- Why did you choose Tenerife as your climbing holiday destination?
In 2014, I came to Tenerife for the first time for a two-week family vacation. We had just started climbing indoors and didn’t feel comfortable to transition from gym to rock by ourselves, so we booked several guided day trips to the climbing spots around Arico. I was blown away by the beauty of the settings and the diversity of the routes. In 2016, I came back with a friend to revisit some of the climbing spots and to discover new areas. Again, Tenerife didn’t disappoint. When I heard that my family was planning to spend this year’s vacation on La Palma, I immediately decided to stay longer to spend 10 more days on Tenerife. I was stoked to discover more climbing areas, to work on some of the projects I couldn’t send last time, and to spend my rest days on the beach or on day trips to Teide National Park.
What do you think about the rock and climbing style in Tenerife?
Tenerife offers a fantastic diversity of routes ranging from beautiful cracks of different widths to pumpy overhangs, crimpy, vertical lines, and slabs. You can practice laybacks, hand and finger jams, stemming, delicate, balancy moves, and pulling on small crimps and finger pockets. I’d say that the routes on Tenerife suit all climbing abilities: There’s a large number of routes in the 5th grade or lower offering the perfect introduction to rock climbing. Besides, all routes are very well protected. The first bolt can usually be clipped after a few easy moves and the bolt spacing is quite close, thus very kids- and newbie-friendly. The majority of routes are probably between 6a and 7b but you will also find a number of routes as hard as 8b+. I love the rock not only for its beautiful color (especially during sunset) but also for its great quality and high friction. Place a foot and it will stick. So far, I have only done sport climbing on Tenerife, but I know that there’s also great options for trad climbing, bouldering and DWS.
What crag you have been more impressed? Why?
I really don’t have one favorite crag. For me, the most spectacular areas were Guaria with its very long stamina sport routes and Discovery with its long, techy routes in a beautiful setting with an impressive view into the valley and towards the sea. I also really liked Zona Zero for its long stamina routes. Here, you will get to climb several different styles (crack, slab, bouldery moves) within a single route. It’s a great option for the afternoon as it is in the shade after ~1pm.
How was your experience in the TCH? Would you recommend it to other climbers?
I definitely recommend the TCH to other climbers! First of all, located in Villa de Arico, the TCH is close to many excellent climbing spots including Arico Arriba/Abajo, El Rio, Planeta Zarza, Zona Zero and La Galería. Second, the TCH is the place to be, if you want to meet other climbers. You can find climbing partners either among the guests, head to the crag with Elena, Erik and the volunteers, or get in touch with local climbers who stop by at the hostel from time to time.
Even though I was solo-traveling during low-season, I found someone to climb with almost every day. If you want to get in touch with locals, I would recommend the Facebook group “Tenerife Climbing Scene”. There’s only a few active members but they usually reply within a day. In addition, the TCH has all amenities you look for after a long day of climbing or on a rest day: cozy rooms, hot showers, a large garden, Wi-Fi, a well-equipped kitchen, and a large rooftop terrace that invites you to hang out, eat, have a beer or glass of wine, and socialize.
What is the most surprised or liked on your trip?
What really surprised me were the good climbing conditions. While the temperatures along the coast are what you would expect from midsummer, the weather further inland can be very different due to higher elevations. Most days were cloudy and windy, sometimes with chilly temperatures. A few times I actually had to put on my puffy jacket for belaying. We could even climb on south-facing walls. On sunny days we would pick a crag that was in the shade. Since many climbing spots are located in barrancos, you can easily climb in the shade the whole day by switching sides around midday.
What I really liked to see is how much effort the local climbers put into maintaining older areas and developing new areas. New routes are bolted almost on a daily basis. It was great to see that these areas are not kept secret but that visiting climbers were welcome to join to explore the newly developed crags. I really liked this sharing spirit and the high motivation of the locals to further develop climbing on Tenerife and to contribute to an active, international climbing scene.