Pleasant walk from Valle de Arriba
This walk is a pleasant one, with a variety of different landscapes, some nice views but mainly gentle climbs and descents. It is in a figure of eight, so although it is a fairly long walk, it could be cut to less than half by making a circle instead of an eight. The full walk is 15.7km/9.8miles, with 454m/1490ft of ascent and descent, and took us 4 hrs 38 mins. If you did just a circle from Valle de Arriba it would take just 2 hours, 5.9km/3.7miles with only about 200m/660ft of ascent and descent.
In Valle de Arriba we parked near an electricity pylon in the road just beyond the church. The road is wider there because of the pylon so there is some space for parking. From there we walked up the road in a northerly direction, ignoring a turning right and keeping straight on to the end of the tarmac. Then we turned to the right on a track, then soon after, left up a slope onto the path. The path goes up a valley in a northerly direction. This area was badly affected by the 2007 forest fire and you can still see the blackened skeletons of the shrubs that were burnt. However, new young shrubs are growing up in their place, and the signs of birdlife, shows that the area is recovering. There were a lot of Lesser white bugloss (Echium aculeatum), the local endemic form of the Viper’s bugloss, up this valley, flowering at the moment and interesting the bees. There was also a fine clump of Retama (Retama raetam) not far from the path, all in flower, but too far away for us to enjoy the scent.
At the top of this path you reach a road, the one from the Restaurant Fleytas to San Jose de los Llanos and La Montañeta. We went to the right on a faint path with cairns to climb up to the track that goes round the mountain to the right, Mt de Tamaseche. However, the path up there is quite steep and might not suit everyone, so if you prefer you can go right and walk along the road for 0.5km/0.3m till you get to a roundabout and turn right. If you climb the steep path to the track, you go left on the track and circle the mountain, with the road below you till you get to the same level at the roundabout where there is a large old pine tree. Along the track are some plants and flowers of interest, including Madeiran sorrel (Rumex maderensis), Cineraria (Pericallis echinata) and Sticky broom (Adenocarpus foliosus), all of which were in flower. Turn right here and go up a track. After the initial stretch with the tree-covered mountain to your right, the views open out, including a good view up to Mt Teide.
After walking about 900m/1000yds up the track from the roundabout, (about 1hr of walking from the start in Valle de Arriba), you reach a crossroads of tracks. This is the crossing point of the figure of 8, and if you want a short walk turn right here. Otherwise go left. The track goes on past open fields and then enters the edge of a pine-dominated woodland with evergreen shrubs of Faya (Myrica faya) beneath them. Continue along this track till you get in sight of a substantial white-painted building, fenced off with chain-link fencing. Before you get to this building, which is a drinking water reservoir, turn right onto a track doubling back to your right.
After 5 minutes walking along this track, (about 0.5km/0.3m) start looking to the left for a large cairn and the start of a footpath, with stones lined up each side. If you miss the path at first keep looking to the left for it as it is in sight of the track for some way, but move onto it as soon as you see it as the track turns to the right and you want to be going to the left with the path.
This path is part of the PR-TF-43 complex and you are on the path which goes from San Jose de los Llanos to Chinyero. It has yellow/white standard signage and parallel paint marks. After about 30 minutes walking through pleasant forest the path goes up a steep slope of black ‘sand’ to arrive at a track near the Volcan Negro on the left. There are views to Mt Teide and Pico Viejo straight on. A covered channel crosses the landscape of black ‘sand’ parallel with the track. This is the Vergera canal which takes water from ground-water resources in the Barranco de Vergera above Los Realejos in the north to Guia de Isora. A signpost with the yellow/white livery directs you right, over the canal, towards Chinyero.
We passed another pleasant 30 minutes walking across the black ‘sand’ in amongst trees, and past rocks with orange stringy lichens and yellow Houseleeks (Aeonium spathulatum) flowering among the rocks. We had gone straight on at a path junction with a left turn signed to Arenas Negras and Garachico, and then shortly afterwards we had reached a signpost pointing in two directions for the Chinyero circular path. Here we went right, but we did not continue with the yellow/white path where it went left off the track after a few yards, instead we stayed on the track to take a shortcut, till a yellow/white marked path crossed the track after 15 minutes of walking, where we turned right to start our descent.
We stayed on the yellow/white marked path, now heading for ‘Partidos de Franquis’ till we got back to the cross roads of tracks where our figure of 8 joins in the middle. We turned left and walked along the track taking the 2nd track on the left, after 12 minutes of walking. We then followed that track till a T-junction of tracks, turned right and met a narrow tarmac road which winds its way up to the end of the Chinyero lava. Going right on the tarmac we soon spotted our path on the right which took us back to Valle de Arriba by a more direct route than the road. Once in the village, and on tarmac we continued downhill, did a sharp right turn, then a left, left again and we were back to the cars.
You will find a downloadable GPS track of the walk, on maps at the following site:
Posted on May 3, 2012, in Walks in Tenerife, West Tenerife and tagged Aeonium spathulatum, Echium aculeatum, PR-TF-43, Retama raetam, Rumex maderensis, signposted path, Tenerife, Valle de Arriba, Walk. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.