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Pic La Selle
Mountain/Rock

Pic La Selle

 
Pic La Selle

Page Type: Mountain/Rock

Location: Sud-Est, Haiti, North America

Lat/Lon: 18.36011°N / 71.97643°W

Object Title: Pic La Selle

Activities: Hiking

Season: Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter

Elevation: 8793 ft / 2680 m

 

Page By: jmitch421

Created/Edited: Oct 19, 2010 / Oct 30, 2010

Object ID: 672339

Hits: 7971 

Page Score: 74.92%  - 5 Votes 

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Overview

Pic La Selle is the highest point in the Chaîne de la Selle mountain range that runs through southern Haiti. It is also the highest point in the country. The saying in Haiti is "Dye mon gen mon" Beyond mountains, there are mountains. Pic La Selle might not be the most challenging of hikes but the remoteness and journey to get there makes it an interesting country high point to pursue.

Getting There

Although there may be a few different ways to reach Pic La Selle we went from Jacmel on the southern coast. Head east along the main road out of Jacmel towards Marigot. After Marigot you drive through one river then start heading up into the mountains. A 4x4 truck is a necessity or like us you can hire moto-bikes for the day and ride on back. We paid like $30 to hire 3 bikes and their drivers. I posted a partial GPS coordinate list below that I used for planning that is close to the route we took I will try to add the map from my GPS later.  
road to Peak La Selle
mountain roads leading to Mare Rouge and Pic La Selle


Ask locals for the way to the village of Chaudry, then Mare Blanch and then Mare Rouge. It seemed most had heard of these towns but not all had any idea how long it would take to get there. The views as you head up into the mountains are incredible. The local people will definitely be curious to who you are and the little children will wave or shout Blan ('white') when they see you (if you are white or light skinned).
 
moto-bikes to Pic La Selle
Riding moto-bikes through the southern mountains of Haiti to Peak La Selle


Mare Rouge is the closest village when approaching from the west to Pic La Selle. After passing Mare Rouge you head into a pine forest at this point you are at an altitude of almost 7000ft. There is a clearing and to the left a small group of buildings that are different from the local homes. A Swiss NGO is running a project to improve the local roads and access clean water for nearby towns. We stayed 2 nights here although the Haitian engineers had to ask permission for us to be allowed to stay.

 
The village of Mare Rouge
The Village of Mare Rouge


Heading west from here you can walk along the road or find one of many small local paths running through the forest. Without a guide a GPS is necessary in finding the peak. It took us about 4 hours to reach the summit which is marked with a cement post with a yellow stripe painted on it. The official height is listed at 8793ft but my gps registered 8525 at the highest point. We navigated off the trails most of the way through the forest to reach the peak.






 
Summit marker on Peak La Selle
Summit marker at the top of Peak La Selle








An alternative exciting climb would be to approach from the north leaving from Port-Au-Prince and trying to head towards a small village of Calalo. This route would involve a hike ascending almost 7,000 vertical feet from the river valley to Peak La Selle.

I used Google Earth and Topo maps extensively in planning this trip.


Red Tape

As far as red tape there is none except the challenge of getting near to the peak. You need your own vehicle and about 6 hours to drive here if starting in Jacmel.

Camping

I would suggest camping for this trip as we were lucky to stay in the NGO buildings but officially it is not allowed and was not cheap. For 3 of us we payed $130US for 2 nights including meals and a ride back to Jacmel which took about 3.5 hours by truck. The weather in the mountains gets cold and you will need a warm sleeping bag and warm clothing for the night and early morning. I would suggest camping further up into the forest.
 
Swiss NGO camp near Pic La Selle
Swiss NGO camp near Pic La Selle

External Links

Add External Links text here.

Rough GPS route through part of the mountains to Mare Rouge

18°18'10.02"N, 72°10'56.55"W main Rd Turnoff
18°18'16.76"N, 72°10'55.52"W
18°18'23.89"N, 72°10'49.02"W
18°18'33.38"N, 72°10'38.74"W
18°18'42.54"N, 72°10'38.43"W
18°18'47.89"N, 72°10'42.26"W
18°19'4.47"N, 72°10'59.77"W turn off to right town name Chaudry
18°19'5.75"N, 72°10'51.81"W
18°19'5.93"N, 72°10'46.07"W buildings on right
18°19'7.46"N, 72°10'41.09"W
18°19'11.32"N, 72°10'31.63"W
18°19'11.54"N, 72°10'25.40"W buildings on left
18°19'11.93"N, 72°10'10.52"W
18°19'15.33"N, 72° 9'54.91"W
18°19'20.17"N, 72° 9'42.99"W
18°19'29.99"N, 72° 9'32.20"W
18°19'43.00"N, 72° 9'24.85"W
18°19'53.73"N, 72° 9'13.46"W
18°19'59.07"N, 72° 8'56.54"W town Caporal
18°19'58.91"N, 72° 8'46.11"W left turn
18°20'3.01"N, 72° 8'48.87"W
18°20'5.93"N, 72° 8'48.54"W right turn
18°20'3.48"N, 72° 8'44.26"W
18°20'2.63"N, 72° 8'32.63"W
18°19'59.46"N, 72° 8'16.98"W road curves left
18°20'6.22"N, 72° 8'3.91"W Barassart
18°20'2.91"N, 72° 7'45.03"W
18°19'57.23"N, 72° 7'28.14"W hairpin turn
18°20'2.20"N, 72° 7'24.86"W
18°20'5.15"N, 72° 7'11.53"W
18°20'1.01"N, 72° 6'57.43"W Mare Blanche
18°20'3.22"N, 72° 6'39.77"W
18°20'1.66"N, 72° 6'30.98"W
18°20'3.63"N, 72° 6'15.72"W
18°20'15.02"N, 72° 6'6.72"W possible good view overlook on left off chaine de la selle
18°20'24.57"N, 72° 5'46.10"W
18°20'27.94"N, 72° 5'29.76"W
18°20'29.47"N, 72° 5'25.09"W roads merge
18°20'37.44"N, 72° 5'14.59"W stay right
18°20'35.94"N, 72° 5'4.00"W stay straight
18°20'36.82"N, 72° 4'41.29"W
18°20'43.90"N, 72° 4'30.60"W stay right
18°20'46.38"N, 72° 4'19.22"W couline boucan griffin
18°20'47.52"N, 72° 4'9.69"W raods merge stay right

then you arrive in Mare Rouge

Images

Route towards Pic La Selleroad to Peak La SellePic La Selleme with Peak La Selle in the backgroundThe village of Mare RougeSummit marker on Peak La SelleRoute towards Pic La Selle
Swiss NGO camp near Pic La Sellemoto-bikes to Pic La SelleMarigot Haitiwoman with heavy load in mountains on way to Pic La Selle