Total length: 30,4 kilometres
Descent from origin to destination: 1547 metres
- Average: 4 degrees
- Minimum: 1 degree
- Maximum: 25 degrees
- Path: 7,2 kilometres
- Track: 9,7 kilometres
- Tarmac: 13,5 kilometres
Approximate duration: 7 hours 30 minutes
Stage 3 Map - Download [PDF]
Our walk towards Gáldar, passing through the Montaña de los Moriscos, is part of the Camino de la Plata. The route joins the two jacobean centres on the Island, and this route is the one the pilgrims travelled along.
From Cruz de Tejeda we start off en route to Pinos de Gáldar around the back of the Parador Nacional. Some 200 metres along on the left appears the path which rises through pine trees to a pond , about 150 metres away. Pine trees, retama plants, laburnum, salvias, thyme and chestnut trees acompany the walker. After a sharp rise, we carry on along a flat area through the western side of the Monte Constantino until we reach the view point of the Degollada de las Palomas. Here the Crespo ravine is born, and with it a view of the north of the Island.
From this point we go up a path, stony at the beginning, which links up with the forest track of Los Moriscos. After one kilometre’s walk along this track towards Cruz de los Moriscos. 100 metres before this we turn off to the right along Lomo de la Arena towards the Caldera de Pinos de Gáldar, where there are some wonderful views.
Our descent is made along a half kilometre volcanic stone path, between a recently planted sapling pine wood, chestnut trees dwarfed by the climate conditions they have suffered, and yellow retama plants. On reaching the main road coming from Cruz de Tejeda, we carry on about 200 metres with the Montañón Negro volcanic cone in our sights, an excellent watchtower standing tall over the north segment of Gran Canaria. It is one of the most recent volcanoes on the Island, over 3000 years old. It has a base surface of about 800 by 500 metres and is 192 metres high. Its mouth, which opens up to the northeast, threw up enormous quantities of pyroclastic rock which got mixed up with more from the Caldera de Los Pinos de Gáldar and covered more than four squared kilometres. The lava flow moved along the ravines of La Virgen and Aguas de Fontanales.
In the Montaña del Capitán, we leave the road and take the earth path, some 600 metres long, passing through the terraces set up for replanting on the western slope of the mountain. Wild thyme and yellow retama plant take the place of the pine trees. We cross the main road to Cruz de Tejeda and continue north until we join up with the GC-21 main road, some 150 from the Caldera Pinos de Gáldar view point.
After descending down this previous stretch, for half a kilometre, the path goes along the Cuesta de los Pinos, on the western side of the Crater, on a steep slope. The drop continues onto another slope, this time not so pronounced, through a former glen flanked by dry stone walls, up to the crossroads of Lomo de Los Galeotes. The path to the right goes towards Teror, the one to the left to Artenara and the one opposite, which we continue along, which takes us to Gáldar. At this point survive the stone walls used to control and mark cattle: again we have the vestiges of cattle usage along the route, still alive, though as a testimony.
From here, following on along the ridge of Lomo de Los Galeotes, there is just a wall on the right which separates the limits between Guía and Gáldar. The pine wood is east of the wall, on the side of Guía, and the pastureland acquires greater importance. We might see the odd flock in Los Galeotes or on other hills nearby, such as Caballo, to the west.
On reaching El Cabezo, the path goes down to the Pavón recreation area, through the Pavoncillo hill and the GC 702 main road.
On our descent, the pastureland alternates with replanted pine woods, and little by little, the bush takes over the land: on the high area, laburnum, which flower in May, and escobones (bushes); and further down, towards the coast, tabaibas, white tajinaste, verode plants and crag grasses.
After arriving at the play area crossroads, we turn off onto a tarmac path for 400 metres going towards Buenaventura mountain. On the right ther are newly planted pine trees and to the left farm holdings. The slope increases a little, and the tarmac road goes on with the wind to Montaña Grande. Next we have a dirt track for 200 metres, delimited by the farms’ stone walls, leading to Las Montañetas, where we follow an earth path for 190 metres, which is stony in parts.
A tarmac path leads us up the western slope of Montaña Buenaventura towards Lomo del Vinvo. We leave behind the Majada de la Carreta and cross over the GC-710 road and Llanos de Lucena, towards Degollada de los Caideros. From here the path runs along a track of half a kilometre on the southeast slope of Montaña de Acebuche. From there we can see pasture terraces at Troya. We head down towards the Cueva de Sosa, which after 200 metres of tarmac path, reaches a bus stop, where we take the road to Hoya de Pineda. The route passes through the Majada de los Dones and the Degollada del Viento, doorway to the neighbourhood of El Saucillo, set on the Llano de Poleo, with its landscape dominated by cattle farming.
Sheep flocks pasture in the area until, at the beginning of summer, the migration begins, an example of traditional grazing. It is at this time that the shepherds take the sheep to Caldera de Tejeda, where for a long period they stay in temporary caves for the humidity and protection of the ecosystems they afford.
After passing along Llano del Poleo, there are various short cuts that cut across the tarmac road and lead us to the neighbourhood of Tegueste.
From here we have to our right the Lomos de Alguacilejo, where we can observe prehispanic caves; opposite, an open air water mine dug out of the porous volcanic rock of Montaña de Coronado. We continue our way along the road which leads to Gáldar for some 400 metres. We leave it on the left to take another path. We take a short cut around a bend to get back on the road some ten metres on. A little futher on we move onto La Degollada, a traditional prehispanic settlement situated at the foot of the Montaña de Guía. On our right lies Hoya de Pineda, an importante traditional cereal enclave and pottery centre.
A path of almost one kilometre, mostly made up of earth, leads to the hamlet of Anzofé, also known as Anzo, on the western slopes of the Montaña de Guía.
The vegetation in the area is presided by tabaiba and cardon cactus, next to white tajinaste, verode plants, cruets, crag grasses, pitas and tuneras cactus. Also, the ravine is the scene of the only palm tree wood of the walk. In this hamlet where the first banana plantations are to be found, they are a permanent fixture on the rest of our walk.
We take a left turn next to the limits of Hacienda de Anzo property, along the Camino de San José, crossing underneath the GC-02 motorway, carrying on along the Callejón de La Palma, and straight towards the town centre of Gáldar.
The main road goes up to a zebra crossing, and carries on into the former capital of the island. At the corner of the calle Bentejui and La Audiencia is the Cueva Pintada Ethnografic Museum, where we can find one of the most important arqueological settlements of the whole Island. We take calle Tagoror and, 50 metres away on the left we see the jacobean temple of Santiago de los Caballeros de Gáldar.