Les Makes, Reunion
Piton Cabris Les Makes Reviews
Nice loop trail from La Fenêtre Oct 20, 2011
A really nice loop trail beginning and ending at La Fenêtre, it took me roughly two and a half hours to complete (my pace could probably be described as “brisk”). There is a fair amount of up and down and I would characterize it as moderately difficult, but certainly nothing requiring any specific equipment or prior experience. Let’s go for a hike!
The trailhead begins beside the radio tower at the lookout (can’t miss it, just right if you are looking out upon the Cilaos Cirque) and initially tilts sharply downwards. Along this initial stretch are the best views into the Cirque as the trail eventually wraps back around into the woods. You will arrive at a clearing where there are some benches and a railing at a lookout, which is where the trail splits. I stuck to the rim side and was oblivious of the split as it is not signposted and easy to miss the alternative since you are enjoying the views in the opposite direction. I would recommend sticking to the rim side because the trail soon begins a steep uphill which I remember thinking would be a bit challenging going the other way (downhill).
I believe this uphill leads to the peak of Piton Cabris, where there is another clearing and a covered picnic table. Similar to prior experience on the island, the picnic table was occupied and my uncertainty around whether or not the trail would actually loop caused me to utter “La Fenêtre?” and point my hiking stick in the direction I was progressing. The group responded with an assuring “oui” and I happily continued. Fortunately I ran into quite a few other hikers and consistently received that reassuring response.
Beyond concern over the trail looping, I will note that there are no blazes and exceeding few trail markers for this trail, explaining my motivation to query each group of human beings I met along the way. The only time I had serious concern was when the trail hit a T with a sign. I didn’t recognize the first place and the other indicated “Les Makes”. Although Les Makes didn’t make sense, it felt like the proper direction and shortly the trail skirted along the road I had taken to La Fenêtre and I realized this was the correct route.
I was quite surprised upon suddenly finding myself back at the clearing with the railing along the rim because I hadn’t noticed the split. The amusing thing was seeing a pair of ladies sitting there enjoying some lunch – I had crossed paths with them earlier and posed my “La Fenêtre?” question. Clearly all roads led back to the starting point! I asked if it was okay to take their picture and after some confusion (they thought I was asking to have a picture taken of me), they happily agreed.
A quality hike with some exceptional views, though nothing exceeding what is available at La Fenêtre. You might still consider it as an effective escape route to enjoy a lunch away from the crowds at the lookout.
Part of the Running to Reunion travel blog
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