Region ✦ Ras Al Khaimah
Country ✦ United Arab Emirates
Type ✦ Dry canyon
Difficulty ✦ v4-a1-III
Max abseiling ✦ 60m
Duration ✦ 4h to 5h
Access to the place
Hiking to the start 5'
We did it from the bottom on the way up. Follow the path to the bottom of the waterfall, from where the 3 short pitches start.
If you're climbing the canyon before descending, you'll need the same gear and equipment as for the big trad routes, mainly to climb the 1st big 60m waterfall. After that, wedges can be used to protect yourself as you go around other waterfalls.
1st part: climbing up the canyon
Start with the big waterfall. Take the central bolted route (see topo). A V+ L1 (25m) on rock that's a little polished but with some nice cracks. L2 (15m, IV+) and L3 (20m, V+) are easy to link up. We end up in the dihedral on the left and the final belay is a little above the one on the right that will enable us to abseil. Then follow the torrent bed and the following cascades, skirting them to the right, sometimes with a detour. You then come to a more recessed entrance that leads to the narrow, winding central section. The next waterfall, around 25m long, can also be bypassed to the right, with a few protective friends. After this, the polished and whitewashed overhangs and mini-cascades can be climbed without difficulty to finally emerge and see the more open and splayed continuation, the ridge much higher up but with no additional difficulty. This is where we decided to turn back.
Part 2: descending the canyon
The way in reverse! A good series of abseils, some avoidable but less obvious to de-escalate than to climb.
R1 and R2, each about ten meters long, can be de-escalated, but R1 in particular is exposed, so it's best to get the rope out. R3 (25m) is the one that slides into the shadow of the chimney, almost vertical and not difficult, but you could end up with your feet in the water with a little more rain. The R4 (30m), mounted on a cable around the rock, is in 2 stages, with a small overhang in the middle, not easy to negotiate. It can eventually be bypassed to the left.
Next, follow the torrent bed and unclimb a large 10m rise, obviously not equipped (or relay not seen) and really exposed (not difficult). You then emerge with an open view of the road. The R5 (20m) passes the wide waterfall before heading for the final abseil R6 (60m), which has been climbed on the left. Vertical but not completely so, a pretty aerial abseil to finish.
It's immediate, with the car in your sights and taking the approach path in the opposite direction.