Circular Walk From Vegas De Tegoyo Passing Montaña Del Cuervo
The onset of this walk is at the small church in Tegoyo, a church which is part of the estate of Casa Tegoyo, an extremely attractive manor house dating back to the 18th century, which is situated opposite.
The house was purchased as a derelict stable in 1804 by wealthy lawyer Don Domingo Stinga who lovingly restored it as a gift for his Italian wife. There is a rumour that states there is an underground passageway leading from the manor house to the small church built by Don Domingo Stinga to prevent others admiring his beautiful wife. The property was opened 1999 as a restaurant/hotel until its sale in 2006.
In a Westerly direction, towards the Northern edges of the village of La Asomada, you will begin to encounter the characteristic circular pits of this area, which are infact the islands vineyards. Water is precious on the island with there being little rain and the volcanic sand makes it difficult for plants to take root. To combat this a circle of volcanic rock is built around each vine, allowing for enough dew to settle each morning to keep the vine alive. These vines are painstakingly maintained by the grape farmers before being farmed and sold on to the islands Bodegas who themselves then go on to produce the wine.
The higher ground that will be visable to your left in this area is ´Caldera del Galda´ a volcanic crater rising to 567 metres. Walking keeping this crater to you left will lead you to the brow of the trail which will then offer you wonderful views over La Geria, one of the largest wine growing areas on the island. Notice the sheer numbers of small, volcanic pits containing the vines, as far as the eye can see. If you choose, you can climb to the rim of ´Caldera del Galda` where, within the crater itself, you will see further vine cultivation. The views of Timanfaya National Park from this elevated position are wonderful.
Circling back downslope in a Northerly direction, you can cross the road and are then able follow a trail through the solidified, volcanic lava which, in parts is now covered in green lichen giving a sharp contrast in colour to the surrounding black, greys and deep, burnt reds. Within this area, at the base of ´Montaña Peña Palomas´ you will notice higher, volcanic stone walls, again built in circular formations. On closer inspection, you will notice that these walled areas contain individual fig trees which at this time of year, are abundant in ripe fruit. Figs require full sun all day to ripen palatable fruits and this location seems all but ideal for this purpose. It did seem a shame that it looked as though a lot of these trees were not being harvested and that so many of the fruits were being left to ripen until they burst open and fell to the ground. But I am sure that the local wildlife are appreciative.
A local legend here states:
“The “Islote de Hilario” is a mountain on the island surrounded by the solidified sea of lava that submerged what was once the fertile plain of Timanfaya during the years 1730-36. The legend says that there was a shepherd called Hilario who over 50 years went to this mountain, accompanied by his camel and where, on climbing to its summit, he chose to plant a fig tree. Although it took roots, the tree never bore fruit because the fig tree can’t live of fire.”
Towards the North, is the unmistakable crater of ´Montaña del Cuervo´ standing at 392 metres. It is possible to walk around the base of this crater, as well as into its depths to observe further details.
This distinctive lunar landscape is visible throughout the centre of the island, with varying colours, rock shades and shadows varying daily depending on the time of day you visit and the amount of sunlight that is available. Due to this, no two photographs will look identical.
If you’d like to read a more detailed description of this, and other walks, on Lanzarote you can visit the site of Ociolanzarote. At the moment all the hikes listed on their site are only available in Spanish but the site currently is in process of being translated into English. So stay tuned…