Category Archives: St. John Virgin Islands Trails

Josie Gut

Josie Gut, Reef Bay Trail, St. John USVI
Josie Gut Horsemill Wall

JossieGutMap-9Josie Gut
The Reef Bay Trail passes through the old Josie Gut Estate about a half-mile from the trailhead at Centerline Road and goes right by the remains of the horsemill and the sugar factory.

The sugar works at Josie Gut, like the Reef Bay sugar works further down the trail date back to the early 19th century. The estate was owned and operated by the Hans Henrik Berg from the 1820s until his death in 1862. Berg served as governor of the Danish West Indies in 1848 and again from 1853 -1862.

Jossie Gut is also significant for using a surface water collecting and distributing system, the remains of which still exist on the opposite side of the trail from the horse mill.

Horsemill
The horsemill lies on a circular platform 65 feet in diameter. It is supported on the lower side by a 16-feet high stone retaining wall, which has a small storage room built into it. The upper side of the horsemill  is cut into the hillside and can be seen on the other side of the trail.

Factory
The remains of the Josie Gut sugar factory lie just below the horsemill. It was built almost entirely out of native stone, with the exception of bricks, used to line the doors and windows and the buildings corners.

The factory is T-shaped. The stem part of the T ends just three feet from the horsemill wall. This part of the factory was single-storied and housed the boiling house. The firing trench can be seen on the back or downhill side of the wall.

The top of the T contained the storage and curing rooms. Two remains of two staircases can still be seen.

Dam and Cistern
On the other side of the trail above the horsemill are the remains of a dam and cistern including a sluice way and gutter that led to the cistern

Ox Pound
North of the factory (up the trail and on the other side of the gut) you can still see what’s left of the old ox pound and two stone buildings.

St. John Live Music Schedule

Monday 3/16

Aqua Bistro
Matt Mirkut
5:30-8:30
340-776-5336

Beach Bar
Buddha Council
9:00
340-777-4220

Concordia
Open Mic
4:30 – 6:30
340-693-5855

Cruz Bay Landing
Chris Carsel
6:00-9:00
340-776-6908

Inn at Tamarind Court
Quest Theory
7:00
340-776-6378

Shipwreck Landing
Dave Gerard
6:30-9:30
340-693-5640

Virgin Fire
Mark Wallace & Broheem
6:00 – 9:00
340-244-9713

See Weekly Schedule

 

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Shortcut Margaret Hill Overlook

The Shortcut to the Margaret Hill Overlook

Margaret Hill OverlookThere are two great overlooks on the Caneel and Margaret Hill Trail, one at the top of Caneel Hill and the other near the Margaret Hill summit. Beginning hike at the trail heads involves steep climbs, but there is an easier alternative.

View from Margaret Hill Caneel Margaret Hill Trail Overlook St John USVI overlooks: Margaret Hill

St. John News

Mongoose Fire
Smoke From Mongoose Junction Fire

A fire at Mongoose Junction yesterday afternoon destroyed several businesses and damaged others…. read more

St. John Live Music Schedule

Saturday 1/24

Beach Bar
Don Dilego & Bree Sharp
8:00
340-777-4220

Cruz Bay Landing
Erin Hart
6:00-9:00
340-776-6908

Skinny Legs
Chris Carsel & Friends
6:00-9:00
340-779-4982

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The L’Esperance Ruins

The Ruins at Estate L’Esperance

St. John Live Music Schedule

Friday 1/16

Aqua Bistro
Steven Sloan
5:30-8:30
340-776-5336

Barefoot Cowboy Lounge
T-Bird
8:00
340-201-1236

Cruz Bay Landing
Bri Felix
6:00-9:00
340-776-6908

Shipwreck Landing
Tropical Sounds
6:30-9:30
340-693-5640

Skinny Legs
Chris Carsel & Friends
6:00-9:00
340-779-4982

Virgin Fire
Inner Vision
6:00 – 9:00
340 244-9713

See Weekly Schedule

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Lind Point Battery Overlook

The Lind Point Battery Overlook

You can access the Lind Point Battery Overlook by hiking the Lind Point Trail, which begins at the National Park Visitors Center in Cruz Bay.

St. John Live Music Schedule

Friday 1/9

Aqua Bistro
Steven Sloan
5:30-8:30
340-776-5336

Barefoot Cowboy Lounge
T-Bird
8:00
340-201-1236

Beach Bar
Sol Driven Train
9:00
340-777-4220

Cruz Bay Landing
Bri Felix
6:00-9:00
340-776-6908

Shipwreck Landing
Tropical Sounds
6:30-9:30
340-693-5640

Skinny Legs
Chris Carsel & Friends
6:00-9:00
340-779-4982

Virgin Fire
Inner Vision
6:00 – 9:00
340 244-9713

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America Hill Estate House

America Hill Estate HouseFriends of the Virgin Islands National Park have again cleared the old America Hill Estate House, which had been previously cleared in 2009 also by Friends volunteers.

You can access the old estate house,  via a spur trail off of the Cinnamon Bay Trail.

 America Hill Estate House Front View  America Hill Side Wall

View West toward St. Thomas
View to the West

St. John Live Music Schedule

Wednesday 12/31

Aqua Bistro
Mark Wallace
5:30-8:30
340-776-5336

Beach Bar
West Lindy & 3rd String All Stars
8:00
340-777-4220

Castaway’s
Karaoke Night
9:00 pm – 2:00 am
340-777-3316

Coconut Coast Studios
St. John Flutes
5:30 – 7:30
340-776-6944

Cruz Bay Landing
Matt Mirkut
6:00-9:00
340-776-6908

Shipwreck Landing
Chris Carsel
6:30-9:30
340-693-5640

Skinny Legs
New Year’s Eve Dance Party with DJ I-Duane
9:00
340-779-4982

Virgin Fire
Hot Club of Coral Bay
6:00 – 9:00
340-244-9713

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South Shore Trail Views

View From Europa Point
The View from Europa Point

These two photos sent to me by Robert Garrison reminded me once again of the magnificent views afforded on the south shore trails, Tektite, Yawzi, Cabritte Horn and Europa Point.

Cabritte Horn
Cabritte Horn Point

St. John Live Music Schedule

Tuesday 12/30

Barefoot Cowboy Lounge
Erin Hart
8:00
340-201-1236

Beach Bar
T-Bird
8:00
340-777-4220

Castaway’s
Karaoke Night
9:00 pm – 2:00 am
340-777-3316

Cruz Bay Landing
T-Bird
6:00-9:00
340-776-6908

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St. John Trails: Yawzi Point Trail

Yawzi Point Trail
Yawzi Point Trail

St. John Beaches Lameshur Bay
Lameshur Bay

The road out to Lameshur Bay and the Yawzi Point Trail is presently in terrible condition. Poor drainage and poor water management has created deep pools of water that cover the entire roadway. So unless you’re a mosquito looking to lay eggs or brave of heart with a proper vehicle, I would advise waiting until we have some consistent dry weather before attempting this drive.

The Yawzi Point Trail begins at the eastern end of the beach at Little Lameshur Bay and ends at the tip of the peninsula at Yawzi Point. This narrow headland divides Great Lameshur from Little Lameshur Bays. The 0.3-mile trail passes through thorny scrub vegetation, century plants, cactus, maran bush and frangipani.

Although there is no historical substantiation besides the fact that name of the headland is reminiscent a disease, island lore has that people infected with yaws, an infectious tropical disease causing destructive skin and bone lesions similar to leprosy, were once forced to live, and die, here.

Yawzi Point Trail Ruin Ruin on Yawzi Point TrailNear the beginning of the trail, about half way up the first hill, you will find the remains of two old stone buildings.

About 200 yards further down the trail, a short spur to the left (east) leads to a small cove surrounded by large rocks. A profusion of wild spider lilies abound in and among the rocks and on the hillside. For experienced snorkelers, this is a good place to access the excellent snorkeling around Yawzi Point and on to Little Lameshur Bay. Excerpted from St. John Off The Beaten Track

St. John Live Music Schedule

Aqua Bistro
Steven Sloan
5:30-8:30
340-776-5336

Cruz Bay Landing
Bri Felix
6:00-9:00
340-776-6908

Shipwreck Landing
Tropical Sounds
6:30-9:30
340-693-5640

Skinny Legs St John Virgin Islands
Chris Carsel & Friends
6:00-9:00
340-779-4982

Virgin Fire
Inner Vision
6:00 – 9:00
340 244-9713

Update me when site is updated

St. John Virgin Islands Trails: Falls at the Petroglyph Pool

Petroglyph Waterfalls
View from the top of the waterfall

The waterfalls at the Petroglyphs, fed by the Living Gut, were flowing vigorously after the heavy rains of last weekend. The rains were heavy enough to bring about the dramatic waterfalls, but not so intense as to flood at the guts along the trail making it necessary to wafe through water -flooded sections of the trail in order to reach the Petroglyphs.

petroglyph falls
Waterfall above the Petroglyph Pool

St. John Trails: Petroglyphs
“The Ghost” Climbs the second set of falls above the one at the Petroglyph Pools

St. John Waterfalls
Hikers on top of the falls

Petroglyph Waterfalls Video

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St. John Trails: Cabritte Horn Point Trail Revisited

Cabritte Horn Point Trail

cabritte horn overlook

cabritte horn tral articleA few days ago, I read a travel article mentioning the Cabritte Horn Trail. I hadn’t walked that trail in some time and I was under the impression that because it s not maintained by either the National Park or by Friends of the Park volunteers that it would be overgrown and not easily passable. Having a travel writer describe it intrigued me, so yesterday I ventured out to Coral Bay and headed up the Tektite Trail to the Cabritte Horn intersection.

guinea grassAs I suspected, the trail was overgrown, but just in small sections and mostly by Guinea Grass, so it was no big problem to stay on the trail and walk through the areas of tall Guinea grass.

Having said this, there are along the way, narrow goat trails and old trails leading to a number of beautiful overlooks, of for which, the Tektite Trail is probably unequaled on St. John. Because of this and because, as I mentioned before, that the trail is overgrown in sections, I would strongly recommend using a GPS loaded with the Trail Bandit Map or take advantage of the St. John Off the Beaten Track App on your iPhone or Android device.

St. John Off The Beaten Track App Location Option
The blue dot indicates “My Location” on the St. John Off the Beaten Track App

Cabritte Horn Tektite IntersectionThe Cabritte Horn Spur leads south and is marked by a cairn.

gorge-9Along the way to the point, you will pass several areas of spectacular views to both the east and west and will pass by a deep rocky gorge just before reaching the dramatic summit of the Cabritte Horn Point that extends out to the sea on St. John’s south coast.

Following is a short video that I took while enjoying the view from that windswept hilltop:

 

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