LiquidLore - Quebec



This page was last updated in February 2010 and it is not regularly maintained. Information may be inaccurate.

The Des Iles is a relatively unknown run in the Mauricie region of Quebec. It is a pool drop run with some relatively big but not the highest quality whitewater. It is worth checking out, at least once.

This report is based on one run down this section of whitewater, and as such our level recommendation may be inaccurate. In mid-May during a low snow year, when the Nielson was already dried up, this river was running low to medium-low. The nearest gauge is on the Mastigouche, which was running at 5-6 cms. Don't go lower - there is a lot of room to run this section of whitewater at a higher flow. In the end, you'll have to put on and paddle the long flat stretch to the first rapids to see what is actually flowing down the river.

The nearest town is Sainte-Alexis-des-Monts, a small village north of the sizable town of Berthierville located between Montreal and Trois Rivieres. This river is a long way off the main highway - it will take a full 2 hours to get from the 40 up to the river. From Sainte-Alexis-Des-Monts head north out of town on Rang Des Pins Rouge towards the Reserve Faunique Mastigouche. You will reach the entrance to the Reserve at Accuiel Pins Rouge and you may have to pay a small fee to enter. Follow the main dirt road - road #1 - for a ways until you get to the junction of road #12 and #1. Taking a left on #12 brings you to the edge of Lac Sorcier, which is the put in. Return to the 1/12 intersection and head north to get to the put in. The river you are driving along as you head north is actually the Riviere Du Loup, of which the Des Iles is a tributary. You can see the confluence these two rivers from the road - find an appropriate take out along this section. Here is a very detailed map of the Reserve, including the road network.

From the put in on Lac Sorcier you have to paddle north along the east edge of the lake to find the outlet of the river. It is a long flat water paddle of an hour or more to the river, whose start is indicated by a small wooden dam. The Des Iles generally trends eastward until its confluence with the Du Loup - this confluence is the take out. The whitewater on this river is pool drop, with some pretty exciting rapids. It is easy to pick your way down - both scouting and portaging are not too tough. Expect a lot of slide-type rapids. If the water is high there will be some enormous holes.

All in all the driving-to-quality-of-whitewater ratio on this run is not the greatest. This may be partially alleviated by running a short section of the Du Loup upstream of the Des Iles confluence on the same day. This roadside run was too low when we were there, but would probably be fun with a lot of water. If you have the drive, I bet there is much more whitewater up this way for you to explore!

Updated Feb 20, 2010