Home Caribbean The Boiling Lake

The Boiling Lake

by Emma April 19, 2013 7 comments
valley of desolation, boiling lake, dominica, backpacking, global frolic, caribbean, hot springs

A photo essay on Dominica: Part 2

Have you ever been somewhere so amazing that you nearly black out the entire event? You’re in the midst of something, experiencing the euphoria of sensory overload, unsure of how much more you can feel, see, hear, touch, understand… before you lose it. Goosebumps, a slight tingling of your ears, your neck hairs salute the sky.

“I never want to forget this” you tell yourself. Months later, something reminds you, a smell or a sound.. of that day you felt in awe of the world around you. Even breathing felt incredible, because to breathe in felt like you were absorbing your environment, pulling it into your lungs just to let it go again.

It is at the height of sensory overload, when it seems so surreal, that I take my time absorbing everything. My biggest fear in life is the loss of my memory. Blame it on a family history of Alzheimer’s, or that I simply cannot remember what I ate for lunch last week, I have an innate fear that one day these wonderful little things will be lost to the wayside. Like the feeling of the mud squishing in-between my toes on tree-root stairways, the cool cloudy mist that oddly causes you to sweat more, rock scrambling single file behind local guides wearing flip-flops.

The Boiling Lake is the second largest hot spring source in the world. Upon entering Wotten Waven in Rosseau Valley, you start to notice little clouds of mist rising from various locations. Backyards, the side of the road, the river you just crossed… the prevalence of hot springs is overwhelming.

Camping in the backyard of a lovely Dominican family, we took sulphur mud baths to clean our skin, soaked in the iron tubs, and swam to our heart’s content.

Although a good soak in mineral rich waters is rejuvenating, the famed Boiling Lake hike had our attention from the get-go. After days of hiking with heavy packs, we sought out the challenge, enlisting Miguel, our new friend and soon to be hiking guide.
Careful climbing

Going up

The five of us were properly outfitted to climb Kilimanjaro, yet Miguel was barefoot half the time, smoking rolled cigarettes, singing quietly to himself. The pace was not quick by any means, but we made good time, passing a group of hikers fiddling with their mud-soaked socks and walking sticks.
Cloud forest

We scrambled and slid down from the tree tops to the Valley of Desolation quickly, anticipation rising to see the lake that boils.

Lichen and steam

My only regrets? Not having a better quality camera, for nothing can truly capture the level of awe. The site of an enormous lake, boiling and surging with thermal energy powerful enough to warm waters hundreds of miles away is enough to make you wish you splurged on your documentation technology. Regardless, the hike, the company, the quadricep workout and the view was incredible.
Sulphur bubbles

Interested in more information about the Boiling Lake?

Hungry for more photography of Dominica?

Let the author know.

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Did ya dig it?


Lisbet April 19, 2013 at 4:02 pm

This is amazing. The imagery you used made me feel like I was really there. Thank you for sharing!

Emma April 22, 2013 at 1:06 pm

Thanks for reading Lisbet! Always a joy to have you in my life 🙂

gonzo April 20, 2013 at 10:13 am

thats beautiful ! and good writing too, good luck keep traveling and thnx 4 sharing!

Emma April 20, 2013 at 1:21 pm

Thank you for reading! I appreciate it greatly.

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