A Sunday trip advice: Garachico Tenerife!

DFMorvan asked for trip advices because he is planning to goto Tenerife.

Image by Author, main square Garachico

Image by Author, main square Garachico

As long as i was there some months ago, i thought to point out a very special place. Garachico.

Gara is the Guanche word for island, and Chico is Castillian for small islet. The obvious reference point for it’s name is the small rock island which sits just off-shore from the town. Garachico located on Tenerife´s north coast used to be an important port till a flank eruption of the north west flank of Teide ( Montana de Trebejo) 1706 which also part of Montana Negra. The Lava poured down into the village and the old port in less than 15 hours and destroyed  it. Another eruption happened a week later. Now this place is a quiet little town rebuilt in typical spanish style on the delta the lava had formed. When one wanders through its roads, it feels, ( or at least it felt that way when we were visiting) rather empty. You only notice the small shops or cafes at the second glance. What is most interesting for volcano lovers is the place where the lava entered the sea. It formed lots of natural pools which are open for the public to take a bath. Dont expect a high class bathing place, but if you want to swim between black lava, thats the place to try that.

2012-09-26 15.40.40

The waves are not as high as in this video most of the time.

Image by author

Image by author

As mentioned above, Garachico was one of THE most important towns of Tenerife due to a deep natural harbour. Much of the islands production of sugar cane bananas and wine left the island from this place. The lava filled out the old harbour and the local the shipyard was abandoned. Garachico was rebuilt in  typical spanish style. As long as there is not much room for new buildings, the old town remains intact and is not ruined by ugly new hotel buildings.

Image by author

Image by author, the “leftovers” of the old port.

Garachico is easily reachable with  buses.

( The easiest way to get a round on Tenerife are public TITSA buses. Best get yourself a prepaid ticket for 15 or 30 Euros. Whenever you enter a bus, the book an amoun of this ticket. This way buses are much cheaper then when you just pay inside the bus, but even then taking a TITSA bus is not all too expensive. http://www.titsa.com/ )


Image by author, The little volcanic island in a distance from the coast in Garachico.

Image by author, The little volcanic island in a distance from the coast in Garachico.

And now the answers to the Friday Riddle.

Riddle #14 was published in Friday Summary and NTV Riddle

5 volcanoes – 5 dings – 5 points

No 1 – Carbon dioxide, Hydrochloric acid, Vermiculite, Lanolin ….. and they have in common?
No 2 – A mountain on Titan is named after this volcano’s alter ego
No 3 – Luckily, coffee is on hand to fortify the local villagers whilst they dare to live inside
No 4 – Oh no it didn’t! Oh yes it did! A devastating flow of toxic water wiped out all the Pantomime’s aquatic stars 
No 5 – Local legend tells of a huge, disgruntled mountain and an abandoned, lonely heart

NTV Riddle
Answers, explanations, links and dings!
No 1 Mount E (aka E san) – Alison at 16.45 1 point
E numbers are codes for chemicals which can be used as food additives for use within the European Union and Switzerland. Carbon dioxide E290, Hydrochloric acid E507, Vermiculite E561, Lanolin E913 etc.
No 2 Mount Ngauruhoe – Bruce Stout at 11.51 1 point
Mount Ngauruhoe was used as a main stand-in for the fictional Mount Doom in Peter Jackson’s The Lord of the Rings movie trilogy, achieving worldwide exposure. The International Astronomical Union names all mountains on Saturn’s moon Titan after mountains in Tolkien’s work. In 2012, they named a Titanian mountain “Doom Mons” after Mount Doom.
No 3 Fogo – Alison at 17.59 1 point
The mountain’s slopes are used to grow coffee, while its lava is used as building material. Near its peak is a caldera and a small village, Chã das Caldeiras, is inside this caldera.
No 4 Mount Chiginagak – Sherine France at 17.51 1 point
In early May 2005, a catastrophic release of acidic water from the lake, with an accompanying acidic aerosol component, drained and flooded Indecision and Volcano Creeks with acidic water, traveled 27 km downstream and flowed into the Mother Goose Lake, headwaters of the King Salmon River. Extensive vegetation damage occurred along the flood route and Mother Goose Lake was acidified (pH of 2.9-3.1), killing all aquatic life and preventing the annual salmon run.
No 5 Alaid – Sherine France 17.23 1 point
The legend about Alaid’s Heart Island runs that instead of the lake, there was a huge mountain called Alaid. It was so high that it was standing in the light of the rest of the mountains which they didn’t like. One day Alaid, tired of quarrelling, left to find a better place to stay – and settled as an island in the sea. The only thing he left there, was his heart which one can see in the middle of the lake. It is a rose-tinted island which has a form of the heart.

Congratulations to all the winners!



80 thoughts on “A Sunday trip advice: Garachico Tenerife!

  1. Dfm posted a comment just before i pressed the publish button:
    Here is is again DFM says:


    A day by day animation of earthquakes under El Hierro since the onset of the earthquake crisis of 2011 and including the last small swarm of 31-12 and beyond up to Jan 08.
    Earthquake magnitude is proportional to dot size (see scale on on side)
    Terrain elevation is shown with colorbar.
    Dot color is time coded (month by month according to the same colorbar) so the oldest events are in blue and the latest in red.
    Data courtesy of IGN and NOAA.
    Many points are interesting to note, in particular, the relative size of the earthquake swarms which show that apparently the intensity (in term of number of quakes) is degressing with time. Also the fact that for the majority of the quakes, they are concentrated timewise. This shows also that the last swarm is activating a new zone where there were few earthquakes before.
    The swarms of august (1’37) and August – October 2012 (1’58 and 2’06) and of course the last swarm are clearly visible (but for the last swarm it’s only at 2’31…)

  2. In reply to geolurking. in the last blog.January 13, 2013 at 07:08 , about the total mass of the atmosphere.
    “I get roughly 380,045,740 kg from 0 meters to 40 km altitude, total mass.”

    Something must have gone wrong here. The density of the first 5500 meters is roughly 1kg/m3.
    radius earth roughly 6350 km.
    4/3pi(6,355,500^3-6,350,000^3)=2.8*10^18 m3 or 2.8*10^18 Kg.

    • Something can always go wrong. Murphy dictates that. General George Armstrong Custer Proved it June 25, 1876, well before it became attributed to Murphy.

      The closest (in time) of what became Murphy’s Law was this:

      It is found that anything that can go wrong at sea generally does go wrong sooner or later

      Alfred Holt (1877)

      Custer had opted not to burden his light calvary unit with a cumbersome detachment of gatlin guns.

      And… given that his adversaries were using winchester repeating rifles whil his unit was equipped with the higher powered but slower breech loading rifles.

      As spotted on an orange bumper sticker on a movie poster hanging in a bar (Texas Jacks) in Palma de Mallorca “Custer had it coming

      And beware of the “Texas Fireball”… I think they have a one drink maximum on that.

      If you visit it, definately check out the wide collecion of ballcaps from the various military ships that have stopped in that port… and if you go look at the photos.. you can actually find on of a cruiser lauching a Talos missile. That’s pretty rare unto iteself. Talos didn’t stay in service very long. (pain in the arse to work with)

  3. Interesting how geology shapes an area and the locals take advantage.
    Here is Port Orford Oregon where I met my dear Wife:
    http://www.portorford.org/ climate is much like Cornwall according to my
    Wife-there are palms in town we had an extensive rose garden. Could even
    grow some hardy citrus…Sits on rock-not sand like a lot of the southern Or.
    coast cities.. which is a problem considering the fact that that ‘ol Demon that
    lives in the cold water-the Cascadia fault(s) could get active any time…

  4. Cool post Spica!! Great pics and I really like the human aspect to it. I never knew about Garachico. Has a bit of a Strombolian feeling to it from the pics. I’d love to live somewhere like this where you get the feeling each day of how impermanent our time here on Earth is.

    • Well, we do have the Internet…. that mechanism that allows you to inadvertantly learn stuff that you did not have the inclination to find out.

      For example… recently I did a post about OCS. To learn more about this, I have been searching for photodissociation rates and the persistance of OCS and other sulfur compounds. I ran across this thesis http://lasp.colorado.edu/aerosol/MillsThesis.pdf where the author goes into pretty much the same line of thought… but with a fairly obvious desire to lay the blame for sulfate on mankind’s shoulders.

      While digging up info on the Euler equations that he uses… I ran across the physics concept of “Jerk.” and the little tidbit that it is the 3rd derivative of a position function of an object. (2nd derivative is the acceleration, so the derivative of that would be how fast the acceleration is changing… or “jerk”).

  5. s” Tired of seeing his 23-year-old son Xiao Feng play video games instead of job hunting, Mr. Feng of Jiangxi province, China hired high level hitmen in several online role playing games to kill his son’s characters every time he logged in. After Xiao Feng caught on to his father’s meddling, he told his father he was taking his time on the job hunt because he wanted to find one that fit him best. His father said he was relieved to hear this, but it is unknown whether or not the hitmen have been called off.”

    via FailBlog subsidiary, daily what?


  6. Morning

    thanks for the tips

    Day by day earthquake animation between Dec 25th 2012 and Jan 13 2013.
    There were not enough “action” directly under the highlands area to be interesting.
    The day by day phase is for the first 8 seconds, then it is a rotation with a small “rocking chair effect”.
    Colorbar shows terrain elevation and the color of the dots is time related (red most recent, blue oldest).
    Main activity is around TFZ but there seems to be some quakes under Eyjafallajökul (look at 6” and 47′)’.
    Size of the dots is proportional to magnitude (X4)
    data from IMO and NOAA

  7. A mind is a terrible thing

    As I sit here waiting for the coffee to kick in, I find myself pondering how one would go about making a bacon and egg milkshake…

    What would you use as the starting point? Milk? Parhaps a slurry of cornstarch?

    How would you keep it from being disgusting? Should you avoid the sugary taste of vanilla ice-creme? That sugar could be useful in getting the metabolism started… how about dough-nuts? Could they be worked into the equation with the coffee? They would effectively allow the sugar taste if you could pass it off… but dough nuts through a straw?

    Yes, a mind is a terrible thing….

    • Hi, I wanted to help, but some other dragon, i think GL? has already done it. I deleted the second comment now, so it is not here twice. Hope thats OK.

      GL Edit: if an annotation is in red, odds are it was me. and no, I have no specific reason for using red other than to make it stand out.

      If I used dark blue, someone might mistake it for a non working link to something unsavory.

      • Hi Spica, nice article, I’ve visited Garachico,(unfortunately not knowing what I know now…) I had a look at the destroyed harbour, the rest of the town is peaceful and pretty: mainly because there is no employment other than in tourism. but as you rightly say, nowhere for tourists to stay, there’s no beach to speak of either. I had a nice day apart from a near argument with an overly officious waiter, who finally gave up trying to tell me that (the customer) was not right, when he realised that I had more than enough spanish to demand to see the boss, and tell him exactly what the problem was… You may have eaten there, it’s the only one on the main square.

        Hi Vernon, that’s a nice piece you linked, thanks. Here’s the original paper if you want to
        know more:

        There’s more pictures, including some nice SEM images 🙂

  8. Hi Dfm,
    A few more tips for Tenerife.
    -If you are staying in or near too Los Cristianos, then TITSA run a daily service to Teide and Las Canadas National park… They lay on another bus if the first one fills up, which is worth knowing 🙂
    – Los Cristiano’s is also the main ferry port for the Western Islands. La Gomera is a potential day trip, either on a coach tour or driving. Using public transport would be a complicated option,but there is one nice possibility, which I can tell you about if you do want to do it that way 🙂
    – The Anaga region is fascinating: the remains of the first of the volcanoes which formed Tenerife. It’s quite isolated, but surprisingly easy to get to by bus. Change or turn off at at La Laguna for something quite different to the rest of Tenerife, the rocks are ancient, and all the “soft stuff” has worn away:

    • I’m really wary of the ngauruhoe seismograph after I drew Erik’s attention to a similar reading a couple of years ago and he ran a feature on it. Suddenly all of these local experts popped up to say it was just noise and nothing unusual although it certainly looked unusual to me and I’d been following it for some time. Now I think they might have just dialed up the sensitivity. Either that or the seismograph is really sensitive to local winds or wind from a particular direction. How’s NZ treating you?

  9. Serendipity means a “happy accident” or “pleasant surprise”; specifically, the accident of finding something good or useful while not specifically searching for it.

    Another less common meaning would be deriving a useful purpose for something that was totally unintended.

    In the deep south, older buildings and homes tend to have really high ceilings. The reason for this is because of the heat. Tall rooms mean the heat has someplace to go where you don’t have to stand around in it. To this day, structures with little to no air conditioning have higher ceilings. One such place are the rest stops in Florida.

    Today, I had the other benificial aspect of a high ceilings emphasized to me… by a high powered industrial toilet. I don’t know if the person that designed the auto-flush system was a practical joker, but having one of these monsters activate as you are preparing to sit will (in a Newtonian 3rd law of motion fashion) scare the cr@p out of you. It is at that moment in time that you appreciate the high ceiling as you come down form your short sub-orbital launch.

    The toilets have motion sensors… and should activate when you leave, not when you are entering. The deep throated growl of one of them will easily let you know that it means business. And in all likelihood, it could probably dispose/eat a shoe with ease.

    I don’t think that they used the basic design of a peri-jet eductor, but that is the only water based system that I know of that has that sort of digestive capabity. I have seen peri-jet eductors crush soda cans in an instant… and then spit them 10 meters away. They were designed as de-watering attachments for fire hoses and they pull out at least twice the amount of water that you push into them. Since flooded compartments can contain a lot of debris, they were meant to be very difficult to clog up.

    Clothing, pants underwear, sock, shirts… no match for a peri-jet eductor. It will just shred them and push them up the de-watering line.


  10. Today… I was confronted by a sheriffs deputy.

    He walked right up to me and stated “You’re here to work on something aren’t you?” I nodded in the affirmative and he bade me a good day.

    That took me by surprise. Usually they just look at me to see if I’m up to no good.

    It may have been the test gear dangling off of my arms and the tool kit. He had a 50:50 shot at guessing correctly…. with what I had, the only other thing I could be doing was bypassing an alarm system.

      • Nah, these guys are twitchy enough. A couple of years ago, they had some armed miscreant running around that took up refuge in the county admin building. It took them a couple of hours to get him out with out killing him. Getting him out is easy… doing so in such a condition that he can later stand trial is the hard part.

        A lawyer can’t make a buck unless he has a case to bill for. And they don’t care if it’s representing criminals or “excessive use of force” cases.

        • Got a question the Peri-jet is it some sort of Centrifugal Flow like say a 40’s
          Whittle type jet engine? Intriguing design…
          Now on the subject of Police. Some years ago I had a job flying night courier
          Overnight packages, Bank notes etc.Nothing negotiable. Cme home to Troutdale, Oregon, in the wee hours of the morning. Parked the 402 Cessna fulled it. did thwe paperwork sent the courier truck off. done. go to the office open the door-alarm was
          set. I reset the alarm-too late Troutdale Gendarme shows .Female. Nothing gets
          your attention than a large caliber hawgleg pistola held in petite hands that obviously know how to hold it. UP against the WALL! Spread EM.” I comply. she pats me down. She then sees my Airport ID and Fed ID.. “What are you doing sir.?!”
          ‘Well I just delivered my freight, and was going home after I finished my paperwork.”
          Then she let me go. I have enough police in my family to knw how to cooperate…
          but not fun..

          • The high velocity nozzles spray water up the middle of the main bore and push any thing in there out the bore. Other water comes in from the bottom and is caught up in the high velocity nozzle spray. They generally run 100 to 150 psi for the supply side and kick out an enormous amount of water when in operation. a 150 psi/125 gpm supply line can easily pull 250 to 300 gpm out of a space…. along with whatever is floating around in it… fuel, included. (it won’t light it off either).

            From the spec sheet (earlier link) it can acheive 40 head feet of lift at almost 450 gpm with a 150 psi and 225 GPM feed line.

            Side note: In shipboard firefighting, one thing you always have to concider, is what to do with the water you use to put the fire out. It is quite easy to sink yourself while trying to put out the flames. One “tactic” on steam ships, was that if the fire was bad enough, and if you had water running into the mainspaces, you would use the installed mainspace eductors to keep it emply. Other methods were in the manual, such as taking a draw with the main feed pumps if needed. (could put an eductor’s capability to shame… in the range of tons per minute). {a 1200 lb plant uses a lot of water}

            For tgm: Some of the best fuel for a steam plant turns out to be jet fuel. We had fouled a tank of JP-5 and could not deliver it to the carrier. They let us redesignate it as bunker fuel and we burned it off. It makes nice steam.

            BTW, that flight deck is for two H-46s.(the ship on the bottom of the photo) The cool thing about the 46, 47, and the 53 is that they could make their own wind envelope. Not a lot of work involved in getting favorable winds across the deck.

            From Wackipedia

            The speed was obtained by giving each ship one-half of the powerplants removed from the unfinished Iowa-class battleships Illinois and Kentucky.

            Which made sense… since that was what the hull had been laid for. This particular class only ran 600 lb steam plants.

          • Hi
            Ejectors are very much in use in water treatment for instance in water softener to pump brine during the regeneration. The good point is that there are no moving parts as you use the pressure loss of the moving fluid to create succion. Pretty complicated to calculate but easy to use.

          • Thanks, Lurk, my cousin was a USN firefighter. never had talked about it much . he was on the Constellation in ’88 when they had that JP-4 fire.. Just as they were leaving port for a shakedown cruise. Very not fun….
            I would rather face a stand of burning bug killed, Lodgepole pine any day…..

  11. The pisser.

    I’m searching for geochemistry on Tolbachik’s flood basalts. Hell, pretty much any geochemistry would do. I run a google search, what do I find? A link to Ruminerian II.

    • Nice lavabomb ont termica cam right now…
      Greg, are you around? Could you use yr timelapse script on schtromboli when you have chance? Cheers, the Tolbachik one was ace 🙂

  12. Nice to see Chiginagak showing up in the riddles. It’s crater lake discharge did wipe out most of the stuff in Mother Goose Lake and upstream of that lake, destroying the salmon run in the lake and upper river. The toxic stuff continued downstream and emptied into Bristol Bay, which is home to a tremendous controversy pitting salmon fishing against a large new mine. The new mine should sit above Lake Iliamna and has been fought tooth an nail by the anti-mining people.

    Their basic message is that if there is a large mine (check), and a coffer dam with tailings (check) and an earthquake comes along (check) which opens the dam and dumps the tailings lake downstream (maybe, maybe not – it didn’t happen in Chile following the 8.8 a couple years ago) which will kill all salmon fishing in the region for all time.

    Yet Chiginagak did precisely that and did not wipe out all fishing in Bristol Bay. Indeed, salmon catches in that part of the Bay actually increased over the next couple of years, leading some of us to suggest that salmon are well adapted to volcanic discharges. The antis don’t want to discuss that any., but they are going to get to sooner or later.

    The region gets regularly dusted with volcanic ash from Cook Inlet and the Alaska Peninsula; Redoubt was the most recent. It got a tremendous amount (megatons and cubic miles) of ash, metals, acids and other stuff when Novarupta blew a century ago.

    Here in Cook Inlet, local commercial fishermen look at Augustine and note that fishing improves after a small eruption. Don’t know if I believe that or not, but it is what the old guys seem to believe.

    We forget how resilient the wildlife is and how well they recover after something really significant (Redoubt, Novarupta, Chiginagak, Okmok, etc) takes place. Some parts of Kodiak got over a meter of ash from Novarupta and if you can dodge the bears, there is some great salmon fishing. Rant over. Thanks for listening. Cheers –

    • Lurk and Bruce thanks for ending my day well. I was having one of those days where
      (from a “Dilbert” cartoon I recall) that the only reason :”I’m not a serial killer is it involves too much manual labor and you have to work with the public.”
      Now to bed in high lonesome of NE Oregon -12c as we speak fire in the fireplace
      and thoughts of herding cats- which describes my day…:)

  13. Wild hair….

    Occasionally, you want to know something but that information is just too new to have been published, or for any official word to be put out. In an instance like that, you are forced to try and puzzle it out yourself. The problem is, you need a sound method to make the determination for yourself. If it’s not available… sometimes you have to wing it and hope for the best.

    One tool that I don’t have, is the ability to estimate SO2 output from an erupting volcano. Let’s see what we can cobble together that might at least point us in the right direction.

    Mt Pinatubo, in the Philippines, is a pretty well studied volcano. According to the Wikipedia article, it ejected about 17,000,000 tones of SO2 in it’s 1991 eruption. How close can we come to that mark?

    According to the Mastin et al, formula, a system that puts a plume to 34 km elevation is ejecting tephra at about 127525 m³/s. The mass of this material, is genrally assumed to be 2700 kg/m³ (that’s the dense rock mass… about that of granite).

    Using a formula cobbled together from a diagram in “Preservation of Random Mega-Scale Events on Mars and Earth: Influence on Geologic History” by Mary G. Chapman (2009), specifically, figure 6.


    I get = S(ppm= 5717*(TiO2/FeO)+537 as a really close version of the linear fit that they have for the parental melt sulfur content. Where this diagram falls short, is that it is intended to estimate that content based on a flood basalt… which is a a bit different than an explosive eruption. It’s all I have, so it will have to do.

    “Quantifying the Pinatubo Signal in the South Polar Show” Coe-Dai et al (1997) have six geochemical sets for a variety of Pinatubo ashfall, ranging from the South China Sea to Luzon.

    Using their ratios, I get possible S contents of 1700.6, 1447.7, 1384, 1405.4, 994.36, 1195.0. With an average of 1354.5. The 95% confidence interval is 1162.8 to 1546.2.

    At an 127525 m³/s eruption rate, that works out to about 344318968 kg of material per second. Assuming 1354.5/1 x 10^6 (0.1354%) for the sulfur, I get about 532401 kg of sulfur per second. SO2 has a mole mass of 64.058. Sulfur has an atomic weight of 32.06. So if all of the Sulfur goes into the SO2, that comes out at about 1.998 times the mass of the sulfur, or 1063737 kg SO2 per second.

    Pinatubo erupted to 34 km for about 3 hours. Tallying that up, I get about 11,488,366,972
    kg SO2, or about 11,488,366 metric tonnes.

    A bit shy of what the Wikipedia article states (off my 32%)… but workable.

    Now If I can just find the geochemistry typical of Manam…

    NOTE: These calculations and estimates are subject to being wrong. It’s not my field and I dropped my spoon while doing them. (ice creme).

    The Megascale Book via Google

    A multidisciplinary effort to assign realistic source parameters to models of volcanic ash-cloud transport and dispersion during eruptions” Mastin et al (2009)

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s