Endless hiking possibilities at Refugio El Pilar

24th and 25th of December, 2020

Just south of the Cumbre Nueva and at 1450 meter on the Cumbre Vieja a variety of hiking trails are starting at Refugio El Pilar. It is a large recreation area where the island people also meet up for a picnic or a barbecue. The trees provide sufficient shade during the warm summer days and it is a perfect playground for children.

The Cumbre Vieja is a large chain of volcanoes that emerge in the form of a ridge. It is possible to hike over the Cumbre Vieja all the way until Los Canarios. You do need transportation back! Our hikes will be a bit shorter.

El Pared Vieja is another smaller recreation area and connected with Refugio El Pilar via route PR-LP18. A nice 7 km hike with an elevation of 250 meters. The narrow path brings us quickly down and goes mostly through laurel and pine forests. It is a perfect hike for today, as the weather is cloudy and there are not many viewpoints. The 250 meters up are a bit more challenging!

As we love the area around El Pilar, we decide to go for another hike the day after. This time we park the car at mile marker 4 on the road towards El Refugio.

From here the views over the valley and the mountains are magnificent! The signs give you the choice which trails to take. The blue sky is inviting and we decide to go for a route of 10 km.

This is an amazing trail! It is part of Ruta de Los Volcanoes and the San Juan Volcano and we hike first over fields of old lava. After, the landscape changes and we walk through the woods. Suddenly, our shoes touch pure volcanic rock and we have to cross a whole field of these black stones. Don’t try this on Flip Flops!

Again the scenery changes; we go through an ancient and colorful lava flow, until we have to climb all the way up the mountain, along the old stream. It is a very steep climb!!! Finally, we reach a wider path and can relax. The view down on the old eruption is impressive.

Later in the afternoon, we drive down the mountain to Puerto de Tazacorte. We will have our Christmas meal at our favorite restaurant  “El Trebol”,  with a view over the sea. There are just a handful of tourists at this time a year and no reservation is necessary. A very relaxing place, where they serve tasty fish and other dishes for low prices. A wonderful ending of our two week visit to this impressive island!

 

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