Slot Canyon: Siq Trail in Wadi Mujib Nature Reserve


Raj and I decided to go hiking today, something most people wouldn’t do in 105 degree heat. Someone told Raj about this place and what an amazing time they had here. The problem is that Raj didn’t tell me what to expect, but I’m not sure he really knew, so I wasn’t dressed all that appropriately. As it turns out, we were hiking, but hiking and sometimes wading in fast-moving water though a slot canyon. [According to Wikipedia, a slot canyon, in case you don’t know, “is a narrow canyon, formed by the wear of water rushing through rock. A slot canyon is significantly deeper than it is wide.”]

 

 

We got to the Visitor Center, paid the reserve fees ($12 JD’s pp), and were told to take our hats, sunglasses, backpack, and valuables and to keep them in the car. Why? Hmm. I didn’t know what this was about. I was told by Raj that we’d be hiking and wore my favorite, well-worn, suede hiking shoes. One last thing the guy said to as on the way out, “grab a life vest.” We put the life vest on, walked down into the canyon and saw the trail. It wasn’t a trail but a shallow riverbed. It was too late to turn around so I plunged in, ruining my shoes. This better be worth it!

The trail led into the Mujib gorge, leading us between towering sandstone cliffs. Throughout the trail (river), there are mini falls and semi-technical climbs up and over the falls. After about an hour of traversing the river, you reach the base of a magnificent waterfall. We hung out here for a while and then turned around. On the way back, I chose a wrong foothold and got swept away by the fast-moving water, causing me to crash into a bunch of river rocks. It didn’t start hurting until halfway out and now my knee is swollen and I’m foreseeing being off of it for a few days. Great! I busted my knee and ruined my shoes.

Does the gorge look familiar? It was featured in the film, Indian Jones and the Last Crusade.

Despite my injury, I suppose it  was well worth the effort of getting to the waterfall (the worth will be dependent on how fast my knee heals). It’s a shame we couldn’t take out camera, which isn’t waterproof, because the color and marbling striations of the sandstone cliffs was breathtaking.