Hiking Wadi Karak

Tuesday, September 13, 2005 | Wadi Karak, Jordan (map)

Green is an exceptionally rare color here in Jordan. Besides Wadi Karak, everywhere else I've seen has been a shade of brown.
Amman continues to disappoint, but things have certainly picked up since this time last week.

Last Friday—the first day of the weekend here—Molly (a friend from my group) and I joined a local hiking club based in Amman for a day hike along one of the local wadis, called Wadi Karak. (In English, wadi translates to something like "canyon", "riverbed", or "valley".)

Very early in the morning, just after sunrise, we met the group in a grocery store parking lot in Amman and drove together past the Dead Sea, which actually looked quite beautiful. For some reason (umm, maybe the name?) I wasn't expecting the Dead Sea to be picturesque, but I'm definitely going to have to go explore it sometime.

The hike itself was even better. We trekked into an oasis-like canyon rife with palm trees and grasses (the color green!), criss-crossing a narrow creek at the canyon's base for about four hours. Here and there, long trickles of water spilled from the rocks above. We spotted lots of birds, some crabs, and nice wildflowers, and ended at a series of pounding waterfalls that we gladly stood in to cool off, before turning around for the soggy four-hour walk back. Totally fun! Who knew fun was possible in this country?

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