The beast rests – La Palma wakes up

still has Europe the youngest volcano nameless, but for the locals it is still “The Beast”, the beast. For 85 days, around 83,000 islanders anxiously followed, as on the west side of The Palm at the height of Step some 45 million cubic meters of magma were thrown into the air. Ash clouds darkened the sky, glowing lava flows lit up the night. It is 200 meters high and 700 meters long. beast today, a mottled mountain of sulfurous yellow and lava-brown black.

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Up to 100 meters in a straight line you can reach the volcano approach, but only with a guide and permission on a newly created path. Only a few groups a day can walk the five kilometers through the ash, which is as difficult as walking on soft sand. The rangers, who also monitor the air and its oxygen content, make sure you don’t drift off the trail. At the measurement point on the way it is still above 20 percent, right at the volcano volcanologists can only work with eight percent oxygen masks. “For scientists, the eruption was a dream, because the volcano showed all the effects expected from textbooks, “says the island guide Kerstin Swizen. The path leads through an apocalyptic landscape. Gassed Canary pines stretch their skeletons skyward from mounds of gray ash. But if you look closely, you’ll see: hopeful green pom-poms stick out from seemingly dead branches.


get there With Condor of frankfurt Y Munich,; With Iberian ( and air edelweiss ( about scalesWith eurowings since october again since

Accommodation In the tropical garden: the tax authorities San Jorge in Los Cancajos, DR/F from 105 euros,

By the sea: What? Princess Hotel in FuencalienteDR/F from 95 euros,

In the green: The tax authorities de Abajo in Tazacorte DR/F from 173 euros,

Volcano tour permits for guided tours have: The Palm outdoor,; farm; The Palm To transfer &; islands Nice

General information The Palm Tourism,

Spanish Tourist Office, BB

Men with brooms try to cover the tracks of tourists who have lost their way. “Here in the old summit, where the popular volcanoes hiking trail also runs, the fresh layer of ash has erased all traces of pedestrians, cars and mountain bikes. This pristine state must be scientifically protected and monitored,” explains a ranger.

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When you walk, you experience all three types of ash up close: fine ash that was blown far and even covered Kerstin Swyzen’s terrace on the east side every day; lapili, glistening millimeter-sized shards of magma that crackle underfoot; and bombs, to chunks the size of a fist, dense and heavy. The closer you get to him volcano comes, the harder it becomes to breathe. There is dust and sulfurous smoke from the cone, which is still visible steaming and gassing.

Lava bubbled up to one side and made its way out to sea. The solidified lava flow is riddled with mini chimneys from which gas was escaping. In tacande there are ash scrapers on the path cut by the lava flow. Wagon trucks of jet-black ash are hauled to the southern tip of the island and piled up on the beach. Vines stick out from the lava flow, remains of a roof, a cable drum. Wild fennel, Canarian sorrel and spurge grow rampant along the path, as if nothing had happened. “More than 7,000 people were evacuated, and they only had 15 minutes to pack up,” says the island guide. The two districts of were the most affected The Aridane Plains, Todoque and La Laguna, as well as the popular tourist town of Puerto Naos. It will probably remain closed for a long time because a gas bubble has formed underneath and is degassing. Of the 12,000 guest beds on the island, 4,000 are currently inactive and 600 have completely disappeared, the tourism agency reports. The Palm. In 2019 there were still 94,485 passengers Germanythe number dropped to 35,240 in 2020 and to 23,263 in 2021. So far this year, 10,961 German guests have been delighted.

You return to the island for the volcano it has lost some things, but it has also gained a new appeal. You can do almost all the walks in the natural and national parks, swim in the sea pools of the north and on the beaches of the east and south, stroll through picturesque villages and visit the spectacular observatories on the Roque de Los Muchachos.

At the top of Montagna la Laguna, the crosses mark the victims of the volcanic eruption, the view is depressing. Clothes still shake in individual houses in the lava desert, a banana plantation has been cut down, the plastic sheeting next to the lava shines bright white. More than 1,200 hectares were buried by the eruption of lava that flowed through one of the three main banana-producing regions.

The full extent of the eruption can be seen from the popular El Time viewpoint, on the edge of the “Quebrada de los Fears a la Muerte”, named for the brave indigenous people who resisted the first attempts at conquest by throwing stones at the invaders. of the cliffs. The new one on the slope volcano, next to the lava flow, which forked in front of a hill and flowed down the cliff like a carpet towards the sea. In front of the coast, where the currents whistled towards the sea, the 48 hectares of newly formed land.

“For me it was very bad when clients and friends came and said, look, now my house is gone in a moment,” says the owner of the excursion restaurant El Tiempo. “I had the place so full that I had to temporarily close it. And if my children hadn’t come here from their studies in León to help, I wouldn’t have managed with all the hype,” he says. Juan Carloswho has lived on the island for 26 years.

The Church of Tahuja managed to achieve quite a bit of notoriety, because journalists and onlookers gathered here to observe the volcano. an agency of Tenerife turned a brilliant business with day trips into a disaster. “Of Tenerife by Boat to the port here, by bus to church, a selfie with volcano and then back”, local residents report and it sounds a bit bitter.

But on the “island of harsh emigrants” (Kerstin Swizen) you look ahead. This year the first new plantations are expected in the twelve meter thick lava layer and the first connecting road has just been opened. Y The Palm it is volcano: This is how the island was formed millions of years ago, created the spectacular landscapes, and now brought attention to the outpost. the deserved The Palm – not just because of “The Beast”.

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