La Porte mountain and Piton du Fouge are two peaks on the Southern end of the mountain range to the West of Chamarel. They are not particularly high, but offer nice views over the peninsula of Le Morne.
Thanks to Sebastian for originally finding the route from Coteau Raffin village. This is a slight modification to his route as I didn't take the path on the outside of the fence which looked like too much effort.
- There are (open) gates at certain points, they might not be open on your visit.
- Despite the presence of gates, there is a deliberate break in the fence on the ridge when coming up from the path originating in Coteau Raffin village on the coast. I don't mean a vandalized break, but a design decision.
- Some of the houses in the area are empty, or seem to be, and others are inhabited. Being noisy will provoke barking dogs.
- There are security cameras (CCTV) near some houses.
- Should you be here? Probably not.
- In early 2017, I received feedback that a hiker was challenged by a suspected "land leasee", and subsequently found the gate closed and turned back. Hence this route is only for the most motivated hikers!
The path starts from the main road near Coteau Raffin village. There is a blue sheltered bus stop near the start of the road into the fields. There are other paths entering the fields, but they are clearly marked private property - no trespassing. You can leave your transport on one of the side roads leading to the coast.
- Leave the main coastal road by the bus stop at Coteau Raffin.
- Follow the track which starts off generally flat, and gets steeper as you move up towards the ridge. The path is clear, easily visible and is easy to follow.
- You will eventually emerge at the top of the ridge, through a break in the fence, with the gated entrance to a red-roofed house on your right.
- Follow the main cemented road to the left of the driveway.
- This will take you around the house to another (open) gate. Once past this gate, be quiet as there is another house behind the trees with dogs!
- As soon as you have passed the gate, turn right, up the grassy steep bank back towards the ridge. When you leave the grassy bank, you will enter woods which seem to be well maintained, without a single trace of a guava tree.
- Keep going ahead until you reach the fence on the ridge, and turn left, Southwards, to follow the path along the fence towards La Porte mountain.
- When you reach the base of La Porte mountain, and the fence veers off left, there is a "custom made" exit in the fence which you can pull open and pass through to continue.
- After easily climbing some bare rock, the path continues to the right, across some cliffs where you should be careful for two reasons, first as the path passes close to the cliffs and secondly, you are exposed in this area and easily visible from afar.
- Continue on the path, which will shortly lead you to the summit of La Porte mountain, with a cemented marker pinpointing the summit. The summit is overgrown, spoiling views all around.
- Moving along the path southwards, there are several areas where the vegetation has been cleared for views over the peninsula of Le Morne. Beware of short steel rods placed vertically in the ground near the viewpoints.
- You will eventually reach the summit of Piton du Fouge, but again, the summit is overgrown, spoiling all opportunity for views.
- You may decide to continue southwards along the path (which would be unwise!), and report your findings, else, return the same way you came.
3.4 km, 22:00:20