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Saturday, August 11, 2018

Coastal hike on Tenerife (One of the Canary Islands)

We spent one of the days of our trip to Tenerife on this hike along the mountainous coast of Tenerife.  As I mentioned in my earlier post, Tenerife is highly populated, so even in this remote area, there were houses and people almost everywhere.  This put a damper on the hiking, since you'd see a mix of sad-looking houses, roads, and power lines, almost everywhere except the best part of the hike.  On the other hand, the best part of the hike was really beautiful!

The hike starts from a well-maintained parking lot for about thirty cars along an extremely steep and windy road.  Despite driving an hour on long, winding, and steep roads, there were a moderate number of people there to hike.  There was a couple at the parking lot when we started, and there were people all along the trail as we hike.  There were only a few times when we couldn't hear or see anyone.

The trail quickly descends from the parking lot, along a grassy valley with a tiny, trickling stream with grassy banks, until it hits the ocean, about 45 minutes later.  The beach where it hits the ocean is black sand covered in large, smooth rocks of white, rust, grey and black colors.  The view down the coast from the black sand beach.  The breeze was nice.

Waves come rolling in with beautiful clear green highlights under their white crests. They keep the big rocks on the beach wet, shiny, and colorful.  Just next to the beach are steep cliffs the waves slam into, creating high plumes of spray.

After the beach, the trail climbs steeply up for a great view from the trail above.  In this view, you can see there is a town of small white houses just at the base of the devils-horn-looking conical hill rising up on the shore in the distance.  Also, there are more jutting cones of stone out in the water.  And notice the yucca plants lining the trail.  That's Jennifer, my wife, just in front of me on the trail.  This view made the whole hike worth it!

There were some hefty lizards here and there along the trail.  Not too terribly afraid of us. This was near where we stopped to have our lunch. 

The clouds moving in from offshore created a nicely layered tableau of stacked colors that almost look out of focus, until you notice the rocky outcrop at lower right.  This was taken just as we were approaching the small town.  

The trail passed through the outskirts, actually onto a couple of two-lane roads passing a few homes, before turning steeply uphill and heading into the trees and toward the pass going back to the start.  

This was the view back down to the town only twenty minutes after we started back uphill.  That was the last impressive view on the trail.  

After that, we were in trees, passing under a big power line and beside small, white, cement houses.

I'll throw this one in just for fun.  Taken a couple of nights later.  There are always good sunsets from the western side of the island, if you're near enough to the coast.  First thing to notice is that there's another island some miles away out there.  Quite a large island, with its own mountains.  The line of clouds forming a sort of crown of the island are created when the wet ocean air slides up the mountains of the island, and cools down and condenses at a higher altitude.  The same thing happens on Tenerife.  The clouds can sometimes seem to just stick to the top of the island, when they're really just regenerating themselves constantly.

This is the second post from Tenerife, one of the Canary Islands.  You can see the first, all about Mount Teide, the huge volcano on the island, by clicking on this line.

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