16-Oct-2003 -- We planned visiting at least three Confluences (29N 45E, 28N 45 E and 27N 45 E) as the part of the kickoff winter season of 2003 during the weekend of the 15th October 2003, before the Holy Month of Ramaḍān (Muslim fasting month) commenced. The total round trip would be about 2000 km from al-Khubar since the available Confluences are now way beyond 600 km from here. The two families travelling out on this adventure would be the Brays and the Mahmoods.
After the success of confluence 29N 45E, we headed back towards Ḥafar al-Bāṭin. It was almost 1:00 pm when we turned south on the Ḥafar al-Bāṭin – Riyāḍ highway. We stopped at a small restaurant and had chicken kabsa for lunch. Having filled our stomachs and the vehicles (with petrol!) we continued on the relatively new road for about 120 km where we turned westwards towards the village of Samuda by passing another sleepy village of Umm Lahar. The road was surprisingly very good and the 200 km to Samuda was easily covered. Just after Samuda we went off road and headed north towards the Confluence. We managed to snake our way over the rocky outcrops until we were only 6.6 km away from the Confluence, when suddenly our progress was halted by a huge double wire fence running across for as far as the eye could see, this must be military zone of some sort.
We were very disappointed that we could not progress further to reach the Confluence. We changed our original plans of camping at the confluence point and instead made a decision to head back and camp as near to the next Confluence 27N 45E as possible. It was Maġrib (sunset) time when we got back onto the road.