02-Feb-2004 -- Visiting this Confluence was really quite a surprise! I have visited several in Saudi Arabia but had not planned any visits during this vacation. I was on a group trip to Oman over the `Īd holidays with the Dhahran Geoscience Society. We had spent the first few days in the Masqaṭ area visiting the local rock outcrops and archaeological sites. Then we drove a group of 9 4-wheel drives down the coast road to Ṣūr. This mostly dirt track provided us with some beautiful views of the Indian Ocean, secluded beaches and interesting villages.
While in Ṣūr we took the opportunity to make a night visit to the beach at Ra's al-Junayz to see the famous turtle nesting grounds. Although it was late in the season, we were amazed to witness the very large female green turtles coming from the sea to lay their eggs, some returning to the sea, and also baby turtles emerging from sand and struggling to make it to the water to begin life's journey. It was a once-in-a-lifetime sight for sure!
We later flew from Ṣūr to Ṣalāla to a beautiful hotel right on the beach. I had brought my GPS with me to make notes for a future camping trip to Oman. While at the hotel I happened to notice that I was almost at a Confluence! The distance was less than 2 miles and it appeared to be over easy terrain. I was going to walk from the hotel but it was getting late, so I hired a taxi to take me as close as I could get. It was nearing sundown.
The taxi driver (Khālid Abū Fayṣāl) had a puzzled look on his face when he asked me where I wanted to go, and I said, "I don't know. Just turn when I say 'turn'." His English was pretty good so I tried to explain about Confluences. As he began to grasp what I was trying to do, he too became excited, and decided that he would walk with me. I think we could have actually driven to the exact spot, but Khālid didn't want to take his taxi off the road.
We parked about half a mile from the Confluence and walked to it, arriving just before sunset. It was almost too dark to get a good picture of the GPS. The flash from my camera kept reflecting off the GPS screen. On the way back to the car we were surprised by a small group of camels walking toward the Confluence.
I think Khālid was pretty excited about the visit, as I told him he would now be "famous" with his picture on the Confluence Project website. He has already e-mailed me to get the URL!