Who is Amy Jurries?

 


WRITER. EDITOR. ADVENTURER.

As an avid adventure traveler and outdoor enthusiast, Amy lives her passion daily. A freelance outdoor and adventure travel writer based in San Francisco, CA, Amy also run's a website called The Gear Caster and regularly contributes to Outside, Backpacker, and AFAR, among other online and print publications.

Amy aims to convey through her storytelling the happiness and connections that adventure brings, and hope to inspire others to get up, go outside, and experience what the world has to offer. 

 

What is #AmyBikesJordan?

On November 13, 2019, Amy Jurries departed from Um Qais on a 454-mile bike ride on the Jordan Bike Trail, reaching her final destination of Aqaba on the Red Sea on November 25, 2019. This 13-day bike ride is comprised of 12 stages and passes through three regions of the country (Northern, Central and Southern). 

Get an up close and personal look at Jordan’s newest trail and immerse yourselves in Jordan’s rich cultural experiences and interact with the communities along the way. Discover Amy's journey as she bikes the entire country; embraces the unexpected, risks old assumptions and gains new perspectives.

jordan-map-desktop
1. Um Qais to Kufr Rakeb
2. Kufr Rakeb to Khirbet as-Souq
3. Khirbet as-Souq to Fuheis
4. Fuheis to Madaba
5. Madaba to Dhiban
6. Dhiban to Karak
7. Karak to Ais
8. Ais to Shobak
9. Shobak to Petra
10. Petra to Abbasiya
11. Abbasiya to Wadi Rum
12. Wadi Rum to Aqaba
Jordan Bike Trail End

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  • Capital City Amman
  • Airport
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  • 1. Um Qais to Kufr Rakeb
  • 2. Kufr Rakeb to Khirbet as-Souq
  • 3. Khirbet as-Souq to Fuheis
  • 4. Fuheis to Madaba
  • 5. Madaba to Dhiban
  • 6. Dhiban to Karak
  • 7. Karak to Ais
  • 8. Ais to Shobak
  • 9. Shobak to Petra
  • 10. Petra to Abbasiya
  • 11. Abbasiya to Wadi Rum
  • 12. Wadi Rum to Aqaba
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1. Um Qais to Kufr Rakeb

Start from from the remains of the Decapolis city of Gadara (today, Um Qais) and enjoy a bracing descent toward Al Arab Dam. From there, climb on paved and dirt roads through a number of smaller villages, before another long descent to the Jordan Valley — at -200m your low point of the trip. Ride a few easy kilometers along the King Abdullah Canal before climbing to Pella, where you’ll find the remains of another Decapolis city. From Pella, it’s a long, slow climb to Kufr Rakeb.

2. Kufr Rakeb to Khirbet as-Souq

Leave Kufr Rakeb, ascending and descending through the famous scrub oak forests of Jordan’s North. Take some time to explore the Ajloun Castle, a 12-century Muslim fortress. From the castle, enjoy a long descent, before climbing all the way back to Anjara. After Anjara, leave more populated areas behind and enjoy the rolling, forested terrain on your way to Khirbet as-Souq.

3. Khirbet as-Souq to Fuheis

Climb from Khirbet as-Souq to a ridgeline above Wadi Zarqa. Take in the impressive views before descending to the wadi bottom 1,000m below. Then, begin a long climb out of the canyon — a demanding ordeal on hot days! Once you reach the top of the climb, your day is not done. After riding along the opposite rim of the canyon, descend to another valley and climb to Rumeimeen – the waterfall below the town offers a nice break spot – before continuing up to Fuheis.

4. Fuheis to Madaba

Leave the forests of the North behind, as you head into more arid terrain, riding along the rim of the Jordan Valley. But be warned, even though you’ve left the forests, there’s still plenty of climbing as you cross several wadis that run east-west into the Jordan Valley below. The expansive views are well worth the effort, however!

5. Madaba to Dhiban

Enjoy the challenge of crossing two of Central Jordan’s major wadis: Wadi Zarqa-Ma’in and Wadi Hidan. While the route sounds difficult (and it is!), you’ll actually encounter less total elevation gain today than any other day up to this point. Start the day descending from Madaba through Wadi Zarqa-Ma’in, before embarking on a steep (but paved) climb to Makawer and Jabal Bani Hamida. From there, you head straight back down into Wadi Hidan — take a moment to stop and enjoy the views on the way down. Shade trees in the wadi bottom offer a nice break (or camp) spot, before the long ascent out of Wadi Hidan to Dhiban.

6. Dhiban to Karak

Prepare yourself for the hardest day of the entire route! After a wonderful descent to the bottom of Wadi Mujib — often called Jordan’s Grand Canyon —you have to climb well over 1000m before reaching the canyon’s opposite rim. Go slow and try to enjoy the views as you plod your way to the top. Once you reach the plateau, enjoy a brief, flat respite as you pass through a number of small villages. Finally, from Rakin, make a technical descent into the valley below Karak and endure the last (300m) climb into Karak (bonus points if you manage to ride the entire ascent!).

7. Karak to Ais

Start from Karak and enjoy the impressive views of the city’s castle on the way out of town. Continue along a number of kilometers of dirt road through small Jordanian villages and shepherds’ tents on your way to Wad Hasa, the last of the major wadis that you’ll cross on your journey. Have fun on the long descent to the wadi bottom and prepare yourself for a long ascent to the canyon’s far rim—don’t worry, though; it’s not nearly as hard some of the other climbs you’ve completed!

8. Ais to Shobak

From Ais, continue to Ain al-Baida and descend to the rim of the impressive Wadi Ma’tan. Follow a picturesque dirt road along the rim of the canyon, before passing Busayra, climbing to 1500m, and descending along a technical single track to Dana. Take a break in Dana with expansive views of Wadi Feynan, before continuing along the rim of another beautiful valley to Shobak and its historic castle.

9. Shobak to Petra

Make a brief climb from Shobak before winding your way to a dirt road that runs along the upper rim of the Araba Valley with some of the most stunning views of the entire route. Eventually, ascend to the King’s Highway; and, after one more short climb, reach the highest point of the trail, just under 1700m. From here, it’s mostly downhill to Little Petra and Petra, with wonderful views of the sites as you approach. It’s a short day, so you’ll have some time to explore Petra in the afternoon; best, though, to take an entire day to visit Petra, one of the Seven Wonders of the World.

10. Petra to Abbasiya

Climb gradually from Wadi Musa, and follow the King’s Highway high above Wadi Araba. Continue on a dirt road into Rajif; and after returning briefly to the King’s Highway, begin a lovely descent along dirt roads to the valley below. A short climb to a low pass then takes you into a wide open desert area for the last few kilometers to Abbasiya.

11. Abbasiya to Wadi Rum

You’ve passed all the big climbs! Now you just have to deal with desert sand. From, Abbasiya ride across open desert terrain with the sandstone buttes of Wadi Rum in the distance. The riding begins to get sandier as you approach Quwayrah and the Desert Highway, but the route is still rideable. Take a break in Quwayrah before continuing toward Wadi Rum. On the outskirts of Quwayrah, the route becomes sandier, and some sections may require pushing your bike (depending on your tire size/pressure). Shortly before Shaqriya, rejoin a paved road and follow it to Rum Village, where you can arrange for a stay in a Bedouin tent in the area.

12. Wadi Rum to Aqaba

Leave Rum Village and begin a demanding slog through sandy jeep tracks; or if you’ve stayed in a Bedouin tent outside of Rum Village, have your hosts return you to the track. Approximately ~10km south of the village, the tracks turn west. While the route is still sandy and may require you to push your bike, the surface becomes slightly harder. Once you reach Titen — a village that once belonged to Saudi Arabia — you’ve more or less completed your trip. From here, it’s all downhill to Aqaba — you can coast most of the way down to the Red Sea!

Jordan Bike Trail

The Jordan Bike Trail is a 730km, mixed-surface bike route that crosses the entire length of the beautiful Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan. 

 

 

What is the
Jordan Bike Trail?

The Jordan Bike Trail is a 454-mile, mixed-surface bike route that crosses the entire length of the beautiful Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan. Starting from the North in Um Qais and ending in the Southern port of Aqaba, it passes through an impressive variety of historical and natural wonders. The trail begins with rolling hills, olive groves, and farms in the North; continues across the dramatic canyons of the Dead Sea region; meanders through the remarkable landscapes of Dana, Petra, and Wadi Rum – before finally splashing into the Red Sea.

There are a number of ways to experience the Jordan Bike Trail, from a fully supported trip without the need to carry any gear or reserve accommodation, to a minimalist bike-packer adventure, or anything in between. On the website, you can find a tour with the level of support you desire, or find out more about riding the trail independently.

 

Follow along the Bike Trail!

 

Amy Bikes Jordan Blog

 

 

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