Day trip to the Jabals Part Two

After leaving Jabal Akhdar, we retraced our steps towards Bahla, and after a snack lunch headed back up into the mountains – destination Jabal Shams (Sunny Mountain).  Conversely, it was raining on the way there, incredibly heavily, and this caused the mercury drop from 38C to 23C in only a matter of minutes.  The rain was patchy and had cleared up by the time we reached the foothills of the mountain range.

IMG_7832

I wonder if rain would have “stopped play” at their football match – the Omanis are football crazy

IMG_7783

It wasn’t easy to spot this long abandoned village nestled into the rocks

IMG_7791

But I guess this shop has a prime trading position, though despite their signboard I don’t expect them to be selling diamonds and caviar.

IMG_7797

We road kept winding higher and higher, and at the scary bits I concentrated on taking some good photos, rather than the long drop-offs to the side of the road.

IMG_7849

My friend Mehran who put the trip together promised me ashphalt roads and crash barriers “all the way”….. well apart from this bit!

IMG_7690

Finally we made it to the top – according to google earth, it’s 800 metres to the bottom of this canyon!  Thank goodness for a safety fence at the top.

IMG_7828

jabal_shams

We didnt’ see too much wildlife, perhaps those camping will see some more – does an abandoned donkey count?

IMG_7801

The trip was completed in a lovely Nissan Patrol V8, which was very suited to the terrain.  With a 5.7litre engine it took the steep climbs in its stride, and the smooth suspension and high level of luxury were appreciated by driver and passengers alike.

IMG_7780

Having rained on the way there, we continued to see signs of rain all around but none fell on us while we were at the top of the hill

IMG_7686

Once we came out of the mountains we had to cross a small, shallow wadi – guess it will be carwashes all around today!

IMG_7816

We covered Jabal Akhdar and Jabal Shams in one day, but it would be much better to stay for two or three days and have more time to explore the area thoroughly.  Camping is possible year-round at both summits, plenty of spaces and will be cool in the summer, and downright cold in the winter – so do take enough blankets to keep you warm if you’re camping between October and May!

We saw 2WD cars up Jabal Shams but wouldn’t dream of driving anything other than a 4×4 up to the top.  Motorbikes can go right to the top of Jabal Shams but they are prohibited on Jabal Akhdar.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes:

<a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>