The Segev Forest Trail on foot and by bicycle is ideal for all the family and those loving a challenge
The deep channels of the wadi to the south of the forest and the channels of Hilazon wadi to the north create a profusion of vistas and trekking trails. Within the forest one can find dense areas of pine trees that afford shade along with Mediterranean thicket. The open slopes are strewn with shrubs. Within the forest and at its periphery there are cultivated areas mainly containing olive groves.The Segev Forest Trail on foot and by bicycle is ideal for all the family and those loving a challenge.
The Segev Forest is spread over an lengthy extension between Nachal Segev in the south and Nachal Hilazon to the north. It lies on both sides of Highway 805 rising up from the Yavor junction to the Misgav services center.
In the months of November to January one is able to witness the olive picking harvest as well as seeing the flowering of cyclamen and daffodils in the winter months. During the springtime there is a carpet of anemone, buttercups (ranunculus) and poppies.
During the time of the Mishna and of the Talmud the area was densely populated and mainly agrarian. Thus, the observant hiker will notice various relics of cisterns and presses used for producing wine in addition to wells and burial caves.
On the north-western section of the Segev forest visitors will come across the "Horshat Rosh Zayit" site. Archeological digs carried out at this site reveal the remains of a settlement dating back to the time of the tribes of Israel and the era of the Kngs dating back 3,000 years. Among the relics found are the remains of houses and ritual buildings as well as many devises for the production of olive oil. At the center of the site there is a relic of a Phoenician fortress building containing guardrooms and living rooms as well as storehouses for storing agricultural produce. There are those that maintain that this is the site of Kabul of biblical times that, according to the Book of Kings, was handed over by King Solomon to Hiram the king of Tyre and Sidon and his maritime commerce ministers in exchange for cedars from Lebanon.
In the nineteen-fifties of the last century there was a large influx of new immigrants and consequently a need to provide these immigrants with employment and at the same time to settle outlying areas of the state. Personnel of the Jewish National Fund came up with the ‘idea' of establishing "working villages". The Segev village founded in 1957 (today it forms part of the Atzmon community village) was one of those working villages and became the pathfinder of Jewish communities in the hilly region of Lower Galilee. During the first years of its existence residents of Segev were employed in forestry work involving trailblazing roads and it was they who actually planted the Segev forest.
During the last few years, following a devastating disease that afflicted pine trees, extensive areas of the forest were cut-down and new saplings were planted. In line with the new approach for more varied forestry the forest now contains many new types of foliage such as the Mediterranean Horesh, Oak, Pistacia and Carob trees.
The Segev forest has now become a center of attraction for cyclists arriving from Misgav community villages and from the rest of the country. The cyclists as well as those coming on foot are able to choose from a number of challenging trails or more leisurely trails for all the family.
How does one get there:
The Segev forest spreads out over both sides of Highway 805 that rises from the Yavor junction to the Misgav services center. From the road a number of dirt tracks to the south and to the north lead to various corners of the forest. It is possible to park vehicles close to the village clubhouse and at Australia Park located at the north-western area of the Misgav Regional Council and then carry on by foot or by bike to the southern section of the forest.
In order to tour in the forest's northern section it's possible to park one's vehicle close to the J.N.F. parking lot by turning off highway 805 to the Ya'ad community village and from there to enter the forest trails.