One of my friend ask me to join her on a "Family Walk" to Stairway to Heaven in Ras AlKhaima. Seeing her amazing pictures from when she went a couple of weeks before, I said: Let's go!
So I woke up at 4AM, drove there and of course typical ladies and orientation, we got lost!!! It is actually pretty simple:
You need to drive to Wadi Ghalilah , easy to find on your GPS. Arriving in that tiny village, keep going until you see that massive UAE flag, turn right just before. Then left just behind the sign.
After 500m driving on rocks you can park next to the shed, you should see a few cars parked.
If you want to reach the top, you need to leave EARLY. I know not so Great on The week-end. If you leaving at 5AM from Dubai you will get there at 7AM. Because we got lost we started walking at 9AM. The earliest, The Better because it is steep and you will get hot and sweaty very quickly.
3. GO WITH A 4X4
That little dirt track behind the huge UAE flag isn't long but it is rocky and I wouldn't go with my Yaris, Unless it's a Rental one...just kidding. You have The option to park close To the flag but it will be longer to walk.
4. THERE IS NO SIGN...FOLLOW THE STONES
There are apparently 2 different walks: The ''easy walk'' that we have done and the ''difficult one'' where there were several accidents. I have to be honest, I felt that ''Easy'' one was NOT EASY AT ALL and you should probably be going with a professional guide.
There is absolutely no sign to know where to go, just look for stones stacked on each other. They show you the way.
5. TAKE PLENTY OF WATER
We walked for about 6 hours and drunk about 1.5L each, however we didn't reach the top which was still 1h30 from where we stopped. I would say to take 2L each and more if you can carry more.
6. WEAR TREKKING SHOES
We went in trainers and it was OK but going down it would be too easy and silly to twist an ankle. Trekking shoes highly recommended!
7. MAKE SURE YOUR PHONE HAS A FULL BATTERY
In case something happens make sure you have your phone and some battery. We met a group of climbers on the way, a couple and an Austrian guy on the way back, but there is a risk that something happens and you need to be able to call in case of emergency.
8. IT'S ABOUT 9H TO THE TOP & BACK
IT took us 6h and back to that big boulder (1st picture) but if you want to reach the top it will take you about 9h.
9. YOU WILL WALK ON EXPOSED LEDGES, IT WILL BE STEEP, ROCKY and SCARY!!!
Before going there, I checked the Internet and read articles saying someone had died over there, but my friend assured me it was a ''Family walk''. To be honest, I would never take any child on that trek. That is way too dangerous. Apparently the accident happened on the ''difficult walk''. Still think the easier one is risky and better to go with a guide.
10. IT IS AMAZINGLY BEAUTIFUL
The landscape is so beautiful you will not believe it. The mountains are huge, the view is breathtaking. I nearly Turned back from The beginning because I am quite scared of height but it was all worth it at the end.
11. YOU WILL FEEL EXTREMELY SMALL
The immensity of that place is astonishing. You will see what a tiny place you occupy in the world.
12. YOU WILL SEE GOATS & Maybe a SNAKE!!
We saw plenty of cute little goats and even.....a snake on the way back. We heard his sound and realized he was hiding under a rock (last picture, iphone pic edited at least hundred times)
so watch your steps !
13. YOU WILL REACH ABOUT 1900m HIGH
The top is nearly 2000m above sea level which is pretty high. I remember at 2500m high in South America starting to feel the height and a difficulty to breath.
14.YOU WILL BE SO HAPPY TO BE BACK & SAFE
Even if I didn't reach the top, for an amator like me, it is a big accomplishement and I was so Happy to be Back and safe!
Enjoy and stay safe!