trek through Quriyat canyon
Khamis al Moharbi is pictured deep in the canyon
running from Suwqah to Al Suwayh in Quriyat wilayat
adventure treks are more your kind of fun, try the canyon that
runs from Suwqah to Al Suwayh in the wilayat of Quriyat. This
little-known gorge meanders along a rocky 15km course through
steep mountains and spectacularly rugged terrain. Sheer cliffs,
precipitous ravines and some stunning vistas en route all guarantee
a special kind of trekking experience.
the uninitiated however, a trek through the canyon can be fraught
with peril. For one, there are no tracks through the gorge,
so you risk getting lost in the labyrinth of little wadis that
join the main wadi flowing through this canyon. Besides, progress
through the canyon is possible only by straightforward ascents
up steep-sided cliffs at some places along the way.
the trail for the most part clings to the edge of the canyon,
so a misstep can be dicey.Nevertheless, this rugged route can
be an experience in itself especially if you're the energetic,
adventure-minded kind. The route itself is your destination.
Thus, the harder the course, the greater is the thrill and the
sense of accomplishment once you've successfully covered the
length of the canyon. As is usually the case with wadi treks,
it is advisable to break up into two teams and plan a simultaneous
foray into the wadi from the opposite ends.
way both teams can meet midway in the wadi, share tips and experiences
on their respective half of the journey, and exchange keys to
their vehicles left at the starting points. Such an approach
saves you the bother of trekking all the way back through the
wadi just to retrieve your vehicle. Al Suwayh is located at
the farthest end of Wadi al Arbiyeen in Wilayat Quriyat.
get there from Muscat, drive from Wadi Hatat roundabout to Quriyat,
80km away. At Quriyat roundabout, turn right in the direction
of Daghmar. About 7km down this road, a signpost points you
to Wadi Dayqah. Proceed along this bumpy trail which weaves
in and out of the wadi and through rugged terrain for about
8km. Turn right at this point for Wadi al Arbiyeen.Suwqah, the
upstream end of the canyon, can be reached only from the Dima
wa'Tayeen side, in the eastern region.
get there, first drive to Ibra and take the turn, signposted
Wadi Na'am, to reach Samaiya, an oasis village in Dima wa 'Tayeen
wilayat. Just 3km before Samaiya however, a trail leads you
to Suwqah, twisting along a 27km route through rugged terrain.
Suwqah consists of a cluster of mountain hamlets nestled amid
picturesque date palm groves. The canyon at this point is usually
dry, its sinuous course strewn with rocks and boulders.
are hardly any tracks inside the canyon, the rocky ledges bearing
no traces of footprints of previous trekkers through the gorge.
It would therefore be best to take along a local villager who
is familiar with the terrain.From the Al Suwayh side, you can
follow the twisting course of a falaj to make initial progress
through the canyon. But, some 3km into the gorge, the falaj
disappears underground, leaving you to figure out the trail
a thumb rule, look for evidence of water flows to guide you
through the wadi. The track meanders in and out of the canyon,
along ledges overlooking yawning chasms and across vertiginous
cliffs. At one point progress is possible only by scaling seven
ropes to get across a sheer cliff face. A thick sliver of blue
water can be seen in a crevasse in the canyon below.
along the way are dramatic landscapes of the canyon walls and
massive rocks scattered along the wedge of the wadi.Not many
trekkers have attempted this 15km crossing, but the handful
who have say that the 18km trek through Wadi Dayqah, located
not far from here, is a cakewalk in comparison.
other wadis, there are no villages in this canyon, so it's advisable
to be well-equipped and prepared for every conceivable contingency,
notably first-aid kits, maps, GPS systems, compasses, ropes
and other emergency paraphernalia, besides ample water supplies.
It's a good six-hour hike through the canyon.
hikers choose to camp overnight at Al Suwayh and Suwqah and
begin their foray into the canyon at first light. Opportunities
for nature photography abound at this time in the gorge.
Adapted from Oman Observer. Nizwa.NET is not responsible for