El roque de los muchachos

This is where I was staying until last week, next to the beautiful MAGIC telescopes. They are a pair, and you can see both in the picture. Even though one of them is just visible as a reflection in the mirrors of the other telescope! Most of the time the weather was to bad for the telescopes to operate, but on a few occasions  we were able to see the telescopes in action and to see them move through the night sky. Quite the impressive sight!

During the day, most of the time, we would sleep. But occasionally we were up early enough to explore the beautiful nature surrounding the telescopes and sometimes the weather even played along so that we would do short trips to the surrounding mountain tops. The top that is closest by is conveniently also the highest mountain of the island and, on some days, allows a beautiful view into the Caldeira del Taburiente, the biggest erosion crater in the world.

On our first attempt to visit the roque, we were not so lucky, while the weather was good the Caldeira was filled up with clouds, this made for some nice pictures of the clouds playing hide and seek with the mountains. It was amazingly beautiful to watch them come and go and engulf one mountain and spitting out another. But it did not allow me to really get a good view of anything, so we tried again the next day and had much more luck, as the view was almost free of clouds and you could see the slopes going down for thousands of meters on all sides. The most amazing thing is that even though those slopes are incredibly steep and completely made out of stone, still some trees manage tocling onto the edges and  grow and survive there!

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