Hiking on Basse terre

Trip Start Oct 01, 2006
Trip End Ongoing

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Flag of Guadeloupe  ,
Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Yesterday i managed to wake up somehow at 6 oclock in the morning, the sky was getting light so i thought sod it, i'm up i might alswell go a climb that volcano, after getting washed, ready, stopping quickly for some petite dejenay (spelling?) and then driving right across to the other side of the country i managed to start about 9 oclock, the route up to the summit was a total well worn breeze, all helpfully signposted with information in french to the top.. I didn't carry a bag with me so had to hold my water bottle all the way but stuffed an apple and a bag of peanut m&ms in my jacket pocket for my packed lunch, on the summit there are a few fissures letting out sulphuric gases, some calmly and some gushing out sounding like a jet engine. the more active ones grabbed my attention so walked up right close to them taking photos and sticking my hand into the vents to feel the hot toxic gas against my skin.. after ten minutes of having fun near there a scientist came trounching over saying something rather quickly in french, i have perfected the "je ne compron pa francois" line quite well so he replied saying i'm not allowed in the area and have to leave. I'm sure he just didn't want me playing in his playground but i'd finished jumping in and out of the sulphur gas anyway so was happy to follow his orders. after climbing down and round the trail to complete a circle of the volcano i came across a sign in french saying 'premier carbenet falls this way, dangerous trail - 1hr45' So as it was about quater to eleven in the morning still and i'd already been to the falls no.2 i thought i'd take up the challenge.

It was quite tricky on the way down to the base of the falls and could've twisted an ankle a few times as it was so overgrown and rocky i couldn't see clearly where to to put my footing. some bits i slid or climbed down and sometimes a rope had been put there to help you absail down steep sections.. as i bounced out onto the main lower trail that is quite clear i must have looked a state. i was red faced from the hardwork and covered in mud up to my knee caps with soaking trainers, the other tourists on the trail all had clean clothers and shoes on so must of wondered if i'd got lost. After about ten minutes of resting at 'the base of the highest falls in the eastern caribbean' i started to work my way back uphil the volcano to where i'd left my higher car, by the time i reached it i was so knackered i felt i could've passed out. I picked up a twix and a yop at the first shop before making my way back to Gosier to get a proper lunch to sort me out.
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