Last Thursday (09/02/17) was a public holiday in Mauritius, the Cavadee, a Tamil festival, and as we were both free, me and Idriss decided to go for a ride somewhere around and I chose the Bassin Estate since I had in mind to explore the river side a bit deeper with the hope to discover some nice waterfalls along. Additionally, the island was a few days back under the heavy influence of the 3rd tropical cyclone of the 2017 season, Carlos. This would probably make water spots more lively and interesting, even though the weather remained very cloudy. Rendez-vous was set early in the afternoon, at 2pm and both of us being practically on time we started the trail at 2h30pm sharp.
Following Riviere Papayes
After reaching the river area, namely ‘Riviere Papayes’, we followed the path on the right side till wherever it lead to, or to the max we could follow, and the trail started rather leisurely through the sugarcane fields without any difficulties. A few minutes later, still along the river, we found some well-loaded mango trees… but we didn’t pluck any since this wasn’t our aim… and we continued our way till we came near a farmhouse-like structure raising chickens and the smell wasn’t so welcoming, but we didn’t bother and continued around it further inside the fields towards the Rempart Mountain. The views were quite delightful and it was all fun.
Following the track we came across a few spots leading directly to the river bank and with the hope of finding a waterfall we followed the path… nothing but just the regular water flow. It was still a pleasant view and this scene repeated at further more places. Around halfway through the track, we found another place which had a little dam but it was fenced and couldn’t get closer.
Following Riviere Rempart
Arriving near Beau Songe, this time we followed the Rempart river rather uphill towards the junction and from this side we could well hear some heavy falls around but all attempts to find something pleasant ended up in vain, except some bushes and cactuses. The valley englobing the area was too deep and dense to spot anything from where we were. Probably from the other side of the river things could be different we thought, but that would be probably on another attempt.
In Memory of Charles Baudelaire…
Ending this part of our trail across the Beau Songe road, we crossed towards the fields leading to La Ferme Reservoir, and minutes after we came to a spot with ruins of something dating back to the British colonial times, and no history left untold the commemorative plate on a piece of rock wrote as follows:
[In French]…”En ces lieux séjourna Charles Baudelaire vécut La Dame Créole naquit Madame de Lesseps ******* Charles Baudelaire (1821 – 1867) visita l’Ile Maurice en septembre 1841 et séjourna chez M. et Mme Gustave Adolphe Autard de Bragard. Il publia le sonnet La Dame Créole en hommage à son hôtesse. Hélène, fille de cette dernière, épouse de Ferdinand de Lesseps, naquit ici en 1848. – Societe de L’Histoire de L’Ile Maurice – Octobre 2001.”
In admiration and contemplation, we left towards the inner fields taking the direction of Corps de Gardes mountain. We reached the main road which led straight to the place I had in mind and on the way came across some more poultry area with a terribly bad smell and lots of flies around, sticking to our faces with the sweat as we rode across… yea well, couldn’t do anything anyhow.
La Ferme Pipeline
Soon after, following the road left to a prayer area, we reached a spot where a gigantic pipe casted inside some serious concrete lead the way towards La Ferme Reservoir, and by the look of it, that was probably the a feeder canal, my guess. And the view was magnificent, even though the weather was overcast. We sat there admiring the low clouds hovering Corps de Gardes mountain on our right and the deep green of the forest further below. Some shy water was dripping over on what looked like a waterfall without water some meters aside.
Some 10 minutes later we got back to our cycles we left up and rode out of the fields towards our starting point again from Beau Songe to Bassin Estate. It was now rather uphill and tired we certainly were. Bid farewell and minutes later we were at our respective places. Again, it was another fun adventure even though we didn’t find what we were initially looking for… Probably on another trip. This 20km ride certainly did me well even though I could not much feel my legs by the time I reached home.