Canary Island Climbing
It had been my plan to use my short stay in the Canaries to get away from the tourists and big towns. I want to explore the outback countryside. I drive to the village of La Laguna along route C-824. Ahead of me is the Parque National De alas Canada’s Del Tieide and Monta Blanca. I park near El portillo. Now an adventure begins!
The climb up the mountain is difficult. This is desert country. The morning sun is up. For the first hour I am joined by other climbers most coming down the mountain some going up, like me. As time wears on, and the temperature rises, suddenly I am alone. I like it! Fortunately, I have a pack with sufficient water and a very few snacks. After all, if Tenerife was not my cup of tea, so to speak, now I have the walking challenge I need.
The guide book says it is a four hour climb to the top and Refugio Altavista. I make it in three knowing too that the downhill return may be quicker. Here there is a mountain top wood and stone government cabin. As I enter I notice that most of the wood benches, which apparently also serve as beds have packs on them indicating that they are already taken. A few Spaniards, men and women, smoke cigarettes while discussing their climb. I am delighted to see a few sheep skin, shoulder slung, wine casks. They seem to be empty. I think about how much fun it might be to spend the night in the Refugee. Alas, I do not have enough food, and no wine. I walk back down the mountain delighted to have conquered Monta Blanca.