Mountain Hike Vacation in St. Lucia
The Mountain Hiker Rating: 6 out of 10
- Contributor: MGF
- Time required: 3 – 4 hours round trip
- Degree of Difficulty: 6 out of 10
- Height: Approximately 1,300 feet (400 meters)
- Distance: Just over 5 miles (9km) round trip
- Guide Required: YES – You may be able to find the trail yourself, however it is St. Lucian law for visitors to the island to be accompanied by an official guide from the Forestry Department. Personally, I also believe the Lucia Forestry guide charge of $25usd per person is well worth it, as they can inform you of local flora / fauna that you would otherwise likely miss out on.
Similar to our Mount Gimie hike, we started off in the town of Migny, except this time we drove part way up the secondary road. We parked where the trail splits between the Mount Gimie hike and the path to the Edmund Forest reserve (and Enbas Saut Falls). The first 45+ mins or so of our drive / hike to the Edmund Forest (also referred to as the Central Rainforest) Reserve is a steady/gradual up-hill incline, with some minor ups and downs, along a rough dirt road. At one point, we walked past an area where the side of the mountain had recently washed away, due to the latest hurricane.
Eventually, the road transitioned into a natural trail which took us to a little gazebo next to a shack with a sign on the ground stating “Welcome to Enbas Saut Falls”… Apparently this is the official trailhead. From here we started down a number of man-made “hollow” wooden stair sections, mixed with some mixed with natural trails, that took us gradually down, into a valley with Morne Gimie looming in the background. I say “hollow stairs”, as the rock /dirt filling for the stairs that I imagined was there at some point, has been pretty much washed away, making the stairs somewhat awkward to walk on. Apparently we took >1200 of these stairs down to the waterfalls – not sure who counted them 🙂
This portion of the Enbas Saut Falls trail hike, taking an hour or so, took us through rainforest, cloud forest and elfin woodlands, with our guide providing a wealth of information on the local flora and birdlife that we encountered along the way. He identified ferns and gommier, mahogany, mahoe and mango trees, as well as pointing out two types of hummingbird, along with a number of different bird species. We saw several land crabs as well as plants growing out of plants wrapped in plants! Our guide also pointed out and explained a few of the plants and the traditional medicines they are used for…
As we were in the thick of the rainforest, it was no surprise that it rained a little, a few times… but we were already pretty moist from the humid air and the physical excursion, so it didn’t dampen our spirits at all (no apologies for the pun). It was a beautiful hike and we did not feel uncomfortable at all, although we had to be careful with our footing as the ground and trail were wet…
We crossed a small river somewhere in the valley, which had a vine “rope” hanging over it, that we took turns swinging on… When we got to the actual falls and pool areas, there were about 10-15 cement stairs in the middle of nowhere leading down to the upper pool… I can’t imagine having had to carry cement bags all the way here!
There are actually 2 small cascading waterfalls with pools. The top falls are about 15-20 feet tall with a fairly large/deep pool, while the bottom falls are slightly higher at 20-25 feet tall with a small shallow pool that spills into a rocky river. After a swim in the upper pool, careful not to slip all the way over the second falls, we headed back the way we came. This time, the trail took us up the 1200 or so steps. While there were a few steep sections, it was really not too strenuous a hike.
In summary, St. Lucia’s Enbas Saut Falls trail was an easy-medium difficulty hike, with lots of steps, and mixed level sections making it a gradual decline /incline. This was a great rainforest experience with heavy jungle, lots of birds and hummingbirds along with a large variety of vegetation, which our guide explained to us. A very educational and fun 3 hour hike.
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