The hike to Boiling Lake, known to be the hardest in the Caribbean, is also one of the most beautiful. A monumental moment, once you reach the end, this hike will test your strength, endurance and ability to last through the grueling amount of squatting, bending and scaling you have to do along the way.
Dominica is covered by rainforest, 70% covered in fact. And, it’s stunning. You begin by yourself, or with a guide, at 6:00 am. The head of the trail is breathtaking, featuring babbling rivers, centuries-old trees, crawling moss and colorful parrots fluttering above your head. But, don’t let the beauty fool you. You’re about to be tested.
I began my hike with my guide promptly at 6:00 am. The walk starts slow, easy in-fact. But, that quickly changes. As the trail narrows, it becomes a game of survival. Hopping over slippery rocks, crossing raging rivers, sliding down rocks on ropes and walking-up a nearly vertical incline. It’s rough. But, with each moment to stop and breathe, the vistas become more and more fantastic.
As you begin to reach Boiling Lake, the smell of sulfur permeates the air. Hot, volcanic springs bubble loudly underground and smoke rises from the hillsides.
After four hours, covered in sweat and sulfur, you reach Boiling Lake. The lake is loud, like a giant pot of boiling water. It really is unique, and breathtaking. After a 30-minute break to eat a packed lunch, your off on your return trip, another 4 hours ahead of you. Don’t lose steam…you’re not done. It’s only just begun.