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Camels, Climbing and Monastery Topics of Mark Jenkins’ Latest Talk at UW

February 8, 2018
man riding a camel in rocky desert hills
Mark Jenkins, a National Geographic writer and UW Center for Global Studies Senior Fellow, will discuss his latest adventures to the Sinai Peninsula in Egypt during a free public presentation Tuesday, Feb. 27, at UW. (Kyle Duba Photo)

Adventurer and journalist Mark Jenkins, of Laramie, will share his latest experiences exploring the desert mountains of the Sinai Peninsula in Egypt during a free public presentation Tuesday, Feb. 27, at the University of Wyoming.

Jenkins, a field staff writer for National Geographic and a UW School of Politics, Public Affairs and International Studies lecturer, will present “Camels, Climbing and St. Catherine: An Expedition to Egypt” at 7 p.m. in the UW College of Arts and Sciences auditorium. The program is part of UW’s Center for Global Studies spring 2018 “World to Wyoming Series with Mark Jenkins.”

Hidden in the heart of the desert mountains of the Sinai Peninsula are enormous walls and domes of red granite. Last November, Jenkins, also a UW Center for Global Studies Senior Fellow, led a four-man team of Wyoming climbers to South Sinai. Besides Jenkins, the group included Micah Rush, of Casper; and Kyle Duba and Kyle Elmquist, both of Lander.

The team lived with the Bedouin -- a grouping of nomadic Arab people who have historically inhabited the desert regions in North Africa, the Arabian Peninsula, Iraq and large portions of the Eastern Mediterranean.

Jenkins says South Sinai is a pivotal region in the three Abrahamic religions: Christianity, Judaism and Islam. It was on Mount Sinai that Moses, according to the Old Testament, received the Ten Commandments. At the base of Mount Sinai lies St. Catherine’s Monastery. Built in 565, it is on that site where Moses saw the burning bush.

man climbing a reddish smooth rock face riddled with holes
Kyle Duba, a Lander videographer, is pictured leading an ascent of Camel Dung on the west face of Mount Naja in South Sinai. (Mark Jenkins Photo)

“St. Catherine’s is the oldest, continuously operating monastery in the world. Christians and Muslims have lived here in harmony for more than a millennium,” Jenkins says. “‘Camels, Climbing and St. Catherine: An Expedition to Egypt’ is about climbing big walls in a remote land; about Christian monks and Bedouin nomads; and about a place where tolerance is more powerful than terrorism.”

With National Geographic images, Jenkins, during his talk, will present photographs of the people, the group’s climbing adventures and the landscape of the region.

Jenkins will give similar presentations next month in Cody, Gillette, Jackson, Powell and Sheridan as part of the Center for Global Studies outreach efforts.

UW’s Center for Global Studies and Office of Academic Affairs, Wyoming Humanities and the Rocky Mountain Power Foundation sponsor Jenkins’ discussions this semester.

For more information, call the Center for Global Studies at (307) 766-3152, email globalct@uwyo.edu, or visit the website at www.uwyo.edu/globalcenter.


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