Lulu Island sandpit hash is back on

lulu3

After a week’s hiatus because the sandstorm and then strong onshore gales, the Lulu Island sandpit hash is back on for Friday April 10.

lulu

It’s the same details as for last week. There’s one boat, leaving from Mina Zayed at 2pm (sharp!), all that’s provided is the run and the beer stop so you need to be self-sufficient with food, water and shelter, and the boat back is at 9am on Saturday because some poor suckers have to work.

lulu2

lulu1

Advertisements

Lulu Island trip POSTPONED

sandstorm

With the weather being what it is and expected to continue into the weekend, we’ve postponed the Lulu Island hash.

This is probably to next week, but we’ll keep you posted.

There’ll still be beers tomorrow but no run. This could set a dangerous precedent…

Lulu Island sandpit hash

lulu

The summer’s a little late this year but the heat is finally returning and with it our annual run on Lulu Island.

The sea’s warm and it’s just about the end of the camping season.

lulu-1(1)

The usual Sandpit Hash rules apply: all we provide is organising the boat, the run and the beer stop. You need to bring *everything* else: food, water, shelter etc.

Last year the boat and run fee was Dh100. It’ll probably be similar this year. The idea is to head over at 2pm, do the run around 5pm, spend the rest of the evening carousing then catch the boat back at 9am.

lulu2

We’ll leave at (2pm sharp!) from the dock near the fish market in Mina Zayed.

lulu1

Yalla! let’s do it.

Sandpit hash at Qasr al Sarab

qas3

It’s time for us to run in the dunes near Qasr al Sarab, a plush hotel in the midst of the Empty Quarter’s dunes. The run will start at 5pm on Friday, February 27.

But instead of shelling out for a five-star hotel, we’ll go for a million-star campsite one sabkha over, far from any light pollution but with all the benefits of having a five-star hotel (*cough*plumbing*cough*) a few minutes drive away.

With a sumptuous breakfast buffet for the following morning, this is more like glamping than camping, but without the price tag. And before, we’ll have a run through the dunes.

The usual Sandpit Hash rules apply: a Dh20 run fee includes the run and a beer stop. You’ll need to be self sufficient for everything else: camping, food and haram beverages. The access is 2WD friendly to within 1km of the camp and we can shuttle you to the campsite, which is accessible via the easiest of 4×4 trips.

qas1

Directions: Drive toward Saudi/Ruwais, take the Hameem turnoff (should be signposted for Qasr al Sarab) then follow the signs to the resort. Instead of turning into the resort, continue to the left past the police helicopter and through the staff accommodation on an unsealed road thatʼs 2WD friendly. At the bottom of the hill, thereʼs a salt flat with the resortʼs activity centre on it. Turn right and follow the obvious tyre tracks over the low point in the dunes (very easy driving — can be done in any 4×4) and weʼll be in the next salt flat over. If youʼre in a 2WD, wait at the activity centre and we can shuttle you the 1km to the camp. The usual Sandpit Hash rules apply: we provide the marked run and a beer stop. You need to provide everything else: food, tent, haram beverages etc.

Yalla! Let’s do this.

New Years Eve in the desert (and sandpits for the first half of the year)

fire

What: This is a camping night in the desert. Since it’s a working day for most of us, there won’t be an organised run. The usual sandpit rules apply: bring everything you need including all food and adult beverages. There’s no organised run, so no beer stop… so no cost!

When: From 4pm on December 31. Lots of us won’t be there until after work.

Where: The dunes near Khatim, in the site used for the Rehy Run in the last three years. It will be marked from the Al Ain Highway end on the day.

rehy1

Directions: From Abu Dhabi, take the highway towards Al Ain. Around 81km before Al Ain (there are mileage markers every kilometre), take the exit to Al Khatim. (Just before the main exit, thereʼs a slip road going to an Adnoc gas station, the last chance to fill up with petrol.) Take the main exit and zero your trip meter at the first roundabout. Cross over the motorway via the overpass.
rehy2
0.2km: Second roundabout. Take the exit towards North Al Khatim. The road parallels the motorway then swings around to the right.
1.4km: Roundabout. Take the second exit. From here, the route will be marked with “Rehy Run” signs.
9.3km: Follow sealed road through the dunes. Watch out for stray camels. When the road reaches a T-junction, turn right. The tar seal ends after 1-200m. Turn left on a gravel road. This is often rough. If youʼre in a 4×4, you can follow easier social roads to the side. If youʼre in a 2WD, stay on the corrugations and avoid the soft sand on the side of the road.
11.5km: Where an endurance trail crosses the road, turn left. There is soft sand here so keep your speed up if youʼre in a two wheel drive. If you go through a gap in the fence, youʼve gone too far.
12.7: At a junction with a similar road, take a sharp right turn. This takes you towards a fenced enclosure, which you pass on your right. After 2.7km, youʼll reach the campsite and the registration.
If youʼre technologically disposed, the site is 24° 17′ 54′′ N, 54° 58′ 27′′ E.
  rehy3
Other Sandpit Hash dates:
 * Friday February 27: A really sandpit hash in the dunes near Qasr al Sarab resort. A million-star view, with the option of being a few mins drive away from five-star plumbing and sauvy by the glass (different pipes )
* Friday April 3: The annual Lulu island run. Like this one.
* Friday May 15: A pre-summer mud run in the mangroves of Yas Island. Like this one.
* Sometime in June: The annual Hatta gorge trip. Like this one.
Yalla! Let’s get out there!

Beat the heat at Hatta Pools

With the temperatures breaching 40 degrees again, most people are retreating into the aircon.

IMG_1626a

But that just means it’s time for the annual Hatta Pools trip on Friday June 13, a route that is not just feasible but enjoyable in the heat of summer, as you can read from the reports of our trips last year and in 2012.

IMG_7145 rob8

The gorge is in two parts so you can do either or both. The upper bit is easy enough, but requires a 100m swim.

IMG_7138

The lower bit is more sporting but still doable.

IMG_1624a

Then we’ll retreat back to the villa at the Hatta Fort Hotel for the usual evening shenanigans.

You can either book a room at the hotel or crash in the huuuuge villa and chip in to the cost the next morning.

IMG_1454

HOW TO GET THERE:

Hatta’s about two and a half hours drive from Abu Dhabi. You need your passport or ID card because you cross three borders on the way to the pools and two just to get to the hotel. We’ll LEAVE from the villas at the hotel at 4.30pm sharp. Bring your ID card with you cos there’s still one more border to cross to get to the pools. It’s 2WD friendly to within about 2km of the pools.

Yalla! let’s do it.

hatta fort big

hatta fort small

Sandpit Hash on Lulu Island

lulu3

It’s that time of year again. The water’s warm again, even for us wusses, and the evening temperatures are perfect.

Before it gets stupidly hot, we’ll have the annual Sandpit Hash on Lulu Island on Friday May 16. The run will start at 6pm.

lulu

The usual Sandpit rules apply: the run fee provides the beer stop, some down-downs for the circle and, in this instance, transport to and from the island. You need to bring everything else. Everything. There are no facilities on the island other than a few strategically-placed trees.

Because the cost will depend on how many turn up, it’ll be somewhere between Dh50 and Dh100, but more likely to be near the lower figure.

How to get there: Boats will leave from Al Mina in Abu Dhabi at 2pm and 4pm. The first boat back in the morning will be at 8am.

lulu2 lulu1

If you have trouble finding it, call me (SHJ) on 050 561 7087. Yalla, let’s do it.

lulu-1(1)

Warning: hashers may differ from those pictured.

Aarfabit’s birthday sandpit

s12-11

March means it’s time for another Sandpit hash hosted by Aarfabit for his birthday, in which he’ll celebrate with three of his four favourite things – camping, drinking and hashing. And he’ll probably celebrate the fourth favourite thing too but I don’t aim to be around when it happens. The run will start at 4.30pm on Friday March 21. The usual Sandpit rules apply: the Dh20 run fee includes the beer stops and a few down-downs for the circle afterwards but otherwise it’s BYO food and adult beverages.

jh2

Directions: Camp Jones is near where the Abu Dhabi – Sweihan Road crosses the Dubai – Al Faya Truck Road. Reaching the camp will require a 4×4 but for those in 2WDs, we’ll ferry them from the end of the 2WD-suitable road to the campsite. We’ll be at the 2WD parking area from 2pm to 4pm to offer a lift.

 jh1  

From Abu Dhabi: Drive past the airport and follow the signs towards Sweihan. After the turnoff to Zayed Military City, the road goes down to two lanes in either direction. The next major junction is the Truck Road. Turn right onto the Truck Road and soon after you’ll go through a roundabout and within a couple of kilometres, you’ll see a Sandpit Hash drinking-camel sign pointing where to turn left off onto a good unsealed road. The turnoff for the road is at 22 23 46.53N 55 00 20.54E.

From Dubai: Drive towards Abu Dhabi on Sheikh Zayed Road or the E311 or E611 and turn left onto the truck road just as you hit the Abu Dhabi border. After you cross the Abu Dhabi – Sweihan Road, you go through a roundabout and a couple of kilometres on you’ll see a Sandpit Hash drinking-camel sign pointing where to get turn left onto a good unsealed road. The turnoff for the road is at 22 23 46.53N 55 00 20.54E.

From Al Ain: Drive towards Abu Dhabi then turn onto the road to Sweihan. At Sweihan turn left on the E20 heading to Abu Dhabi. At the Truck Road, turn right towards Al Faya. You’ll go through a roundabout soon after then a couple of kilometres further on, you’ll see the Sandpit Hash drinking-camel sign showing where to turn left onto a good unsealed road. The turnoff for the road is at 22 23 46.53N 55 00 20.54E.

From the good unsealed road: Follow the road until you get to a place with a sign advising 2WDs to park there. Those in 4x4s can follow the signs to Camp Jones, which is at 24 22 47.11N 55 01 27.93E. You’ll need to deflate. Those who’ve parked their 2WDS can get a lift from some of us 4x4ers from 2pm to 4pm. The run will start at 4.30pm.

If you get lost or need anything else, call shorth@ndjob on 050 561 7087

Sandpit Run at Little Mo’s desert safari

 

Image

Winter in Arabia means one thing. Well, it means lots of things, mostly to do with gloating to friends in colder places while hiding the fact that we’re actually shivering too and complaining about it being “a different type of cold”.

But I digress. Winter in Arabia means it’s time for Little Mo’s desert safari. As our host put it: “Frankly speaking I can’t remember how long since we had this beautiful climate in UAE, Desert is green, visibility is 100% clear, (young people may see mountains of Iran), zero humidity, ground is firm and compacted, no excuse, any 4WD will penetrate, tent or sleeping bag, drink of your own choice and some firewood all you need. 

“The camp Site is already located, drive route is chosen, desert drive duration about 2 and half hours, Shaikha almost finished dinner/breakfast menu, extra T-Shirts are printed. We look forward to see you all at EPCO petrol station Dubai, Aweer road just before China Dragon Mart (same place as every year).”

Image

The driving is certainly fun, with challenging and less-challenging options depending on the ability of the car and the driver.

Image

And, generous soul that Little Mo is, he’s agreed to let the Sandpit hash team set a run in the afternoon once we’ve arrived at the campsite. 

This was a lot of fun last year, providing the perfect dune on which to see the sun set.

Image

So come and join us! If you have a 4×4, you should do the safari. If you have spare seats, there are 4x4less people who’d like to join you and will help keep you entertained by screaming at appropriate moments and then helping you dig your car out…

This is the meeting place: 

Image

If you don’t do the safari, you can meet us at the campsite, which is a little way north of the town of Madam. Full details will emerge early next week.

Do it!

Image

 

New Year’s Eve Sandpit hash

We appreciate there’s a wealth of options for Dec 31 but if you find a night in the desert more appealing than one in town, we hope you’ll join us for the Sandpit New Years Eve hash.

Image
What: This is a camping night in the desert. Since it’s a working day for most of us, there won’t be an organised run, although there’s likely to be a, um, traditional sandpit midnight run…. The usual sandpit rules apply: bring everything you need including all food and adult beverages. Some of us are producing mulled wine to get into the spirit of things (literally as well as figuratively) so if you could RSVP by Dec 27, it would help those organising this to work out how much to bring. A donation towards the cost would be appreciated on the night.

When: From 4pm on December 31. Lots of us won’t be there until after work.

Where: The dunes near Bab al Shams, in the site often used for the Gulf Interhash, black tie dinner etc.

Directions: From Dubai, take Um Suqeim Road/Al Qudra Road towards Arabian Ranches/Bab Al Shams. Access can be from SZR (at Mall of Emirates), Al Khail Rd, Emirates Rd or Outer Bypass Rd, just keep following Bab Al Shams/Al Qudra signs. After crossing Outer Bypass (E611) continue on Al Qudra passing two roundabouts and a bridge over E77 highway. Note cycle path on left which starts at second roundabout. Caution: speed cameras (at least one works) speed limit 100km/hr.  After 21.5km, there is a third roundabout with iron horse sculptures. Go straight on and road turns immediately left. Continue for 1.5km over two speed humps and take turning right. The cycle path should now be on your right hand side. Continue on this road crossing some pylons and then six further speed humps. Caution: wind blown sand.  After 11.5km the tarmac road turns into a track. Look out for orange paint markings. Continue on track keeping cycle path on your right. After 1.7km bear left away from track and cycle path. This will be clearly signed. Follow signs across gravel plain for 1.3km to sand dunes. Site is on edge of sand dunes.  We do not allow any cars except for the catering van and Barbie Bus in the dining/dancing area. It’s a huge site, so plenty places to pitch your tents
Approx Location 24°44’54.50″N 55°19’35.93″E Route is 2WD friendly but not M3 friendly.

nye map