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Wadi Manchura Zabadani area

  Wadi Manchura  



Linzey and Annina in front of the Kain and Abel boulders



Manchura in Arabic means “chopped”, “sawed” or “cut in two”. When you see the boulders of Kain and Abel located at the beginning of the high plateau in Wadi Manchura, it becomes obvious where the valley got its name from. The limestone boulders with the size of a three-storey building look like chopped with an axe. The Kain&Abel, Kompromiss and Katyusha climbing sites are situated along the flat ground of the basin-shaped mountain valley. The forth sector - Les hirondelles - which comprises the only true multi-pitch established routes in Syria is located a bit up the slope which closes off the valley to the East. Due to the elevated altitude of around 2000m, Manchura is the ideal area for the hot summer months: when the scorching heat in town makes it just impossible to lift a finger there is always a bit of a fresh breeze up here. Unfortunately, the site can only be accessed by 4x4 – and in spring, when the melting water is still flowing in the river-crossing on the way up, the drive requires some guts. Depending on the amount of snow that fell in the preceding winter, the season lasts from around end of May till the first snow falls normally around end November. The drive from Damascus takes an hour which in contrast to the sites closer to town such as Sabbourah and Monte Rosa preconditions the spot more for a full days’ outing than a quick evening session. But the fresh air and the mountain scenery are also inviting for the non-climbers for a picnic. Up the gravel slopes plenty of corral fossils can be found and one can hike on the shoulders of the valley to enjoy amazing views into the Lebanon mountains and the Bekaa valley. It is possible to go camping here, but the valley is a commonly know smuggling route – smugglers do not appreciate too much company. Thus, camp a bit out of sight and there won’t be trouble.

SSAC Last updated: 2nd of December 2006