La Gomera

Wed 2 Nov 2005 11:53
The Marina, San Sebastian, La Gomera.  The mountain of Tenerife in the background.
Since our last web diary entry we have travelled down the east side of Tenerife.  Collecting a windsurfer for 30 euros on route.He wasn't any good so we fed him to the Pilot Whales but kept his board.  Marinas and anchorages are difficult  on the south of Tenerife and we had some rolly nights on anchor.  We then went over to La Gomera, a lovely marina and very friendly.  Lots of swimming and a day of attempting windsurfing.  It has been 18 years since I windsurfed and its like riding a bike, with the board we got it was like going from a bicycle to a unicycle.  Rob got to the other side of the harbour and back a couple of times.  We will keep trying with it or try and trade for a larger board.  Plenty of swimming, the water is warm and lots of rocks to snorkel around.    We have done some hiking around the island and the picture here was taken from the statue of Jesus a climb of 250m.  The views from the top of the hills/mountains are quite spectacular. The island has many marked footpaths around the coastline and into the hills, some quite daunting along narrow ledges, finding the start of the walks from the town is a bit of a problem.  Different sort of navigating for Rob.
We travelled back to Tenerife to collect Pete and Jane Hannifan who are with us for a week, and returned to La Gomera.  We will hire a car and explore further a field in the next few days, getting to the National Park in the centre of the island.  The stretch of water between the island is some 9,500ft deep and the third most popular place for whale watching, on our trip over with Pete and Jane we had Pilot whales within 3m of the boat, we just let the boat drift and they slowly came past and so did the Pilot Whales.
I went and had a chat with a couple of the Atlantic rowers, they leave La Gomera on Nov 27 and will take 50 to 70 days to cross, in virtually an open boat, so I think our 18 days (approx) in a yacht is nothing to worry about in comparison.
The ARC web site is now available and you should be able to track us after the start on November 20.
Well Pete and Jane have been with us since last Friday and everything is MINT now!  To Peter everything is mint, he has just come back off a walk and seen a mint hawk moth , a mint dead shearwater and we had a mint dinner in the town but the shearwater was a bit tasteless.
We went exploring today found a mountain called Garajon (1487m) highest on Gomera. We walked the last 7.5m !  Which was better than yesterday when we had to descend a 600m volcanic mountain on our bums
amongst the cacti and rocks. We also went to Valley Gran Rey which is stunning it changes from dense forest areas to dry and volcanic . The town was very nice and easy going and surrounded by banana plantations.
Rob went snorkelling he came face to face with  Ray who was 5ft across, black as your hat, winging his way through the water, we are sad to say that Rob's swimming shorts are now a different colour.
We can highly recommend Gomera and a holiday with Jane and Peter Hannifan.
Next web page will find us fast approaching our date with the Arc people and our Atlantic crossing.
Happy Birthday to Danny, Lucy, Chrissie, my Mum and Jane Hannifan for next week (21 again!)