How to reach the start
In the direction of its descent, this path lets you reach Grand-Ilet from Roche Ecrite. In the ascent direction, you need to go to Salazie by the D48, then one kilometre after the village of Salazie, and at the junction shortly after the Voile de la Mariée waterfall, turn right towards Grand-Ilet. Cross Mare à Vieille Place, then Grand-Ilet towards Mare à Martin. The road to Mare à Martin descends to the right towards the end of Grand-Ilet. Continue to follow the Mare à Martin signs under the ramparts of Roche Ecrite and park your car in the car park on the left of the road shortly after the start of the trail, just before the sign indicating the Ravine Blanche waterfall.
0 km – Descend from Roche Ecrite by the same path taken to reach it.
1 km - Three directions are indicated at this junction in addition to that of Roche Ecrite behind you. The path on the left goes back to the Roche Ecrite gite. The path that goes straight down makes a detour via Caverne Soldats before returning to Roche Ecrite gîte. Take the path that goes up right towards Grand Ilet.
1.2 km - At the end of this very short climb, you’ll see in front of you the end of the plateau of Roche Ecrite.
1.6 km - After a long straight, you’re at the edge of the rampart that dominates Grand-Ilet. In fine weather, the view overlooks the Rivière des Pluies all the way to the village of Rivière des Pluies at bottom left. Just below, you can see the thin rocky barrier that separates Cirque of Salazie from the Rivière des Pluies, dominated further on by Piton Plaine des Fougères. Below and to the left of this piton you can see Mare à Martin. Further left beneath your feet is Grand Ilet and the north-east part of Cirque of Salazie. Take a few moments to admire the scenery before you start down the first steps of the trail.
1.7 km - After the first steps, the trail is at first on a gentle slope and turns to the right. Very quickly, the descent becomes steep on a fairly narrow path.
2.2 km - You lose altitude very quickly and the first steel cables are there to help you get down this very narrow dangerous section. Slightly hidden by vegetation, the void is never very far away.
2.3 km - Pass the Guus Smit Memorial. Take your time and admire the magnificent views on offer.
2.8 km - You’ve completed half the descent of this rampart and the most dangerous section of the trail is behind you. The vegetation has become denser with more shady sections.
3.2 km - The descent is still very steep but the Mare à Martin route is now much closer down below.
3.3 km - The trail is crossed by a few small dry gullies and small pools of stagnant water.
3.4 km - A small rein announces the end of the descent getting close, then a protective barrier prevents you from falling into the void.
3.6 km - The slope becomes more gentle and the first concrete steps follow one after the other until the end of the trail. You can now clearly see the Mare à Martin road 100 metres below.
3.8 km - Here is a last ravine crossing at the side of the wall.
3.9 km - A few more concrete steps and you’re on the Mare à Martin road. What a descent! Look back up at the starting point of your descent at the top of this impressive vertical wall.