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Friday, August 2, 2013

Hike 31.07 2013 Barranco Azuaje to Fontanales attempt 1

On Wednesday 31 July 2013 we caught the 0840hrs Nr 210 bus from the Telmo Bus Station to Arucas
We soon realised that we could have left Dutch Link much later as the Nr 210 bus stops at the bus stop close to the Marina on its way to Arucas - it arrived at this bus stop at 0845 hrs !

Arrived at the Arucas Bus Station at 0925 - well in time for the 0950 hrs Nr 123 bus direction Moya

At 1005hrs we got off the bus on the bridge over the Barranco Azuaje (photo below shows view northwards down the Barranco

and started our Hike towards Fontanales - the first part of the hike is the same as the Nr 10 Sunflower Guide hike which we had down a few days earlier - see blog:-

Our planned hike to Fontanales is shown in the below map - unfortunately we did not have a description of the route.

As before, our route took us past the old Spa - Jeannette always gets excited when she sees a spa - even the ones in ruins!

so far, the same delightful route as before

Same rock for a rest

Once more tried to find the waterfall mentioned in Sunflower Guide Nr 10 walk - we think this was the one but access is impossible without paddling.

More stream crossings

The furthest point south which we reached on our previous hike

a remote farm house built into the rocks
zooming in
looking back along our trail
A split in the path - we had no idea which route to go - we chose Montana de Firgas to the left (actually thought it was to Montana which should have been on our route - now realise that Montana de Firgas is actually Firgas)
This track took us steeply up almost into Firgas at rim of the Barranco

At this point decided that we had made a mistake and went back down the track

Back at the split , we took the route to Barranco de Guadalupe and Moya, neither of which should actually be on our route but there was no other alternative
Shortly after this signpost the trail split once more, one route turning right crossing the Barranco towards Moya - we now think that we should have taken this route. However, we kept left and , on later reflection, think we entered the Barranco de la Virgen and ........
Shortly afterwards we came across this sign
a weird place for a yacht broker to advertise !
back amongst the bamboo

the trail went past this smart looking if isolated dwelling

complete with old Singer sewing machine table

and a beautiful Dragon Tree

the route is becoming more and more interesting.

Round about here we had a couple of silly mishaps, Jeannette slipped of a rock she was sitting on and hurt her hip ( is now OK), and Mike slipped and fell on his left hand in which he was holding his IPhone  - wrist hurt for a day but was luckily not broken - however both front and rear screens on the IPhone were shattered and the chassis bent - found a shop in Las Palmas that can repair it - cost 145 Euros - ooch! - all very silly.

and more and more swampy - memories of our trip up the Amazon!

more and more jungle-like

more fallen trees
This fallen tree actually had a live tree growing out of it
amazingly, the trail keeps going - somebody must find it useful to "maintain "it !

now what ?? the only way forward seems to be through this hole in the rock
so we investigate

and lo and behold there is a way through

and we are back in the open
for a short while
then back through another hole in the rock

someone has thoughtfully provided this short ladder
to a rock with steps cut into it - but then where do we go?
a bit of a puzzle
along a small ledge at the side of a stream
too far - yes those are stepping stones

the path continues
back in the open - the trail finally leaves the Barranco floor and starts to climb
soon we see some signs of farming
At this point we explored various possibilities but non seemed to lead us towards our objective Fontanales.

After studying the map on returning to the boat, we think we must have been close to where the ?? has been put on the below map

As we were not at all sure where we were, the only thing certain was that we were on the wrong side of the Barranco for Fontanales and to get to the correct side would be quite an effort. As at this stage we were starting to feel a bit tired, we decided to take the more certain route and head up the track to the road which we were pretty sure would bring us to the town of Firgas.

looking around the Barranco as we climb the track

Finally reach the road
Took a photo of the Hiking sign complete with Grafter sticker. We saw several of these posts along the route but most of them had no sticker so presumably the route marking is not yet complete.
If you scan this with a Grafter App (Iphone etc), you access a website which gives hiking guides - would have been useful before we started this hike!)
Some indication of where we might be

Decided to try hitching - Jeannette was very lucky - the first car to pass stopped and kindly gave us a lift to the Bus Station in Firgas where we caught the 1540 hrs Nr 201 bus to Las Palmas - the last bus of the day!

and so ended our superb adventure - a most amazing and enjoyable hike .

The route we think we did and the route we wanted to do are marked on the below map - next time we will try crossing the Barranco towards Moya and see if we can make it to Fontanales that way!


Unknown said...

What an adventurous pair you are! Glad you got back OK. See you later this week. love Jane xx

mgjb said...

Another great story to read! I would haveturned around half way.
Greetings from Bilthoven

Bob & Janice said...

Boy, that was some hike - glad to hear that neither injury was too serious but sorry to hear about the cost of the iPhone fix - oh well...
We have been enjoying the Netherlands - are currently in Lelystad on the hard doing some repairs. Best wishes to you both!