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Climbing Petit Piton

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My wife and I will be going to St. Lucia in 3 weeks. We are very excited about the trip. We love beautiful places that are also adventurous. We've been reading a lot about climbing the Pitons. We are both avid hikers and have experience technically climbing. We would really like to climb Petit Piton, more so than Gros Piton. From reviews I've read and some youtube clips Ive, it doesn't look too bad. However, there are a few reviews that make it sound very dangerous. We're both in our early 30s, athletic and in good shape. Has anyone actually climbed the Petit Piton that could tell me if it is a safe climb? I understand that it is strenuous. I just want to make sure that it is safe. I'd hate to spend time and money climbing half way up and then get to a point where it's risky. I'm not too worried about it. But, my wife is a little concerned because of some of the posts on tripadvisor that it is dangerous. Thanks in advance for you reply! We can't wait to get to St. Lucia and enjoy its beauty. We'd love to conquer the Petit Piton while we're there...

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    How exciting! Where are you staying? We were there about 7 years ago and loved it. We stayed at Stonefield Villas at the base of the Pitet Piton. We were in our late 20's/early 30's then and hiked the Pitet Piton. Our guide was really nice and lives at the the base of the Pitet Piton as well. He actually hiked it in his bare feet! He said his kids climb it with him, but then again, they live there and do it all the time.

    We're both in good shape and it was a strenuous climb, but doable...up until the shoulder. I was trying to overcome my phobia of heights by doing this climb which probably wasn't the smartest thing in the world. It's HIGH!!! So you climb by grabbing onto the roots of the trees and pulling yourself up. It's essentially like rock climbing but "root climbing", belly to the mountain and up you go. Same goes for the way down. Belly to the mountain and you slowly move down. There are some parts of the climb that are narrow (as in about 12") trails, rocks, and then a lot of the "root" climing. There are 2 lookout points that we stopped at. The views are beautiful from that height.

    We made it to the shoulder and then had to call it a day. When you get to that point there is a large boulder with a rope hanging down on it. You have to pull yourself up the rope while climbing up the boulder without any harnesses, and it's a straight drop down on either side. There were 2 avid rock climbers that came down this while we were pondering whether or not we should continue, and they said that they wouldn't recommend doing it - too dangerous. Being as my husband had a broken clavicle at the time, and I wasn't liking the height, we decided it was best to head back down the mountain.

    My 2 cents on hiking the Pitet Piton. It was an adventure and if you want to do it, go for it. Just do it at the end of your trip as I literally couldn't move for a few days I was so sore! Also, don't push yourself. If you get to the shoulder and want to turn around, do so. It's not worth getting seriously injured over to go up 20 more feet to get to the top.

    With this being said, our friends hiked to the top of the Gros piton and loved it. There are steps going to the top and they easily made it to the lookout point and have gorgeous photos all along the way. We couldn't take photos except for the 2 lookout points because it wasn't doable while climbing. If I were to do it again, I would skip the Pitet Piton and go for the Gros Piton. At least you know you'll make it to the top!

    Here are some pictures from our trip, with ones from our Pitet Piton climb towards the end.
    http://pix.kg/p/8074400670103%3A1042987175/scl

    Ooh, and don't miss the Anse La Raye Friday night Fish Fry-it's so much fun!!!
    Enjoy!

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    Thanks for all of the information Kelly. I asked the same question on trip advisor this morning and 3 responders warned against climbing it due to safety concerns. I guess we'll just wait and see. We definitely don't want to do anything dumb. But, we may never go back to St. Lucia. I'd love to have been able to at least try the Petit Piton... We are staying at Ladera. Thanks again for you help. We'll write a travel review when we get back.

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    Great! I can't wait to read your TR (and hopefully you'll post pictures too)! Ladera is great-beautiful views down the valley. Be sure to check out the beach below as well as do dinner one night at the Mango Tree at Stonefield (5 minute cab ride from Ladera) -the sunsets are stunning at Stonefield as the Pitet Piton doesn't block the view of the sun setting over the water. Service is very slow but friendly, and the food, atmosphere and views are wonderful, so just plan on spending a few hours there. And if you can, take a water taxi from Jalousie's dock anywhere rather than a cab. The roads are a bit tough there. We did a great horseback riding trip through the mountains too. I hear there is now a ziplining course too there if you're into that. And they also have great mountain biking trails from what I've heard. Have FUN! It's one of my favorite islands :)

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    Hi. I climbed the Petit Piton nine years ago when I was in my mid thirties and not very fit. It was quite steep towards the top but not at all scary. I have done lots of hiking and a little climbing in the past and found the Petit Piton climb quite straightforward. I climbed with a barefooted Rastafarian guide who lived at the base of the peak. He was very fit and set a fast pace. We got up in 90 minutes and down in an hour. I would highly recommend the trip. I just got back to St Lucia for another holiday and will do the Gros Piton on Monday. It is a much easier climb than the PP. I understand that the PP is now a protected area and that a special permit is required to climb it. Also today I heard that a tourist fell and badly injured himself on the PP so the authorities try to discourage people from climbing it.

    In summary, if you are reasonably fit and can cope with some slightly exposed simple scrambling you will love the PP climb.

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