly settled communities. Furthermore, Father Labelle was passionately convinced that the train would forge the way for the development of tourism for “the big city people”. In December 1892, the settlers of St. Jovite heard the first whistling of the P’tit train du Nord.
At the turn of the 20th century, the choice of the Mont-Tremblant Region as a summer playground increased in popularity. Guesthouses, inns and hotels sprouted up all around. The surrounding forest, the pure mountain air and the striking beauty of the scenery drew wealthy Montrealers, as well as Americans and Europeans.
In 1936, Joe Ryan, a young eccentric American millionaire was so taken by the scenery at the summit of Mont Tremblant that he decided to build “the biggest ski centre in the East.” Three years later, Joe Ryan’s dream became a reality. Mont Tremblant Lodge was inaugurated and the ski resort proved to be an immediate success.
With the onset of the 1950’s booming postwar economy, the automobile and a higher standard of living that allowed for more leisure activity, the Laurentians became the playground for middle-class Montrealers and suburbanites.
1991 brought winds of change! Intrawest, the biggest Canadian promoter of alpine resorts announced a significant investment that dramatically thrust the Mont Tremblant Resort into the 21st century. The intuition and vision of Father Labelle and Joe Ryan paid off.
Sony Alpha 700, Sigma 28 to 300 at 90mm
iso 100, multi-pattern metering, aperture priority F16.0, 1/10 second