After having failed on loads of technical climbing we turned our heads on the Beduin routes. In my opinion the Beduin routes are the most special thing in Wadi Rum. Every climber should do a couple of these routes during his trip in Wadi Rum.
I might be biased because of failing on the proper routes but I think the Wadi Rum is not about climbing splitter sandstone. After having climbed the Beauty I though the crack climbing is not that bad but not really special either. At that point I was still more or less in the ascending rhythm and I hadn’t failed yet. But I felt the rhythm was sorts of out of tune.
The puzzles didn’t fit together for some reason. The Beauty was a supposed to be a three star route and one of the best routes but I figured in Yosemite there are probably more splitters on the Nose alone than in all of Wadi Rum combined. The brittle climbing with big jugs and poor pro is also not that bad but it’s way better in the Dolomites. But the overall desert experience in Wadi Rum is something special. And I really think the Beduin routes and the approaches through the ravines are something spectacular which you won’t find anywhere else on this planet.
Jebel Rum: Hammad’s route (5, AD+) – October 18th, 2012
The Beduin routes in Wadi Rum are great adventures with a little bit of climbing in between loads of scrambling. They are the most logical way to the summit though the maze of ravines.
The Jebel Rum looks like your normal round hill once you look it from below. One might think there is no challenge but from below you can’t see that the top part of the mountain is split by huge big cracks. Most of the cracks are very deep and just about too wide to cross with jumping. They create a big labyrinth on the top of the mountain with loads of dead ends.
The climbing is not technically hard but it’s very easy to get lost on the upper part. Very good world class alpinists have gotten lost on the route. There’s a interesting story about Hammad’s Route in Mick Fowler’s book, for example. He traversed the mountain with his wife and they got lost numerous times descending the Hammad’s Route.
Most of the easy scrambling is very exposed and this is true especially on the descent. I really enjoyed the trip up to Jebel Rum. It’s very much like climbing a long alpine route except for the snow. The route is highly recommended!