Here I am preparing to enter the Makhtesh Ramon (The “Ramon Crater”; makhtesh is Hebrew for “crater” and Ramon is the name of one of the rivers–or wadis–that flows through it). This is one of the most unique geological landforms in the world.
The Makhtesh Ramon is one of three craters of its kind, the others being the Makhtesh Gadol, “the Large Crater” (though the Ramon is in fact larger) and the Makhtesh Katan, “The Small Crater”. All three are located in the Negev (Heb. “dry” though used in the Bible as a synonym for “south”).
This is very near the place where Israel wandered in the desert for 40 years. Hiking for several hours through this crater gave us a very, very small glimpse of what Israel’s wanderings may have been like. We will talk about wandering in the wilderness in a subsequent post.