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Post details Post   (Contract pics)
**** SPECIAL REMIN.. by swoop   (Show all posts)
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kernowclimber
2011-05-20 21:33:34
"Abandoned Village, Wadi Ghul Balcony Walk" from kernowclimber Contract pics
Picture: Abandoned Village, Wadi Ghul Balcony Walk (Contract pics)

Arabia's Hidden Treasure: Oman
Martin and I have just returned from another amazing trip to Oman, land of myth and legend, of a Thousand and One Nights, the Queen of Sheeba and Sinbad the Sailor; land of barren, majestic mountains, deep wadis and lush oases; harsh and aesthetically beautiful desert; of warm, crystal clear seas literally shimmering with tropical fish.

This time we climbed 2 via ferrate, trekked a precipitous ancient mule track along the Wadi Ghul (Oman’s Grand Canyon offering spectacular views and a picturesque abandoned village); trekked and swam up the beautiful Wadi Shab (canyon) from the coast where we camped on beaches for three days snorkelling and swimming, and also made a brief foray into the unforgiving arid environment of the Wahiba Sands in our jeep. The cost was absolutely minimal - we wild camped - and the 4X4 was even cheaper this trip by using a local company. In fact we’d spend almost as much on gasoline and parking in an average week commuting into Dublin from Wicklow and the food costs (on arrival we stocked up at Carrefour in Muscat) would shame Lidl and Tesco.

The sincerity, warmth and hospitality of the Omanis were fabulous just as we found the last time. For example, arriving at a wadi in the Al Hajar Mountains in the dark we discovered some people already there, their camp fire blazing. These were three friends from a local large town on a plain beneath the mountains who had travelled there to connect with their ancestral home. They saw us foraging for kindling wood to light our fire and immediately offered to share their wood with us even though we had brought our own. Next morning we were treated to Arabic coffee, dates and bananas with our new found friends. In broken Arabic and pidgin English we made conversation. They were very interested to know more about Ireland and answered all our questions about Oman and the Middle East with great honesty.

Inshallah, we plan to return to this amazing country later this year when the heat has subsided, to climb and kayak on/off the Musandam Peninsula, and to trek in the mountains of Dhofar and the Sticks in the mountains near the border with the UAE. Oman is Arabia’s hidden gem and is totally safe for Westerners. I feel absolutely confident leaving all my kit in full view in a jeep in a remote wadi for over 24 hours or camping out in a lonely spot far from civilisation where I feel 100% sure that no one will interfere with us. There are only the sounds of desert foxes and feral goats and donkeys to break the silence in the still of the night. The Milky Way shimmers overhead, the stars are hung like crystal apples in the purple firmament while the fragrant smoke of your fire perfumes the air, its glowing embers casting a welcoming glow and warmth about your camp.

If anyone is interested in going to Oman, please feel free to get in touch with us using the MV message service.
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RECENT CONTRIBUTIONS 1 2 3 .. 17 Next page >>
Track
Ballinagee Bridge to Hollywood (Western Half of St. Kevin's Way)
jgfitz 2 days ago.
This is the first half of St. Kevin's Way, but walked in reverse direction. This pilgrim route normally starts in Hollyw walk, Len: 14.9km, Climb: 195m, Area: Dublin/Wicklow (Ireland)

  
Summit Comment
Knocknafallia: Summit Found
CaminoPat 2 days ago.
Walked to Knocknafallia from Knockmeal on Sunday 18 February to location of stone cairn which includes a passage grave on the eastern side of Knocknafallia. The cairn is located at Irish Grid S 0...

  
Track
Lake District: Loughrigg Fell
Onzy 3 days ago.
Up and down to a solitary Wainwright above Ambleside. walk, Len: 5.0km, Climb: 278m, Area: Loughrigg Fell, Lake District - Central & ...

Track
Lake District: North Central Fells
Onzy 3 days ago.
Walk above Derwent Water taking in 5 Wainwright hills; Walla Crag (Not listed on MV), Bleaberry Fell, High Seat, High... walk, Len: 17.3km, Climb: 727m, Area: Bleaberry Fell, Lake District - Central

  
Summit Comment
Truskmore: Access update 18 Feb 2018 from carpark at IG78210 48924
ColinCallanan 3 days ago.
I had intended to summit Tievebaun and/or Truskmore, and had also hoped to check out "Eagles rock" using the car park as a start point at IG78210 48924, so I proceeded to park my car at this offic...

  
Track
Lake District: Above Troutbeck
Onzy 3 days ago.
Walk taking in 3 Wainwrights from Troutbeck, Sour Howes, Sallows and Troutbeck Tongue (not on this site). The extensi... walk, Len: 13.8km, Climb: 721m, Area: Sour Howes, Lake District - Eastern Fell

Forum: General
How's this for a mountainview?
mcrtchly 6 days ago.
The majesty of the otherworldly night sky over the iconic Vestrahorn massif in SE Iceland. The moon had just risen and illuminated the snow-crested mountains, whilst the Milky Way arched overhead ...

  
Summit Comment
Knockanaffrin South Top: Steep Ascent
peter1 3 days ago.
There is ample parking at the trailhead, where a number of circular walks start and finish. Approaching the Knockanaffrin ridge from the East, provides a number of options once Coumduala Lough is ...

  
Forum: General
Meelmore the concluding argument
BleckCra a week ago.
Ladies and Gentlemen of the Jury, the case of :-Meelmore, what the place name means in English.BleckCra -v- Ptempan.Summing up for the prosecution.The defendant avers and publishes that the Mounta...

Forum: General
Gleniff Horseshoe
Aidy 5 days ago.
Headed out last Sunday to climb Tievebaun, but the lightning put me off. Got some great views in the Gleniff Horseshoe as a consolation.

  
Track
An enjoyable route up to Tievebaun with stunning views into Donegal.
ColinCallanan 3 days ago.
This was a very enjayable walk. We started in the carpark which has an information board titled "Eagles rock". walk, Len: 6.6km, Climb: 448m, Area: Tievebaun, Dartry Mountains (Ireland) Ti

  
Summit Comment
Mount Kennedy: Find the wall going north to south (or vice versa) over the summi
Bunsen7 a week ago.
I had to laugh when I looked at the tracks on the site and compared it to my own from O2276 0476. If I were to upload it there would be three tracks all of which reached the summit but took an unn...


RECENT CONTRIBUTIONS 1 2 3 .. 17 Next page >>