Our Beautiful World


Wandering and Wondering II - On 'La Merica'
The villages in the bottom of the valley is
surrounded by two high mountains,
Merica (850m asl) and Teguerguenche
(540m asl).
The trail upwards to the top of Merica
is a fine beginning for new visitors, and
is recommended to anyone not afraid
of unusual altitudes.
We also went this path first, before we
got used to anything else, i.e. the sun....

After having rounded 42 curves on the way up, (at first there is longer between the curves),
we just had to give up because of lack of water. Half a litre to each of us was
not wnough. But, oh boy, what a view from up here! It was it all worthwile.

If you want to reach the top, just relax, when you get to curve number 66, there is only
one more - and the last 25 are much narrower to each other. They are getting more
and more narrow the closer you get to the top.

Well, so far, we arrived at curve No. 42, and found a beautiful view and a shadowed place
for a siesta. Overwhelming sea-view, and quite a few geckoes or lizards. When we spat
out the seeds from an orange, they showed up all over, wondering what was happening.
Finally, when we also let them have a piece of the orange itself, they ran ahead,
grabbed it, and disappeared before someone else came running.

While sitting there, they even came between our legs and behind our back, and they also
screamed and made other noises, sounded like babies, but sorry, we did not understand...

How do we know that the distance between the curves is shorter when you get higher up?
Well, even if we had to give up our first try, there are other possibilities...

On day 12 of our visit here, we went by taxi (2.000 Ptas) all the way up to Arure -
in the other end of the canyon where we found the amazing waterfall. Arure is a
small village, from where several trails start. The road up there was indeed exciting,
as you see on the small map below - the new road goes through a tunnel way into
the mountain, then it makes a big slope, and crosses over the tunnel, giving us a
fantastic view of the Gran Rey Valley, and then back over the tunnel again.

Finally at Arure,the surprices were coming non stop. The first one was when we left the car,
and came out in the air. Then we had to admit that we broke the first rule when wandering
in mountain-areas. Here, at about 900 m asl, in thin shirts, shorts and gum-shoes, and a temperature that felt like 20 degrees lower than when we entered the taxi down by the ocean. What did we forget? Clothes. Warm clothes. And under a dark threatening sky with big
black clouds, we felt raindrops coming down.

However, the taxi had left, and
on the other side of the road,
was a sign showing us the path back to Valle Gran Rey, via the Mountain Merica trail.

Next surprise - just a 100 metres further, where a short path round a small hill, revealed another valley, with a view all the way down to the ocean.

Half way down was the small village of Taguluche. Later on we also should view this from the seaside. (See Around The Island).

Up here they were preparing for
a restaurant etc, with the help of EU-funds.

As we came further along the road, now with view to the
Gran Rey-valley and the sea on one side, and to Taguluche and the sea on the other side. Not much for a car here,
but is was possible. However, you will never get
me into a car, with 'miles' down on each side. We kept walking on the opposite side of the road, depending
on which side we could look right down to the bottom.

Soon we could also see the famous table-topped mountain "Fortaleza" (1.241 m asl) way south, and a little later we
could also spot the villages on its left side. That is where
the aborigines of La Gomera are still living.

Further on, the path was getting more narrow, and after having passed a goat-farm, there was only a small path left, which we had to share with the goats. Now we went on a ridgem from were we could look right down into the
Barranca de Arure, the canyon where we had visited the
waterfall, and had to walk through something like a jungle.

Up here (800m asl) there grew pines of different kinds, some with 15 centimetre long
needles, and others down in the canyon look to us as normal Norwegian spruce,
which they obviously were not. Other bushes and flowers, too. But to describe all this -
we feel it would be hopeless. You have to see it for yourselves. Together with the goats.
(Some times you even wish you could climb like a goat, too).

Last part of the upper part, lead us over the Merica-plateau, where we finally could have an
incredible view of Valle Gran Rey and the sea, way way down...

Finally the curves down,
all the 67 of them.
According to the handbook
2 to 2,5 hours.
Together with us : 3,5 hours,
including rest and a insatiable curiosity for flowers, trees, birds, goats, mountains,
ocean and view.

La Merica
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