OverviewThe Quill is a stratovolcano located on the island of St. Eustatius in the Netherlands Antilles. The summit elevation is 601 metres (1,972 ft) above sea-level.
The name Quill originates from the Dutch term kuil, meaning pit or hole, which was used originally with reference to the volcanic crater. The Quill was designated as a national park by the government of the Netherlands Antilles in 1998. It is administered by the St. Eustatius National Parks Foundation (STENAPA), which maintains a number of trails for hikers.
The Quill formed between 22,000 and 32,000 years before Present to the southeast of St. Eustatius (Statia) in the West Indies. Pyroclastic flows during the initial eruption joined The Quill with St. Eustatius. The Quill has been active since its birth; the last known eruption, as determined by carbon dating, occurred between 1,755 and 1,635 years before present. Since volcanic eruptions from The Quill have included pyroclastic flows, and groundwater heating indicates that The Quill is only dormant, the volcano must be regarded as potentially dangerous.
Flora and fauna
The crater of the Quill contains a lush rainforest populated by native and introduced tropical trees and plants. These include elephant ears, tree ferns, begonias, figs, plantains, bananas, bromeliads, trumpet wood, mahogany, seedless breadfruit, Surinam cherry, ginger bush and edible raspberries, as well as at least 17 different kinds of orchids. Resident animal species include iguanas, anoles, snakes, hermit crabs, butterflies, exotic birds, and occasional goats and chickens that have strayed from nearby Oranjestad. Hunting land crabs in the Quill crater is a somewhat popular evening pastime of islanders.
Getting ThereAsk any local where to find the start of the trail it is walking distance from Oranjestad. There are clearly marked signs and a well maintained trail. Towards the summit the trail is overgrown with vegetation once you pass a sign saying welcome to Mazinga. It is about another 15 minutes of hiking from this point.
There is a survey marker on the highest rocks of the summit under a large elephant ear and bromiliads.