The fullness from the feast of the sacrificial goat meant I slept last night, however I was slightly on edge at some points, feeling rather vulnerable in my sleeping spot. On previous nights I had felt a little more enclosed with the camp, sleeping fairly close to the tents, and having varied terrain around us made me feel quite secluded. Tonight, however, there was a vast expanse of flat ground we had just walked through. The horizon was miles away and I felt very small in a big desert. On top of this, yesterday I had found a scorpion hole near the camp and decided to rummage around to see if I could find anything in there. I was told they waited until night to come out, when temperatures dropped. I wasn’t actually aware at the time that this is where we were about to make camp, so thought nothing of aggravating these guys. But as I closed my eyes I couldn’t help but slightly regret my decision to wind up the local critters. It didn’t bother me for long though, I was out like a light. In the early hours I was woken up sharply by a loud moaning sound very close to me. In my deliriously sleepy state I concluded this loud noise was a big animal. Probably a camel. Standing over my head. I flailed around a bit, but it was pitch black so I couldn’t see what was making this noise. I turned my torch on and realised nothing was there. We just had some loud snorers in the camp who were clearly also benefitting from the heaviness of the feast last night. This made me chuckle, and I was sure to tell Craig in the morning that I thought he was a camel!
In the morning we got up and ate our usual breakfast of hummus, tomatoes, cucumber and pitta bread with our sweet tea, plus the leftovers from last night. Today we were setting off up into Wadi Parwas, a large, mountainous canyon. We were headed for our highest camp at 1,100m.
There was a stark difference in the terrain from the previous day. The wide expanse became a narrow path of rubble between towering rock. We passed the clear path and started climbing over the undulating rocky hills to gain some height. We zig-zagged up steep sides and promptly descended each side. It felt like for every 20m we gained, we then lost 10m and so climbed very slowly.
As we dipped lower we crossed streams which gave rise to vegetation which grew across our path. Once again, cutting our way through shrubbery and bushes was not something I pictured doing in the desert. I loved the variety!
When we climbed higher the views were incredible and we could see where we had walked from. It didn’t look nearly as far as it felt!
It’s starting to sound repetitive, but the views were astounding! After every small ascent the overall scenery would completely change, giving a totally different viewpoint of our surroundings. I took so many photos today and had some great opportunities to climb up addition boulders to get some great shots.’
At some times it was a little tough as we were walking close to some drops, with rubble filled paths making it hard to find solid footing, but there weren’t many of them and it was so worth it at the end!
The walk was long, but still so much fun. The views still take my breath away and I’m always surprised by what the desert threw at us. I truly fell in love with this place. We reached our camp in good time, sat around our camp fire and watched the sun set over the mountains.
Now it’s time for more jokes and stories around the campfire, with many stories about the Bedouin lifestyle. These guys are great at answering any questions and we are getting a brilliant insight into the nomadic lifestyle. I’ve picked a nice spot on the edge of this mountain, on a big rock, for my sleeping spot tonight. Getting a little more adventurous, straying further from the safety of camp and everyone else. (Hope it’s not too windy tonight as there’s a rather large drop just by me!) Tomorrow we walk to “Little Petra”, just outside the city of Petra.