Spent the day exploring a bit around Salalah. We drove southwest of town toward the Yemeni border just past Mughsail to see some of the most beautiful, secluded beaches we have ever seen. The sand was like powder and the water bright turquoise - picture perfect really. Then you look back inland and see the sheer cliffs and barren land knowing the Empty Quarter is just beyond - such contrasts! The road getting out there was pretty fun...the sealed portion leading to Mughsail crossed an enormous wadi with cliffs 1000 meters high so the road was a long set of very steep switchbacks leading in and out of it. Once past Mugsail we turned off the sealed road and onto a rough gravel road for 6km of more steep switchbacks leading down to the perfect beaches I mentioned. Really worth the few hours it took to explore and didn't see another person save for a lone camel herder.
Went to the Frankincense Soug (thank you Bob for directions!) and had lunch at a traditional Omani restaurant where we had to wash our feet in the sink before eating and seating was on rugs arranged around a small private room. I wish I had a picture of Kelsey hoisting his foot up to the sink for a good washing. Finding traditional Omani food is harder than it sounds as most restaurants here serve primarily Indian cuisine. Never would have guessed it.
Not much to report on the fishing front (or camping for that matter) as the wind has been pretty terrific the last few days. The are having big sand storms north of here which makes going out in a boat (which we had hoped to do) not possible. Or at least not a very good idea anyway.
Kelsey has gotten my cold so it is his turn to not feel very well. Hopefully it won't last long. We are leaving early in the morning to head back north. We are taking the interior road this time which is said to be one of the most uninteresting drives on the planet so will have to stock up on Mt. Dew (they love that stuff here). If we are lucky we hope to make Nizwa tomorrow night - there are a few sights in and around there that we may try to see.
Haven't been able to talk with the kids since entering Oman (only text works) as the government has blocked FaceTime and Skype. Apparently Omantel is the only phone carrier in the country so has a monopoly on communications. I am going to keep my opinion about that whole thing to myself.
Hope everyone is doing well and thanks again for keeping tabs on us. We love reading your comments