We had done a loop around the Montaa Negra on our first visit to the volcanic region known as Arenas Negras. The last time this “Black Mountain” exploded was three hundred years ago, devastating the seashore community of Garachico completely. We were so taken aback by the alien setting that we told ourselves we’d come back for a second climb… and we kept our word.
Arenas Negras, or “Black Sands,” is a blackened wasteland of jagged lava rocks, vast open views, and the occasional pine tree seeking to prove that life can thrive anywhere. There are a number of volcanic peaks in the area, as well as a complex network of hiking trails that wind their way around them. The park is enormous, and you could easily spend an entire day here; a popular trail in the shape of a “8” connects the Montaa Negra and the Chinyero, but we’ll be focusing on the latter today. We headed north after parking alongside the TF-38.