Top of Mount Duff

Hiking Mount Duff

Mount Duff is the highest peak on the island of Mangareva in the Gambier Islands, French Polynesia. It has an elevation of 441 meters.  It also called Auorotini in the Mangarevan language.  But most everyone calls it Mt. Duff, much easier to pronounce.

We had wanted to hike Mt. Duff for several weeks, but were unable to due to weather.  Either there was a dark cloud cover over the top of the mountain or we had rain.  We were told to 2 days after it rains as the trails become very slippery, muddy, and impassable.  In the image below you cannot even see the top of Mount Duff.

Mount Duff on a Cloudy Day

Mount Duff on a Cloudy Day

Below you can see the top of the two mountains on a bright and clear day.

Two tallest mountains in Mangareva

Two tallest mountains in Mangareva

Hikers:  Sugar Shack (Matt & Christine); Agape (Josh, Rachel, Wilky), Halcyon (Andrew), Argo (Simone and Torsten) and a random little, fluffy dog.

Welcome Sign to Start Hike at Mount Duff

Welcome Sign to Start Hike at Mount Duff

It was a pretty stiff hike, straight up, through mud, pine needles and over fallen trees and rocks.  Our group of 2 teens and barely 30-year olds seemed to skip up the hill while I struggled a bit.  Lucky for me, one or two of them would hang back and wait with me as I caught my breath.

HALF WAY STOP

At the half way pint, Simone and Torsten picked some fresh pomplemouse for everyone.

Pit stop at half way point for a snack

Pit stop at half way point for a snack

Along the way we had gorgeous views.

View Mid-Way from Mount Duff

View Mid-Way from Mount Duff

View 3/4 of the way to the top Mount Duff

View 3/4 of the way to the top Mount Duff

Being at the top of the highest peak on the island was breathtaking!  It was well worth the effort to hike up the 441 meters.

Of course, the last 100 meters of the path narrowed down to 1 meter in width with dramatic drops on both sides – little nerve racking.

Top of Mount Duff

Top of Mount Duff

Must admit that I had a difficult time up and down, but I made it.  It was a huge accomplishment for all of us, but I was particularly proud of myself.

3 of our friends decided to stay at the top for a bit longer to enjoy the view.  Since I knew it would take me a lot longer to get down the mountain, Matt and I left first, then Josh, Tortsten and Simone followed 5 minutes behind us.  The three that stayed were privy to a gorgeous rainbow

Rachel and her beautiful rainbow

Rachel and her beautiful rainbow

Almost 6 miles, 14,570 steps and 116 floors climbed.

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