One of our blog readers has provided the following review of cross-country skiing at Parc Angrignon, accessible via metro. Thanks Shirley!
If anyone else would like to submit a review of an outdoor adventure, especially if it's accessible by public transportation, please feel free!
Shirley writes that the park is very easy to get to, and nice because you can get ready in a warm station. The day she went, the ski trails were walked all over, so it is not for the high-performance minded. It's also completely flat. A couple of people had carved their own ski trail over the pond (long thin pond running much of the length of the park) so that was a way to have no footprints tracking all over. (note to readers: get to know how to evaluate ice conditions before attempting this kind of thing!)
The park was very quiet, which was awesome; there was hardly anyone there. She loved the wide open spaces (sunny) with just enough topography and variety, with the woods and pond. The loops meet up so it was easy to make up your own route of whichever length you want, and go back when you want.
She doesn't recommend making a long journey to get there. But it's good for an easy ski for an hour or so if you're in the neighbourhood, and she thinks it's well lit enough to do at night.
I would like to add that I also tried out the Park Angrignon skating rink on a weekday evening. It was completely deserted. I was told that the park may not be safe for women on their own after dark. The rink is marked 'PP' on the City's website (patinoire paysagère) which means it is supposed to be charming and cute; in fact, it was just a basic ring shape and was not all that cute. The ice conditions were very difficult - it was nearly un-skateable that day - but this is what happens on 'natural' outdoor skating rinks. There was a great big moon over the frozen lake and forest though, which was an amazing view. I saw the ski tracks near the rink and they looked to be in good condition that evening - it would be fun to try out in the evening. Overall, the skating rink is best suited for those already in the neighbourhood in my opinion.