Wednesday, May 24, 2006

New Rules for Access to the top of Mount Teide

This month, new rules have come into force for gaining access to the peak and crater at the top of Teneife's Mount Teide. Amongst other changes, it's now possible to obtain a permit without having to go in person to the National Park offices, as had been the case in the past, making it more convenient for visitors.

It is now possible to obtain a permit by fax to (+34) 922 244788 or email to teide@oapn.mma.es. Permits must be obtained at least seven days before the date you wish to ascend (one month if requested by ordinary post).

These permits are for the 700 meter Sendero Telesforo Bravo (footpath), which connects La Rambleta (3.555 m.) with the highest point of Spain and of all the Atlantic archipelagos, to the top of the 3,718 meter volcano.

Only 50 people are permitted to be on this footpath at one time, owing to the extreme fragility of the area and to guarantee security for visitors.

In 2005, the National Park administration issued 11,001 access permits covering 36,804 persons, a figure that was significantly lower than the previous year (43,198 people), given that conditions made the ascent impractical for several months. At the beginning of 2005, the footpath was closed because of heavy snow and accumulated ice. Extreme high winds at that altitude can add to the difficulty, so don't be too disappointed if the weather doesn't play the game. Nevertheless, it's worth trying and great to be able to say you've been!

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