tiyul number 7 – nahal og

by Aviv Blum on October 24, 2010

Tiyul #7

October 22, 2010. we had a wonderful hike in the judean desert. we usually have it with 3 people or the whole family but this time we had 9 people on the hike! we had 5 from our family and 4 other people including 2 people from my school. we woke up at 6:30 to a beautiful morning in Jerusalem. we scheduled to leave at 7:30 but we left at 7:45. me, Imma, Abba and Amir went in one car and Merav and Gabe went with Asher in his car. in our car we drove to the gate of Kfar Adumim to pick up my friend Nesya who i invited to go on the hike. then we drove about 8 minutes to the beginning of the hike. we had to wait about 45 minutes at the start of the hike because Abba and Asher had to drive to the end of the hike and then drive in one car to a army base a km and a half away from where we were and then they had to walk to where we were so it all took about 45 minutes. while we were waiting Amir, Imma and Jay went on a 20 minute detour into the canyon. finally Abba and Asher arrived and we started the hike. we started at about 9 and it was very hot, it was about 25 or 26 degrees. we walked partly in the sun and partly in the shade. the hike started off with 2 little slides which were kinda fun and after that it was a flat rocky and very wide path. around us there were huge canyon walls towering above and there was a bit of an echo. we walked for a long while and switched between each other to talk. in the beginning of the hike we saw a dead ibex. it was pretty disgusting, at first we saw the body and then we walked about 5 meters and saw the head torn up with blood on the ground. at about 1 hour in, the clouds started to roll in and we had shade for the rest of the hike. at about the same time that the clouds came i saw my old friend joey who was my councilor in sleepover camp 2 years ago and he was also there this year that i went and it was very nice to see him. then he asked if my brother was there because Amir was in the same camp and joey was there too so Amir and joey walked together for a long time. at about 2 hours in, it started to get a little rocky. i love in desert hikes when it gets rocky and you have to like climb the rocks. there were a bunch of places after that that we could jump off.  at on point we got to a really narrow canyon for like five minutes and then it cleared up. then we walked in the wide space for another five minutes and then we got to a turnoff. or we could go on the black trail which would lead us to the end of the hike or we could go on the green trail which would take us another hour into the hike and we would eventually hit the ladders. so we turned onto the green trail and it got really narrow because it was really deep in the canyon. i really liked that part because the last time i was in a thing like that was when we were in eilat and we went on a canyon hike there which had that kind of walls. we walked for a bit and then we hit the first ladder. the first ladder was about 12 meters high and it was not so hard to climb down. the ladder was basically metal bars sticking out of the wall. we walked for a bit more in the canyon and we hit another ladder but this one was much bigger. it was about 20 meters and it was pretty scary going down but when you look up at it from the bottom you see that it isn’t that hard. when we got down we ate lunch and then continued to the biggest ladder. this ladder was about 30 meters and it looked terrifying from the top, and it’s true, if you fall, you die. but when i looked down at it from the bottom it was the same impression as it was with the second ladder. after that we walked a bit until we were next to a huge wall and we walked beside it until we had to climb a hill for five minutes and it took us five minutes to climb up what we went down in 3 hours! when we got up we had to wait for the cars again and once they came we just went home. this was my second time on this hike in nahal og but last time i did it i didn’t do the ladders and i am so glad i did them this time because in my opinion that was the funnest part of the hike. and in my opinion this was one of the best hikes so far.

A narrow canyon

Me and my parents

My friend Nesiya

Merav and Gabe

First view of the ladders

Plunging into...nowhere

Here I go!

Amir on the ladder

Merav on the ladder

Imma in the canyon

The canyon

Resting at the end of the tiyul

{ 12 comments… read them below or add one }

Jody Blum October 24, 2010 at 4:53 pm

Those photos are amazing! The largest ladder DOES look scary to me, looking back up it. I was shaking and my hands started to sweat, making going down MUCH worse! Next time we’re hiking in reverse and going UP the ladders!

debbie October 24, 2010 at 8:34 pm

wow this was definitely the most interesting hike to read about. and i LOVE the pics. i would like to know: who took the pics and with what camera???? the quality is also great. photography lesson #1: pics always look better on a cloudy day. these are your best so far! can we please come on a hike too?

Ron (Saba) Fox October 24, 2010 at 8:47 pm

Wow!!! Aviv, this certainly looks like the best hike you’ve taken so far. It all looks great particularly the rocks and the ladder(s). You’re going to love Nepal…it will give you a lot of climbing opportunities in some beautiful mountains. I hope this hike is one of the considerations for the hike we do during your Bar Miztvah week. It would be great unless you find something even better. It sounds like your group is growing in participants. That’s great and your actual Bar Mitzvah week hike should be the biggest of all.
I’m looking forward to seeing and reading about the rest of your Tiyuls.

Safta October 24, 2010 at 10:09 pm

I agree with Debby, this was the most unusual hike and the most interesting to read about. Those ladders looked very scary to me also! Who was the brave one who went down first? Aviv, you are more than half way to your trek in Nepal. You probably learned a different technique from each of these hikes which you will find useful in Nepal. Can’t wait to read your blog then!
Happy hiking!

Grandma Carol October 24, 2010 at 11:02 pm

What a great description of a wonderful hike. I almost felt as if I went with you. The photos helped me to picture the ladders, and they are much more difficult than the ones we encountered on our recent trip to Asia. Good job, everyone!

Deb Hoffen October 25, 2010 at 2:03 am

What a great idea for Bar Mitavah prep! thanks for sharing

Debbie Kempinski October 25, 2010 at 4:59 am

Another Awesome hike with Aviv! Looks like a great time for everyone! Thanks for sharing!

Jen van Stelle October 25, 2010 at 10:08 pm

Wow, Aviv, the ladders sound totally cool! And the narrow canyon sounds neat, too. Loved the pictures — you are becoming a great photographer, it looks like!

Any idea what got the ibex? Are there large predators out there in the part of the country where you were hiking?

Dori and Rich October 26, 2010 at 12:45 am

Absolutely and positively AMAZING tiyul. Your description was so vivid we could imagine being there, especially seeing the photos. What amazing experiences you are having; And none better than sharing with family and friends. I could so see myself doing something like this one.
You have one beautiful country to explore and breathe in.

Uncle Dave October 27, 2010 at 10:02 pm

The ladders are totally cool! Sort of reminded me of Native American cliff dwellers, like the Anasazi.

When you get to Nepal, you’ll love the bridges. They’re basically wood rope, and if there are any holes in the planks of the bridge, they just cover them with rocks. How’s that for a quick fix! Totally fun and scary. 🙂

Eli October 29, 2010 at 12:51 pm

Hi Aviv!

I have been reading your dad’s work since you were about 7 I think. I love your writing AND your blog! Great pictures! We’ll be in Israel in February. This looks like someplace I’d like to visit but I can assure you…I’d freak about those ladders too!!!

Kol hachavod!

Ruth November 3, 2010 at 8:23 pm

WOW!! When are we going to get to go with you?

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