In the early 1950s a citizen of Roberval on Lac Saint-Jean was contemplating the expanse of water that extended before him and dreamt of the day when a person would be able to swim the distance separating Peribonka and Roberval.
At that time this idea was considered unrealistic and few people thought that they would see the feat accomplished. In the summer of 1955, a group of swimmers finally accepted the challenge, but it was a few decades before cyclists decided to take on the challenge of this sea of ice.
Enthusiasm for the legendary 32 km route caught the interest of a runner from the Éric Paquet region who proposed to the On the Tip of the Toes Foundation the idea of organizing a winter crossing of Lac Saint-Jean. Thanks to the support of the ‘Fat Bike winter crossing team’, the On the Tip of the Toes Foundation organized a pilot event on the ice in February 2018. The event followed a 42 km route and involved twelve high-level Quebec runners. Following the success of this pilot project, the Foundation decided to officially launch the first edition of the CRYO races in the autumn of 2018, along the traditional 32km route and adding a distance of 10km to the program.
In February 2021, the event took a turn “at home” to allow runners to live the CRYO and Lake St-Jean experience, despite the COVID-19 pandemic. A total immersion in our universe which set the stage for the return of the event in its traditional form in 2022!