Category: Sinai

 tunnel  We drive through the tunnel, underneath the Suez Canal.
 I took this picture to try and capture the sheer expanse of the desert, on both sides of the road. expanse
 ship One of the things I had read about, and was really looking forward to seeing.

Viewed from the road, ships appear to sail across the desert (this was illustrated in a famous scene in Laurence of Arabia).

It was a long way away, and in the process of shooting, I managed to get this tractor in the picture as well. Slightly annoying.

We stop off next to the ocean and have the option of swimming.

Ever the adventurer spot a cave, and make straight for it.

 cave The cave was very cool and dark.

With my head torch, I spent half an hour exploring it (some sections of it could only be reached by climbing through a hole 2 feet in diameter).

Me sporting the “C&A man” pose I perfected in Orchha.

 Looking out of the cave, towards the ocean.  hole
 desert  As we continue on our journey, we stop to visit this old cemetery.
I investigate this empty stone building.

It really was a superb construction, and very cool inside.

 hotel Our splendid hotel at St Catherine’s.

There didn’t seem to be any other guests staying.

In the afternoon, we relaxed around the pool.

 Philipa’s mum had given her a bag of mini eggs, so that we could celebrate Easter Sunday.  eggs
 dinner  We went out for the evening, and had some excellent food (it cost practically nothing) and then popped back to a nearby hotel, to enjoy the bar.
Mount Sinai in the daytime, the place where God gave the 10 commandments to Moses.

I took this Photograph in the daytime, but the plan was to set off really early in the morning, and watch the sunrise.

 rest As we set off in the early morning, we briefly stop and have a drink (there were several places along the way selling drinks, blankets, sleeping bags etc).

The walk wasn’t actually as hard as I thought it would be, but I was still exhausted.

 There is no actual peak to mount Sinai, but this is me, standing at the top.  metop
 highrock On a rock quite far out, one particular piece jutted up.

The adrenaline Junkie Philipa decides to climb it.

Problem was, she didn’t tell me that her camera used film, so I blasted off dozens of shots, not realizing I was using up all the film.

Aud had bought Ralph a water colour set for Christmas and he spent some time painting the view from the peak.

Although I have never been interested in art, I felt a little sad at that moment, as I realized I would never be able to capture that mountain view myself, with anything other than a camera.

 down As we walked back down, some of the rock formations, really were stunning.

I couldn’t help thinking that it would have been better (and quieter) to have walked up in the daylight.

You can see how the light hits these rocks.

I am really pleased with this picture, it superbly framed by the rock walls on either side.

 clinic  My friend Yuko, on the descent from Sinai, standing next to the “emergency” clinic (actually, I presume its some kind of emergency meet up point, as apart from the stone, there isn’t anything else there !).
The outer wall of St Catherine’s Monastery, the oldest inhabited Monastery in the world.

Its said to be the site of the burning bush, and tragically, was closed on the Easter Sunday, when we were there.