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The Mastigouche Wildlife Reserve is a public territory for the conservation, development and practice of recreational activities. It extends into the administrative regions of Lanaudière (MRC de Matawinie) and Mauricie (MRC de Maskinongé), in Quebec in Canada. This reserve is not a protected area because forestry and mining activities are practised there.

This reserve has typical attractions of the boreal forest. This wildlife reserve offers recreational tourism activities in a wild nature, centered on the forest, flora and fauna. The main activities on the territory of this reserve are hiking, observation of flora and fauna, gathering in the forest, camping, water activities (swimming, pleasure craft, canyoning), cycling, fishing (day, wading) and hunting (bear, moose, small game with accommodation, small game for the day).

In this wildlife reserve, families have access to activities specific to young people, so that they can play in the sand, on the water, on the trails, fishing or hunting (12 years and over).

Understand[edit]

History[edit]

This reserve was established in 1971 with the aim of democratizing access to these public lands. Previously, the territory was exploited by hunting and fishing clubs, in particular the Saint-Bernard (founded in 1872) and Mastigouche (created in 1901) clubs.

Geography[edit]

At the center of the Reserve territory is the Basses-Collines-du-Lac-au-Sorcier proposed biodiversity reserve. The latter includes the following main lakes: Lac Régis, Lac de la Rencontre, Lac Oudiette, Grand Lac des Îles, Lac Bigorne and Lac au Sorcier. The latter is crossed by the Rivière des Îles.

The Reserve also includes the Marie-Jean-Eudes Ecological Reserve covering 8.45 km2 (3.26 sq mi) and located near Shawinigan Lake. This protected area is home to a stand of sugar maple and yellow birch trees, an ecosystem representative of the middle Laurentians of Mauricie.

Go[edit]

The Mastigouche Wildlife Reserve is accessible by road vehicle, ATV, snowmobile and even by air (via seaplanes).

By car[edit]

  • From Montreal (169 km (105 mi). Time: 2 hr 34 min. Take highway 40 (north shore) heading east; take Chemin Caron (northbound); take route 138 (eastbound) to the village of Louiseville; take Rang Barthélemy (northbound), and cross the villages of Sainte-Angèle-de-Prémont and Saint-Alexis-des-Monts; take the rang des Pins Rouge (direction nod), up to the Reserve reception station.
  • From Quebec (city) (221 km (137 mi). Time: 2 hr 43 min. Take highway 40 (westbound) and cross Trois-Rivières; take highway 55 (northbound) to Saint-Étienne-des-Grès; take Chemin des Dalles (westbound); take the chemin du 2e rang (northbound) to the village of Charrette; take route 350 (westbound) to the village of Saint-Paulin; take the 349 (westbound) to the village of Saint-Alexis-des-Monts; take the rang des Pins Rouge (direction nod), up to the Reserve reception station.

Geographical maps[edit]

The SÉPAQ makes available to the public, in particular:

Inside the Reserve, the road network is forest-type and has an entire gravel surface.

Get around[edit]

Map of Mastigouche Wildlife Reserve

Reception stations[edit]

  • Accueil Pins Rouges (from May to October) (telephone: +1 819-265-2098, ext. 2): reception station located at Saint-Alexis-des-Monts, or 24 km north of the village, by road 349.
  • Accueil Bouteille (from May to October) (telephone: +1 819-668-4471): reception station located at Saint-Michel-des-Saints, i.e. 26 km from east of Saint-Zénon, by road 131.
  • Accueil Catherine (from May to October) (telephone: +1 819-801-8000): reception station located at Mandeville, or 18 km north of Mandeville, by routes 347 and 348.

The Reserve reception stations offer:

  • for sale: hunting licence, fishing licence, access rights, promotional items, baits and lures, ice (Red Pins, Catherine and Bouteille receptions), firewood, boating safety kit, salt block for saline, pocket of salt, pocket of sulphur;
  • rental: fishing rod, boat engine (Pins-Rouges, Bouteille and Catherine) and personal flotation devices for users.

Geographical maps[edit]

The SÉPAQ makes available to the public, in particular:

Inside the reserve, the road network is forest-type and has an entire gravel surface.

See[edit]

  • Wildlife observation.

Do[edit]

  • Hunting (Hunt).
  • Fishing (Fishing). Fishermen can read the 2022 fishing plan on the SÉPAQ website. On the Mastigouche reserve, the fishing sectors are: Tête rustic shelter, Joe rustic shelter, Lac-Bouteille campground, Lac-Soufflet campground, Au Tonnerre 2 campground, Aubry chalet, Brochard chalet, du Cap chalet, Hollis chalet, chalet Toy, Mastigou chalet, Orignac chalet, St-Bernard chalet and St-Bernard campsite, Farm 1 and 2 chalets, accommodation in Le Sable, accommodation on the islands, accommodation in Houde-Patoulet, accommodation in Marcotte, accommodation in Ouabiti, accommodation in Shawinigan and accommodation in Violon.
  • Hiking trails (Hiking trails). The map of hiking trails is available on the SÉPAQ.

Events[edit]

Buy[edit]

  • Dépanneur du camping Saint-Bernard (Saint-Bernard campsite convenience store). The Saint-Bernard campsite convenience store offers for sale (bait and lures, firewood, ice, insect repellent, basic groceries and camping products) and for rental (canoe, kayak, pedal boat, bicycle, rowboat, paddleboard and personal flotation devices) for users.

Eat[edit]

Drink[edit]

The territory of the Mastigouche Wildlife Reserve does not have a public place serving alcoholic beverages.

Sleep[edit]

The five accommodation sectors include around 100 lakes:

  • Brown Lake,
  • Dunbar Lake,
  • Lake Normand / Baude
  • Tousignant Lake / Soucis
  • Lake Wessonneau.

Chalet[edit]

  • Chalets en location. The chalets rented by package are: Aubry, Brochard, du Cap, Hollis, Jouet, Mastigou, Orignac, St-Bernard and camping St-Bernard, as well as Farm 1 and 2. The names of the chalets correspond respectively to the name of the lake which is allotted for fishing.

Camping[edit]

Mastigouche Wildlife Reserve offers four campsites and several other rustic camping areas.

  • Camping Saint-Bernard (to access the Saint-Bernard campsite with tent trailers, trailers and recreational vehicles, SÉPAQ recommends the Pins-Rouges reception).
  • Camping Lac-Bouteille. This campsite is located at the end of the bay in the northern part of Lac de la Bouteille; the latter is a lake allocated for fishing.
  • Camping Lac-Soufflet. This campsite is located towards the middle of the north shore of Lac du Soufflet; the latter is a lake allocated for fishing. Seasonal packages or daily rates.
  • Camping Au Tonnerre 2. This campsite is at the end of a bay on the west shore of Lac au Tonnerre; the latter constitutes a lake allocated for fishing. Seasonal packages or daily rates.

Go next[edit]

  • 1 Saint-Maurice Wildlife Reserve (Réserve faunique du Saint-Maurice) – Park administered by Sépaq on the west bank of the Saint-Maurice river and north of the Matawin river. This park offers chalet rental, small game hunting, fishing, camping and ready-to-camp services. The main entrance is the Mékinac bridge which spans the Saint-Maurice river.
  • 2 La Mauricie National Park – National park offering several recreational and tourism activities: sport fishing, hiking (160 km of trails), cycling, canoeing, kayaking, swimming, interpretation trails, cross-country skiing, snowshoeing, camping (both in summer and in winter), canoe-camping, long hike in complete autonomy. A promenade road crosses the park right through. This park is bounded by the Matawin River to the north and the St-Maurice River to the east. It has two entrances: Saint-Mathieu and Saint-Jean-des-Piles.
  • 3 Zec du Chapeau-de-Paille – Controlled exploitation zone (ZEC) created in 1978 in the MRC de Mékinac, in Mauricie. This zec covers 1,270 km2 (490 sq mi), covering the townships of Badeaux, Arcand, Seigneurie du Cap-de-la-Madeleine, Brehault, Livernois and Normand.
  • 4 Zec des Nymphes Zec des Nymphes on Wikipedia – Controlled exploitation zone (ZEC) created in 1979. Its territory covers 171 km2 (66 sq mi) in the municipalities of Mandeville, Saint-Damien and east of Saint-Zénon.
  • 5 Mandeville Mandeville, Quebec on Wikipedia – A municipality of Lanaudière focused on recreational tourism and forestry.
  • 6 Saint-Alexis-des-Monts Locality whose economic activities are focused on recreational tourism activities (vacationing, hunting & fishing, swimming, snowmobiling, mountain biking, etc.) and forestry.
  • 7 Trois-Rives – Since 1972, the municipality of Trois-Rives (formerly designated "Municipalité Boucher" has five hamlets or villages: Saint-Joseph-de-Mékinac, Rivière-Matawin, Olscamps, Grande-Anse and part of Rivière-aux-Rats. Its economic vocation is focused on forestry, agriculture and recreational tourism activities (vacationing, hunting & fishing, swimming, snowmobiling, mountain biking, etc.). The bridge erected at Matawin gives privileged access to the Zec du Chapeau- de-Paille and the Saint-Maurice wildlife reserve.
  • 8 Saint-Mathieu-du-Parc Located in the northern suburbs of Shawinigan, this municipality is centred on a residential vocation and on recreational tourism activities thanks to the Saint-Mathieu recreation park and the Mauricie National Park reception centre.
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