Hiking the Jordan Trail: Day 14 – Oyoun al-Theeb to Wadi Ma’in Zara (14 miles)

Jordan Trail

Hiking on this rocky trail for hours is really hard on my feet. I’ve developed hot spots, and am hoping they don’t become blisters.

When I arrived at Wadi Ma’in I expected it to be Shepherds Central, with their camps lining the river with sheep and goats everywhere. But when I got there I had the whole place to myself. I found the perfect camping spot on a sandbar – the first time I wasn’t sleeping on a bed of rocks. I had a nice dinner of unleavened bread, cheese, and tuna fish while I watched the sun set and the stars come out. I’ll sleep well tonight listening to the croaking frogs and bubbling river.

Two nights ago when I left Malibu I had to start off with two and a half days’ worth of food and water. The food wasn’t bad but I had 5 liters of water. When I put my pack on it was so heavy I thought I felt my vertebrae compress. Over the last two days the weight has taken a toll on me. My shoulders and back are sore along with my feet and knees. All the walking over the rocky desert has raised havoc with my feet. Today I started to develop hot spots (precursor to blisters) on the soles of my feet. I took some anti-inflammatory medicine hoping they’ll be better tomorrow.

Most of the day was spent in the rugged, remote, rocky mountains. They were barren with very little vegetation. For the most part I wasn’t even on a trail and with no map I trekked cross country with only my GPS to guide me. The only people I saw were in the shepherd camps I passed, and of course they invited me for tea.

My one and only encounter with wildlife thus far was with what look like a jackal. Now I know what the howling sound I hear each night comes from. They sound similar to coyote. I assume the reason some shepherds carry a shotgun is to protect their flocks from them.

Jordan mountains

The barren, remote, rugged landscape of the Jordan mountains.

I will be posting all my journal entries for the Jordan Trail here: Jordan Trail

books by Nancy Sathre-Vogel

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One Response to Hiking the Jordan Trail: Day 14 – Oyoun al-Theeb to Wadi Ma’in Zara (14 miles)

  1. Hadija March 23, 2017 at 1:58 pm #

    Wadi Zarqa Ma’in is one of my favourite wadis. I had a lunch break there. Very quiet – what a great place to sleep. By the way, there is a lovely flat sandy track for camping down the steep hill from Ma’tan before you reach the Siq. Do hope you can rest your body and feet enough. Beautiful photo of trail and scenery.

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