26-Dec-2000 -- Moti Maman, Chance, and I set out to conquer two
Confluences in the Israeli Negev Desert (31N 35E & 30N 35E). We
took advantage of an occupational necessity to drive from Jerusalem
to Eilat and back. We set out at 06:00, drove a total of 782 km, hiked
about 6 km, and returned to Jerusalem at 22:00.
Our route took us from the Holy City of Jerusalem, sacred to Judaism,
Christianity, and Islam, to Beer-Sheva where Abraham dug a well in ancient
times, along the mutual Israeli-Egyptian border to Eilat, the southern most
tip of Israel, on the shore of the Red Sea where Israel meets Jordan, Egypt
and Saudi Arabia, through the Arava along the mutual Israeli-Jordanian
border to the Dead Sea, the lowest point on earth at 394 meters below
sea level, to Jericho, the world's oldest known settlement, dating perhaps
from 8000 BC which Joshua conquered from the Canaanites and finally,
back to Jerusalem.
The first confluence, 31N 35E, was fairly easy. Located between the towns of Dimona and Yerucham, about 4.2 km from the nearest road, we turned our Fiat Marea into a jeep, drove on fairly level ground on trails made by Bedouin nomads, and were able to reach a point just 600 meters from the Confluence. From there it was a short walk to the exact spot. The view was wonderful and we were lucky to do it on a sunny and clear day. The photos don’t do justice with the beauty of the area.
On to the second confluence 30N 35E!