Many people ask what is a Calima, the answer is simple, it is a dust storm carrying sand from the Sahara. In fact I remember years ago when I was a teenager, we lived in the south east of England and the weather people said that we were going to be coated in dust from the Sahara desert. At that time, I thought it was fascinating to know that the sand has travelled all the way from Africa to land on my mum’s car…amazing.
What is not so amazing is when you’re in the Canary Islands and you’re suffering a Calima. The hot winds that have carried the sand over from the desert are still hot…surprisingly. The dust stays in the air and traps the heat too, so not only are hot winds prevalent, but due to the sand cloud, the heat stays put.
I went to look at a lovely finca in Arona yesterday and on the way down the hill, with temperatures at 29C, I could see the line of sand in the distance hanging in the air. I took a photo and hope that you are able to see it too, it is the line in the distance just above the mountain top.
The photograph below is a picture of the sand being carried by the winds from the Sahara to the Canary Islands.
So now, if you get asked “What is a Calima?”, you can now answer the question.