L’Anse-Saint-Jean, Quebec — Yesterday, a rough year at Mt. Édouard somehow got worse.

On May 31st, the base lodge at Mt. Édouard caught fire, completely destroying the building. The good news is that their lifts, garage, and snow groomers were unaffected. An investigation into the cause of the fire is currently underway.

When the firefighters arrived, the flames had spread to a point where the building couldn’t be saved. Maxime D’Amour, who’s the interim fire director at Fjord Intermunicipal Fire Safety Authority, said the following to Radio Canada about the fire mitigation process:

“We were in defensive mode, that’s for sure. The spread was extremely rapid. It is a large open concept building. So the fire spread extremely quickly and we didn’t want to endanger the firefighters.”

This heartbreaking news follows a year of financial hardship for Mont Édouard. Last July, it was put under the Bankruptcy and Insolvency Act due to the need to repay creditors. A non-profit, Friends of Mont-Édouard, was created last year to help keep the mountain alive. Since then, they’ve raised over $2 million CAD, but they’re going to need to raise quite a bit of money to rebuild Édourard’s lodge. The ski resort is owned by the Municipality of L’Anse-Saint-Jea.

Guy Bélanger, who’s the president of the Friends of Mont-Édouard, described to Radio Canada what their next fundraising steps are following this disaster:

“It’s a hard blow, especially since we were already very far along in our plans. What we’re going to have to do is sit back and review all of this. Recalculate all that, see what insurance we’re going to have, if any are missing, how we’re going to get all that. We may have to return to our governments [for assistance].”

According to Radio Canada, Mt. Édouard is planning to set up a temporary chalet while a long-term plan is analyzed.

Image Credits: Mont Edouard

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