Jabal Shams Via Ferrata:
Another famous Via Ferrata in Oman is located at Jabal Shams (Sun’s mountain) at the end of the breathtaking As Sab W6 Balcony Hike.
Jabal Shams Via Ferrata starts just above the As Sab old abandoned village, close to the lake. Most of the route is vertical split by a horizontal section just before the end.
The rigging is well done, though I believe some vertical sections could have been divided in half, but it is not a safety issue.
There is only one route option. The starting and finishing points are not the same. You will have to leave a car or someone fetches you at the end of the Via Ferrata.
The technical part of the Via Ferrata ends just below the main road, so you still have to cross a small canyon and hike about 200m to the car.
Via Ferrata parameters:
- Elevation gain: around 250m
- Start point elevation: around 1,750m
- End point elevation: around 1,900m
- Time required: 2 to 3 hours (depends on your skills, and excluding the hike to get to the starting point)
- Starting points: 23.219680, 57.208859
- Via Ferrata end points: 23.220126, 57.206803
- End point after the Via Ferrata: 23.222072, 57.205229
Don’t carry a heavy back-pack and wear comfortable clothes.
Sun cream, sun-glasses, emergency blanket, head-light, lighter, hat, small hiking bag with waist straps, water, more water, healthy snacks and food for the day.
Extra gear: rated harness, Via Ferrata kit (please do not sue any ropes for safety, normal climbing ropes are NOT safe for Via Ferrata, it is completely different mechanics), a helmet and gloves (you will be pulling on a steel cable all the time).
Make sure you have all your items properly packed and will not fall off you.
Average fitness required. You will be using your arms to pull yourself on multiple sections.
And needless to say, you have to be ok with exposure.
The Via Ferrata overlooks the Jabal Shams’ Grand canyon at all times. So make sure you enjoy the view.
- Watch out from knocking loose rocks on the person below you. And please do not throw any rocks, as there might be hikers and goats below you.
- The steel cable gets hot, also it is harsh on the skin, so make sure you have gloves.
- Do NOT at any point unclip your safety rope.
- Always keep one section distant from the person in front of you.
- Avoid doing it at night or midday, best time is mornings.
- Don’t do it when it is raining, as flash floods build up quickly and they are dangerous, especially the route is built around a waterfall area.
- The area is well known for lightning, and I am sure you don’t want to be on steel cables when there are lightning everywhere.
- Higher a guide (a certified and recognized by international standard guide with rescue experience) if you have no experience. There are many guides taking tours, but most of them are not qualified.
- Please don’t leave trash behind, and if you see any trash laying around, do the community a favor and collect it.