Holiday La Palma Blog
Posted on 2:56pm Friday 6th Jul 2012
I have to confess that this blog post is not about walking the GR130 or even walking in fact. But it is to do with leaving the car at home and getting out and about on La Palma - but on a bike.
Ah, cycling on La Palma. Not always the most obvious thing to do on what many regard as being the most mountainous island in the world for its size. And in fact, in the past we have looked upon cyclists with some degree of pity as they huff and puff their way up some steep incline or another.
But each to their own and we have been very pleased (and hugely impressed) when people have actually cycled to us here in the north all the way from capital of Santa Cruz de La Palma 48km away and, even more bizarely, seemed to have enjoyed it!
What possessed us to get our Trek touring bikes intended for guest use out from the safe confines of the garage, I shall never know. But emerge they did. At first, it was a tentative cycle to the sports ground just half a kilometre away (downhill), a good few laps around it (flat) and then a cycle back (uphill). (Very uphill).
This was deemed to be a success in that we actually managed to return and, what's more, with and on the bike.
Next up was a trip into to Los Machines which can loosely be called the village of Franceses.
Los Machines, Franceses
Almost a kilometre away (downhill) this had the added benefit in raising a few smiles of the even fewer villagers - definitely of the bemused variety. Well, it's nice to make people smile. And one old gentleman commented that he couldn't remember having seen bicyles in the village bfore - come on, let's hear it for Britain!!
The return journey (uphill) went off without a hitch although admittedly with something of an increase in blood pressure and at times in the lowest gear possible.
We were now ready for the next challenge (?). Unfortunately, the next logical step would be to set off in the opposite direction and make a complete circuit of Franceses, cycling up to the main road 1.5km away (uphill), along the main road 2 km and into Franceses by the old entrance with the wooden sign (downhill), through Los Castros to Los Machinos (almost flat) and then back to our starting point in Las Tierras (uphill).
I can't say I'm a hugely confident or experienced biker on anything other than more or less flat terrain and like most normal people, I don't exactly love very steep inclines or even very steep declines and so I didn't particularly expect to make the whole circuit actually using pedal power as opposed to pushing power, but I did.
Oh well, it can't have been that hard then after all. Ah, how the memory fades ..
The farmyard goat was pleased to see me back anyway. And, OK then, I was pretty pleased to see her too.