Saturday, 7 June 2014

Wadi Dayqah Dam

A lady started visiting me last week.  She came several times, often more than once a day, and brought a few relatives with her.  I was glad to see her, but a little apprehensive because in Jordan there would be a 98% chance she had someone whom she wanted me to marry.  This is not Jordan and people here are not as fired up about all ladies getting married asap, and most people know that it's illegal for Omanis to marry foreigners - although it's not quite that simple.  I'm sometimes selfishly relieved that law exists, although it causes other people a lot of trouble.

But it turns out, she's the imam's wife and wanted to be welcoming to a foreigner and no a3rees has come out of the woodwork yet, which is the best outcome I'd hoped for, alH.

She and her husband took me and their two kids on a day-trip to Wadi Dayqah last Friday.  It was a great trip overall.  We had long conversations, the kids slept part of the way, and there was only one vomiting incident. 

Wadi Dayqah Dam is reputed to be the biggest dam in the Middle East, and it is the biggest dam in Oman and an important part of Oman's water projects.  The research was begun on the dam, which traps winter flood water so that it can be used year-round, in 1978, but the dam was only opened to the public in 2012.

The storage lake covers an area of about 350 hectares and extends to about 6km from the main body of the dam.

The observation post. 
There's a walkway with rails for visitors to walk about halfway out along the dam, although it's somewhat messy due to construction right now.  There is a grassed area with gazebos for visitors to sit in in the shade by the reservoir, but we only walked across it and I didn't want to take pictures of other people.  You can find pictures of it if you Google the wadi name, there's lots available in English.

Water flows down the wall in flood season.

Men swimming in the basin at the bottom of the wadi.

Wadi Dayqah is one of the few that flow year-round, but it's massively reduced in summer.

Villages in the valley.

Wadi Dayqah currently provides agricultural water free of charge to villages in Qureiyat, and is part of a US$ 120 million water supply scheme that aims to provide potable water to Muscat and Qureiyat.  I haven't found any projected completion dates for that, but they wouldn't likely be very useful anyhow.

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