Pico de los Nieves

I collected bread from the panaderia, not forgetting the espresso, and we were away at 08:20 lightly loaded for the ride to the highest point of the island, El Pico de los Nieves. It’s not far away but a thousand metres higher so the road has to twist and turn its way up. Consequently the round trip measured 46 km. It took a long time to reach Cruz Grande where we paused for a few minutes for a drink of water then resumed the relentless uphill toil.

With our increasing altitude we escaped the heat of the day and the air became pleasantly fresh. A more level section made a nice change for a while, then we turned off at Ayacata for the long steep climb to Roque Nublo, a distictive 67m tall volcanic rock. Here, a roadside stall served us a very welcome freshly squeezed orange juice.

Masses of roadies were at the summit, a British group admired my Timothy Taylor’s shirt and EU socks and took this photo for us. We didn’t quite break the 2 km high barrier, the summit is 1950m asl. Back at Ayacate we stopped at the bar where every customer was a cyclist and rehydrated with Tropical. At Cruz Grande a cyclist from Evesham was waiting for his wife to catch up. He was a self employed gardener and worried about the acres of flapping decaying plastic used to boost growing productivity and the consequences of the millions of fragments blowing into the ocean.

We reached Tunte around 16:00 and bought bread so we could make tomorrow’s lunch and get off to an early start.