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    The Madness — Todd Swain

    Trip Report: Jordan Trip 2019, Bulletin 3 by Todd Swain

    Trip Report: Jordan Trip 2019, Bulletin 3 by Todd Swain

    We left Wadi Rum in a rainstorm (our timing was perfect) and headed north to the Dead Sea. In addition to bobbing in the sea, Donette smearing mud all over herself and being pampered by hotel staff, we also went climbing on a very fun limestone slab not far above the Dead Sea (but still well below sea level; the Dead Sea is about 1,440 feet below sea level [Badwater in Death Valley is 266 feet]). While there, we ran into a group of “youth at risk” that were being taken rock climbing as part of their intervention program. We talked at length with the Jordanian climbing guides about the program and that Donette had done the same work for Outward Bound.

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    Trip Report: Jordan Trip 2019, Bulletin 2 by Todd Swain

    Trip Report: Jordan Trip 2019, Bulletin 2 by Todd Swain
    Each day we went 
climbing. A few
 days were spent at 
the big cliff near
town (Jebel Rum),
 but most days were 
far out in the
desert – the real 
reason to visit 
Wadi Rum. One 
day, we went to a classic climb called Desert Rats in the Shade, which is located about 24km south of Wadi Rum village. From the end of the 4WD track, we hiked about 45 minutes up to the route and did some very fine climbing (including a new two-pitch route). 

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    Trip Report: Jordan Trip 2019 by Todd Swain

    Trip Report: Jordan Trip 2019 by Todd Swain
    Khaled was a climber and hence, knows where the remote climbs are located. On the 25th, we drove to within three kilometers of the Saudi Arabian border to do a climb called The Haj (5.9, 600 feet). Once Khaled drove away (promising to return at 4pm), we were enveloped in the vastness of the desert. We were far enough from camp that if Khaled didn’t return, it would be a challenge to make it back alive. This setting was why we came to Jordan. 

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