Wadi Bashing in Dhofar

The beginning of November, we went on a 5 day road trip, and spent a full day in Dhofar on the road east of Mirbat (east of Salalah), in the south of Oman.

We had never been east of Mirbat, but had been told that the shore line scenery was second to none.  After breakfast, we headed out, with Snoopy in the back seat.

Sadah is about 40 kilometers from Mirbat.  first, you climb up on a plateau, driving down through wadis, or dry(??) riverbeds along the way.  There had been rain recently in the mountains, so there was often water running over the pavement in the low spots. The British devised a way to tell if the water is too deep to drive through – it doesn’t have to be very deep sometimes for the current to wash a vehicle sideways.  Anyway, they put white cement posts along the side of the road  with the danger level painted red. A sign before each wadi remind you to watch out.

We were surprised to see weeds and branches stranded on the railing at the edge of the road…. surely the water couldn’t have been THIS high!

We stopped where there was, or had been, a rest area along side the road. Water was still running across, and we got out and walked towards the sea, which wasn’t very far away.  The water was quite warm where it was shallow, but there were some sudden deep spots.  Snoopy thought he could just wade across in one spot, and was suddenly forced to swim. He loves the water, but doesn’t like to get where he can’t touch bottom – we we found out that he swims very well when he has to.  This rock was incredible – I’d sure like to know how this was formed.When we finally met with rocks we couldn’t climb over and water we couldn’t wade through, we headed back to the car, checking out the rest area on the other side of the road. Then off we went.

Through more water – did I mention that there are camels everywhere, and they always seem to think they have the right-of-way, even when they are miles from a camel crossing sign?Another stop was right by the ocean, in a tiny inlet.  The shore was rocky, and the waves were tall and came crashing in. The rock formations were quite interesting – like this big rock with bisecting seams. I could have stayed there for a long time, just listening to the waves crash on the shore – I think in a former life, I must have lived by the sea.

Before we got to the Sadah turn off, we went through a few wadis where the road had been washed right out…. we followed other vehicles and made it through with no problem.  David thought maybe I should just wade ahead of the jeep, taking photos, and making sure we didn’t run into any deep spots.  He found out that there are limits to what a farm girl from Saskatchewan will do, and this was one of them!

At the Sadah turn, we headed on up the highway.  We went through wadi after wadi, some not so bad, some that had me biting my nails a bit…. I am really NOT an adventurous passenger. We were beginning to get hungry, but there was not a shop or restaurant in sight.  And then we came over the crest of a hill, and saw a fair sized town….Hadbeen…. and the road was completely washed out before it.  Well, the SUV in front of us went on, so we followed.  The last bit, the road had been built up so you could drive into the town, although it was very rough and rocky, and we weren’t sure if we had done some damage to the bottom of the jeep… but we made it.

Since I am so slow at putting photos into these blogs, I will stop there, and continue the trip in the next edition.

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