When looking for a place to recharge your batteries in nature and to fish, the list is long.
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On the Monts Valin side, 550 km from the metropolis, I recently discovered an inn in the forest that stands out for several good reasons.
When we talk about a family outfitter, we expect to be received in a warm and friendly atmosphere.
Isabelle Marcoux and Luc Bourgault, from Granby, are truly passionate about everything that has to do with nature. These young fifty-year-olds met more than 30 years ago in CEGEP and they started their family.
In 2009, wanting to prepare for their retirement and make a gradual transition, they acquired the Itouk outfitter.
Isabelle and Luc alone receive, without the help of any employee, 400 to 500 guests annually. “We work hard and we have the satisfaction of offering ultra-personalized service. Our customers are treated with small onions. This is one of the reasons why 90% of fishermen come back year after year, explains Ms. Marcoux with a big smile. We do everything we can to make the experience unforgettable.”
Let's talk fishing
Part of the largest pool of native trout in the world, Itouk is considered a well-kept secret where you can catch beautiful catches measuring an average of 20 to 35 cm.
For their part, the Claude, Itouk and Loop lakes are host to specimens that can approach 2 kg. For example, last year, more than thirty beautiful paddles swinging the scales between 1 and 1.5 kg were foiled by skilled rod handlers.
On the territory with exclusive rights of 70 km2, there are a total of 11 lakes. Of this number, eight are easily accessible by vehicle less than 12 km away. In order to offer absolute peace of mind, there is only one 14-foot boat equipped with a 2.5 hp Mercury or an electric motor, per lake.
Anglers wanting to get off the beaten track can opt for one of three destinations where you have to walk 0.5 to 1 km to exploit lakes that have suffered very little pressure.
Fishing with metal spoons such as the Toronto Wobbler, Williams Wabler, Lake Clear, Flasher, etc., with a 45-60 cm leader, hook and earthworm, is ideal, as is fishing with jigs or fly fishing.
For accommodation, there are three chalets near the hostel. It can accommodate 4, 8 and 12 guests respectively. These ultra-clean homes, rated three stars by the Fédération des pourvoiries du Québec, are all equipped with solar energy.
For people wishing to stay in an isolated site, there is the Itouk chalet located 7 km away. Up to six people can stay there comfortably.
“Having minimal operating costs, we can afford to offer packages below $100,” says Luc Bourgault. Upon request, Isabelle can also offer American or even corporate packages.
Aside from catching fish, there is moose hunting which takes center stage come fall. The various groups of nemrods are lucky enough to be able to exploit the entire territory of 70 km2 on their own, for a week.
In winter, this territory known for its abundance of snow turns into a paradise for off-trail snowmobiling. Drivers can then explore pristine snowy paradises in the company of an experienced guide.
People who want to tease native speckles, get away from it all, recharge their batteries and enjoy life just have to go to Chicoutimi. From there, they take route 172 towards Tadoussac, then they branch off onto the L-200 forest road in Saint-Fulgence. There are only 109 km of perfectly passable gravel roads left to get there. The site is serviced by Air Medic, as needed.
Isabelle loves human contacts and interactions with customers. She makes all the reservations. In addition, when you visit their website pourvoirieitouk.com, a communication window automatically appears and you can chat live with Ms. Marcoux. The parents are proud to say that their daughter Raphaële intends to continue operations when they want to retire.
▶To find out more about this outfitter in zone 28, where it is permitted to keep 20 trout for consumption, call 418 690-4072.