Sonntag, 4. Mai 2014

AlionLive Frühling auf Madeira: A new video series is coming... soon!

The day before yesterday Malina and I returned from Madeira, after two weeks of adventure, fun and sunshine. Yes , the weather this time was really fantastic, sometimes so much that it was uncomfortable ;). We also established many new contacts and made new friends, I finally met some of my Facebook friends from the island in person and met old friends. Thank you at this point, for the wonderful time that we spent with you.

Of course we filmed and photographed a lot. Thus in the new video series, like in the one from 2011, still photos will be included, which Malina has taken. Altogether, I filmed 11 hours and 27 minutes of raw video footage and Malina took 1393 photos. In this respect, the raw footage is slightly less than in 2012 but much more than in 2011. But the video series will be much longer than 2012 still, because of the use of the photos, even if I cut the video material excessively.

When does it all start? I plan to upload the first episode on the 3 year anniversary of the AlionLive video channel on May 13. 2014. This is already scarce enough, because I want to speak a little introduction into the camera as always, create a nice intro and the material from the first day must be edited also. To give you something on what you can look forward, I now give you a glimpse of the series by telling you briefly what happened on each day of the adventure:

April 17. 2014
The journey began at 3:30 clock in the morning with the trip to the Hamburg Airport, as our flight was going already at 6:00. At about 11 am we arrived in Funchal and surprisingly felt not tired. So we walked through Funchal in fantastic weather until late at night and decided to end the day with a good meal at the restaurant "O Arco".
Funchal welcomed us with sunny weather

Spring in Madeira is much more "flowerful" than late fall ;)
 April 18. 2014
On this day I wanted to take Malina on a hike, which I had already done two times in 2012 on the 4th day and on the 13th with Beatrice. The trail led from the Parque Ecologico do Funchal to the plateau north of Funchal and then to Poiso. This time the weather was much better than in 2012, but due to some non-hazardous cloud banks, the wind pushed across the plateau, at least a bit of the 2012 feeling was present.
First the weather was still quite clear up there...

...but somewhat later, the good old "spooky forest" feeling was there again ;).
April 19. 2014
This was the first real long walk. In the morning we took the bus to Santo da Serra, a place that you already know from Part 8B of the 2012 series. From there we hiked through deep valleys and across high mountains in roaring heat to Portela. From there we hiked the path already known from part 12 of the the 2012 series through Referta to Faial. However, we missed a turn-off somewhere and had to take a significant detour via Porto da Cruz.
Does this look familiar to you? This is Santo da Serra in good weather ;)
Portela, this time quite crowded.
April 20. 2014
Since we started our day quite late, we decided to do a relatively short hike, again on the trails of the 2012 trip. We drove to the Vale Paraiso near Camacha and hiked, with a stop at the Abrigo do Pastor to the Parque Ecologico do Funchal. This route can be viewed also in the 3 parts of day 10 in the 2012 series. Again, the weather was not to be compared with it's 2012 equivalent and this time the route was intended. Due to the late start we missed the last bus from the Parque Ecologico do Funchal and hiked on to the Terreiro da Luta. In fact we actually intended to hike further at least to Monte in the dark. This was, however, spared us by a nice indigenous guy, who took us a big part of the route to Funchal in his car.
Guess who's this on the Levada dos Tornos ;)

Good Espetada and wine (one of our favourites) at the Abrigo do Pastor

April 21. 2014
After the considerable exertions of the previous days, we granted ourselves a day of rest in Funchal. We just strolled through the town, visited some parks, a Madeira winery and bought delicious fruits at the market hall.
A nice morning at the Parque Santa Catarina

Jungle feeling at the Parque Municipal
April 22. 2014
Well rested from the day before we went on the long bus ride to Santana and did a heavy ascent to Queimadas. Actually we planned to hike further to the Calderão Verde and then to the Caldeirão do Inferno. But at the time of our arrival at Queimadas, it was already too late for this. So we hiked on to the Pico das Pedras and from there down to Faial , where we just reached the last bus to Funchal.
Queimadas like I only knew it from photos on Facebook.

General Rundkopf in full gear on his way to the Pico das Pedras ;)
April 23. 2014
Somehow we already needed a more calm day in Funchal again, but not as calm as on the 21srt. We visited the fortress "Fortaleza de São João Baptista do Pico" extensively, from which one has a magnificent view of Funchal, and the artist quarter in the "Zona Velha", ie the old town. Here we filmed and photographed this time pretty much all of the wonderfully painted doors and visited two art galleries.
A lonely guard at the fortress.
Painted door at the Zona Velha.
April 24. 2014
Again on the trails of the journey of 2012, we went by bus to the Ponta de Sao Lourenco on that day, and hiked to the Cais do Sardinha. As in 2012, we spared ourselves the ascend up on the last mountain, also because it was a bit too late for that if we wanted to get the last bus back to Funchal. But far more footage was filmed this time than in 2012.
This may look familiar to one or the other ;)
The north coast: Spectacular as always.
April 25. 2014
A rather quiet day on which we took the bus to Ribeiro Frio and did the 4 km short hike to the Balcoes. In contrast to the pure fall of 2012 we had fantastic weather this time and a great view, which allowed us a preview of the next day trail to the water power plant. Then we hiked along the easy road towards Faial, explored the entrance to the gravel road to the hydroelectric power plant and got the bus back to Funchal at Cruzinhas.
Who can see the well-camouflaged Sonny?
No AlionLive without beer!
April 26. 2014
Probably the most eventful day with a about 11 hours continuous mega hike. We got up early and took the bus to the gravel road to the hydroelectric power plant, which we had explored the day before. Then we hiked up there, and then did a hefty ascend to the Levada do Pico Ruivo. After unexpectedly long hike along that Levada, we reached the entrance to the dark and long Pico Ruivo tunnel. The passage through that tunnel proved to be longer than expected. Since we would miss the last bus anyway, we switched to 100% no-risk-no-fun-mode, hiked to the impressive Caldeirão do Inferno, then to the Calderão Verde and after that to Queimadas. There we fortunately met a couple of hikers whom we had met already the day before and gladly accepted their offer to take us back to Funchal in their hired car
Me reporting from the Levada do Pico Ruivo

Not for the claustrophobic: This hike had vary, very many tunnels. The longest was 2.5 kilometers long and PITCH-DARK.
April 27. 2014
After that mega hike we desperately needed a day of rest and used it for an extensive Pocha-O-Rama... well... it was not only Poncha, but generally we partied merrily until late at night. The party took mainly place in Camara de Lobos. This was the day on which we made the most new contacts -> logical :).
Our first Poncha of the day. It would by far not been the last one ;)
A great place to party: Camara de Lobos!
April 28. 2014
After the festivities of the day before we were just not dead ;) but also not absolutely fit. So we decided for a reasonably short hike, but also a not too easy one. We took the bus to the entrance of the tunnel before Curral the Freiras, hiked up to the Eira do Serrado and did the, somewhat steep, descent to Curral the Freiras. We finished the day with a good meal of the probably best Espetada of the island.
View of Curral das Freiras from the Eira do Serrado
A bearded nun in Curral das Freiras ;)
April 29. 2014
On this day we were up for a longer hike again. We took the bus to Santo da Serra and got off somewhere in the middle between Camacha and Santo da Serra. We hiked south until we reached the Levada dos Tornos. Since we had a specific destination, we left the Levada near Nogueira. Here we saw our first poor people ghetto in Madeira and were almost eaten by aggressive dogs ;). Next we did the descent to Garajau where we first visited the statue of Christo Rei (we spared ourselves the last part of the  descent to this for reasons of efficiency) and I fulfilled a promise I had given in 2012: I returned to the restaurant of a good friend, whom I had met in the 2012 episode " A Chaos Day" on day 6. We ended the day with a truly royal feast.
Entrance to the Levada dos Tornos
General Rundkopf on duty.
April 30. 2014
It was by far not the longest hike, we did on this trip, but it still was quite extensive. Actually, we just wanted to pretty lazy but extensively explore and film the area around Poiso, but, due to a scheduling error on my part, we missed the bus in the morning. In order not to lose too much of the last day of the trip, we decided to take a city bus to Curral dos Romeiros. From here we hiked to the Terreiro da Luta, where we were absolutely overwhelmed by the bombastic design of the Our Lady's statue "Nossa Senhora da Paz". Then we hiked through the Parque Ecologico do Funchal to Poiso where we ended the day with some Cortados and a Poncha.
Above the clouds.
Let's sing a little song ;)
May 01. 2014
On the day of the departure to Hamburg I only filmed the airport of Funchal this time. In this respect, this part will mainly deal with the aftermath of the trip. ;) But that's still faaaar away.

And that's the end of this, now very extensive, blog entry. I 'm looking forward to edit all the video material and, during that, to relive all the memorable moments of the trip. Let's hope that it goes faster this time with the editing and that it does not take 1 1/2 years again to complete ... and if already ;).

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