While only barely above 1000m of elevation, Roque del Conde is one of the landmarks of the island Tenerife. Certainly it cannot compete with meighty Teide but it towers above the south-west of the island and thus is the first and sometimes only mountain, which the common Tenerife Tourist sees from the beaches and resoorts of that area. Also, it is a rather popular hike which takes little more than two hours from the closest trailhead in the village Vento near Arona.
Roque del Conde is a tabletop mountain with a huge plateau on its top. Its sides, however are very steep and one of the two trails which lead to its summit should only be used in dry conditions as it becomes extremely slippery when wet. However, the south-west of Tenerife is the island's driest region so that the chances of precipitation is low. The normal route heads up the south face of the mountain, switching between natural ledges.
Roque del Conde as well as its neighbours Los Riscos, Roque de los Brezos and Roque Imoque belong to the oldest parts of the island. About 7 million years ago three island volcanoes surfaced in which today are the Anaga-, Teno-, and Adeje-Regions in the north-east, north-west and south-west of Tenerife respectively. Two million years later volcanic activity shifted to the centre between these islands and created the huge stratovolcano Teide. Later the former islands connected with the volccano in its centre to become parts of the largest of the Canary Islands.
Erosion formed the three oldest parts of Tenerife for the last 5 million years, creating ridges of spikes and towers, mesa-like high plateaus and deep-set canyons. All of these you can see around Roque del Conde, which itself took the role of high plateau. To the north the ridge of Los Riscos, Roque de los Brezos and Roque Imoque is formed by former volcanic plugs while at its base to the west you find Barranco del Infierno, one of the most popular canyons of the island. The routes to Roque del Conde lead through another one of these canyons, Barranco del Rey.
Roque del Conde is best known for its views across the tourist towns along the south-west coast of the island. However, its rather solitary location also offers good views towards Teide and the caldera rim of the Cañadas del Teide. Quite often, however, these higher mountains are shroudes in trade wind clouds while Roque del Conde remains the last bastion beneath the fog.
Note aside: Roque del Conde is also popular among paragliders thanks to its position on the lee side of the island, which blocks the otherwise high trade winds. Also thermic conditions along the ridgelines of the mountains offer good thermals.
- Take motorway TF-1 west to the exit Los Cristianos
- Switch to TF-28 north-east, firection La Camella
- Before you reach the village, TF-51 turns of northward to Arona
- Pass the town but right afterwars (after two curves (right / left)) turn left (west) into Vento
There are two routes to the summit of Roque del Conde, which both start at Vento and have the first section in common. The common section cuts through Barranco de las Casas and Barranco del Ancon. On the far side of the latter, the routes split:
for the normal route turn south and descend into Barranco del Rey, which you follow for a few metres before you ascend the far side. The path passes two threshing places and then heads for a saddle between Roque del Conde and its southern side summit Centinela. From the saddle the path follows a ledge through the south face and later switches back and forth between several ledges. Finally you'll reach the plateau on its southernmost side.
The northern route, which is usually used for descent only turns right (north) at the aforementioned intersection. It follows GR 131, one of the trekking trails on Tenerife, which soon also descends into Barranco del Rey, which it leaves a bit later, heading westward towards Degollada de los Frailitos. From here turn south onto the north ridge of Conde, which you'll leave for the east face a few hundred metres later. The path also jumps from ledge to ledge like the normal route. However, it is much steeper and dangerous in wet conditions. It cuts through the mountain's east face to reach the plateau in its south-east only a few steps away from the normal route.
There's no red tape. Parking space in Vento is very limited, you might have to leave your car outside the village boundary.
AccommodationOf course you can find a lot of hotels, fincas and casas on the island which you can book from any travel office or over the internet. The closest tourist locations are at Playa de las Americas and Los Cristianos. In the towns of the closer area (Adeje, Arona) you can also find hotels and apartments, which might turn out rather more difficult.
Weather conditionsThere are several sites on the web which give you information on the weather on Tenerife. The following table shows data for Puerto de la Cruz on the north coast.
|Avg. day temp.[°C / °F]||19 / 66||19 / 66||20 / 68||21 / 70||22 / 72||23 / 73||24 / 75||26 / 79||26 / 79||24 / 75||22 / 72||20 / 68|
|Avg. night temp.[°C / °F]||13 / 55||13 / 55||14 / 57||14 / 57||16 / 61||18 / 64||19 / 66||20 / 68||20 / 68||18 / 64||17 / 63||14 / 57|
|Water temp.[°C / °F]||19 / 66||19 / 66||19 / 66||19 / 66||20 / 68||20 / 68||22 / 72||23 / 73||22 / 72||22 / 72||21 / 70||20 / 68|
The Canarian Islands (as well as Madeira) are located in the trade wind zone. You almost always encounter northeastern winds which carry a lot of humid air. Being forced to climb to higher altitudes this moisture condenses into clouds. This in return means that most of the time the northeastern part of the islands is covered in clouds from altitudes of 1000m through 2000m. The Teno and Anaga Ranges often are covered in clouds, though mostly along the north coast. The Adeje region often is the area with least precipitation on the island.
Maps & Books
Kompass Map WK233
Freytag & Berndt
Out of the multitude of maps and books I have been using the following. It is excellent but be careful if you do any one of the suggested "variations" to the tours described therein. The variations are described in a few words only and you might get the wrong impression of their quality.
- Teneriffa, Tenerife
K. & A. Wolfsperger
Rother Walking Guide
English - ISBN: 978-3-7633-4809-1
German - ISBN: 978-3-7633-4016-3
French - ISBN: 978-3-7633-4904-3
Spanish - ISBN: 978-3-7633-4700-1
- Teneriffa, Tenerife