One of the finest mixed evergreen deciduous forest walks may be had at Wallings. Proceed westerly from John Hughes village up a slight gradient. At the top on turning to the left, is the pumping station of Wallings reservoir. From the station, start walking westerly to find the footpath that leads to the reservoir.
After walking about half a mile along dry scrubland with scattered trees, the spillway of the dam appears. The workmanship of this fine example of Victorian industrial architecture is truly magnificent with its rounded capping and small round tower. The reservoir was started in 1890, but there were complaints in 1897 that it could not hold water. However, it was finally finished to perfection in 1900. It was designed to hold 13 million gallons.
Nine years later it had to be repaired again. It was then supplying thirty water tanks in fifteen villages.
In 1912, after three years of drought, Wallings became empty, but later heavy rains fell in October and November of that year. A small additional dam creating the Fig Tree reservoir next to the main road was finished in November 1945. This was used to pump additional water up to Wallings. Together these two reservoirs cover 268 acres with a storage volume of 50 acres/ft.
In 1915, 13 acres of the reservoir catchment area were sown with tree seeds with a view to reforestation, as the area had become denuded after the turn of the century. In recent years some attention has been focused for both watershed protection and forestry products. Follow the east bank and find a rough footpath that meanders upwards into the forest. Proceed slowly and quietly to listen and watch for birds. If you are lucky you could observe a black whiskered vireo (Vireo altiloquus), Antillean euphonia (Euphonia musica) or a red-necked pigeon (Columba squamosa). On your way back, explore the back of the reservoir where some interesting water diversion channels and sediment traps can be seen.
The predominant tree species are locust (Hymenaea courbaril), ironwood (Exostema caribaeum), mahoe (Daphnosis caribaea), black loblolly (Pisonia fragrans), and mango, (Mangifera indica). Of the mid-level types are white cedar (Tabebuia pallida), turpentine (Bursera simaruba), and gunstock (Gauzuma martinicense). In the lower level are mahogany (Swietenia mohogani), Spanish oak (Inga laurina) and white prickle (Zanthoxylum martinicense).
In a certain area near the reservoir, picnic tables have been installed. Plan to make an outing into this section of Antigua's forest - a perfect place for peace and quiet in this bustling world - full of history and natural history.