Photographer's Note

High on the southern slopes of Jebel Shams, the tallest peak in Oman’s rugged Hajar Mountains, the elements have hewn a canyon so deep and spectacular that it’s called the Grand Canyon of Arabia. Alternating bands of resistant limestone and narrow benches of softer shale have shaped the precipitous walls of this 1000m-deep gorge. You can peer into its depths from the vertiginous Balcony Walk, a 6km round-trip hike that starts at the end of the rough road to Al Khateem and ends at an eerie village abandoned in the 1970s.

from the luxury Jabal Shams Resort, a side track runs a couple of kilometres to the windswept hamlet of KHATEEM , just a handful of tiny houses clinging to the edge of the canyon. Getting out of your vehicle you’ll probably be greeted by local children trying to sell you some of the area’s traditional black-and-red rugs, or smaller woven trinkets made from the fleece of the long-haired goats which browse the mountains hereabouts.

I was afraid of the vertiginous Balcony Walk so I was waiting for the friends in a Khateem village. I have seen already earlier the long-haired goats, but to see them reaching for the trees from the cars was very surprising.

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Tourist and goats

There are alsop sheep there

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Additional Photos by Malgorzata Kopczynska (emka) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 13023 W: 139 N: 33701] (153738)
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