Unable to climb to the summit of the Piton de la Fournaise volcano as it was closed off after an eruption, we made the most of the surrounding area - there's still plenty to see.
|Piton de la Fournaise|
On the road leading to the Pas de Bellecombe is a viewpoint called the Nez de Boeuf (literally the Ox's Nose), which has a great view over the Riviere des Remparts valley.
|view from the Nez de Boeuf (2136 m)|
On a clear day when you look back towards the centre of the island you can see the Piton des Neiges - the island's highest point.
Next stop is the Commerson crater at 2310m, about 235 metres deep and 200 metres in diametre.
It was formed 2000 years ago during an explosion.
- 1474 mm in 24 hrs in March 2006,
- 1505 mm in 24 hrs in February 1987 during Cyclone Clotilda,
- 2463 mm in 48 hours during Cyclone Gamede in February 2007 (5512 mm overall during the cyclone),
- 6083 mm in 15 days during Cyclone Hyacinthe in January 1980.
Further on is the Plaine des Sables, a flat plain which the road crosses in a straight line.
|The Plaine des Sables is at 2260m|
|Plaine des Sables|
Once we arrived at the Pas de Bellecombe we could only hike down into the Enclos caldera as far as the Chapelle de Rosemont as any further ahead was shut off due to a recent volcanic eruption.
|Peak of La Fournaise from Pas de Bellecombe|
|Chapelle de Rosemont|