View Full Version : Virgin Gorda - Elderly People going there?
February 25th, 2005, 08:45 PM
Is it possible for an older person that doesn't walk really great get to Virgin Gorda and the Baths? My mom is going with us and she can walk ok but her knees are not that great. She also gets out of breath easily so we have to take it slow. She can ride a stationary bike for about 25 minutes at home and walk around the block but just slow.
Any suggestions? Does a sail boat go over there?
February 26th, 2005, 12:30 AM
I don't want to discourage people from going to The Baths. It is a beautiful, one-of-a-kind experience that everyone should see for themselves. Children are fine; it will be an adventure for them. There are many people in their 60's and 70's who make it down the trail.
If your Mom has sufficient balance and mobility to go up and down stairs without using a handrail you will be perfectly fine on the trail. If your Mom has difficulty with stairs or uneven ground (more shuffles than walks), you will need to go very slow and help keep her steady in a few places. The hike down to the baths from the end of the road requires walking down a short gully (dry except of course when its raining). The trail is mostly hard dirt, although there are some places where there are rocks that you have to step down onto or around. There are also some places you have to walk on rocks with sand on them (possibly slippery). There are no handrails on the trail down. The hike will take an athletic person less than 5 minutes each way. Living in California, I have seen many tougher beach access trails. You can try the trail and turn back if you have to, spending time in the gift shop/restaurant at the top. If Mom is persisent and confident (just slow), I would try it; if she tends to become unsure and worry about slipping or falling, I would have to recommend against trying it. Perhaps there are some short dirt trails in your local park that you can try her out on before you decide.
Inside the baths, you have to duck walk in one place for about 10 feet, scamper up a large wet rock (with assist from a rope), and climb up/down several step-ladder-like contraptions.
If you think she would be able to climb up and down a ladder into a boat, that might be the better choice. The beaches are very nice without going into the Baths. Charters are offered from Totola (there have been some other posts in this group). Or, you can take the ferry from Totola to Virgin Gorda and take a jitney for a few dollars each way to the Baths.
February 27th, 2005, 08:59 PM
We just got back from the Baths. Awesome! We want to go back.
stebul pretty much nailed the answer, but if my mom had great difficulting walking, I would not take her down there. I'd leave her in the nice restaurant overlooking the ocean.
March 2nd, 2005, 04:11 PM
Yes and No. We took my father-in-law there last year. He has MS and does not walk well. However he did make it down to the beach on the trail, and back again! We had to sort of help him in spots - which is difficult because he is a large man! I imagine it would be easier to help your mom! But anyway - he was able to do it, and I don't think he's in as good of health as your mom since he doesn't exercise at all and he also had pneumonia on our cruise last year (we didn't know until we got back! Ack! He has severe heart problems too - his family teases me now that I tried to kill him last year by taking him to the Baths!)
In any case, if he can do it, I'm pretty certain your mom can. His whole family is convinced that there is another way down there. Because there is a little bar down there, they figure there is some back road you can take. But I've never heard anything about that.
Anyway - so your mom could get down there - but I don't know how much she could do inside the actual Baths. However, you can go in a little ways prety easily and see some really cool stuff, and then just turn around and go back before it gets too difficult. My sister-in-law and mother-in-law just went a little ways in because they were nervous about. My husband and I went all the way through - and it was just the coolest thing! I wish we could have talked them into trying, because they could have easily done it.
March 13th, 2005, 09:09 PM
I think she wouldn't be able to make it. You gave me such good advice.
A boat trip over to the baths sounds like it might be ok, but I just wonder how far she would have to swim from the boat to the beach.
March 15th, 2005, 09:09 AM
The boat trips I saw arriving when we were there ferried people to the beach on little zodiacs if they did not want to swim or snorkel from the large boat.
March 15th, 2005, 09:47 PM
In some areas the trail is kind of steep and rocky, the sand makes it slippery in spots and there are some areas where you have to navigate around large boulders that are in your way. I would not bring an elderly person down the trail unless they are very agile and fit.