Too bad we hadn't been told about the pool when we checked in last night as it would have been very refreshing after the long day and tough drive.
The mountain road didn't look any better in the light of day either! The reason we had stayed at the resort last night was so we could take a hike of the nearby Wadi Nakhr aka Grand Canyon of Oman. We noticed that some people had just pitched their tent at the summit. It was nippy enough for us in the cabin so I could only imagine how very cold they must have been camping in the open air with no facilities whatsoever.
The 'trailhead' for the hike known as the Balcony Walk was only about a ten minute drive from the resort. Since it was already getting hot out by 8:30, we were glad we hadn't started any later as we had a long hike in front of us. Enterprising locals had set out items they had made but we said we would look on our return.
Before the trail began, we needed to pass the untethered goats!
Some of the local homes at the summit:
The beginning of our trek around the edge of the canyon. Do you see Steven carrying one bottle of water? Stupid, stupid us as that was all we took and we knew it was going to be about a three hour hike at close to 10,000 feet. The only shoes we had were our river shoes which were not the best to be hiking in especially in this dangerous terrain. All I can say we were darn lucky that neither of us had any sunstroke or sprained an ankle.
As long as we kept this trail marker in sight, we wouldn't get lost.
The views were absolutely spectacular from the start to the end.
Unlike you, Lina, I've not hiked the Grand Canyon but the Omani version was fabulous and more than a little scary in many places because of the almost vertical 1000 meter drop to the wadi below.
One of the ten or so hikers max we saw the whole hike:
You can see why they don't call this the Balcony Walk for nothing!
One of the few rest stops along the trail. The only issue was that it was located well above the path and wasn't easy to access.
I couldn't imagine what somebody had been thinking when s/he built the cairn so close to the edge. I'd have been lying on my stomach trying to place the last rock!
You can follow the trail we took as it hugged the cliff.
Figured this fellow must have been training for some endurance competition as he ran past us on the trail one hour in on the hike.
I couldn't resist picking up some of these grayish-black rocks with white markings as souvenirs.
I didn't like looking down much as I have a fear of heights.
One or two false moves and you'd be a goner for sure.
This abandoned 'village' located in an opening under the overhang had originally been our goal but we pushed ourselves and walked even further. The village reminded us right away of Mesa Verde in Colorado
We could hardly believe it when we saw the remains of this fort that had been built just a few feet from the trail.
The rock was so soft, it just broke apart easily.
Part of the abandoned village had this door into the rocks. I looked inside but it had been emptied.
The gecko was the only animal we had seen up until then - I figured it was too hot for all the others. We turned back here as it was hot, we had little water left and also because there was no trail guide to let us know how much further the cliff walk went.
Parts of the trrail were very rocky and we had difficulty seeing any trail markings so it was tough to know how to proceed.
When I was clamberig up the rocks, I don't know who was more shocked when I saw this mountain goat in front of us: him or me! I was glad I had the presence of mind to take a photo right away.
What a relief getting back to the flat terrain of the parking lot by 12:30 after hiking for close to four hours. We bought a few trinkets from the two women selling souvenirs before returning to the resort to freshen up for a couple of minutes.
It wasn't unusual at all to see homes in Oman outside of the capital looking like wannabe castles! Almost all homes had walls enclosing the home on all sides.