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Trident Canyon, Wadi Shah

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Situated a little higher up than its neighbor, Thunder Canyon, Trident Canyon bears a strong resemblance to it: a dry canyon, a series of open waterfalls with scree transitions, an arid, mineral setting. No major difficulties, 6 abseils, including one on a spider's thread with a not-so-obvious start, a fair amount of walking among the boulders in the central section, a few small, accessible de-escalation passages, all in a fairly deep rocky setting. A nice loop, perhaps more accessible for beginners. An alternative approach is to start from the winding road that climbs up to Jebel Al Jais to reach the starting point more quickly, but with the disadvantage of returning at a distance from the starting point, requiring 2 vehicles for the return.

Rappel final

Technical summary

Type ✦ Dry canyon
Location ✦ Wadi Shah
Region ✦ Ras Al Khaimah
Country ✦ United Arab Emirates
Difficulty ✦ v4-a1-III
Vertical drop ✦ 180m
Max abseil ✦ 45m
Duration ✦ 4h to 4h30
Interest ✦ ★

Access to the place

From RAK, join the road leading to the entrance of Wadi Bih. At the yellow house, at the small traffic circle, turn left into Wadi Shah towards the El Jais Mountains. Pass the long straight stretch and, just as the road begins to curve to the right into the deepest part, you'll find a large parking lot on your left. There are terraces directly opposite.

Itinerary description

Hiking to the start 1h à 1h30

There are no paths or markings, but the route is fairly obvious. Climb the scree vertically above the parking lot before reaching the ridge overlooking the end of the canyon on the left and the final abseils. Further along the ridge, you'll find a vaguely marked path, with a few staircases up to a rocky plateau. Above, an easily recognizable summit in the shape of a splayed M with white and red stripes gives us directions. Cross the plateau, keeping level, and gently approach the canyon to the start. The trail gradually enters the canyon bed, and there's a white cloth post on a large boulder at the start.

Course 2h à 3h

The Trident canyon is dry all year round, except perhaps after a storm. It is south-east-facing and includes 6 abseils, 5 of which are mandatory, all equipped (7m, 12m, 20m, 40m, 15m, 45m). No intermediate exit, the route is obvious, even if in scree and boulder areas you have to search a little to find the best option, often on the left-hand side. The route has recently been equipped with knotted ropes and lifelines to secure exposed passages.

Part 1

A series of jumps from 3 to 5m before reaching abseil R1 (7m), which can be avoided by crossing to the left. Immediately afterwards, R2 (12m) on an inclined plane, then R3 (20m) more vertical and a small aerial finish. R4 (40m), just after, is the most impressive, in a large cirque with a tricky start and a spider-wire descent over at least 30m.
Part 2

Next, there's a long descent through chaos. The path is easier on the left, with nice sloping slabs and then weaving between boulders. Eventually we reach the easy R5 (15m) and then the final abseil R6 (45m) in a sloping waterfall where the rock is whitened and striated'.


Finish by walking out of the wadi and back onto the main Wadi Shah road, the parking lot is on the left at 5′.

Map & topo

Voir en plein écran



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