Monte Trigo

  • Monte Trigo
  • 510 m
  • Primary factor 100 m
  • Sao Jorge, Azores
  • Location: North 38.73975, West 028.28577 (GPS on the summit)
  • Difficulty: YDS class 2
  • Climbed: July 23. 2014


How to get there:
Here is quick summary of my climbs in the Azores islands.
From Velas, drive the main Hwy. north-west, then continue on a smaller dirt road. Monte Trigo is very near the end of the island. A small dirt road circles the peak. Park near its highest point on the west side of the hill. Location N38.74013, W028.28927, elevation about 420 meter.
Route description:
Head up along the fence that marks an edge to the farm land that extends uphill. Higher up, one must enter the brush. The best way is likely to enter up in the (left) corner, then traverse further left without gaining more elevation. Then, when only a short distance from the summit, head uphill. There are thorn-bushes almost everywhere. Fight your way through the bush and locate the very large summit marker.
This hike cannot be recommended, since the summit is well guarded by (almost) impenetrable brush, most of which is a maze of sharp thorn-bush. I started out from my car following a fence and staying along the edge of an open (farm) field that extended quite high up. Thus, it looked like a short section of bush and my guess/hope was to find some sort of path. No such luck. I followed what looked like a small clearing into the bush, but it soon stopped. Shortly after I was making extremely slow progress due to all the thorns that caught my arms, legs and head, normally you try to unhook them, otherwise a very unpleasant mark results. On top of this was all sorts of other vegetation, dense enough that it was hard to squeeze by. I thought about Papua, where I was only last month. How useful a big machete had been here! After about one hour of painful (literally!) work, I first came upon a small concrete marker, then shortly afterwards a big summit marker. It must have been placed here many years ago and most likely, nobody ever visited again! I climbed up on top and had a very well deserved rest.
I decided that I might as well try a different route back down - it could not really be any worse. Dropping more off the top ridge, I was somewhat lucky finding my way through the dense brush with slightly fewer thorn-bushes. Naturally, this could not last and the final 40 meter before reaching the open field was a continuous, dense thorn-brush, so deep that I never stepped on solid ground. It was indeed very nice to see my car and observe that my legs had survived. I had perhaps 20-30 stripes with traces of blood on my legs and arms, nothing really serious, but I would feel this hike for a couple of days to come.
This trip had taken much more time than expected and I had just enough time to drive back to Velas, catch a quick dinner, then getting aboard the 2040 ferry that would take me back to Faial.