The lakes of Quebec are increasingly inaccessible

The privatization of banks, the lack of access, the high fees demanded by municipalities and an epidemic all contribute to making lakes more difficult to access.

The Quebec Sports Fishermen’s Association has been fighting against municipalities for years, charging high fees for a simple one-day startup.

But canoeists, kayakers and swimmers find it very difficult to explore without scattering their wallets. This year, in Austin, in the eastern townships, the city closed access to Lake Arford. In Fosambold-sur-le-la, one of the rarest beaches (money and private) in the national capital region is threatened; The developers tried to turn this into a condo complex.

The situation is condemned by pressure groups, but it is not measured; “No data on access to lakes” in Quebec. However, this is necessary for the restoration of water systems, says Antoine Vervil:

“Frequent visitors to the lakes develop a relationship with nature and do not want to preserve it,” he says.

Common tradition

The lakes belong to everyone, and the law even states that they are “part of the common heritage of the nation.” But if everyone had the right to go there, a part of the bank would still be public.

This is the responsibility of municipalities, which is in favor of their residents.

“My citizens do not have to pay for swimming with their taxes on access to swimming for the people of Quebec. Let go of Fossembold Mayor Jean-Berne. If we want the government to grant access, let it be offset.”

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Jack is the mayor of Wall-des-Montes north of Lorraine Katino. There are 120 lakes in its territory.

“It is not possible for us to ensure access to all of these waters,” he said.

His municipality operates two launch pads on Lake Saint-Pierre and McGregor – rates for residents range from $ 10 to $ 120.

The pressure from the locals carries a weight: “They come to see us immediately when there is damage,” he said.

Enemy Number 1: Ships Awake, They damage the banks and the bottom of the lake with their impulses and waves.

The curve of the lakes

Municipalities sometimes like to charge very high prices to encourage potters. Sometimes, some lakes are completely privatized.

“There is growth, people buy what is expensive, it gets capitalist. They just don’t want to see people in their lakes, ”said Franுவாois Presset, a water expert and professor at ETS.

Cities are in conflict of interest; They need to protect access to water, but also benefit from this real estate craze, he explains.

“If there is a small segment of the population, the rich who have access to the lakes, this is a big ethical issue,” says Antoine Verville.

Many municipalities charge very high fees for residents who want to start a motor boat. The Sports Fishermen’s Association of Quebec condemns the situation.

“Charging several hundred dollars a day on a boat is too much. Not everyone can afford it. For example, think of a grandfather who wants to go fishing with his grandchildren. […] Many lakes are blocked by residents and these municipalities are illegal, ”laments Stephen Bourgeois, president of the association.

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Lake of Lakes, Shavinigan

Daily access cost: $ 115

Lake des Chappells, Saint-Agade-des-Months

Daily access cost: $ 300 to $ 400 For petrol engine (Friday, Saturday and Sunday)

Lake and Seven Lakes, Saint-Donat

Annual Cost: $ 50 to $ 300

No daily access.

Ocean Lake, Connolly, Echo and Blue, Saint-Hippolyte

Daily access cost: $ 400

Beaches are also reserved for city dwellers.


Daily access cost: $ 100 to $ 500

Lake Manito, Ivory-sur-le-Lock

Stephen Portua, president of the Sports Fishermen's Association of Quebec, in front of Lake Manito.

Photo by Martin Aller

Stephen Portua, president of the Sports Fishermen’s Association of Quebec, in front of Lake Manito.

Daily access cost: $ 250

Lakes Saint-Joseph and Saint-Mary, Saint-Adolf-de Howard

Daily access cost: $ 325

Lake your concern

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