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L'Esperance Road - has anybody here walked it?

North Carolina
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L'Esperance Road - has anybody here walked it?

I'm a historical geographer that is about to start a multi-year study on slavery & plantations in the USVI. I have learned that there a are a number of ruins associated with different plantation sites alone the L'Esperance Road trail. Have you walked this trail? How difficult is this trail for a relative novice to walk?

I really would like take as many photos of as many different sites associated with plantation in St John as possible, so walking this trail seems like it would be very useful.

I will be in the Virgin Islands between May 29 and June 4, if anyone is interested in joining me on this adventure, I'd welcome the additional company.

Pia
St John, VI
Destination Expert
for St. John
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1. Re: L'Esperance Road - has anybody here walked it?

I would not start with this hike, if you are a novice especially - start with an easier one :)

Buy the book Feet, Fins and Four Wheel Drive and read up on the hike we have here - very good info and lists each with degree of difficulty.

For the hike you asked about it reads (in part) ......"A machete would come in handy" - and - "bushwhack your way to the right, good luck"

Pia

North Carolina
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2. Re: L'Esperance Road - has anybody here walked it?

Thank you. This won't be my first hike, but as a novice, I don't want to end up in a situation that would have me (and others) stressed.

I was reading on seestjohn.com (http://seestjohn.com/trails_lesperance.html), "The L'Esperance Trail was improved in 2007 by volunteers from the Student Conservation Association and was designated an official National Park Service trail that same year." I was thinking that since this should have been done since this was written since "Feet, Fins and Four Wheel Drive" was written, maybe things had improved. But I think I'm going to probably need to follow the advice, "If in doubt, don't..." on this one and hold off unless someone who has actually hiked it tells me it is manageable.

Thank you again for the help.

Pia
St John, VI
Destination Expert
for St. John
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3. Re: L'Esperance Road - has anybody here walked it?

It has been improved and I now a few who do hike it - I'll ask them next time I see them :)

I would start with....

Reef Bay

Cinnamon

Annaburg

Brown Bay

Pia

St. John
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for St. John
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4. Re: L'Esperance Road - has anybody here walked it?

I'm not familiar with this road, but I did find this info:

www.stjohnbeachguide.com/LEsperance.htm

I would get familiar with Christmas Bush... you do not want to get near this stuff!!

Pia
St John, VI
Destination Expert
for St. John
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5. Re: L'Esperance Road - has anybody here walked it?

Yep - hubby has been in contact with some just last week clearing a trail - not fun (3rd time) :(

Pia

Virgin Islands
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6. Re: L'Esperance Road - has anybody here walked it?

The trail is not at all difficult, but long and tiring, especially at this warm time of year. I would assume you would get in touch with local historians through the VI National Park, the St. John Historical Society, etc.? All of the plantation sites along this trail are in the VINP, and certainly you shouldn't be using a machete unsupervised...we've had far too much illegal activity of this sort in recent years!

7. Re: L'Esperance Road - has anybody here walked it?

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