Burma Road - Jerusalem Mountains
The Burma Road is a mysterious road hidden in the Jerusalem mountains. To understand what happened in 1948, we must enter the Jerusalem mountain forest and embark on the most fascinating route to delve into the founding events of the War of Independence and the heroism of the Palmach soldiers.
WHY VISIT THE BURMA ROAD?
The "Burma Road" is a silent testament to the Palmach fighters' determination and courage in delivering supplies to besieged Jerusalem residents in 1948. On our off-road ride, we'll see the remains of the "Shiloah Line," as well as the convoy extension and the Comb Reserve.
WHAT CAN BE DISCOVERED ALONG THE BURMA ROAD AXIS?
Several vacation parking lots have been established along the route for travelers: Parking lot at Mitzpe Harel - picnic tables, water dryers, toilets, picnic tables, and water fountains are available in the Ein Susin parking lot, and Parking lot at Ma'ale Hatana - also picnic tables.
THE STORY OF THE BURMA ROAD
During the Battle of Jerusalem during the War of Independence, the road that ascended from the lowlands to Jerusalem - Latrun and Ayalon Park - and was the main transportation artery was blocked and controlled by Arab forces and the Jordanian Legion. The road from Sha'ar Hagai to the east, in the area of Latrun and Deir Ayub - from Sha'ar Hagai to the west. Givati battalion and the 7th Brigade fought but failed in several conquests, and Latrun remained under Jordanian control, "Latrun traffic jam" was prevented In this situation, it was critical to seek out a hidden alternative route that will allow avoiding Latrun.
History tells of three Palmach soldiers from the Harel Brigade who left Kiryat Anavim to reach Tel Aviv, navigating at night on the road from Saris (root), hiding from the Jordanian Legion's eyes, bypassing the Arab villages of Beit Jiz (Kibbutz Harel) and Beit Sosin (Taos), and finally arriving at the rat. The problem was how to bridge this section (from the west - from Madir Mohsin to the aliyah, from the east - from Beit Hamsir to the aliyah). As a result of the discovery of the Latrun bypass, supplies of food, fuel, and medicine were moved. The first convoy of trucks passed through the alternative hidden road in June 1948, liberating Jerusalem from the siege and providing air to our holy city.
WHAT IS THE ORIGIN OF THE NAME OF THE BURMA ROAD?
The term "Burma Road" refers to a road in East Asia breached by the US and British armies during World War II, a road that bypassed the area controlled by the Japanese and through which supplies were transferred to the Chinese army. "Burma Road" is a spectacular nature reserve with monuments commemorating those battles, observation points, seating areas, historic archeological sites, agricultural steps, and ancient agricultural remnants. Delek, Jerusalem volunteers who paved the way for old trucks crossing the treacherous path ("aliyah").
ROUTE SITES OF THE BURMA ROAD
1)Mitzpe Harel - Start the route at Mitzpe Harel, a path suitable for any vehicle and marked with silhouettes of warriors and armored vehicles emerging from the JNF observation tower. Drive east from there to the next stop, Ein Sosin.
2)Ein Sosin - Until its conquest in May 1948, the spring was used by residents of the Arab village of Beit Sosin. Harel, who came out of Beit Mahsir, and Hulda approached each other to see if the road was dangerous to each other.
3)Ma'ale Hateena - there were no fig trees planted on either side, so the supplies were loaded and transported on jeeps, beasts of burden, and porters volunteering on the other side of the Ma'aleh, where the supplies were loaded on trucks traveling to Jerusalem. Iron sculptures of jeeps and trucks can be found here as well. Continuing east, you will come to a steep slope known as "Serpentines," which is best accessed on foot rather than by vehicle.
"Serpentines" - a pleasant walk on a dirt road about 700 meters on the Burma road to the end of a steep slope, where a section of water pipe stands as a monument to the "shipping line," this pipe replacing the main water line to Jerusalem after the Jordanians blew up the pumping station. The pipe was quickly installed in Latrun, and water began flowing through it only one day after the explosion. The following observation was made in the carob parking lot.
The carob parking lot offers a view of the Comb Reserve, as well as a picnic stop and a place to rest.
4)"Ein Hila" - Road junction - Burma Road with "Ayelot Road," this is a road that bypassed Latrun and precedes the Burma Road, on the "Ayalot" traveled primarily armored vehicles of the Givati Corps, nicknamed "Ayelot," at this point, there is a small spring on the side of the road and a picnic parking lot has been set up around it. Continue driving in the direction of a red arrow until you reach Ein Mesila.
5)"Ein Mesila" and the armored parking lot - a well-like spring and an active parking lot with picnic tables, water taps, and children's games such as swings, slides, a sandbox, and more.
6)The next stop is the Sha'ar Hagai lookout point, also known as "Khirbet Katula," which is reached after a moderate drive on a dirt road approximately 250 meters long and indicated by signs. Following Israeli independence, the JNF began construction of the watchtower in 1998, from which there is a spectacular view of the opening of the limestone gate, where a sign telling the story of the battles that took place in the area, as well as a memorial site from the United States and Canada.
7)Those who wish to continue their journey on a mountainous section of the Burma Road can do so by jeeping across Road 38 to the Mahal monument, which is a steep road that leads up to Beit Mahsir (Beit Meir) and marks the end of the Burma Road. This section of the road is only suitable for 4x4 vehicles.
HOW TO GET TO BURMA ROAD?
Those traveling from the west - Masmia Junction - Nachshon Junction - take Road No. 3 to Nachshon Junction, then turn right onto Road No. 44. (Heroic Road).
For those coming from the center, Tel Aviv-Jerusalem, take Road No. 1, turn right at the Latrun Junction, and then take Road No. 3, at the "Brigade 7 "junction, and continue driving to Nachshon Junction. And about half a kilometer after Kfar Uria, turn left onto Road No. 44, Nachshon Junction - Shimshon Junction. Follow the signs to "Mitzpe Harel" and turn left (next to the turn is a Mekorot website) Drive to the Khan plaza Harel via a narrow and winding road."