The Reef Bay Shoreline Scramble provides another way to access the restored sugar works ruins at Reef Bay. There’s some rock scrambling involved, but it’s half the distance of the Reef Bay Trail and doesn’t involve much hill work.
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.
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.
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
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.
4:30 – 6:30
Cruz Bay Landing
Inn at Tamarind Court
Mark Wallace & Broheem
6:00 – 9:00
Petroglyph Trail, St. John US Virgin Islands
Despite the heavy rains, the Reef Bay Trail for the most part remained in fairly good condition, at least up to the Petroglyph and Lameshur Bay intersections.
The use of strategically placed stone culverts to deflect the water to the side of the trail and thus preventing the erosion that would be caused if the water just was allowed to run down the trail, did their jobs well.
It was definitely worth the effort as the Petroglyph waterfall was spectacular!
It was so good that I decided to brave the steep, muddy, slippery path that leads to the top of the falls and to the bottom of another waterfall that appeared to be about twice the height of the Petroglyph Falls.
Video of waterfall located just above the Petroglyph Falls
There’s something new to view for hikers on the Cinnamon Bay Trail.
Jeff Chabot group leader and volunteers working with the Appalachian Mountain Club in a cooperative venture with the Virgin Islands National Park and Friends of the Virgin Islands National Park have cleared an overlook along the trail, with views extending from Jost Van Dyke to St. Thomas and the northwestern cays.
Some years ago there was an overlook higher up on the trail near the top, which has long since overgrown.
The trail crew did an excellent job creating this new overlook. The view is spectacular!
Other overlooks that have now been cleared are the Lind Point Battery Overlook, at the bench almost to the top of Caneel Hill on the Caneel Hill Trail, one on the Bordeaux Mountain Trail and another on the Lameshur Bay Trail.
We’ll be posting photos of these overlooks shortly…
Soon come… one on the Reef Bay Trail, the Francis Bay Salt Pond and two on the Johnny Horn Trail….