Canyoning is a funny activity which consists of following a mountain watercourse and descending its different waterfalls using ropes.
Canyoning Quebec offers a perfect course for beginners at Vallée Bras-du-Nord, at the Cascade on Easter Island. After meeting guide Andréa Tremblay at the Shannahan reception, we set off for a short 45-minute hike to the top of the waterfall. It’s time to put on the harness, put on a climbing helmet and learn the basics of abseiling. There is nothing to fear, the guide will maintain control of the rope and will be able to stop any participant who is a little too enthusiastic (or really too clumsy).
You should expect to get your clothes and shoes wet. When it’s cold, especially in the fall, Canyoning Québec provides an isothermal suit.
Then, it’s time to get down to business with a small 12-meter waterfall. It’s a little weird walking on wet rocks and straight through water. When climbing and hiking, we avoid like the plague anything that looks like a wet rock. And we keep a respectable distance from the waterfalls. Here, we’re getting straight into it. With caution, at least at first: will the soles of the shoes slip?
From the second section, I trust the equipment and my skills a little more, and I can begin to appreciate the aesthetics of the waterfall, which bounces off a series of small rocks over a distance of around twenty meters. But the third section brings a different type of challenge: you have to hang above the void to descend in a section so steep that you no longer touch the wall. A bit like a spider at the end of its thread. A spider who would like the idea of going in the shower.
Andréa indicates that here, participants are sometimes paralyzed by fear. But the guides know many techniques to help them overcome their fears. And there are many more participants who love this section so much that they would like to do it again.
The last waterfall is less dramatic and allows for a gentle end to the activity. We can return to the starting point (with shoes that look fuzzy), where dry clothes await us.