Saturday, April 22, 2017

Day 5: From Shaharut to Shizafon (Neot Smadar) - 17th April, 2017

I started the day again early (left Shaharut at 6:15) to try to beat the heat. I was worried about the hot weather, so again brought a lot of water (8.5L!)

The sun rose just as I left the camp

This sign was basically my plan for the day

The first signs of new sprouts after the rain of a few days ago

Today again there was very little shade, these trees were very far between!

The trail went past Ovda (the air force base / airport)

These are pictures from an ancient temple (active from around 6000 BCE to 2000 BCE). At first I had no idea what I was looking at - after reading the explanation sign I realized that these are supposed to be leopards.

Still some water remaining from the rain a few days ago

Beautiful patterns left in the sand presumably from the rain

These are the Kasui sand dunes - huge sand dunes, perfect for playing in

Not sure which two animals left these tracks . . .

From the sand dunes, I switched to the bicycle tracks (blue path, all the way to the end of the day), thanks to the suggestion from the people I met the day before. The path was quite scenic, most likely better than walking along the road. At some point I realized that the map I had received from the hikers the day before was from openstreetmaps - you can go to their website and see the trails marked there (the blue-marked bike trail is also blue on the website)

The rest of the day again had almost no shade whatsoever, and it was already pretty hot by this time. I met a group of walkers doing the same route as me (a group of friends who used to be in scouts together) sitting under a tree, As seems to happen in Israel, we worked out we have some mutual acquaintances :) I picked up my speed as we were walking together, and finished the day relatively early (by 2pm) - I had booked a bus for 6:40 pm (and needed to get to the 90 road, 12 km away). However, one of the group generously offered to give me a ride back, and took me nearly the whole was home.

Due to the ever-hotter weather, this will unfortunately have to be the end of my Israel trail walks until after the summer.

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