Val-des-Monts north of Gatineau and Ottawa.
To get to the Laflèche Caves from Ottawa, cross the Macdonald-Cartier Bridge and head north on Highway 5 towards Maniwaki. Go east on Highway 50 and take Highway 307 towards St-Pierre-de-Wakefield (over the junction with Highway 366). A large sign to Laflèche Caves soon appears on your left.
All year daily 9-15.
During Winter: groups (15+) only.
During Summer: individuals may reserve or join if there are places.
150th Anniversary Discovery Tour:
Adults CAD 20, Children (8-13) CAD 18.92, Children (5-7) CAD 17.83, Children (0-4) not allowed.
Family: Adults CAD 18.92, Children (8-13) CAD 16.74, Children (5-7) CAD 16.53, minimum 3 people from the same family.
Groups (10+): Adults CAD 17.18, Children (8-13) CAD 14.79, Children (5-7) CAD 14.35.
Groups (30+): Adults CAD 15.44, Children (8-13) CAD 14.35, Children (5-7) CAD 13.05.
Combi ticket with climb: additional CAD 12.18.
Explorer Tour: Adults CAD 42.62, Children (8-13) CAD 33.92, Children (0-7) not allowed, Family: Adults CAD 39.14, Children (8-13) CAD 30.44, minimum 3 people from the same family.
|Light:||headlamp provided All security gear provided.|
150th Anniversary Discovery Tour: L=403m, D=90min.
Explorer Tour: D=120min.
|Address:||Arbraska Laflèche, 255 route principale, 307 nord, Val-des-monts, Qc, J8N 4B7, Toll free: 1-877-457-4033, Tel: 819-457-4033, Fax: 819-457-9329 E-mail:|
|As far as we know this information was accurate when it was published (see years in brackets), but may have changed since then.
Please check rates and details directly with the companies in question if you need more recent info.
|1865||discovered by Joseph Dubois who followed a bear into a hole.|
|1923||Zéphyr Laflèche opened the cave up to the public.|
|1937-1958||managed by Zéphyr Laflèche, a Hull business man, until he retired at the age of 81 years.|
|1958||Caves owned by M. Gaétan Dagenais and Paul Cloutier.|
|1973||Caves abandoned. Surface buildings turned into a Motel.|
|1995||Caves reopened with new entrance tunnel.|
|2002||A new staircase installed. It is 20 meters high and links the upper and lower sections of the cave.|
|2013||cave purchased by Arbraska.|
A General Tour is a guided tour with commentary for groups of up to 25 people. They are available seven days a week from mid May to the end of August. From September to mid-May they are open Wednesday to Saturday. Headlamp, helmet and battery pack are included.
The Wild Caving Tour is with an experienced caver directing a group of four people. The brochure describes these tours as giving "privileged access to galleries inaccessible and forbidden to the general public". Horizontal crawling is involved, as is liability insurance. Coveralls and caving hats with headlamp and battery packs are included. Individuals aged 12 and up are accepted.
When the caves were abandoned in 1973, vandals destroyed many of the spectacular speleothems, stalactites and stalagmites were smashed and the interior dulled by smoke from a large fire in the early sixties when a man wanted to dispose of some car tyres. He underestimated the wind flow and died. But, fortunately, the cavern was not forgotten and, in 1995, was cleaned and re-opened. There are about 400 meters of dry galleries, tunnels and in 2002 the chambers on two levels beneath the hillside, where connected via a new 20 metre high staircase allowing the visitor to experience a through trip. The cave is inhabited by bats and the odd porcupine can sometimes be found.
No matter how cold or drizzly outside, the caves stay at a constant, cool temperature, making it an intriguing destination for an early spring day.
Tour tips: Children are welcome and will delight in caving.
Revised text by Tony Oldham (2003). With kind permission.
In 1958 the caves were purchased by M. Gaétan Dagenais and Paul Cloutier, who owned a Montreal based company producing bank vault doors, safes and safety deposit boxes. Their largest customer was the federal government, located less than 30km away in Ottawa. The Caverns were purchased as a place to meet political figures and their families. They sold it around 1969.
In 2013 the cave and the surrounding forest were purchased by Arbraska, the operator of a chain of treetop adventure parks. Obviously they purchased it to create a new treetop adventure park at the cave, but the cave trekking was integrated into the offers of the park. They offer tree climbing, GPS rallies and other geocaching event, cave exploration, and Caveman's Sleepover. The cave tour is now named 150th Anniversary Discovery Tour, and the cave trekking is called Explorer Tour and takes two hours. Like before it is essential to reserve, they are not able to handle individuals who just drop in.