A walk to remember: to the Biberon waterfallBy Jean-Jacques Segalen (jjacques)
June 18, 2012
We drive through the village, enjoying some colorful typical Creole houses called "cases," then drive past City Hall and soon reach a small parking place. It's empty as we are rather early (the early bird catches the worm!) Speaking of birds, here comes a charming little one, Saxicola tectes locally known as ‘tec-tec' which is endemic to Reunion (remember, an endemic species means it will be found in the wild only in a given place.) This one is small but very familiar and will probably follow us on the trail, briefly perching itself on a twig then flying further on. Let us lace our shoes and get ready; this is a short and easy promenade but reliable shoes are nonetheless required as we will step on large stones and walk across a stream. The area is also pretty muddy as rainfall is important here. And you may want to keep your jumper on, we are at 1070m (3200 feet) high. From the road we can get a first view of the waterfall which is some 2km away and is 240m (720 feet) high, the top is partially hidden in fog. We may get some raindrops but nothing can stop us now, en route!
|Yummy strawberry guavas!|
|Fruits of Ficus mauritiana|
Here we are, we just reached the bottom of the waterfall, it makes a pool deep and wide enough to swim for those of you who are not cold sensitive, as this is mountain water! I also hope that no flibbertigibbet here has forgotten his camera at home; the sight is really worth at least a dozen pictures. We will sit and enjoy the place, I did bring my vacuum flask with vanilla tea if you want, a special tea prepared in Mauritius.
Is everyone rested and ready to stroll back? All right then, let us go. Stay vigilant, the drizzle has made the boulders even more slippery so please watch your steps. Now you
| Ardisia crenata|
Well, everybody is
|Endemic tree fern and invasive ones|
back and safe as I can see, just a little wet and muddy but this is part of the game, keep your hiking gear at hand as we will pretty soon go for another discover of natural wonders of Reunion Island!
And as some French-speaking readers will inevitably wonder why this waterfall is called "biberon," (which means baby bottle.) The reason is very simple; it comes from Mr. Biberon, who was at one time the head of the local forest department!
| Ready for a resfreshing swim?|