It'd been a while since Ari and I have really gone anywhere or done anything exciting on our own volition, so we were overdue for an adventure, and anxious to take our new climbing gear for a spin, and the weatherman predicted bluebird weather for the weekend. Quite the ideal combination. So we packed our harnesses and rope and shoes, threw in a tent and some food and warm clothes, and set off for the Arab North. We were headed for the cliffs near Gita, a tiny Jewish settlement near Ma'alot Tarshiha. Well, Shabbat has always impeded our weekend travel plans, at least to some extent, but it really made things very difficult, as the ideal bus that would take us a half-hour walk from Gita wasn't running on Friday, meaning we had to settle for a bus requiring a two-hour walk down roads not meant for pedestrian travelers.
As an aside, I sincerely hope this blog post finds its way through the jumble of Google searches and indexes to the eyes of hopeful climbers in Israel who don't read Hebrew, as the information on this place is really very scarce on the web, and finding our way there sin car was a bit tough. This is a map of our path to the cliffs, bus route in blue, walking route in red. All in all, it took us about five or six hours of travel from Tel Aviv to get there. Rent a car, folks.
|Bus in blue, walking in red|
|Killing time on the bus|
|Village of Yanuh with Druze flags on street lamps|
|Ari on left, Druze couple on right|
|The quarry, great reference point for wayward travelers|
|Routes left of the boulder|
|Ari by sunset|
The routes at this place are incredible. They have everything here, crack climbing, strength routes, long routes, short routes. And they're so very difficult…or maybe I just suck, I'm not sure. But regardless, I need to get significantly better before I can do anything serious at Gita.
|40m up, tent's a speck from up here|
When it started to get dark, we trekked the whole route in reverse and caught the 35 when it started running to Acre.
Beethoven - Sonata No. 17 in D Minor - "The Tempest"