August 5, 2001 – Dana




Departure has been set at 7:30 for q 14 km hike. The landscape is really beautiful with the village in the shadow and the valley well enlightened.


Wadi Dana : Departure of the 14 km hike


We multiply stops at the beginning trying to see the remains of past civilizations!! At one spot, we were nearly sure to have discovered a rock with a kind of writing on it. After climbing there we notice that the writing was made of little holes in the rock, too bad.

We take with us 2 bottles of water on the advice of Nabil who also prepared us a lunch box. This is the really first physical challenge of the trip but a good practice for the next 3 days in Petra. We hardly meet anybody on the track except an American who is going to the village and 2 children looking after goats.


Wadi Dana : First encounter with local goats!


Yesterday, the French and the German made the hike in 7 hours to reach the encampment. We warn Ali, the driver of the Hotel to come at 3pm, it will enable us to have more time in the valley. Sometimes we are looking for water because there are some reeds. We also stop to visit some caves that we see from the path. When we suppose that this is the middle of the hike we stop to have lunch: carrot, cucumber, tuna, bread and one tomato. Delicious!


We are thinking that after this break we will be nearer the encampment but it was not the case. From there, Arnaud and Fabrice are going to explore what we take for a crater but it will appear that this was only hard core put there during the construction of a road above us, it was really a crater from our position. We start surely to increase our walking tempo because we don’t see the end. But when we see Bedouins tents, we know that the end will come soon. It will be great because our reserves of water are very low, less than Ό bottle to finish the day. From these tents we only have to follow a water pipeline that brings them some water. At the encampment, we remember the advice of Nabil of not paying the fees and as a man asks us something we continue our way. At 300m, a German archeologist and the manager of the camp catch us up in a pick up. The archeologist, Doris, will be our interpreter, she has been there for 28 years and she is fluent in Arabic. The guy is speaking with his boss and the woman offers us to fill our bottles and the locals offer us some tea.


Finally everything is cleared, we thank them for the hospitality and Doris drive us to our meeting point with Ali. We did the trail in 6:30 at a good pace on the end. Near the school there is no Ali so we reach the Bedouin encampment. We meet again Mohammed who was about to reach us when we had to go to the campground. No bakchich ! Ali is there, he is sorry of not having been there near the school. Finally we will spend more than 2 hours, talking with them, drinking a lot of tea. Great moment.





Guillaume is going out with one of the boys to test the famous donkey ride whereas the oldest man under the tent is beginning a dance and show us his good health by doing many figures with his body. They invite us to spend the next day with them, doing a trip in the area. Then we test their tobacco that smells like cannabis, very strange !! So time goes quickly and Ali tells us that we have a long road to go back to Dana village because we have to go around the mountain on a 100 km trip.


This road allows us to see wonderful landscapes, sand dunes, desert parts and the Israeli border at 200m. At a crossroad we go up the mountain and we have from the road a nice view on the Dead Sea during the sunset. We finally arrive in Dana at 8pm.


We were just arrived that a big fire was starting at 200m from the hotel, it was really spectacular with big flames. The fire was really impressive and we all think of the quick propagation of the fire in this period of the year. Hopefully, mobile phones were used and very quickly, firemen with 2 trucks come.


Tonight we have dinner with the American we saw this morning, he is traveling for a year. He started in Morocco, then Europe and Middle East and after India and Asia. Nice program!!





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D1 : Lyons – Damascus

D2 : Damascus (1)  (2)

D3 : Damascus

D4 : Damascus – Palmyra

D5 : Palmyra – Hama

D6 : Hama – Apamea – Aleppo

D7 : Aleppo

D8 : Aleppo

D9 : Aleppo

D10 : Aleppo – San Simeon – Aleppo

D11 : Aleppo – Qalaat Al Saadin – Tartous (1)  (2)

D12 : Tartous – Krak des chevaliers – Beirut (1)  (2)

D13 : Beirut – Tripoli

D14 : Tripoli – Damascus

D15 : Damascus – Maaloula – Damascus

D16 : Damascus

D17 : Damascus – Bosra – Damascus

D18 : Damascus – Amman – Dead Sea – Amman

D19 : Amman – Jerash - Amman

D20 : Amman – Madaba – Amman

D21 : Amman – Kerak – Dana

D22 : Dana

D23 : Dana – Petra (1)  (2)

D24 : Petra

D25 : Petra

D26 : Petra – Wadi Rum

D27 : Wadi Rum – Aqaba

D28 : Aqaba

D29 : Aqaba

D30 : Aqaba

D31 : Aqaba

D32 : Aqaba - Amman

D33 : Amman

D34 : Amman – Lyons




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