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Thread: St Barth Hiking & Walks

  1. #1
    tim is offline
    Moderator Joined: Jun 2003 Vélo, Virginia Posts: 16,797

    St Barth Hiking & Walks

    The below described walks/hikes are ranked in their difficulty, #1 being the easiest -

    1. Point Milou - Park at Le Ti and walk the circle around Pt. Milou which is mostly flat.
    There are three extras that can be added:
    do the outer loop around Pt. Milou;
    walk down the steep road to the Hotel Christopher and back;
    walk out of Pt. Milou, turn left, go through the security gate, and walk the road through Mont Jean.

    2.Sunday Ramble in Gustavia - Sunday because the traffic is light and local families are out with their children enjoying their special day together.
    Park your car in the public parking lot on Quai de la Republique.
    Take the seaside walkway down past Route des Boucaniers.
    Check out the Anglican Church across the street and the Catholic Church two streets back.
    If you're so inclined, attend the morning services at the church of your choice.
    The Anglican service is in English.

    Walk along the Rue Samuel Falberg headed toward the Hospital.
    On the left as you start the ascent is a set of steps that leads up to the site of the former Fort Karl.
    The view from the old fort of Shell Beach, Do Brazil, and the sea is spectacular.
    Retrace back to the street, and walk on up and right past the hospital on Rue Jean Bart.
    Take the next left and the next right that will put you on Rue de la Colline with intermittent views of the harbor on the right and the sea on your left.
    Walk down to Fort Oscar, the current Gendarmerie.
    Take the little street (steep) down the hill and head for the harbor.
    Take a left before you hit water, and walk down past the Wall House, then the Museum, and stroll around the Hotel de Ville (Town Hall), where many of the local familes with children and their wheeled toys will be enjoying the day.

    Walk back towards your car on any of the streets paralleling the harbor. You should be able to find your way back on your own.
    If you've worked up a thirst or an appetite, take with you Kevin's latest Resto list that shows which ones will be open on Sunday afternoon. We've enjoyed the 6:00 PM Happy Hour at the Cantina, along with their tapas combination, on several fun evenings.

    3. St. Jean to/from Lorient - With Kiki & Mo at one end and La Petite Colombe on the other end, for what more could one ask on a walk in paradise?
    A sidewalk can carry you the entire distance, but don't walk so fast as to miss the beautiful vistas along the way. Start at either the St. Jean side or the Lorient side and do the round trip.

    To add mileage for this walk, start in the vicinity of the airport on St. Jean Beach.
    Walk along the sand to Eden Rock, and then head out to the sidewalk along the road and turn left.
    Keep going to Lorient where you can delve into the delicacies at La Petite Colombe a little further down the road.

    4. Lower Path to Colombier Beach
    Drive your car past Flamands Beach and past the office of Auberge de la Petite Anse (green roof building pictured below) all the way to the end of the road.
    Park your car and continue walking on the road. You'll see the sign for the beach, and there you turn right and follow the trail. It's a 15-20 minute walk from car to beach -

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    There are some places where one should exercise care on this hike -

    5. Upper Path To Colombier Beach
    This path is considerably more difficult than the lower path and not for those with weak knees or ankles.
    Drive your car out through the village of Colombier and past Le P'tit Morne Hotel.
    Park in the places at the circle on the summit. (Before starting the walk, don't forget to walk up to the lookout site to enjoy the maps and views of the surrounding islands.)
    Walk straight down the new pavement that is the continuance of the road. The photos below should help you find your way -

    Start walking -

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    Keep walking -

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    The path is on the right just before the gate -

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    Turn left when you see these steps and begin your descent -

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    I didn't count, but there are a lot of these round "steps" on the path down to the beach-

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    Enjoy the view along the way -

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    6. Santa Fe to Gouverneur Beach and Back

    Park your car up near the Santa Fe restaurant. Walk down to the beach and back up to Santa Fe. The road is very steep in some places, 20% inclines. Allow between 30 and 60 minutes depending on your levels of fitness and determination.

    This trek is best done in the early morning or late afternoon hours. Although light, there is automobile traffic on this road and no sidewalks. Maintain vigilance. See photos in the thread below.

    7. La Pointe around Le Toiny - Drive on the main road past Le Toiny(coming from the Marigot side), and park down along the left hand side before reaching the brown, wooden villa, Chez Nureyev that sits out on the coast. Look for a concrete driveway blocked by a large chain(photo below) and walk down the drive towards the beach. About 30 meters down the concrete driveway, you should see a ceramic sign saying "Toiny" that marks the path. Walk down to the shore, and turn left toward Le Toiny. Keep walking along the beach past Le Toiny's beach chairs until you run into the path that follows the coast. It should be quite visible. Follow the path toward the point and climb the steps built into the hill. Finding the steps going up the hill is difficult when the grass is high. Look for the stones held in place by rebar driven into the ground, and you'll be on the right track. Continue on the path and the dirt road that follows to the paved road above Le Toiny. Walk down past Le Toiny, turn left on the main road, and head back to your car. Make sure to bring your camera for shooting the numerous goats in this area. (This walk can be very breezy).

    Entrance to Toiny beach path -

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    Follow the beach, and you'll be able to see the path that goes around the hill -

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    Photo by JoshA

    ​Additional photos in the thread below.

    7.5 Petit cul de Sac Circle - This hike can be done independently or in combination with the Le Toiny hike for extra distance and climbing.

    When going away from Grand cul de Sac toward Grand Fond, turn left at the sign in the photo below -

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    You'll come to a three way fork in the road. Bear to the left and park on the hardened sand. Keep walking and take the far right hand fork(if you miss this direction you'll run into the gate guarding Domaine du Levant, where you don't want to go). Continue on foot up the killer hill(25% grade), straight at the bottom and winding at the top. Killer hill pictured below -

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    Follow the paved road as it winds and undulates on its way above and beside Le Toiny.

    Le Toiny pond seen from above -
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    To combine with Le Toiny hike, turn left at the Le Toiny shuttle sign. If not, when you get to the main road, turn right to walk back to the road headed to the Petit cul de Sac beach and your car.

    8. Washing Machine/Natural Pools - Drive over the mountain at Grand Fond and head down toward the sea. You will come to a dog leg turn to the left. Do not make the turn, but park your car to your right in the small carpark(4 cars). Walk past the turn and take the path on your right that goes between a stone wall and the brush. When you come out on the stone beach, turn right and follow the sea and the path up the hill. Climb down to the natural pools when they come in site and take a dip if you're so inclined, but watch out for the black, spiny sea urchins.

    Car park -

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    Entrance to path that goes to stone beach -

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    One of JEK's many photos taken along this hike -

    Natural Pool Photo by Didierb

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    9. Upper and Lower Colombier Beach Hike - Park your car near Le Pigeonnaire in the Village of Colombier. Walk out past Le P'tit Morne and follow directions for Upper Path down to Colombier Beach. Continue past the beach and walk back along the other coast on the lower path. Keep walking when you get to the pavement past Auberge de la Petite Anse. Continue walking on the road that parallels Flamands Beach until you get to the turnoff for La Langouste/Baie des Anges on your left and stop. This is crucial. Turn right on what appears to be an alley and walk up the steep road(20-25% grade) until you get to the main road through the Village of Colombier. Turn right and walk to Pigeonnaire to reclaim your car.

    Entrance to "alley" that climbs the hill to Colombier. This is a one way road for downhill traffic, so keep an eye out -

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    10. Hike to Chauvette Beach from Saline - Do not go without a guide. The route along the coast from Saline requires some climbing on rocks that are often slippery and wet. If you take the other path through private property, make sure your guide has obtained permission from the owner.

    11. Hike from Grand Fond over Morne Rouge to Saline Beach(aka Cactus and Goat Poop Climb/Hike) - See story and photos below. Do not go without a guide and at least three people. Involves much rock climbing.

    Appropriate foot wear is important for any of the ventures listed. When off road, don't step on any cactus, dead or alive. Their spines will penetrate your soles.

    If you're into photography, by all means take your camera as long as it doesn't interfere with safe hand holds; the same is true for water bottles. For the more strenuous efforts, I would always take a cell phone in case of injuries to the participants.

    I do most of the above walks at least occasionally and edit the descriptions in an effort to keep them current.
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  2. #2
    tim is offline
    Moderator Joined: Jun 2003 Vélo, Virginia Posts: 16,797
    You can borrow JEK's map below to guide you in your Gustavia ramble -

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  3. #3
    tim is offline
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    Photos From Hike #11

    Report of the 3/14/10 climb over Morne Rouge from Grand Fond to Saline -

    Our first climbing goal this Sunday morning is the peak one sees in the distance atop Morne Rouge -
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    We started our climb from the Natural Pools and climbed up this "path" 400 feet to the hidden plateau at the summit -

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    The view of Anse du Grand Fond on a wonderfully clear day -
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    Our ultimate goal was to descend the other side of the mountain to Saline Beach as seen below -
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    Two hours after we started we did indeed walk the sands of Saline Beach, three grubby guys amongst the naked folks that congregate towards the ends of the beach. We were a little scratched up, sweaty, tired, and a lot dirty - otherwise no worse for wear. That was my third climb over the top of Morne Rouge, and it's always enjoyable.
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  4. #4
    elgreaux is offline
    SBH Insider Joined: May 2003 Saint Barth Posts: 12,046
    Terrific information Tim, thanks...!

  5. #5
    Jim Kelly-Evans is offline
    SBH Insider Joined: Nov 2010 Philadelphia and Fire Island, NY Posts: 1,367
    We did the upper Colombier in 2011...getting back up was interesting. I think we'll opt for the lower path in the future!
    "I'd rather have a bottle in front of me, than a frontal lobotomy." - Dorothy Parker

  6. #6
    andynap is offline
    SBH Insider Joined: Oct 2002 Philadelphia Posts: 46,251

    Photos From Hike #7

    Entrance to Toiny beach just off main road

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    The Toiny beach itself is nice, but can be extremely dangerous for swimmers. In the distance one can see the Toiny Pointe; the path will be visible running across the hill.

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    Toiny beach chairs

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    Climbing up the ocean side of the Toiny path. In February, 2016 the path up toward the summit was very difficult to find due to the island's lack of rain. Everything was brown with no vegetation to help one locate the path -

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    Photo by JoshA

    Upper entrance to Toiny property. Guests using beach are shuttled back and forth from the main hotel structure -

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  7. #7
    NHDiane is offline
    SBH Insider Joined: Aug 2003 New Hampshire Posts: 6,928
    Nice job Tim - a grab from the archives! I'm exhausted just reading about it Pictures are terrific...
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  8. #8
    tim is offline
    Moderator Joined: Jun 2003 Vélo, Virginia Posts: 16,797
    Merci beau!
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  9. #9
    debd is offline
    SBH Insider Joined: Dec 2005 CT Posts: 1,414

    Hiking in St. Barts

    Forgot about that little gem that you had put together. Tim, merci beaucoup.

  10. #10
    jayhawkgirl is offline
    SBH Insider Joined: Dec 2009 Overland Park, KS Posts: 668

    Thanks to Tim for adding the photos to the hikes and walks thread

    We have used your original posting many times to take hikes and walks on the island, and appreciate your efforts. The photos add even more to the helpfulness of the information.

    Good work!
    "When you lose yourself, you find the key to paradise."
    Zac Brown Band

  11. #11
    tim is offline
    Moderator Joined: Jun 2003 Vélo, Virginia Posts: 16,797

    More Photos From Hike #7 and #7.5

    Below are some photos I took on the Toiny hike early one beautiful morning -

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    Attachment 23728

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  12. #12
    JEK is offline
    Senior Insider Joined: Jan 2004 In the ether . . . Posts: 57,309
    The best dinner on Saint Barth is a lunch at Sand Bar!

  13. #13
    tim is offline
    Moderator Joined: Jun 2003 Vélo, Virginia Posts: 16,797
    To contact Helene for a Taxi tour of the island, go to Easy Time St Barthelemy - Facebook. I don't think she gives hiking tours any more.
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  14. #14
    tim is offline
    Moderator Joined: Jun 2003 Vélo, Virginia Posts: 16,797

    Hike #6 Photos

    Photos from Hike #6 on the list. The first is the starting point, the Santa Fe restaurant -

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    Here is the intermediate goal, the entrance to Gouverneur Beach -

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    If you go early enough in the day and pay attention to the sites in the area, mother nature might treat you to this vista -

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  15. #15
    tim is offline
    Moderator Joined: Jun 2003 Vélo, Virginia Posts: 16,797
    The directions and some of the photos for the Toiny Pointe hike have been updated in February, 2016. I saw no need to update other information, but please let me know if readers find errors.
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