Tunte – Hoya de Pinata.
Today we left the northern part of the GR131 which we had previously walked and continued on our pilgrim route across the Island. We set off in cold mist and despite my assertion that we would be walking downhill all the way spent an hour climbing steeply towards Moriscos. Out of the mist appeared our friend the runner, now with followers in tow, we will check how he performs in the grand run in March. This wet weather is due to the trade winds from the NE which had brought Christopher Columbus to the Island and established it as a trading post in the Atlantic. We bypassed Mt. Moriscos and Mt.Negro, the latter a perfect ash cone and arrived at the view point into Caldera de Pinos. That was quite impressive and ‘only’ 3000 years old. Nearby were some Canarian Pines 300 years old.
Steep descending on ash through the pines brought us out into rolling green countryside with grazing sheep, Tagasaste plantations [used for animal feed] and flowering almond trees. Quite a contrast to the higher areas of the Island. A door admitted us into a small bar for a Tropical beer and bocadillos once we had pronounced them correctly. The local police stopped by for a drink and a chat. We emerged into hot sunshine and carried on down lanes past farmsteads and barking dogs. Over to our left the Tamadaba hills seemed impressive in profile, we had climbed them last November. The village of El Saucillo was next and in our endeavours to support the local economy coffee was taken in the café. Despite the fact that there were only three people at the bar the volume of conversation was off the decibel scale, I’m sure it was all very friendly. Our onward route was identified on the road signs. A little peace and quiet followed as we strolled down the lanes and into Hoya Pinada. Our hostel for the night, the Camino Art Hostel, was the last house in the village after the church, on the very edge of the wild barranca. Beata, a Hungarian girl, made us very welcome and proudly showed us round her gardens and property. The girl sharing our dorm was Ukrainian and others staying there are Polish and Spanish. As the wine was cheap we stayed put for an evening of International discussions.