San Sebastian on La Gomera Jan/Feb 2017

HF Holidays - a week walking the spectacular ridges, gorges and forests of one of the prettiest of the Canary Islands.


Photo Gallery

[1: 30 Jan]
I forgot to take my phone for yesterday's walk but here on Day 2 we started the walk by ascending the cliff above the village of Agulo. From high up we look down on Agulo after a steep and steady climb.
[2: 30 Jan]
Upon reaching the plateau we got a good view eastwards to the island of Tenerife with the dominant Pico Teide volcano rising to 3781 m above sea level.
[3: 30 Jan]
After lunch at a visitor centre our route takes us back towards Agulo, descending on rocky dirt tracks. The leader today was Steve.
[4: 30 Jan]
A different view from around the same spot.
[5: 31 Jan]
Due to poor sleep and alarm not going off I forgot my phone again today but here is a picture from a fellow walker with our group stopping for lunch at Ermita de Lourdes. This walk took us down through the unique rain forest of the Garajonay National Park. Paradoxically, the greenest parts of the island are higher up with the arid zones lower down.
[6: 31 Jan]
At the same venue, I examine a spring emerging from a living tree. There is actually a pipe embedded in there but I've no idea how it was engineered!
[7: 1 Feb]
Wednesday was the 'day off' so Brian and I wandered round the town. This is the lighthouse near San Sebastian.
[8: 1 Feb]
This is the Torre del Conde, an old military fortification and one of the original buildings of the town of San Sebastian.
[9: 1 Feb]
Near the harbour is a small bay with black sand, protected by this rocky peninsula. A nice shot showing the foaming sea.
[10: 1 Feb]
The church 'La Iglesia de la Asuncion' which is found near the centre of town.
[11: 1 Feb]
A viewing point on the steep winding trek between the town and our hotel (Parador de la Gomera) which is sited on high ground overlooking the harbour.
[12: 2 Feb]
We're walking again today (Thursday), this time a 10 mile route from the mountainous interior heading south back to San Sebastian. The coach drops us off by the roadside.
[13: 2 Feb]
We descend into a valley with the mist above. This mist coming from northeasterly trade winds is the source of most of La Gomera's water. It does not rain very often on the island.
[14: 2 Feb]
We get another glimpse of Tenerife, which often has a layer of cloud hanging below the Teide volcanic peak. You can see one of the 3 main roads on the island winding its way along the other side of the valley.
[15: 2 Feb]
A feature of La Gomera is the presence of desert plants such as giant yukkas and cactii such as prickly pear in the lower, more arid parts of the island.
[16: 2 Feb]
Travelling along a high ridge we passed this muffin-shaped rock structure.
[17: 2 Feb]
Yet more stunning views of the deep valleys, with sheets of harder volcanic rock protruding from the strata. This must be a dream destination for geologists.
[18: 2 Feb]
Our group of about 8 or 9 continues alongside the ridge.
[19: 2 Feb]
Someone took a picture of me on a rocky outcrop on the valley side. The valley we are about to descend into can be seen at the bottom left.
[20: 2 Feb]
Looking back to where we've been with the muffin shaped rock in the right background.
[21: 2 Feb]
A long steep descent down a zigzagging dirt path took me to the dry valley floor ahead of the rest of the group. The amazing thing about being down here was the total SILENCE, not a bird's chirp, not a buzz from a insect.
[22: 2 Feb]
From the valley, we soon ascended to another ridge and prepared for our descent to the beach west of San Sebastian.
[23: 2 Feb]
The leader didn't warn us of the final leg, steep climbs and then descents on two coastal hills were needed before we reached the town. Before this I had slipped and fallen backwards, with my left arm taking a severe grazing. Annoying as I had been so careful with my footing all day.
[24: 2 Feb]
This was the toughest walk of the week (over 10 miles and lots of ascent and descent). Finally we emerged above the harbour.
[25: 3 Feb]
Our final walk on Friday took us through the unique tropical forest in the Garajonay National Park on a steady descent to Hermigua.
[26: 3 Feb]
More volcanic rock outcrops as we descend.
[27: 3 Feb]
It's impossible to recreate the experience of descending down the side of this huge dry canyon in any photograph!
[28: 3 Feb]
Our walk along the side of the canyon continued. We kept meeting up with another group from Germany although as always there is a little polite chatter in English and we keep our distance - it's always like this, though I did say a few words in German!
[29: 3 Feb]
A few seconds after the last photo I took this one of the opposite side of the canyon. After this we climbed up and out using some unlikely looking goat paths.
[30: 3 Feb]
This snap shows the abundant cactii found on the island, especially prickly pear. At the end of this walk we stopped at a bar and sat outside and enjoyed beers etc before the bus picked us up for the drive home.
[31: 3 Feb]
Our walking group back at the hotel.
[32: 3 Feb]
The same except that Sara has been replaced with leader Bob!

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