Augustave Channel - Aurère

Walking/pedestrian at Salazie

6.0 km
Canalisation Augustave-Aurère-1.jpgBord Martin
Canalisation Augustave-Aurère-2.jpgLa parking du départ du sentier et la ravine Savon
Canalisation Augustave-Aurère-3.jpgAu fond de la ravine Savon
Canalisation Augustave-Aurère-4.jpgLa rambarde de protection mis en place pour votre sécurité par l'ONF
Canalisation Augustave-Aurère-5.jpgLe sentier avant le gros passage à gué
Canalisation Augustave-Aurère-6.jpgLe passage à gué avec ses marches taillées dans la pierre
Canalisation Augustave-Aurère-7.jpgPassage à côté d'une cascade
Canalisation Augustave-Aurère-8.jpgL'abris du chantier de la nouvelle passerelle
Canalisation Augustave-Aurère-9.jpgPassage de la ravine Augustave
Canalisation Augustave-Aurère-10.jpgLa nouvelle passerelle
Canalisation Augustave-Aurère-11.jpgPassage très glissant sur des pierres recouvertes d'une mousse visqueuse, glissante comme de la glace
Canalisation Augustave-Aurère-12.jpgPasserelle de la Marianne
Canalisation Augustave-Aurère-13.jpgAu bord du vide à l'approche du Petit Rein
Canalisation Augustave-Aurère-14.jpgLe Petit Rein est droit devant
Canalisation Augustave-Aurère-15.jpgLe Petit Rein
Canalisation Augustave-Aurère-16.jpgL'intersection avec le sentier du Bras des Merles avant l'arrivée à Aurère
Canalisation Augustave-Aurère-17.jpgSur la crête pour descendre à Aurère
Canalisation Augustave-Aurère-18.jpgArrivé à Aurère, à l'intersection près de la maison de l'ONF
Canalisation Augustave-Aurère-19.jpgAurère, ses gîtes et son école
  • The Augustave channel trail connects Bord-Martin on the Haut Mafate forest trail (Cirque of Salazie) and the Aurère islet in the Cirque of Mafate. This descends first along the Savon Ravine with its many longoses (plants), which as the name indicates (savon = soap), has many very slippery sections. It then joins the trail created for the laying of the Augustave channel on the side of the rampart. The very difficult task of creating the Augustave channel took place in 1976, and without it, Aurère would have been deserted by its inhabitants for want of water. It’s this portion of the trail that makes this route so spectacular, and particularly subject to the changing weather. This section forced the ONF to close the trail for several years, as some parts were no longer safe. Funding from Europe and the Department enabled the ONF to embark on a major programme of work to re-open the path. The ONF is going to carry out some technical work on this spectacular site to create steps followed by a footbridge, both anchored in the cliff wall above the void. The section seems very solid and ready to withstand whatever the weather can throw at it. The dangerous, wild nature of the trail and the views it offers of Mafate make it a very popular hiking trail. With the Scout trail, it means you can make a loop between the two cirques.
    Do this hike in dry weather, as the river fords cannot be crossed in case of rain. Be very vigilant because several sections are very slippery, and the name given to this ravine (Savon/Soap) is quite justified. In particular, don’t take very young children, because there are many narrow sections at the edge of sheer drops. Be careful and wear good boots.
  • Difference in height
    182.73 m
  • Documentation
    GPX / KML files allow you to export the trail of your hike to your GPS (or other navigation tool)
How to reach the start
Go to Salazie via the D48, then, one kilometre after the village, just after the Voile de la Mariée (waterfall), at the first junction, head towards Grand Ilet.
0 km : Canalisation Augustave - Aurère 0,1 km : Canalisation Augustave - Aurère 1,3 km : Canalisation Augustave - Aurère 1,6 km : Canalisation Augustave - Aurère 1,8 km : Canalisation Augustave - Aurère 2,4 km : Canalisation Augustave - Aurère 2,8 km : Canalisation Augustave - Aurère 2,9 km : Canalisation Augustave - Aurère 2,9 km : Canalisation Augustave - Aurère 3,2 km : Canalisation Augustave - Aurère 3,5 km : Canalisation Augustave - Aurère 4,1 km : Canalisation Augustave - Aurère 4,8 km : Canalisation Augustave - Aurère 5,4 km : Canalisation Augustave - Aurère 5,6 km : Canalisation Augustave - Aurère 5,9 km : Canalisation Augustave - Aurère 5,9 km : Canalisation Augustave - Aurère 5,9 km : Canalisation Augustave - Aurère
0 km - You arrive at Bord Martin, where the start of the trail is on the right side of the car park when you’re looking at Ravine Savon in Mafate.

0.2 km - Head down into this gorge of Ravine Savon, then the rate of descent increases after 200 metres. Be careful with this tricky and very slippery section, covered in longoses.

1.0 km - The descent becomes easier, then you reach a junction. If you miss it, it doesn’t matter because the path that heads off on the left is closed because it’s too dangerous. It used to let you join the Scout trail. Continue straight on.

1.7 km - After a slight incline then a short but steep descent, the trail alternates between fords and slippery sections.

2.3 km - You cross the last ford, marking the end of the descent of Ravine Savon. Now you head up to the Augustave Channel.

3.1 km - A forbidden trail leads off right to the catchment in the Augustave Ravine. Continue straight ahead, past the wooden shelter with the sheet metal roof on the right, and then further on, pass by the heliport used to bring in the materials necessary for constructing the footbridge, down to the left. After crossing a small ravine which is almost dry, you arrive at La Fenêtre (the Window). Admire the scenery before starting the descent of the Grande Passerelle.

3.3 km - Turn around and admire the ONF’s technical prowess in achieving this feat of construction.

3.6 km - Be careful in this section as the stones are covered with a thick layer of silt. This is an extremely slippery place (“Soap Ravine” deserves its name).

4.0 km - The trail follows the Marianne footbridge.

4.2 km - The precipice is sometimes hidden on the left by the vegetation, so be careful and watch where you put your hands and feet.

5.1 km - You’re approaching Aurère and the path on the cliff side is at times narrow with a handrail firmly anchored into the wall.

5.3 km - In front of you is Petit Rein, a narrow passage, not very long but with a drop on either side. On the left you can admire Ravine Savon, and on the right Bras des Merles.

5.6 km – Passing through the forest of filaos, you arrive at a junction. A trail heads off right towards Bras des Merles, but you continue left towards Aurère.

5.8 km - You descend the ridge behind the Le Poinsettia gîte, and you’re overlooking Aurère.

6.0 km - You arrive at the last junction, just at the entrance to Aurère, near the ONF offices.
183 meters of difference in height
  • Start altitude : 1543 m
  • End altitude : 914 m
  • Maximum altitude : 1548 m
  • Minimum altitude : 913 m
  • Total positive elevation : 183 m
  • Total negative elevation : -812 m
  • Max positive elevation : 38 m
  • Min positive elevation : -146 m