Snow at the Roque de los Muchachos

The Canary Islands are known as the land of eternal spring, but that’s not quite true at 2,396 metres (7,861 ft). Down at sea-level, it’s been raining. Up on the mountain, it’s been snowing. Yesterday the road was only suitable for 4-wheel-drive vehicles, but I gather the road is open again. If you’re on La Palma, this is your chance to make a snowman. But drive carefully, and once you…

February 11, 2011

Sahara Dust

After an colder-than-average winter, the temperatures here have shot up. This happens whenever the trade winds give way to calima – a hot, dry wind and dust blowing from the Sahara. We used to get it only in summer, but for the last few years it’s been happening earlier in the year. Actually, it’s really nice at this time of year. Suddenly it’s warm enough to sit on the beach,…

March 20, 2009

Snow at the Roque

  La Palma has a lovely sub-tropical climate. It’s called the land of eternal spring. But today the top of the mountain is covered with snow. Of course, we only ever get snow at high altitude, and these days, we don’t get snow every winter. But when it snows, it can dump several feet in one night. The Roque is one of the three best sites in the world for…

February 6, 2009