Ascent of Mount Gimie on 2016-01-22
|Date:||Friday, January 22, 2016|
|Ascent Type:||Successful Summit Attained|
| Location:||Saint Lucia|
| Elevation:||3117 ft / 950 m|
Ascent Trip ReportMy brother-in-law and I met our guide operator - Smith from excitingtours - in Soufriere at 6am (guide required by law to hike this, and you wouldn't want to try to find the trail yourself). We picked up another hiker in town and headed up a paved road to the trailhead. After a few miles the road turns rougher and at some points becomes a bed of rocks. We were glad to have our high(ish) clearance vehicle.
Along the way, we picked up Miguel, our guide, machete in hand. We started at an open field and took a path downwards into the rain forest. We descended 500 feet into a ravine with a gorgeous double waterfall, then started the ascent to Gimie. Given the topography of the island, it's not surprising that very little of the hike was on flat ground. It was muddy and steep, and many areas required care. Before long our boots were caked in mud, not to mention clothing due to several slips. Perspiration rolled off me in buckets while Miguel didn't even break a sweat. Most of the route followed a ridge to the summit, with one spot of nice views to the Pitons to the west. Unfortunately the summit was socked in, but we were told one can see almost the whole island from there. A pity. We did see an Antillean crested hummingbird up top. Along the way we heard a St. Lucia amazon (the island's only parrot) and saw a beautiful St. Lucian oriole.
This is much tougher than the stats would have you believe. The descents and ascents are very steep. This was a unique class 3 route, roots and trees replacing rock. The path was slick due to the heavier than usual precipitation over the past couple of months, and there are places where a slip or fall could have very bad consequences. I don't handle heat and humidity well, and had a tough time near the end (even vomiting for the first time on a hike).
We took 2.5 hours up and the same down - Miguel said average is 3 up and 3 down.
|Summary Total Data|
| Total Elevation Gain:||3118 ft / 949 m|
| Extra Gain:||999 ft / 304 m|
| Round-Trip Distance:||5.8 mi / 9.3 km|
| Trailhead:||1997 ft / 608 m|
| Grade/Class:||Class 3 |
| Quality:||6 (on a subjective 1-10 scale)|
| Route Conditions:||Unmaintained Trail, Scramble|
| Gear Used:||Guide|
| Weather:||Drizzle, Hot|
Hot and humid
|GPS Data for Ascent/Trip|
GPS Waypoints - Hover or click to see name and lat/long
Peaks: climbed and unclimbed by Shannon Dillmore
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