The history of Beaver Lake and the Glades: Interpretation panels and animation


Beaver Lake sector – work site progress and restoration projects

Beaver Lake constitutes one of the most popular sectors of Mount Royal Park. Since 2003, the area has seen major projects to restore the pavilion, construct an artificial skating rink and restore the children’s playground.

In 2012, the Ville de Montréal began the first phase of a project to restore the Beaver Lake basin that should have been completed in 2013. Due to the additional administrative steps necessary in according contracts, the project’s completion was delayed and a new call for tenders was issued for the work to continue this year.

Hence the second phase of the project began in June 2014 and comprises the restoration of the western sector of the Glades to make this family-friendly area more safe and appealing while enhancing the heritage value of this core area of the park.

Specifically, this project includes:

  • Improvements to the entrance to the park and its accessibility by the overhaul of the parking lots and welcome points of the Glades (main entrance)
  • Management of the water network and restoration of humid zones
  • Revitalization of the waterfall
  • Reconfiguration and drainage of the pathway surrounding the lake
  • Reconfiguration of the surrounding pathways
  • Renewal and addition of urban furnishings and improvements to lighting

A temporary pedestrian pathway will be built to allow access to the pavilion at all times.

An access road to the worksite will be identified for the exclusive use by trucks to transport materials without adversely affecting the activities normally associated with this sector.

During the summer season, all activities will operate as usual, except for those on the lake.

The work should be complete by December 2014 in time for the 2014-2015 winter season.

Source: Ville de Montréal

Come discover the Beaver Lake area and the Glades: Interpretation panels and animation

Exceptional paleoecological discoveries were found in the sediments revealed as a result of the restoration work on the Beaver Lake basin. Radiocarbon dating of the sediments and pieces of gnawed wood confirm the presence of beavers and therefore, the existence of a mixed forest 11,000 years ago!

According to recent discoveries, human activity on the site dates back about 3,000 years, Aboriginal people practiced hunting, fishing and gathering on the mountain. In the last 100 years, the site has been heavily used in the winter, as well as the summer, for a variety of outdoor activities.

Did you know that before the lake was dug in 1937, the toboggan runs of the Montreal Toboggan Club were a veritable international tourist attraction as early as 1884? In the 1960s, the practice of skiing was popular thanks to the presence of a T-bar on the hill and in the summer, the Mountain Playhouse overlooking the lake, provided theatre performances.

There’s still more to discover! Join Les amis de la montagne this summer to learn about the rich history of the site via a variety of interpretation panels located in situ. On weekends, our educators will be present to answer your questions.


Discover the history of the Beaver Lake sector, the ongoing restoration work in the Glades and the mysteries buried at the bottom of the lake!

  • Daily, until October 12, 2014
  • Free
  • Information: 514 843-8240, ext. 0


  • On weekends, until the end of September, 2014
  • From 1:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m.
  • Free
  • Information: 514 843-8240, ext. 0

If you want to know more about the projects planned in the Glades, join Les amis de la montagne’s next Public Forum on October 15:


The Glades is one of eight landscape topographies created by Frederick Law Olmsted, landscape architect of Mount Royal Park. The Glades encompasses the entire area from Beaver Lake, the pavilion and toboggan hill to Maison Smith, its surrounding green spaces and adjacent parking lots.

Discover the evolution of the area from its origins to present day, as well as the projects planned by the Ville de Montréal for the Glades, the parking lots and the park’s accessibility.

  • Wednesday, October 15, 2014
  • From 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.
  • At Maison Smith (1260 Chemin Remembrance, Mount Royal Park)
  • Free
  • RSVP: 514 843-8240, ext. 231 or