Climbing Mt. Sinai.
Getting Up Before I Went to Bed!
It so happened that the date was 21 June, thus making it not only the longest day of the year but also the shortest night and earliest dawn! This meant that we had to leave not long after midnight and so it was a very early rise indeed, certainly the earliest I have ever got up!
During the climb we got to know Mossa. For decades the Sinai Bedouin had been the poor relations of Egypt. Undeterred Mossa’s goal was to get to University in Cairo and must have seen as big a climb as Mt Sinai. Clearly the younger generation were grasping opportunity and determined to get on with life.
Climbing in the dark was easier than I thought simply because the night sky is so bright and illuminated the fairly wide and safe trail. The biggest danger for me was when gazing into the night sky and looking at the several shooting stars that were visible that you simply trip over. This I did but the only damage was to my head light!
We stayed on the summit for an hour or so, others had arrived and some held Prayer Services as the sun made its way above the horizon. The walk down was pleasant and I was ready for breakfast and then a visit to the Monastery, another fascinating part of Egyptian history.
Anyone of reasonable fitness can make it – just ask for extra time. In mid summer the temperature at night was just right and a change from the daytime highs, but in winter remember to prepare for a chilly night.