Alice Morrison Restarts Jordan Trail

Alice Morrison both began and paused her trek of the Jordan Trail on December 3. She set off from Um Qais with her guide Muther Al Tit. Later that day, after 25km, a dog bit Morrison’s leg and left her with a deep wound. Suddenly, the walk was on hold.

She knew that dogs in the area could be aggressive. Her guide warned her, “If they come close, then take a stone and threaten to throw it. If they come really close, then throw it to one side of them.”

When they stumbled across five aggressive sheepdogs, they threw stones to deter them. Initially, this seemed to work, but one dog quietly crept behind them as they spoke to the farmer who owned them. Minutes later, Morrison let out a yelp as the stealthy dog bit her.

Turtle on the trail. Photo: @aliceoutthere1


After they cleaned the wound and gave her various vaccinations, doctors recommended that she rest for at least a week. And so, nine days later, on December 12, she restarted her walk.

The Jordan Trail

Often touted as the Inca Trail of the Middle East, the 675km trail traverses Jordan from north to south. Morrison plans to complete the route in 35 days, finishing at Aqaba on the Red Sea.

Wadi Rum, Jordan. Photo: Shutterstock


The Jordan Trail only opened in 2017 but was long in the planning. In 1984, British couple Toni and Di Howard were inspired to visit Jordan after watching Lawrence of Arabia. They saw the beautiful and austere Wadi Rum valley, which Lawrence evocatively described. The couple became determined to help develop tourism in the area. Aqaba, the trail’s endpoint, was also an important part of the T.E. Lawrence saga: It was the town that he and the Bedouin took back from Ottoman forces in a surprise attack after a grim, near-waterless march through the desert.

Fossils along the route. Photo: @aliceoutthere1


After years of exploring, they proposed the Jordan Trail in the 1990s. Sixteen years later, the idea received funding.

The trail connects multiple existing routes into a mega-trail across Jordan. It passes through 75 villages and towns. Trekking this trail is more than a fitness challenge: It is a walk through history and exploration. Since its inception, thousands of people have done pieces of the trail, although only about 20 per year attempt the full thing.

The section of trail that leads to the ancient city of Petra, Jordan. Photo: Shutterstock