Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Israel Trip Part 6

Part 1. Part 2. Part 3. Part 4. Part 5.

So I left off with the group attempting to sleep in a tent in the desert. It was not the best night of sleep ever. Then again, we went to bed after midnight and got up at four in the morning. So, that probably contributed.

Why were we getting up at four in the morning you ask? So that we could climb Masada by sunrise. It would be cooler for the hike up, and we would be able to tour and climb down before the really hot part of the day.

We ascended via the Roman Ramp. It took about 20 minutes. That thing was steep. Like, I enjoy hiking on steep, rocky things and I was a little winded by the end.
The sign for the Roman Ramp.

The view from the Roman Ramp.

The sign for the Byzantine Gate.

And there I am standing in the Byzantine Gate. That smile is the smile of a  person who is glad to not have to climb up a steep ramp anymore.
Once at the top, we rested a little and watched the sun rise.
I literally have 10 pictures of this with the flag blown out different amounts in each one.

I love the reflection of the sun here.

We also ran into a Bar Mitzvah.

After we finished resting we explored a little and looked at the ruins.

Then we climbed down Masada. This time we took the snake path. The snake path was so named because it winds down like a snake. This meant a lot of tight turns, not all of which had great guard railings where you'd want them. It was also just steep enough to be uncomfortable, but not steep enough to feel really steep. Basically it was awkward to walk down. But pretty! you just had to be careful not be distracted and fall. Which no one did!

We got breakfast after that. It was around 9am. Then we went to the Dead Sea.
That's me. Floating. In the Dead Sea. Just floating away.
We then all promptly got out of the Dead Sea and rinsed as thoroughly as possible. We dried off and went to Ein Gedi, where we said goodbye to the Israeli soldiers.
Then we rode a bus for hours and hours to get from the Desert in the south, to Tiberias, in the North.

We spent the night in our final hotel. The next morning we went out and explored the Golan Heights.
Syria is somewhere in here.

Wave hi to Syria again. It's in here somewhere.
We left the Golan Heights and got to stop at a military base. They had tanks and let us take a picture of one. Only one. And only from the front.
There's a picture of me standing on the tank (with other people) but it's blurry.
The next item on the itinerary was the water hike. I have no pictures of this because for some weird reason they don't want you to bring electronics along on water hikes. I will say that the water hike was amazing. It was also followed up by a swim in the Sea of Galilee.

The best part about the Sea of Galilee was swimming in warm water. I'm from the east coast. Our water is cold. And my school's right on a Great Lake. That's also freezing cold. Warm water is nice to swim in.

Anyway... After the Sea of Galilee we dried off and cleaned up for Shabbat.
Part 7! (Final Part)

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