and Mr. Ghanim Al Marri on Motorbike to Jabel Shams, Oman
3000 meters high is the highest mountain in Hajar Mountain range.
Temperature drop is recorded down to Zero degree Celsius in its history.
Normally, temperature drops down to 4-5 Degrees Celsius in the winter.
This is one of the most popular Tourist destination in Oman and entire
Steep Uphill, unpaved dusty road; Accessible by four wheel drive (4X4),
fixed the date for an adventure trip to Jabel Shams in Oman, on 28th
of December 2017. The time was set for 6:00am to meet at the Creek
Metro Station, but did not happen due to heavy fog in Dubai on that
morning. I took the first Metro from Bur Juman Center station @5:36am
and reached the Creek station at 5:50am. The visibility was just about
8/10 meter through heavy fog.
him to find his whereabouts. He was at home about to start
the Motor Bike. We talked about the weather condition, thickness of
fog and distance visibility. I suggested him not to hurry up on the
road. He arrived at the Metro Station @6:25am. After some adjustment
of luggage on the bike we got on the road at 6:40am.
on we faced more and more difficulty on the road due to very low visibility
and rain like condensation and dripping from the Helmets. Off Dubai,
we were forced stop on the road side. We waited for more than half
an hour. The weather condition improved, a bit. We got on the road,
slowly and carefully. Almost Al Ain, we got in better weather.
process at the immigration was a quick one. At the entry immigration
in Oman, also, was not bad. Mr. Ghanim went to process the document
for the Motorbike, while I was at the visa counter. After passing
the immigration we stopped at a cafeteria where we had some Veg/Parotha,
dates, Arabic coffee and Chaya Karak, at the end. It was a sunny day.
The time was very pleasant on the road. The road was smooth, wide
and less traffic. At
1:30pm we reached Bahla. We stopped at a supermarket to purchase a
few things and water supply for the evening and next morning. We had
a quick visit in and around Bahla fort. After Bahla the road was narrow
with two ways traffic separated with the line in the middle. We passed
through smaller towns and farming areas. GPS and signs on the road
side indicated the narrow road and uphill to the top of the Jab el
Shams. The road took up steeper and then on the unpaved dusty rough
road. We faced a small accident; our motorbike rolled aside on the
dusty area. Nothing went wrong on the motorbike and both of us. On
the way up somewhere we stopped for a water break. The air up in the
height was cooler, getting cooler as we got higher.
of the mountain, there were many tourists before us. Some of them
were having lunch on the edge of the vertical cliff while the car
was parked on the edge, too. Some guys were sitting on the edge with
the legs dangling over the edge which looked a bit risky job. The
view from the mountain top was stunning. There was a deep gorge between
two vertical mountains, more than 90 degrees angle. The gorge may
be around 2000 meters deep. The more interesting thing was that there
was a village at the depth of the gorge. Freely
roaming goats were expecting something to eat from the tourists. We
had a whole mater melon. The water melon peels made a feast for them
after dark. They were quite a few, around. A whole watermelon, some
energy bars and tea was the dinner for us.
a pleasant clear Moonlit night with the refreshing air. By 3:00am
in the morning the temperature dropped down to 8/9 degrees Celsius.
I was a well prepared camper, but Mr. Ghanim was not the one. He had
under-estimated the temperature drop on top of Jabel Shams. He was
going through a cold night. By midnight some more campers came up,
they were very noisy and did not sleep throughout the night that disturbed
my sleep. As the morning light came, Mr. Ghanim started the stove
to prepare some breakfast. I walked around to take some photos. Ya,
one thing was missing for the trip that was the tripod for photo and
video. I was about to pack my tripod, Mr. Ghanim told that he would
take the tripod that can be used by both of us. But, he forgot to
put in the pack. Long exposure photography and videography made impossible
on the trip. Never mind!
a very good time on top of the mountain, Jabel Shams. We spent a lot
of time over there, as per the distance and time calculation of Mr.
Ghanim. We drove down, I saw some very nice photogenic sites and angles.
But, I did not want to ask for a stop because of the difficult unpaved
road. I missed that.
was in need of a Memory card for his GoPro. We stopped at a few places
in smaller town and smaller shops, but the item was not available.
We had a stop at Nazwa Grand Mall for the Memory card. At the same
time, we had some bread and water.
was some mixed up in GPS reading. We spent plenty of time on top of
Jabel Shams in the morning. While taking a break in Nazwa Mall in
Oman, Mr. Al Marri discovered that the distance was different than
what he had calculated , earlier. It was after midday, we still had
to go for about 500 KM for the port to Al Masirah island. He knew
that the last vessel to the island was at 6:00pm. The vessel earlier
than that was at 3:00pm. We moved on, he pressed hard for speed up
going at 140KM/hour, sometimes even higher. Sitting behind him, I
calculated the speed and the road distance. The speed was not going
to make any difference. I tapped him to slow down and explained the
final result of the speed. Any speed we go, we will reach after 4:00pm.
The vessel to the Island leaves at 6:00pm. Better, we go slower. We
found a virgin road without any signage for road and destination.
The road was new that did not even come in the GPS reading. There
was a confusion. In this way, we were late to reach the port. We were
the last passenger to enter the vessel.
left at 6:00pm. We reached Masirah Island, late after dark. We stopped
in a restaurant for a dinner. It was a great dinner after a long tiring
day; Chicken and Lamb with bread. After dinner, we located the beach
for camping with the help of GPS and map. The camping site we chose
was like a WOW! Pleasant weather and refreshing air coming from the
sea. We went to bed around 9:30pm. The sleep was a single go all the
way to 5:30am. I called him, he was up. We began to prepare tea and
breakfast. After making some tea, he boiled 6 eggs in a little pan.
But, the gas ran out before the eggs being well cooked. I peeled on
the eggs to show him. It was totally uncooked and runny. I dropped
the whites on the sand and ate the yolk. He said that he did not want
any of them. I ate all the yolks from 6 eggs. It was just warm enough.
We really enjoyed the morning view with the pristine sunrise.
move! We drove towards the vessel port. The timing was a bit difficult
to deal with. The vessel trip to other shore was at 8:00 am and 12:00pm.
There was no vessel schedule in between. "Let's go around the
island and take the vessel at 12:00pm" I told him. But, it was
not the right plan because we were to far away from Dubai. Both of
us had the duty to report on the following day. The ticket house in
the port office was closed, already. It was either we were too late
or too full the vessel. They sent us to the vessel directly to talk
to the staff if they could take us in the vessel. That meant it was
not sure if we could travel or not. Thanks God! We were allowed in
the vessel to travel.
an hour journey on the water. The sea was very rough. I went to the
roof top to have a look around. Oh! No! I started to feel the sea-sickness.
I ran down in the sitting area where I had a quick good sleep.
No-sea sickness. It was around 9:30am when we started to drive on
the main land Oman. The previous day we passed by the salt pans where
the workers were collecting and piling up the salt. I request with
Mr. Hafnium to stop in the area for a while to take some photos and
video clips. But, no one was at work on the way back. He asked if
I had wanted to stop by. We continued on to Dubai with several stops
on the way. We reached Dubai after 7:00 pm.