For those who haven’t been in this magical place Wadi rum is located in southern Jordan, 3 hours from Amman.
The Wadi looks like a maze of sand stone peaks and the surrounding are sand dunes which are vast as far as the eyes can see.
The bedouin that live there, has a tradition of hospitality and they are kind and friendly.
Climbing in Wadi rum has started in the 80’s and until today the climbing is mostly trad, the longer the routes they tend to be more adventures , the approach and the route finding is sometimes difficult and some routes are very committing.
There is a guide book to Wadi rum, but new routes are being opened each year and if you are lucky you can find some information in the visitor book which is in Wadi rum “Rest house” .
Elad Omer is rock climbing guide( FACEBOOK PAGE ) and a very close friend, whenever he is calling i know he has some new project or a route he find for us to test out skills.
This year Elads call came on time just when I started to get bored from training on plastic, and in a period of complete shut down of northern Israel crags due to legal issues, so it was the right time to go.
Crossing the border to Jordan give me peace of mind, and desert life starts the only thing that define time is the rise and the set of the sun, and I love that feeling.
Our first new route was a route that was opened in 2012 and goes on the West face of the northern Jabal bara, the first ascent was by Italian climbers and it is called “catch the devil by his tail” 7c , 7a oblige , it is 12 pitches long 420 m, and has it all, from difficult delicate friction slab climbing on micro holds with bolts to off width climbing on trad gear, I highly recommend the route, the Italian did great job, all the belays are well bolted, and the rappels on the route are easy and fast.
I believe we did one of the few ascents of the route or maybe the second.
The next new route that we climb was in Bara canyon.
Bara is a small canyon, an outlet of “Um Ishrin” canyon with some of the best rock in the valley.
In bara you can find Some of the Wadi all time classic like “The star of Abu Judayda” and “Merlins Wand”.
A french team has put up a mixed route on Jabel abu judayda, just in the middle between “Merlin Wand ” and “star of abu judayda” .
The route has 5 pitches and has its is a mixed climbing with some bolts and some natural protection this is not sport climbing.
The route is good but the nature of the climb is very run out and committing, climbing is very technical face climbing on micro crimps , and some slab climbing, Elad who is a Wadi rat showed again how solid climber he is when he led a 5.12 pitch with only 6 mm sling around a small rock formation to protect his 20 meter potential fall.
One of my goal at wadi rum is to seek new line for a new route.
After my friends and i bolted and climbed the route “Glory” (8a) I stayed with lot of motivation for a new one and bara canyon seem like a good place to seek new lines, there is a lot of good unclimbed rock, the answer to me search didn’t waited long , when we found this amazing north face 200m black rock, hidden in on of the small canyons.
now it is the time for the transition back to sport climbing, and wait to November to come back to the Wadi and make dream come true.