Mount Meron

Mount Meron

Mount Meron reaches a height of 1204 meters. Located in the central Upper Galilee, it is the second highest mountain in Israel after Mount Hermon. The mountain is surrounded by one of the largest nature reserves in the country, stretching for about 24,710 acres.
The recommended hike is circular, relatively easy and is 2.5 kilometers in length, starting and ending at the same parking lot – the summit path. The path encircles an army base constructed at the top of the mountain and passes through a Mediterranean wooded area of common oak and kermes oak. In October, alongside the path, near the lookout and north of it, the yellow autumn crocus, a lovely flower protected by law, can be seen in full bloom. The white and pink colchicum also blooms in autumn along the length of the path. During the spring, the area is brightly colored by many different types of wildflower.
At the beginning of the hiking path, there is an impressive lookout point to the east, and the path continues, circling the summit from the north via the Lebanon observation point. From here, the Green Line is easily distinguishable. Contrasting with the heavily wooded area on the Israeli side, Lebanese territory is bare, the result of continual over deforestation and over grazing. In the area of the Safed observation point, the scars on Mount Meron are clearly visible. These are a result of the Second War in Lebanon (summer 2006) during which Katyusha rockets fell in the area and set fire to the woods, causing heavy environmental damage.
After the Lebanon observation point, the path passes an ancient wine press and then crosses the “mountain path”, marked in black and leading down to the Mount Meron Field School. We continue to hike along the “summit path”, crossing a dirt road used by the army camp. We then reach the mountain observation point – a view of the western slopes of Mount Meron and the Western Galilee. Soon after, the path reaches an intersection and from there, we continue south, towards the parking lot (the second road leads to the military area at the peak). From this parking lot, other hiking trails are accessible. One of these goes down the mountain eastward and continues along Nahal Amud (the Amud riverbed) to Lake Kinneret. This route is part of the Israel National Trail, a 940 kilometer trail from Kibbutz Dan (on the Lebanese border) in the north to the city of Eilat (on the Egyptian border) in the far south. This trail is marked in blue, orange and white for its entire length.
The Mount Meron summit path is attractive all year long. It is pleasant during the hot summer days and in autumn as well, when the various geophytes species are in bloom. In winter it is covered with snow, and it is in full splendor, blanketed with blooming wild flowers in the spring.

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