On 31st January 2014 we had an early start. we picked up Carol and John and their two dogs, Punto and Polka, and drove to Arguayo and met Sally and Mike who were on holiday from Poole in Dorset. At 10am we were by the football ground at Arguayo. The two couples planned to do the Almond Blossom walk from Valle Arriba to Arguayo which was said to take 3 hours. This was too strenuous for us so we had decided instead to walk up the mountain near Arguayo called Roque de Arguayo or Montana de la Hoya.  We all got into the van and holly drove to the start of their walk at Valle de Arriba beyond Santiago del Teide. holly and I then drove back to the football pitch where Sally and Mike had left their van.

At the higher side of the football ground we started our walk by the safari sign.

It was then 10.45.



 Roque de Arguayo or Montana de la Hoya.





The way was a track designed for a small four wheeled vehicle and was not too steep to begin with.

The views became more extensive as we climbed and we could see the new motorway which is not yet opened to traffic. I do see however, from Google Earth, that someone recommends it as a good cycle ride. It doesn't look as though it has been built wide enough for a central reservation and two lanes of traffic in each direction.  Two tunnels have been dug beneath the mountain that we are climbing. At present the new road finishes at a very big round-about before reaching Santiago del Teide.






On the left is a photo of the track up beneath the cliff face



The track becomes much steeper now and takes nearly a 90 degree turn to the right. At this point there is a feature of a natural stone arch and a good view of Arguayo and towards the coast.


View towards the coast past Montana del Angels




The track continues up a lot steeper, but the going is made easer by a staircase being cast in the concrete between the vehicle tracks





At the top there was not much vegetation, but there was a small pine tree which looked a good shady place to have our snack of peanuts, and a welcome drink.



These what we thought to be two wild mountain goats were very shy. When we approached they were at the far end of the mountain top and had nowhere to run away. They hesitated for some while, weighing up the situation, and then decided to make a dash to pass by us on our right-hand side. They were very nimble on their feet.

They differed from the domesticated goats we have seen in that their ears stand up and they have no horns. They looked in very good condition. John has now seen these photographs and has identified them as  mouflons.  They are believed to be the wild predecessor to our domestic sheep. The male ones have enormous horns so these must have been female. We have Googled  mouflon and looked at the images and we agree that John is right. Living in Tenerife they do not need thick woolly coats.


El Retamar, El Molledo, Santiago del Teide. A good head for heights is an advantage.


View to coast


The football ground is off picture to the right and the track we walked is shown close to the cliff edge



Era seen from above

This era is smaller than usual and constructed in the lava flow


Era as seen from ground level


 Euphorbia to the right of the track going down with Montana del Angels in the back ground.


Looking down on Arguayo


Fields, pines and almond blossom on hillside on other side of Arguayo


Track down, new motorway and Montana del Angels


Slate in rock face and track looking down beneath a sheer cliff face




On the way down we met an English couple making their way up. We later thought that they were lost because they thought that there was a through path although we told them that it was only a one way track. They were following a written guide and they said they had already gone the wrong way once where the guide said "turn right at a broom bush". Not a good guide we thought.

When we got to the bottom of the track near the football ground we saw that they had reached the top. See photo opposite. 

 Later holly saw that them retracing their steps down the track.



 Aeoniums, a native of Tenerife and Prickly Pears, a native of America.

Bearded Iris growing beside football ground wall


When we were back at the football ground holly text Carol to see where they were and if they needed picking up. They were at Las Manchas and were ready to be picked up. After picking them up in the van we decided to have lunch beyond Santiago del Teide at Las Fleytas. However, we got there only to find it was closed. Mike said they had in the past had a good meal at  El Patio in Santiago del Teide so we ate there. We chose from the set menu for the day and was well pleased. During the meal Sally told us about their alarm clock.

In their apartment at Los Cristianos they found on their arrival from Poole that they were short of an illuminated alarm clock. They found one called 'Hello Kitty' at a Chinese shop at a bargain price. Unfortunately it woke them up at 6 minutes past one in the morning singing 'Happy Christmas to you,  happy Christmas to you and a happy new year. Good tidings I bring etc.'  They were not amused.  For the next night they took out the batteries and left it in the other room, but it woke them up again at the same time.  Apparently it had a small back up battery and you had a choice of half a dozen Christmas carols to chose from. holly chose "Silent Night", "Ding, dong, merrily on high" and "God rest ye merry gentlemen".

Anyone like a cheap Chinese alarm clock?




On the other side of the road to El Patio where we parked was some nice almond blossom. It had been very misty at  Las Fleytas and holly had put the headlights on and had asked us to remind her to switch them off when we parked for our meal. We all forgot.......

However, after our meal the van started OK and we were able to take Sally and Mike back to their van parked at Arguayo and then drive Carol and John and the dogs back home too.

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