Wild Dog Adventure Riding

Riding: Plan, Report and Racing => Ride Reports => Topic started by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 09, 2010, 05:17:14 pm

Title: Africa our way !! ( Complete...... or is it? )
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 09, 2010, 05:17:14 pm
ok ok.. I cant take the moaning and groaning any longer, I figured if I get started on it I have no excuse but to carry on.. so here it is. Africa our way !!

I am one of those okes.. always wanted to ride a bike, but was never allowed one so this RR is dedicated to all those okes who never had a bike growing up, to the okes who take the miss on a weekend away and when 5 KTM 990's roar past your heart leaps and you think to yourself " one day I will be doing that", you see my mom has worked for an orthopaedic  surgeon for as long as I can remember and my attempts at obtaining a bike throughout my school days was just impossible, I remember the day I bought home a Gamma 50.. the next day there was a note saying sorry with a pile of cash on my pillow.. MOM !!

Fast forward to age 35 and my mom gets a phone call.. “ I have bought a bike and I’m gonna keep it”.. the reply “ I knew this day was coming”,it was done,  the brand new Transalp 650 was mine!

And so it was on.. since I could remember I wanted to ride a bike as far up into Africa as I could.. I was born in Zim and spent my childhood in the bush.. so I wanted to get out of Cape Town and back to the elephants, feel the earth and smell the rain.. before I get too old and cranky. It has to be said that I did’nt buy the bike with the intention of doing this trip, it was a sequence of events that just seemed to make it all happen. It all started when I went to Tanzania to climb Kilimanjaro. While riding in a bus from Kilimanjaro international Airport to our hotel I saw a guy riding his bike and I thought.. " I should'nt be in this bus, I should be on a bike" and the seed was planted.

A little while after I got my bike a friend of mine Wayne was looking to upgrade his bike.. he was set on buying a VStrom 650.. hmmm, nice bike, but I had a plan. If I can convince him to buy a Transalp as well, we can share tools, spares etc on longer trips. It was no easy task but eventually Wayne got a deal of a lifetime bagging a good condition, neat as a pin TA for a steal.. The plan comes together a few months later when I was chatting to another mate of mine Martin.. he missed out on climbing Kilimanjaro with me a few months prior and I knew that there was no way he was going to miss out on the next adventure, so armed with a few maps and an idea I paid him a visit.. if he could also be convinced to buy a Transalp we would have 3 and maybe this idea could move to a planning stage.

So while we waited for Martin to ponder the proposal and look for a bike I set about learning how to ride these things, I remember picking up my TA for the 1st time.. it was large, powerful and intimidating, but I knew that I would just have to get over this, get some saddle time and pay my school fees. I can still remember screaming WOOOO HOOO !!!!!! as I rode out of Honda’s showroom floor, oh my God ! can it be true.

My mate William was the main man in the Honda workshop when I bought my bike, he was a great source of information on upgrading the bikes to suite the riding conditions we wanted to ride.. I think the 1st thing he put on for me was my crash bars, that was not a good sign.. then came the hand guards and more gear than I knew even existed, pants, jacket, gloves, helmet, neck brace, knee guards, boots WTF !!

With my budget klupped it was time to give this thing horns and over the next 12 000km I had the benefit of meeting so many okes on Wild Dogs who have organised rides, day trips, Atlantis dunes, geocashing  trips.. the bug had bitten and best of all Martin had found a mint TA with 12 000km on the clock for R32k.. holy moly !! lets start planning. I was starting to feel comfortable on the bike, we had done a little gravel and about one days riding on sand, but exactly how much riding preparation required for a trip like this is a gray area.

So the idea was to ride off into the distance and see what Africa had to offer.. ‘ Lets setup a war room” I suggested with Glee.. “ you know like on Long Way Down where they have an office with maps on the walls and hot chicks organising visas”, one dining room and a map of Namibia later and we were set to start planning the 1st leg of the tour. Ok.. we can do this, how long do we have? And hello, we have our 1st problem. Wayne only has a limited amount of leave.. he has to be back within 4 max 5 weeks, there is no way we can fit an Africa trip into that, we had to make another plan.
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Waynan on December 09, 2010, 05:26:46 pm
Quote
Fast forward to age 35 and my mom gets a phone call.. “ I have bought a bike and I’m gonna keep it”.. the reply “ I knew this day was coming”,it was done,  the brand new Transalp 650 was mine!

What was wrong with you bud I did that at 25 :P

Quote
before I get too old and cranky
Umm there is a Reason we call you grumpy  :peepwall:


Okay I will behave now, seriously bud it is about bloody time to got around to this one...

Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Brakenjan on December 09, 2010, 08:02:46 pm
<subscribe>

Great start - keep it coming.  :thumleft:
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: zetman on December 09, 2010, 11:44:16 pm
Lekr:-@
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 10, 2010, 12:41:13 pm
Leaving the planning of the route for the time being our focus turned to the bikes and equipment. We knew that we would have to be completely self sufficient for the entire duration, this means we would carry everything.. eish ! I figured that if we can agree on a detailed equipment list we would have a good idea on how to prep the bikes.. 1st step would be to setup a workshop for Martin and although we were going to keep the bikes completely standard these bikes needed a luggage system that makes setting up camp easy and makes everything easily accessible while on the move. looking at the options on the market we were not satisfied that anything was going to suite our requirements, and with respect, the prices of panniers was just out of our budget, we needed to find another solution.

Martin showed his strength in this field, the man can formulate, design and create almost anything.. trusting in his abilities he was tasked with designing up complete luggage systems for the bikes, a task I think we completely underestimated and would ultimately lead to delays. Myself and Wayne started comparing kit lists covering everything imaginable. On the bikes we made sure that extra clutch and accelerator cables were plumbed in, 12v charger, check, we had complete list of spares and tools that should see us through anything thrown at us. One thing we paid special attention to was the medical kit, it was comprehensive and covered everything from major burns to plasters, we had meds for every situation.
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 10, 2010, 12:46:34 pm
(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/at1.jpg)

Finally my garage is turned into a workshop, we had to make our own sheet metal bender to start making the panniers.. we did not make provision for the time it would take to do this..

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/at2.jpg)

Martins GF pays us a visit with some icecreams..

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/at3.jpg)

Muz and Martin show off the home made sheet metal bender.. at last
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 10, 2010, 12:48:41 pm
As we went on the list grew.. coffee, mugs, clothing, washing powder, spices, knives & forks, towels, sunblock.. it was starting to look a little long and I was starting to scratch my head, not giving up so easily I put my head down and continued to just add everything I could think of.. the idea being that once we had thought of everything we could always trim down, this was starting to become testing as we tried to figure out weather patterns, disease risks, cultural taboos.. we all had our say in what to take.

Eventually the last items to hit the list was the electronic equipment, battery chargers, cell phone chargers, cameras and we were done, or so we thought. Upon actually gathering everything together I realized what Wayne had been saying all along.. I was nuts. There in front of me was about 70 – 80 kg each of sheer necessity that would’nt fit into a 4 x 4 yet alone a bike. You want to be prepared, some things you throw out for weight, some for size and some cos there just is’nt place, I felt myself become less prepared and more uneasy with every exclusion but I knew, this was what it was all about, and I found my doubt turning to excitement as I realized what we were about to take on.. This is what I had dreamed of, this is what I wanted to do whenever I saw those okes riding with gear, covered in dust hammering it home after a days riding. I wanted to feel what they felt, then it hits home, reality sets in and I felt dejected, there was so much still to do and I cant even get the equipment streamlined enough to be light and effective, so back to the drawing board, now we had to take into consideration what we would be able to source along the way, what we could do without, we even considered the possibility of pre shipping supplies ahead to specific destinations. Either way, we had to get the weight down.

Things were all systems go, ahead of us lay weeks of grinding, cutting, drilling, fitting and refitting the bikes, we organized visas, carnets and insurance but then disaster struck, I had not taken into account I only had my learners license, and I was’nt the only one, with 3 weeks to departure this was not proving to be something that could be solved easily. I could’nt believe it, weeks of planning and the whole trip may have to be cancelled or delayed by up to 2 months because the traffic department just had no space to fit us in.. there had to be something we could do but I was hitting a brick wall on this one.

I could’nt believe that we had missed this one, and now the whole trip hung in the balance. I was’nt going to take this, I was angry, e-mails started to fly, and I started right at the top.. the Mayors office. That was not the only thing not going our way, even with working in the workshop every evening till 4am, we were terribly behind schedule, I was starting to feel the strain of the last few days, stress was starting to show and emotions were getting the better of us, we still had no detailed route setout.. things were looking down and I could’nt see our way out of it, I had to make a call to Wayne, “ dude, speak to your boss, we are going to have to push the departure date back, we are just not going to be ready”. I don’t think Wayne was very happy, he was the most organized out of the whole bunch and smarty pants bought Oxford panniers which means he was good to go and I was still slamming pop rivets into panniers I had no idea would work or not.. they sure weighed a ton.. but it was too late in the day to be going back to R&D to manufacture a lighter canvass equivalent.

I had no idea if we were going to get this right but we were not going to give up now, we are doing this, we are in It, so suck it up and get things done. We were due to depart in September, we had 4 months to achieve our goal of riding around lake Victoria to be home by Christmas, now we had a delay, every week we were delayed decreases our chances achieving our goal aaargh, this was frustrating, lets just go already.
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 10, 2010, 12:56:23 pm
Over the next few days I started getting phone calls from the provincial police chief only too happy to help as he got a call from the mayors office.. it was a mad rush but they squeezed us in just a few days before departure.. it is amazing that you can ride thousands of km in preparation for a 12 000km trip around Africa and all of a sudden you have a wave of doubt that you may not pass your license.. WTF !! just to be safe we booked ourselves into a bike school and like kids we went for a lesson just before the test, it was money well spent because guaranteed I would have failed. A flood of relief came over us and myself and Wayne passed.. I can’t believe it , we are back on track for leaving, all our paperwork is in order, we have had medicals, my bike and Waynes bike were done, we were just waiting for Martin to finish making is own tank bag and make adjustments to his bike, tyres were fitted and we have come up with a simple solution for the route planning.. we did’nt have one !!

We knew that we would go into Namibia and try to make it up to Angola, we would then backtrack down through Nam to the Zim border so that Wayne could gap it back home, his leave would be up by then.. myself and Martin, both basically unemployed at the moment had a lot more time, we would then head up, destination…Uganda. The idea was to head up Botswana, cross over into Zambia, trek up the Western side of Lake Malawi, into Tanzania then turn slightly NW and head for Burindi , Rhuanda, Uganda, sweep around Kenya and back down into Northern Tanzania.. I wanted to ride past Kilimanjaro again as we headed south along the Tanzanian coast into Mozambique and then follow the path less traveled by down the 3000km Mozambiquan coast to SA !! we had just on 90 days, 11 countries bring it on !! but there was a twist, we were doing this blind. NO GPS, NO MAPS, we were going to experience whatever it threw at us, we would use information from backpackers, locals, tour operators and overlanders, the main reason for this is because we did not want to be tied down to a schedule, we did’nt ever want to feel the need to race through somewhere to get somewhere else, it did’nt seem like chasing km’s was our intention, it was all about meeting the people, tasting the food and if it means we see a place we really like, then we will stay a few days without feeling guilty or rush off and take unnessary risks like traveling in the dark, if we travel 50km that day, so be it, but if there is a few hundred km of nothing.. we give it horns, rain or 45 degree heat, mud or dust, we head for the next destination.
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Gat Slag on December 10, 2010, 12:59:06 pm
 :happy1:

Nee hierdie moet ek sien...  I am also one of the few who were neber allowed to ride or own a bike when I grew up, just because my mom's fiance died in a bike accident and my dad fell his arse off on a gravel road years ago... so enjoyed the first part of your tale!
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: TheAnt on December 10, 2010, 01:00:16 pm
Subscribe!!!  :thumleft:
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Waynan on December 10, 2010, 01:03:37 pm
Quote
the main reason for this is because we did not want to be tied down to a schedule, we did’nt ever want to feel the need to race through somewhere to get somewhere else, it did’nt seem like chasing km’s was our intention, it was all about meeting the people, tasting the food and if it means we see a place we really like, then we will stay a few days without feeling guilty or rush off and take unnessary risks like traveling in the dark, if we travel 50km that day, so be it, but if there is a few hundred km of nothing.. we give it horns, rain or 45 degree heat, mud or dust, we head for the next destination.

Slight contrast to the last Nam trip :P
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: onderbroek on December 10, 2010, 01:04:37 pm
 :happy1: :happy1:
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Totos on December 10, 2010, 01:28:06 pm
Subscribed......... :thumleft:
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 10, 2010, 01:35:35 pm
Three, two, One… there is nothing else we can do, myself and Wayne had taken a weekend away to Beaverlac situated in the Olifants river Mountains above Porterville.. the idea was to test all the tents, sleeping bags and gear..everything passes, everything works and we are good to go !

Here we are going on out full kit test ride..

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/at5.jpg)

Muz standing next to Waynes bike.. spot the nice new Oxford panniers.. I was using some soft panniers I had but somehow I was still convinced that the alum panniers we were making up would be much better in Africa, they were hard, they could lock and could carry double the capacity.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/at6.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/at4.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/at7.jpg)
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Waynan on December 10, 2010, 01:41:35 pm
Quote
I was still convinced that the alum panniers we were making up woul dbe much better in Africa, they were hard, they could lock and could carry double the capacity.

You forgot "they can do serious damage to your body" ....
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 10, 2010, 01:42:30 pm
Martin, Wayne ( yes he is really wearing a reflective vest on sand training day )and Myself braving sand training at Atlantis dunes in 32 degree heat. At one stage it was such tough going we had to open the bikes up while pushing, it was tough work, I took my new Arai helmet off and tied it to the bike.. a few 100m later I realised it had fallen off so I had to slog it back through the sand.. oh fuck, it has been stolen !! I was not impressed with my sand riding performance, it was hot and now my R6k helmet was gone.. I had to ride home without a helmet !! awesome experience but I may never see atlantis dunes again.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/at8.jpg)

One new helmet later and we are GOOD TO GO GO GO..

um.. well nearly.. Martin was hitting delays as he tried to perfect his luggage system, this is a major problem, we cannot afford another delay, Wayne has leave constraints and I have a freaking lake to ride around, it’s time for a tough discussion, and it is one that does not make us happy.. this is a very emotional time, NOT again, not after everything we have been through, myself and Wayne have a discussion about the situation because it is at number ninty nine now and we have to make a decision, it is a tough one but after everything is thrown on the table we decide that the departure date stands, ready or not, we are leaving. The decision does not sit well with myself or Wayne, the idea of leaving without the whole team goes against everything we believe in, this would mean that Martin would have to play catch up, riding alone means bigger risks, but he assures us that he is only a day or 2 behind and the 1st leg is mainly tar as we head out of SA and into Namibia, so we agree that myself and Wayne, just to keep our sanity would get on the bikes and take it slow, within a day or 2 Martin would catch up to us, hopefully before we are too far North, it has all become too much, the anticipation of leaving, family and friends are all phoning to wish us well, stuff it.. LETS GO !!.

Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 10, 2010, 02:16:56 pm
It is so close we can taste it.. My brother Glenn comes over to wish us well and to apply the reflective stickers onto the bike which he made up for me, the final touches are applied. All our hard work paid off on those panniers, they worked out awesome, it was tough to get them in the right position but we were happy with the performance of the bike with them on. Everything is packed, ziplocked, colour coded and stamped.. the documents are in the tank bag.. I cant help thinking we have forgotten something but we will be in SA for a while so we can always buy it along the way if we need.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/at.jpg)

We kit up.. I push the button and the beast roars to life.. it is only a beast now because fully packed it looks massive. We pull away, this is it! The bike feels well balanced and as we hit the road I yell a massive WOOO HOOO into my helmet, so loud I almost scare myself. It is a strange feeling as you depart on a trip like this, leaving my house I felt free of the workshop, the endless hours prepping the bikes, our bodies and our minds, it is just us and the road, it was a huge relief, I take a deep breath and enjoy the moment. It is hard not to notice the expression on some drivers faces as you pass by.. and I think to myself “ yup, I used to be you in that car thinking the same thing… enjoy work sucker!!”
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: ktmrules on December 10, 2010, 02:40:28 pm
Holy........that is some serious packing :o
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Johnnie Bok on December 10, 2010, 03:00:10 pm
Hier kom 'n ding!
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 10, 2010, 03:17:17 pm
Destination.. Namibia, and we cant wait.

We were supposed to hit the Nam border within a day or 2 but leaving Martin behind was playing with our minds, so we decided that the best way to do this was to take it slow to give him a chance to catch up plus we will get a feel for the bikes and their motherload while enjoying what the west coast has to offer. Our intention was never to be doing any offroad in SA, we had pretty much seen most of it anyway but I was starting to regret not going the offroad route it would have been just as quick and would have been a lot softer on the tyres.

Which tyres to use was a big debate, we slipped on one new set and took a spare set with us - in the end we went with Heidenau K60's on the back, a decision that would plague us in the end.

We stumbled across Vanrynesdorp with plenty of daylight left, but in the spirit we were in it seemed like a good place to pick a spot and setup camp for the 1st time. It was quick and painless but I could'nt stop thinking that this was going to be the 1st time of plenty that we have to unpack and pack the bikes, I expected the 1st few times to be a bit clumsy but overall I was happy.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/at9.jpg)

Checking out the reflective stickers

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/at11.jpg)

Brandy, coke, big fire, meat, friendship.. I cant wait to get on the bike again tomorrow.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/at12.jpg)
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 10, 2010, 03:30:00 pm
It is a good time to make mention that when we were packing we decided that we would be allowed a max of 3 luxury items.. the 3 things that we could take would be considered to be something we could do without but what the hell.. lets treat ourselves.. in the pic above you can see one of our items we decided to take.. chairs, there is nothing more kuk than perching on a rock all night, it can be noted that mine has a built in cooler box - woo hoo, the second luxuary good was a decent blow up mattress, there was just no way I was going to ride ride ride and then at night have a kuk nights sleep, the mattress is heavy, bulky and needs a pump which takes up more space but I can tell you , it was heaven and well appreciated as the trip went on.

I cant remember the other luxury item I took, I know that Wayne took coffee and a coffee pot.. dont mess with coffee in the morning. I will chat later about how we stripped gear on the bikes as we went, the weather had a lot to do with this.
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: TheAnt on December 10, 2010, 06:27:34 pm
Keep them coming! Cant wait for the rest...
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: espresso on December 10, 2010, 07:00:56 pm
Woo hoo subscribe  :)
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Drifter on December 10, 2010, 09:07:04 pm
subscribed....from one ex Zim to another
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: madmike999 on December 10, 2010, 09:51:51 pm
Woo hoo subscribe  :)



 :thumleft: :thumleft: :thumleft:


Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: GlenInk on December 10, 2010, 10:03:11 pm
Keep them coming! Cant wait for the rest...

+1000 Don`t stop now !
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: White Rhino on December 12, 2010, 08:42:18 am
Looks like you are leaving home with all that stuff...

There aren't many oke's that wouldn't give their left nut to embark on such a trip.

We wait with eagerness to share in your exploration and African adventures.

Subscribe!
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: JMOL on December 12, 2010, 09:16:04 am
 :thumleft:
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Poenjas on December 12, 2010, 02:12:26 pm
 :happy1: :happy1:
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Johnnie Bok on December 12, 2010, 04:06:54 pm
Wanneer kom die opvolg op die storie?
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: BabyBeemer on December 12, 2010, 04:28:34 pm
 :lurk: Sounds promising - can't wait for more.
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Oupa Foe-rie on December 12, 2010, 06:22:10 pm
Whow ............... a serious RR is coming up .......... :thumleft:
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 13, 2010, 12:23:14 pm
I will post the next installment asap.. in hindsight I should have posted this rr sooner, sorting through the photos and getting everything in order is a task and a half.
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 13, 2010, 12:42:47 pm
I am not sure what to expect on this trip, you experience so many mixed emotions, are you ready for whatever it is going to throw at you. Every km you travel is one km further away from home. At least we are still in SA and it is only day 2.. I convince myself that the guys who leave from JHB on trips like this are still further north than we are and that for the time being gives me a little comfort.

I am not sure if it is a change in mental attitude, or the fact that there is nothing bogging down your mind like work and family commitments but for some reason the sky always looks better when you go on these trips.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/at13.jpg)

Wayne showing what he thinks of the trip so far

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/at14.jpg)
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 13, 2010, 12:52:32 pm
We were still waiting for AMrtin to leave CT, this was not a massive concern for us just yet as we know he can chew up Km catching up but never the less it was a topic for conversation as we headed towards Springbok. and indeed again when we were in Springbok, do we continue up into Nam crossing the border before he has even left or do we take a bit of a detour.. hmm, what to do.

In the end we decided to head for pofadder, at least then we had a choice of where we wanted to cross over and it would chew up some hours. Once in Pofadder we could not find a nice place to setup camp so we indulged in spoiling ourselves by finding an awesome B & B called Vra veer.. if I remember correctly. Run by a husband and wife, they really bent over backwards to make us feel at home. I honestly recommend this place !

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/at15.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/at16.jpg)

After a rest, a good nights sleep and a cuppa coffee it was decision time again.. which way ! Martins no show was starting to give way to more than a little frustration and we could'nt waste any more time taking unnessary detours, it was wasting time and eating budget, so it was back to Springbok and up into Nam for us !! lets hit it.
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 13, 2010, 12:58:23 pm
(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/IMG_7152.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/IMG_7153.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/IMG_7155.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/IMG_7157.jpg)
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: neil123 on December 13, 2010, 01:00:33 pm
 :drif:
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 13, 2010, 01:06:13 pm
This is it.. we were heading out of SA ! somehow the crossing made it real, it was my 1st time in Nam.. I was thinking of the 100's of okes who travelled from SA into Nam every year to 4 x 4 etc, I felt like a novice but I could not contain my excited feeling... I was getting country 1 of 11.. fantastic !! everyone was very friendly at the border, we had heard a lot of stories about border crossings further up into Africa, what a nightmare they can be, but for now it was smooth sailing !!

We were heading up towards Rosh Pinah and I had no idea what to expect, the name sounded quite cool !! I confess that by this time I was really getting tired of tar, enough already, I had seen pics of Nam.. I had seen the sand. Our sand riding to date left something to be desired and I anticipated a few hard days of slogging through sand but for me it could not come quickly enough !! I wanted to experience it.

The thought was hardly through my head and I saw a sign !! WOOOOO HOOO, now that is what I am talking about !! what a sign.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/IMG_7159.jpg)

Whatever dude..

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/IMG_7166.jpg)
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Johnnie Bok on December 13, 2010, 01:19:55 pm
Gooi hom!
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 13, 2010, 01:22:01 pm
NOTHING and I mean nothing prepares you for what comes next ! I was blown away by Namibia already and we were just a few km into the ride.. it is simply spectacular. For those of you who have never ventured into Nam, just do it !! It turns out a year later we did a 10 day trip through Namibia again, you can read Wayne's rr that he is busy posting now.. you will find out why it was called The Revenge of Namibia.

I was amazed with the landscape, I loved the roads, it was so much fun to ride ! The bikes were still feeling a little heavy and it was our 1st taste of gravel, thankfully it was not too technical because it gave us enough time to adjust and gain our confidence.. and one thing I learnt on this trip, confidence counts for a lot !

It took a while to figure out why the local squatter camp was all built of grass, but with the heat of the day hitting well above 30 degrees it soon became a case of.. why does'nt everyone do that, then I thought of the CT wind !!


(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/IMG_7160.jpg)


(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/IMG_7162.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/IMG_7163.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/IMG_7164.jpg)

Simply amazing, I was having so much fun !

Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Kaboef on December 13, 2010, 01:36:13 pm
Nice RR, keep it up!

One question: If you only took 3 luxury items (chair, mattress, coffee), what the heck did you pack to take up that much space?  ;D
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 13, 2010, 01:54:26 pm
Man, these roads are to die for !! If it carries on like this I will be a happy man.. Also just to note that it has been a year since we did this africa trip, when we went back to Nam recently on our 10 day tour a lot of these awesome gravel roads have been tarred, just a bit more motivation not to delay.

We headed into Rosh Pinah for a few supplies and looked for a place to stay.. backtracking a few km we were directed to a place called Namuskluft which was nesting at the base of a mountain range.. getting there proved to be a bit of fun as we encounted some really deep soft sand.. when I arrived at the reception there was a distinct lask of another rider.. oh no, what now !! do I go back or do I just give Wayne a few min !! The rule gents is that you always go back no matter what, but it was not long before I heard the familar rumble of Waynes bike followed by a dust clowd.. he had dropped his bike and had struggled in the heat to pick it up again.. oh boy that can put you in a bad mood and our friendship was tested for a while as we setup camp.. I must say, what an awesome campsight

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/IMG_7171.jpg)

Boob Mac Nabs catching some rays on the tent.. what a watch lion he proved to be.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/IMG_7174.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/IMG_7169.jpg)

Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: letsgofishing on December 13, 2010, 01:57:45 pm
Really nice writing Fuzzy!  :thumleft: and pics too!

SUBSCRIBED!
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 13, 2010, 02:02:15 pm
Nice RR, keep it up!

One question: If you only took 3 luxury items (chair, mattress, coffee), what the heck did you pack to take up that much space?  ;D

Yeah, look the packing thing we ended up taking a lot of stick for later on in the trip.. I suppose at the end of the day this was our 1st trip of this nature, I had no experience on doing this kind of thing, watching the Long Way Down helps shit and on websites you get so much conflicting info that you do your best to make sure you are prepared. In the side panniers I had things like medical, clothing, spares, knives and forks, that kind of thing.. top bag was tent , mattress, mattress pump, sleeping bag, warm jacket, waterproofs plus a bit of spare space for dirty laundry etc, tank bag was documents and cell phone, headlamp, leatherman, sunblock.. stuff you use every day or hour.

You will see later on when we hit Malawi I end up with one of those massive wooden chairs which I had to carry as well.. not fun but we had a good solution.
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Kaboef on December 13, 2010, 02:16:22 pm
I suppose at the end of the day this was our 1st trip of this nature....


Yip, the law of relative space applies to everyone the first time.  :biggrin:

But let's not digress..
Please continue with what promises to be an epic ride report.
Thank you for taking the time to write it so decently.

Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 13, 2010, 02:18:58 pm
What a lekker spot, there was a hosepipe at the campsight so the bikes got a well deserved wash !! It turns out that on the way in I nearly fell in some soft sand but opened up to pull out of it, Wayne hit the lovely trench I left behind.. oops !!  :imaposer:

Onwards and forwards.. we left the comfy campsight and hit the road to Helmeringhausen !! awesome.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/IMG_7177.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/IMG_7178.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/IMG_7179.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/IMG_7181.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/IMG_7183.jpg)
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 13, 2010, 02:36:56 pm
When we left the site there is a gate that has to be opened, I was 1st to arrive so stopped and proceeded to open the gate, as I was about to climb back on the bike I could hear Wayne coming up behind me.. before I knew what was happening there was a clowd of dust and Wayne came ploughing into me.. I knew it was not intentional but there was more than one heated exchange between us.. he just could'nt get out of line to avoid me, the sand was hectically deep, yeah right !!.. he was fast becomming the king of fall !! and I was glad it was him and not me ! My turn was coming I am sure .. luckily there was no damage, just a bruised ego

The spot where it happened !!! that is not sand !! WTF was his real excuse..

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/IMG_7184.jpg)

Rosh Pinah in all its glory !

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/IMG_7191.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/IMG_7192.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/IMG_7188.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/IMG_7193.jpg)

The road to Helmeringhausen was just spectacular.. the road is gravel but it may as well be tar with a few sand patches thrown in, it was basically my 1st time riding on such open stretches of road and i found myself being more than a little scared, I was not used to the bike being thrown around so much, WTF was happening, the back end was sliding out so much.. well it seemed that way.. is it all in my mind ! This is where lack of experience catches up with you but we were too far now.. eish !

Now, it is all fine and dandy saying 'lets go to Africa' but, and there is a big BUT ! I was concerned I did not have the skills to pull this off. My off road had been limited to events put together by the Wild Dogs like the Canola runs etc, I had never done roads like this, hard packed gravel, loaded bike, doing speed !! I take a deep breath.. suck it up and concentrate.. lets just see how the bike reacts if I go faster, I am starting to think that going slower is my downfall.. I twist her ear and go from a lazy 80km/h to 120km/h, that's much better !! it is not being made any easier by leading. Wayne has settled into following me. I am comfortable being in the front, the last thing I need on top of this is swallowing sand as well.. but I have to pick the line, make observations on road conditions, adjust speed.. AAARGH ! I am starting to feel a little overwhelmed.

It looks easy, and it probably is to most guys reading this, but as a noob I was not having an easy time with the loaded bike on such a gravel highway.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/IMG_7194.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/IMG_7195.jpg)

By the end of the day I was getting the hang of it, in hindsight learning as you go is not the best way to travel, but we were committed, eager and ready for the challenge.. Helmeringhausen was approaching, the sun was going down ! lets try to find a spot to rest.

Now, I remind you that we were basically travelling with no GPS, we had no idea where we would end up on any given day. So if we see a sign, we go and ask if they have a place to stay.. it becomes the luck of the draw! and part of the adventure.

Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Soundboi on December 13, 2010, 02:42:24 pm
Nice!!! Keep it comming.  :thumleft: :thumleft:
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 13, 2010, 02:57:22 pm
We zooted past a sign that said Naturepark Tirasberge Conservancy, Woo HOO, with a little picture of a tent ! awesome, we may have just found our campsite for the evening !

We battled down a dirt road.. by far the thickeds sand I had ever done, I think I remember pulling one back on Wayne as I dropped the bike.. 30 degree heat, end of the day.. bugger me the bike is heavy to pick up again.
We meet an awesome German couple who run the farm, they retall a story of 2 German guys who came through there a while back, riding from Germany to CT, the one guy fell and snapped his leg on his pannier !  :eek7: I look at my massive home made alum panniers and wonder if the cloth route was not the better option !

The owner gives us a toilet key and points in the general direction of a mountain.. " your campsite is behind that' he says laughing! ' have a great time !!"

We head to the campsite not knowing what to expect, but what we saw when we got there even exceeded our expectations.. WOW, Namibia just gets better and better ! My spirits are immediately lifted from the days uncertain ride. i always feel much better when I have a place to stay and I know where i will be resting my head.. if the sun is still up I am in an even better mood !! tonight we live like kings !


(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/IMG_7199.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/IMG_7207.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/IMG_7201.jpg)

We needed firewood.. problem !! neither of us wanted to go down the road again to the farmhouse to ask.. it became a tough choice but in the end it was me destined to get it done, Wayne made up for it by cooking a decent meal ! life was sweet again and we sucked in the sunset.


Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 13, 2010, 02:59:08 pm
Waynes mommy would have been proud of the little housekeeper !!

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/IMG_7205.jpg)
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 13, 2010, 03:40:32 pm
 The next day I woke up to the birds chirping and an awesome sunrise.. it does not get any better than this, then I saw Waynes face !! eish ! not good. Apparently I developed a little bit of a snore during the night, I mean, how bad could it really have been..  :thumleft: he was looking a bit worse for ware but I knew a quick cuppa coffee would turn that frown upside down !!! BA HA HA..

We packed up, tied down and left the key for the loo right there, they would collect it later. I was looking forward to today and confident that I was getting the better of these roads. Next stop Maltahohe ! awesome.. lets go go go.

It must be said that in hindsight these are awesome roads to travel, I found that with the load and with the ruts in the road that travelling at between 100 and 120km/h was just right, the bike floated over the ruts and i was having fun again !!

Not being sure where you actually are on a road means that you just give it horns when riding.. if I knew that we had only about 2km to go before tar and Maltahohe I probably would have been taking it easier, the road was testing my abilities and just as I was thinking that all hell broke loose.. I found myself going wide in a corner, it seemed as if the bike was bogging down and the bars were sticking it to me, there was no time to think and I followed the general rule of thumb in these situations.. GIVE IT ALL SHE'S GOT !

I climbed on the throttle and the bike reacted immediately, she dug down and pulled back into line, WHEW, that was a close one !! but I was not out the woods.. I was now going far too fast, on a blind corner, on the wrong side of the road ! this is not good, we have only seen about 3 cars the whole day, but I don't wanna be here when the 4th car comes along ! I looked forward a few metres along the road and it was like someone had replaced the hard gravel road wih a sand pit full of rubble.. in a split second I shifted my weight back and opened up again to power through it.. oh shit

The bars pumped my arms.. I had no strength left and with one final WHAM there was the tank slap and there was the hindside.. I can still remember my head hitting the deck as I fell face 1st into the road, the rest of my body following me, My helmet filled with dust and stones and I blacked out.. from there it was all silence !

I woke up with Wayne standing over me shouting my name and swearing, my head felt like a watermelon inside the helmet WTF.. where am I. ?? I remember telling him that I am ok, but for the love of all that is mighty, please take my helmet off, I cant breath and it feels like my head is going to explode ! Wayne was not happy, we know that we risk further injury if we make a wrong move now, but I insist and he removes my helmet as gently as he can !

"Oh my god.. what have I done !!" I can't believe it. You read about it, you hear of it happening to other okes.. tears fill my eyes and run down my dusty face.. its all over ! I collect my thoughts on the side of the road, I don't deel any pain so it may be ok.. I am in shock and I have no idea where I am.
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 13, 2010, 03:56:17 pm
I take a look back down the road.. Wayne has left me with my tears and my thoughts and is picking my bike up.

I see it for the 1st time and my heart sinks.. she is a gonner, duct tape is not going to fix that, but all that is on my mind is that I have to collect everything off the road before a truck or something comes along and flattens what is left of the bike.

I stand up.. fuck me! the pain hits home and I fall to the road ! WTF is wrong with my foot. It feels like someone threw a grenade in my boot but still I feel like I have to collect my belongings that cover the road ! I see a car stop but I don't notice them. I see Wayne talking to them for a bit and he waves them goodbye. I am still looking for the contents of my tank bag !! Where is my camcorder ??

I see another car stop and again I don't care.. by now I am on the side of the road, i'm not going anywhere, I can feel my foot swelling in my boot, it is on fire and every move feels like raw skin rubbing on sandpaper. It is all a blur ! I see a bakkie stop and 2 okes get out. I can only muster looking in their general direction. I am shattered. We have planned so long, and at the end of the day my inexperience has cost me, it is a tough pill to swallow, but no excuses, I fucked up.

I try to help them load the bike on the bakkie but I am not much help.. I am dehydrated, I hurt, my bike is smashed but boy oh boy am I happy that someone has taken the time and trouble to help me out.. I dont catch the okes names, i pass out about 3 or 4 times in the bakkie.. all I know is we are heading down the B1 to Windhoek.. sounds good to me, i remember the oke telling me that he is a member of Wild Dogs and I feel closer to home.. I pass out again !
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 13, 2010, 04:04:34 pm
on our way to Windhoek.. someone buys me a coke and it is appreciated.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/crash2.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/crash1.jpg)

All that is on my mind is that we need a base camp.. we need to get organised and quick !! we need a place to sleep, we need food, the light is going.. I need to get to a hospital, we need an evac plan.. no time to cry, there is work to be done.

We arrived in Windhoek and say our goodbyes.. what lekker okes ! Wayne books us into Arebbusch.. we have a base camp from where we can opperate. Wayne is a star, he sets up our tents and organises some grub.. I am sifting through what I have left but I am not much help, I can't walk. I pull out our medical kit.. SEE !! I knew it would come in handy.. I have pain killers, anti inflamitories, compression bandages !!

I cant tell if the foot is broken, but it is late, I am still in a state of shock and everything has happened so quickly you can't think fast enough. We decide to get some sleep and seek help in the morning.. I can't do anything else today, I am mentally and physically exhausted.

Base camp

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/crash4.jpg)
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 13, 2010, 04:20:59 pm
The next day is a blur.. I can remember pain, I can remamber orgainsing a shuttle to the Medi Clinic.. ahhh, x rays ! yebo, this is what I need because now I can see what is going on, if I am lucky we can patch the bike and I can carry on !!

I go through all the crap of filling in forms, I get admitted and a very lovely lass takes my x rays.. it seems like forever and I fear the worst. I cant put any weight on my foot, I have to use a wheelchair, dammit, we should be heading for Walvis by now along the C14.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/crash5.jpg)

I manage to take a pic of my foot, it is bad, I can see it starting to bruise before my eyes..

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/crash6.jpg)

THATS IT, it's all over as the results come back, nothing broken but my tendons and legaments are buggered.. it is going to be at least 3 - 4 weeks and that's if I get physio.. I am devistated, I can hardly speak to Wayne when I get back to the camp. What do I tell him, his trip is over as well. I am gutted, we make the call back home.

Come get us ! As we phone Martin has just left Cape Town to come catch up.. he turns around and collects his BMW and a trailer.. help is on the way, but it will take a day or so ! I am left with my thoughts and it's not pretty.
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 13, 2010, 04:24:04 pm
Hi Muz, glad to hear you're fine and still wanna do Africa. Ek en my swaer was op pad Walvisbaai toe , toe ons verby die 2 manne met hul fietse ry. Well ek is bike mal en toe ek verby ry sien ek dat die een Alp darem te veel spares het wat rondom hom le en dat dit net een ding beteken: Die ou het geval.
Wel ek het al my valle gehad en weet hoe dit voel om so ver van die huis in so 'n dilemma te sit. Ou Muz was taamlik in pyn en sy bike het maar kark gelyk. Die stuk pad was blyrrie baie los gewees waar hy geval het en hy het eintlik maar lig daarvan afgekom. Bly ek kon help , wel hoe ry jy wat self bike ry verby 'n man wat geval het. Net jammer dat hulle trip so moes end. Werner.
 
« Last Edit: April 20, 2010, 04:55:05 PM by Baches » 
 
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: terminator1 on December 13, 2010, 04:29:42 pm
fark dude, that sucks. But...you are alive and you'll do it again some day. I know exactly what you are going through.  :thumleft:
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Waynan on December 13, 2010, 04:54:07 pm
Waynes mommy would have been proud of the little housekeeper !!

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/IMG_7205.jpg)

I am retracting my promise not to chirp anymore...

I Was looking for leftovers!!

Oh and just one thing that Muz has left out, he chose this trip to try and stop smoking...
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Waynan on December 13, 2010, 05:04:11 pm
Quote
The spot where it happened !!! that is not sand !! WTF was his real excuse..

I can be honest now the reason was plain and simply too much gear and an inexperienced biker, I was going way too slowly and with all that water and fuel on the back the bike was an unruly beast, especially at slow speeds. Thankfully we have learned to pack a lot lighter now and put a lot more trust into the fact that "Africa will provide" also we are both a lot more experienced having tackled a lot of tough terrain on our last trip to Namibia...

Okay no more chirping :P
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: GlenInk on December 13, 2010, 05:09:26 pm
Nooit !  :o Kark luck Muz ! I hope this story does not end here !  :deal:

Excellent writing and pics  :thumleft: :thumleft: :thumleft:
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Oupa Foe-rie on December 13, 2010, 05:10:51 pm
Ag no man ................. thats bad ............ really bad  :(
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: JMOL on December 13, 2010, 08:22:31 pm
Bad way to end a trip  :o
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Heimer on December 13, 2010, 10:55:03 pm
That is the kind of ending that we all dread. Sorry to hear about your bad luck. Your writing and pictures are excellent.
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Husky Boy on December 13, 2010, 11:04:22 pm
I suppose that's why your mom never wanted you to have a bike...in fear of this, but you can't overcome if you do not face it! Well done and all the best! Thanks for sharing this adventure - we need to understand that sometimes things don't work out, it's a reality, not all trips have happy endings, but it keeps things real!
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: White Rhino on December 14, 2010, 07:11:42 am
Sad ending to a great adventure. Look forward to your next trip, I enjoy your writing style.
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: letsgofishing on December 14, 2010, 07:55:45 am
Man, what a kak ending to what promised to be a great adventure!
Really sorry to read this  :'(
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 14, 2010, 08:52:38 am
lol.. not an ending to the trip.. just the beginning trust me.

And so it was.. now it is hard to go through the emotions of what you feel when this happens, you blame yourself that is for sure.. bottom line, no one made me crash, it all came down to skill and experience. I feel terrible for Wayne, I  put myself in his position and it is hardly the experience he signed up for, but kudos to him, if there was any complaining from his side I didn’t hear it. A true friend, I can’t say it often enough.. thank you ! If I can give any advice to anyone traveling away from home.. write down a list in big bold red writing of things to do in event of an accident. It is amazing what shock and pain does, you just don’t think clearly and I made many mistakes, not getting immediate medical assistance was a mistake I messed up procedure which led to such a fight with the insurance company eventually leading to nothing being paid out, no matter how prepared I thought I was, it could have been better.

Waiting for evac was torture, there was nothing I could do with my foot that made anything feel comfortable, walking to the loo was just too painful so I would pee into a bottle and take a few loads to the loo at the same time, it sounds gross but trust me the embarrassment of walking to the loo with a days worth of pee is something you suck up with glee as every painful step reminds you of what an idiot you were.. on top of that, when we sat talking about what happened and what I could have done differently, it comes to pass that my foot probably finds itself in the state it’s in because of the panniers.. they are just too dangerous. I go through all my gear.. My jacket’s zip has been ripped and I have a hole in my shirt that matches the hole in my back.. My helmet is toast but it did a stand up job, I had a tear on a glove but the rest of the gear holds up, thank goodness I was wearing my Thor knee guards, they saved my legs big time. These events convince me that I need better boots.. much better.

Around the fire Wayne tells me the story from behind me. He hit the same 1st patch I did but he did’nt open up.. he stopped.. HUH ! he thought he had a puncture so he slowed down to check it out, by the time he hit the second patch he was going much slower.. I am glad for his fortune, we would be in a serious situation if we both went down ! At this stage I am pretty much relying on Wayne for everything and he does an awesome job.
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 14, 2010, 08:53:34 am
We had time to discuss the situation we were now in, Martin was supposed to be one day behind us, we were on day 5 and he was still in SA, there was no way he was going to catch us as we stretched our legs in Nam, it looks like we were doing the nam tour solo but it did’nt matter now, for the time being we were happy that Martin was still in CT or we would have been stumped on how to get home.. I did’nt think to check that insurance indeed covered evac from countries you don’t reside in.. Hindsight is a bitch.

Martin in the mean time launched himself into the rescue mission low flying to us in record time, he was not sure what to expect, he just knew I was down and needed help, when he arrived at base camp I was sooo happy, “ dude, you are my hero” we packed up and headed home. Martin had been up for 2 straight days so Wayne took the lion’s share of driving back as Martin slept, we managed to bundle both bikes on the trailer and we had a one-way ticket home.

Well, I had a stuffed up foot, that much is true, what happened sucked but it was time to get to work because my bike was just as stuffed, and last time I checked nobody really mentioned the words “ it’s over”, I may have thought that as I lay on the road, but it was far from over..

When we got back the bikes got pulled into the workshop.. sigh, what a mess. I entrusted William who helped me prep my bike with the repairs.. “ dude, just patch it so it goes.. we are not hanging around” I brief him.. but I can see that it is not going to be that easy.. luckily the damage was not that hectic, the back end was 100’s, the front end was a bit like spaghetti, but no structural damage, the forks were not even bent, even the front wheel was perfect. The bike looks like it flipped up and landed square on the nose taking out the fairings, headlight, screen, dash and the tank had a nasty bash on it.. the handle bars looked like a boomerang and there were a few leavers and mirrors missing.. so there was a bit to do and it smashes the budget.

handle bars done.. now the rest

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/crash7.jpg)
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 14, 2010, 08:54:27 am
While the bike was being bashed back into shape, I had a sit-down with Martin.. “ Dude, those panniers don’t work on 3 levels.. 1. They are heavy, 2. They are dangerous and 3.. mine is broken beyond repair so I want a new set, but made in cloth..”, the reply was music to my ears.. “ dude, I hear you, leave it to me” anyone who knows Martin would be screaming.. GO BUY SOMETHING !! but time I had, and I had a bill coming my way for bike repairs, another R3k for awesome boots and a R3k neck brace made the check list, there is no way I was taking that chance again, it could have turned out so much worse. For this I was thankful, but now the budget was well and truly in its chops.

I, in the mean time was having more trouble with my foot than I could ever imagine, it just wasn’t healing. Week 1, week 2 week 3 and it was just as swollen as the day I crashed, something else must be wrong. I am one of those okes who never go to the doctor, it must just fix itself and lets get on with it, but this was becoming a problem, I wanted to leave and I was still on crutches 3 weeks later, so after much gnashing of teeth I went to a physiotherapist, awesome !! for 2 hours I got flapped at about how if I had have taken better care of myself immediately after the crash it may have been healed by now, instead I had been tearing the ligament more and making it worse.. for fuck sakes.. I leave the physio with a list of exercises to do and I  got the feeling the physio was just like my mother. We wont even go into what my mom said about this whole thing, yet alone her reaction when I told her as soon as I can walk we are leaving again !! kids under 18 may read this.

I gave the foot another week and I just couldn’t take it anymore.. I called Martin.. dude, we are leaving, tomorrow !! “ you are freaking nuts dude, you cant walk, how can you ride?”, I knew he was right, but I didn’t care, we were leaving.. lets make a plan.
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Brink on December 14, 2010, 09:04:02 am
Good read with the suspense and all :mwink:
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 14, 2010, 09:09:44 am
There was no way I could ride, I knew this.. just standing was painful, so we devised a plan. The idea would be to take the train from CT to JHB.. from there we would ride to Martins mom’s place in Nelspruit..aka new base camp. From there we would keep an eye on the foot and as soon as I could ride we would be out of there, in the mean time while we are sitting around we can finish those cloth panniers Martin was so busy with.. it sounded like a plan.. it was Game on !!! bring it.

Getting to the train was torture, I had to ride from my place in Bothasig to Town.. how was I supposed to do that ?? Well simple, wearing a sock.. my brother pushed me off from home and Martin caught me at the station.. we were off again. The bike looked.. um, fair, it was ok., I fitted second hand plastics, one blue and one black on the front.. but it worked, it was straight and it will have to do, it seemed silly to buy new ones only to leave on a 12 000km trek, they will come back a bit more polished. By sand, mud and grass...

Time to load the bikes.. gosh what a pain, but we eventually sort it all out loading procedure and it is time to load, we have to push the bikes onto the train ourselves and we have to tie them down ourselves.. we have 3 min.. lets go. Without thinking I grabbed my bike and pushed.. POP ! I felt what felt like 300 red-hot pokers stabbing me in my foot and right up my leg.. my eyes well up with the pain and I know what this means.. my foot is back to square one.. I have damaged it badly again. “ I must be insane” I think to myself.. If I go into Africa and I fall on this foot, I’m done for, is it worth the risk?” I didn’t know, for now we have a 24h train ride ahead of us and at least a few days at Martin’s mom’s house. Lets play it by ear, I have already loaded the fucking bike anyway. I was so angry with myself.. stupid idiot, just because I did’nt want some Transnet employee touching my bike.

The train pulls away, I should be happy, I should be shouting woo hoo’s at the top of my lungs, but the mood is somber.. myself and Martin look at my foot as it swells up like a balloon. “ I’m not gonna lie” says Martin, ‘That looks shit” I smile and lie to him that it looks worse than it looks, I know the chances of us leaving are slim to nil but I had never seen Nelspruit so lets go go go. I organize ice and my foot stays in an ice bucket for as much of the trip that it could survive.

Further pain medication was administered and we settled down ! train is such an awesome way to travel.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/DSC00077.jpg)




Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 14, 2010, 09:31:49 am
Martin’s mom is an absolute card, typical mom, full of worry, full of chirp, but I love this old duck.. she plants down OB’s like it’s OJ and I have a blast ripping her off and getting her to repeat herself, she does not mind in the slightest that we have just taken over her flat – shot !!.. we setup our new home. My foot has been on ice for the whole train trip, the ride to Nelspruit was like having surgery without an anesthetic but we were there and my foot was back in ice water.. all I could do was wait and watch Martin working his magic with a sewing machine. I pack, unpack and pack 50 times, ask me anything, I know where everything is.

Here is the old bag !! she was awesome.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/DSC00101.jpg)

Sitting with my foot in an ice bucket, not a happy camper !

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/DSC00100.jpg)
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 14, 2010, 09:35:38 am
Even just sitting there was uncomfortable, at every chance i had my foot elevated !! Bored to death and checking out how much our wet weather gear looks like we are going to the moon !!

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/DSC00102.jpg)

It took me a few days, but I eventually lost my mind, it was either suicide or leave, the good news is that I was finally getting to walk around, it was sore, but I was walking unassisted.. right, time to go ! It’s time to trust in our faith that it will all work out, worst case scenario is that we go home defeated, you did’nt hear of those stories but I am sure they existed, our chances were on a knives edge.

Martin said to me “ we can leave if you can get your boot on”.. “deal” I replied and I wasted no time in putting on my hiking boot !! “ That’s not what I meant” came a stern reply.. “lets go” enough waiting, I will be careful mom.. he relented and at 1st light we were outta here.. Nelspruit decided at the time to throw a few thundershowers our way so we took the time to try on our full wet weather gear ( something by the way which is a total waste of time.. towards the end you see a rain cloud, you ride through it, you get wet and on the other side you dry.. smelling a lot better, you can leave rain gear behind )
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 14, 2010, 09:40:23 am
We had had enough time sitting around to discuss the new route.. it was simple, we had lost just over a month, this dealt a hammer blow to our original idea of going around lake Victoria, but we adopted the same attitude.. lets just see how it goes and lets see where the road takes us to, for now, lets head to southern Tanzania and take it from there, we both agreed that going up through Namibia from Nelspruit was not going to happen, so Botswana it is.. one photo to signal the restart and we were off. I could not even think of putting this stupid foot into my new boots so it was takkie on one foot for a while..

One last photo and we are OFF !! take 2.. yeeeee haaaaaa, I will take some photos of how the cloth panniers yurned out ! they worked wonders, much lighter but not as accessable !! in any event that was the last thing on our minds. We jsut wanted to beat the approaching thundershower and get the hell outta here.. next stop Lydenburg, Polokwane and up to Franscistown, there was little doubt that we wanted to make up for lost time a bit, but never compromising on our belief that we would not chase km.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/DSC00104.jpg)

Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: GlenInk on December 14, 2010, 10:02:52 am
Yes yes yes, I`m so glad this story is not over !  :ricky:
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 14, 2010, 10:10:55 am
lol.. well sit back and enjoy, it may be a long rr.
 :thumleft: and lots of drama to come !!

Traveling through to the border we passed so many interesting places, we even met Madiba ! At a petrol station as we were asking for directions, he even showed us his ID book to prove it ! cheeky fellow, but at least his name really was Madiba. It even saw us having a conversation with a biker riding around with one arm.. with his wife as pillion !!

It was awesome to be on the road again...

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/DSC00117.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/DSC00119.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/DSC00123.jpg)

Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Johnnie Bok on December 14, 2010, 10:47:41 am
Hierdie RR gaan afgaan as 'n GROOTE!
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 14, 2010, 11:23:24 am
I think it was while we were going through Lydenburg that we came across Piet.. he was soo oexcited to see bikers come into his campsite and he rushed off as quick as a flash ! moments later we hear a thunderous row !! holy moly what is that.. he was busy bilding this Trike up from scratch, and what a beauty it was !!

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/DSC00105.jpg)

I will forward details of this place later, I need info from Martin. I think it was in Polokwane !! awesome place, awesome people. We were supposed to camp but they had so many rooms available they gave to us as a 2 for the price of one .. well worth it !

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/DSC00115.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/DSC00113.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/IMG_7218.jpg)

A welcome bar.. pool table.. it was awesome, but we were still in SA, we had no intention of hanging around, our goal now was to move north and as quickly as we felt was reasonable without killing ourselves.. we knew we still had between 10 000 and 20 000km to go !!

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/IMG_7223.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/IMG_7228.jpg)
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 14, 2010, 11:30:01 am
At last.. at last, we hit the little blue line that makes us different from Botswana !! we flew threw the paperwork and customs !! yebo baby, we were in a different country. Mentally for some reason that makes a big difference.

Unfortunately we were going to make up a little time in Botswana, it is a country that you can easily spend a month in, there are some awesome tracks, but I was in no shape to be bashing it off road for the time being. I am thinking it would be better to avoid the more technical routes for the time being. Also, without maps or GPS we were having trouble identifying exactly where bikes were allowed, some parks say yes some sy no !!

We rolled into Franscistown quite late, I had a tinted visor which made night riding impossible, we had a smoke right above a petrol tank which caused mild panic at a petrol station, grabbed a grub at the local Wimpy but we had nowhere to sleep, the place we were looking for was about 10km out of town according to our knowledge, but we had no idea where we were really so we ended up cruising the main road looking for a sign.. Enter into the mix a place called The Nest, the most overpriced rat hole we ever could have stumbled upon, but the problem with accommodation in towns is that you can’t just pitch a tent so you conform to cultural standards even if you would prefer a tent or even a park bench. Our bikes may not be there in the morning but guaranteed, with all the burgular bars, nobody was getting in ! what a view ! Either way, we had a hot shower and a bed.

The awesome view of the disease infested rat hole they call The Nest !! At least we did'nt have to start unpacking to pitch tent in the dark.. always a bonus !


(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/DSC00126.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/DSC00125.jpg)

Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 14, 2010, 11:43:30 am
 The general agreement of not taking technical routes went out the window fast as about 50km north of Nata we followed a sign that said Elephant Sands..

Sands was correct! And we were thrust into the deepest sand we had encountered.. ever!! Holy moly. Martin had dropped his bike for the 10th time and was just too exhausted to pick it up again.. my foot was pounding from trying to walk our way through the sand, besides I was off for the 4th time (or so )and I was finished.. for my experience and with the weight of the bike there was not going to be an easy way through this one, I pictured how the okes doing the Dakar would have chopped this road up in 2 seconds flat and I can’t help but feel overwhelmed... as we stood next to our bikes catching our breath we heard a van of sorts coming.. it was a couple of game rangers returning from collecting wood..”you are about 300m away guys”.. well, that is all we needed to hear and we were off again..

Rounding a corner we came across a watering hole ! YES YES YES !! I was elated!.. Elephants.. big ones, male bulls.. yes baby, we were exhausted but this for me was what it was all about, awesome stuff ! it was as wild as it got.. just as I thought we could sit and check them out for a while the worst thing possible happened, my bike began to overheat in the sand and the fans kicked in, the only thing is that the metal casing around the back of the fan had taken a small ding from a rock during the crash, so the fan kicked up a nails on a chalkboard scream.. um !! elephants apparently hate that noise ! WTF the Elephant opened up his ears and took a step towards us.. I turn and look at Martin who is behind me and he is already abandoning his bike, shot mate ! I can’t run.. afterwards while sitting next to a pool having a beer, I retell the tale of how I had absolutely no plan whatsoever if the elephant decided to charge me to a group of overlander tourists, leading to similar stories, which led to the bar, where we met the cameraman from “veldspore” I swear, who looks like a naughty Tolla van der Merwe and just as funny.. I have never laughed so much and went to bed totally trashed...

It is in interesting places like this where we met a couple who were government sponsored to go mapping in Ethopia for a year, fully kited in the biggest 4 x 4 I had ever seen, it was like a 10 ton land cruiser! It makes out tale of riding a bike seem as interesting as popping out to get milk, some okes just command respect.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/DSC00133.jpg)


Martin and the Barman.. we became mates, what a lekker oke. The same evening we took this pic we went 10m into the bush for a um.. smoke, and an Elephant passed within 10m of us. it was one of the most terrifying experiences of my life.. but you feel alive !!

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/DSC00136.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/DSC00141.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/DSC00124.jpg)


Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: ®©errie on December 14, 2010, 11:47:46 am
This is on the edge of the seat stuff...Great!!!
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: GlenInk on December 14, 2010, 12:12:13 pm
Stop reading  Angola, it's not like they said.. and write your own RR please !  :biggrin:
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 14, 2010, 12:21:54 pm
I just had a quick peek !!

We missed Angola on the trip and it looks awesome.
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 14, 2010, 12:36:00 pm
Elephant sands was an amazing experience, we mat a chick Charlene who was hanging around waiting for her overland truck to pick her up.. they were on their way to Livingstone to catch up with the rest of the crew and head north !! she was a great source of information and told her we would catch up to them in Livingstone. Hmmmm. I think we have an idea! We are carrying far too much gear on these bikes and it would be nice to play.. if you are heading to Livingstone and we are headed to Livingstone.. hmm, are you thinking what I am thinking?? This is either genius or it is gonna come back and bite us hard. As we head up through Botswana much lighter.. our top bags safely in the back of an overlander truck on its way to Livingstone., my foot is swollen but it is behaving and I gain the confidence back on the bike, it is an awesome feeling cos you know the foot is getting better, not worse. I was so worried that riding like this would make it flare up again and I have flashbacks to the train station. The difference between this trip and the likes of Long Way Down is that there is no support crew to meet you with a medic to check you out, you have to go on what you know and communicate that effectively but by the time we leave Botswana I am feeling strong and confident, I swear the swelling is going down but it would still be more than 2 weeks before I manage to get my boot on !


Waiting for the ferry to cross from Botswana into Zambia and we experience 1st hand what it is like to be hustled by street smart vendors, money exchange artists and border crossing experts who will stop at nothing to extract every last cent out your pockets. Amazing ! you can be as careful as you want, they will get you, how much depends on how quickly you move through. We probably got taken for a lot more than we will ever remember. Just like that Zambia was our new home.. new currency, new adventure, it was stinking hot but we were through, destination.. Livingston, a place I was fascinated with as a kid and a place I was dying to see like an itch that could not be satisfied, and it did not disappoint.

My mind crosses briefly to what we have done !! WTF, are we mad, we just gave 50% of our essential gear to someone we don’t know, allowing them to cross a border.. shit, what were we thinking, I hope it all works out ok.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/DSC00142.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/DSC00145.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/DSC00147.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/DSC00149.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/DSC00150.jpg)

on the other side !! vendors scratching at your pockets, it was so hot we did'nt care.. just recovering from the awesome ferry ride in the shade sounded like a good plan, throw in a coke and it was bliss. trucks line the gravel highway for as far as the eyes can see. This oke is trying to sell me ZIM$50 billion in notes for US$1

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/DSC00152.jpg)
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Jan82 on December 14, 2010, 12:41:05 pm
awesome, deursettingsvermoe se baas
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 14, 2010, 01:22:32 pm
We headed through the heat that welcomed us into Zambia, thanks to one of the river crossing experts we did’nt set a foot into a public officials office except to have our carnets stamped.. I was carrying my ID book with me as they sometimes insist on seeing ID.. The chap opens up my ID book and stares at my picture for a while, he is a huge black man, loosing more sweat per second than a cow does in a whole year.. he got this puzzled look on his face and askes me.. “ where is Rhodesia”, LOL, I did’nt know what to say, so with a serious face I informed him it was the country before Zimbabwe..”Oh! he said” and that was that.. off to The Waterfront with us ! adventure awaits and I was eager to get my tent & gear back ! The Waterfront, was rumored to be the best value for money with 100% of everyone there just passing through. Livingston would transform how we traveled through Africa, enter the age of the overland truckers and the guides within. The Waterfront was awesome, for a fair price you get a green campsite, clean ablutions, swimming pools, bar and... the awesome Zambezi. After a lekker days ride we finally found it !

WOOO HOOO ! the Zambezi, fantastic man, we made it this far! Now, lets check in and find our gear baby, exciting stuff.. there are women here, and a bar.. yes. ! We had actually been riding without a break for a while now, a little rest seemed in order, not only to explore, but the bikes really could do with an unpack, a wash and sort out the gear that was smelling a bit, anyway, there was so much to see at this hub of tourism which has boomed since the downfall of Zimbabwe. we got allocated a campsite and we began to scour the landscape for the familiar overlander truck.. well, no truck, but we did come across about 15 people from the Netherlands who were trekking coast to coast on a bike tour.. man o man, lucky buggers, they had a massive recovery and support vehicle.. spare tyres.. we started to drool.. food !! lets not get distracted, it is going to be getting dark soon and we have no idea where our stuff is. This is not funny !!

NOOOO ! where are they. We check at reception, they have no idea !! it is now dark. We have no tents, no mattresses and very little else except some clothes, medical supplies and spares.. tempers start to flare as Martin and I take turns bouncing our frustration off one another, this is going to test our ability to solve what was a really stupid idea!, an hour later and I meet with another lady at reception, I go through all the overlander companies that have either checked in, or will check in over a 24 hour period.. there … THERE.. I shout, I see his name signed in.. Willem, that’s him ! where is the fuck.. “ oh replies the receptionist, he has been on a booze cruise for the last few hours.. WHEW ! he is at least here. He must have our stuff. 30 min later the booze cruise arrives and guess who stumbles off as drunk as a lord.. Willem !! lets just say that the friendship was tested to its limits between us as hours of frustration came off a bit harsh !! but we had our gear.. time to setup camp.
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 14, 2010, 01:26:26 pm
The awesome Zambezi.. you dont get sunsets like this unless you are on holiday !!

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/IMG_7233.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/IMG_7235.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/IMG_7237.jpg)

Willem entering as only he could.. what a piss cat !

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/IMG_7240.jpg)
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 14, 2010, 01:28:51 pm
Some of the overlander crew Charlene !

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/IMG_7238.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/IMG_7239.jpg)

our camp.. awesome !

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/DSC00176.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/DSC00175.jpg)
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 14, 2010, 01:31:51 pm
(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/DSC00166.jpg)

Seeing as this was just an awesome spot full of yummy tourists we were having far too much fun to leave and we decided to spend a few days here!. We had to dig deep and look past the cost of this experience, but there was no way I was coming all this way and I wasn’t going to do a wee bit white water rafting. It was not an ego boost as women passed me on my way down the steep slope to get to the water, I was really feeling my foot today and the stress of the decent meant it was slow going, the instructors showed me how to sit in the boat as to reduce the chance of taking a whack on my foot.. it happened on many occasions but WOW, highly recommended. I was living  one of my childhood dreams and I felt awesome.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/DSC00174.jpg)
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 14, 2010, 01:42:21 pm
I leave you with some pictures of the rafting.. it was worth the experience even though my foot took a pounding, so much so that we had to stick around one more day just to give it some time to recover. Luckily the recovery rate is getting quicker.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/IMG_4266.jpg)


(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/IMG_4273.jpg)


(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/IMG_4306.jpg)


(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/IMG_4309.jpg)


Yes, those are my legs sticking up out of the water !!!

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/IMG_4534.jpg)


Big breath.. we are going under !!

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/IMG_4344.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/IMG_4348.jpg)
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 14, 2010, 01:55:01 pm
I have to mention at this stage that I had a bit of a scare.. Boob mc Nabs my lion companion was abducted off my bike by monkeys.. The one female took him high up into a tree.. de flea'd him and then decided that he was not lively enough. About an hour later she let him go but he was stuck high up in a tree.. a few well aimed throws of a stick got the poor guy back.. non the worse for ware but it was a close call !!
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 14, 2010, 03:34:46 pm
It was time to bid farewell to Livingstone, I was happy and satisified that we had spent enough time in the area, it was time to head North towards Choma..

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/DSC00178.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/DSC00177.jpg)

The roads around these areas are very bad, patches of tar in places however the road has become so bad that trucks have made new roads next to the tar.. riding in the bush was that much better than 3m deep potholes. The ride was taking it out of us and the heat was relentless. While we were taking a break a chap pulled up in a 4 x 4, his name was Steve and he was from Gordons Bay, he had moved out here a few months ago to farm and was in the process of bringing his family over. He offered to put us up at his farm in Choma which we gladly accepted. I smell a braai coming on !!

After staying the night with Steve and his neighbour we headed off towards Lusaka.. we had heard many bad things about the inner city itself and indeed when we arrived we could see why. Our bikes received a lot of attention and it was not the attention we were looking for, so we decided seeing as we had loads of time to spare we would ride through Lusaka and try to find somewhere to stay on the outskirts !! it was a plan

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/IMG_7244.jpg)

We came across Eureka a bush camp that takes on its fair load of trucks full of honeys ! http://www.eurekacamp.com/ This would be our overnight rest stop before we headed up towards South Luangwa National Park. The road heading towards the Luangwa river from Lusaka is prime supernike road.. long sweeping corners through a forrest, it is simply breathtaking and we hadn't been on tar this good for ages.. we could'nt help ourselves and gave it stick.. 140km/h and we were having fun !! for the time being anyway.
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 14, 2010, 03:58:08 pm
We were about to find out why okes use maps and little electronic goodies called GPS.. we made a mistake by not confirming distances with another source at the last camp.. my fuel was looking decidedly low.. I knew I should be ok because I had a healthy reserve in my gerry can, but Martin ( who refused to buy a gerry can ) was going to be in a bit more trouble.. we pulled over. Martin was anticipating that I was gonna pull out the "I told you so card" and tried his best to defend his position, but that did not matter ! we had a decision to make, and quick before we lost light. This is not an area you want to be setting up camp on the side of the road, we had heard reports of bandits and this did not please me. We could either use the remaining fuel and put it all in one bike, that bike then goes for help, but we break up and that was not good. Or we share the fuel out and see how far we get !! we had no option and the bugs were biting our asses, lets get outta here..

We must have had about 5km of fuel left when we hit the Luangwa river.. on the one side we saw a sign " Bridge camp" hmmm !! lets check it out. I was thinking that if we had fuel we probably would have gone straight past, but for now it was safer than being on the road.

Woo Hoo, Jackpot ! we spoke to the owners who immediately sent someone off to go and buy some black market fuel for us.. but tonight we were their guests and we rented a campsite. As luck woudl have it we were the only ones there so we got a full nights entertainment from the owners on the history of them owning the place.. nice little jewel they have !!


(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/IMG_7251-1.jpg)

The bar.. yay !!!

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/IMG_7254-1.jpg)

Not the most inviting pool, but with the river WAY down it was a better alternative

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/IMG_7255-1.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/IMG_7273-1.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/IMG_7275-1.jpg)

It was also the 1st time I contacted home to let them know I was ok. I made the decision over this trip not to stay in touch every day, Martin on the other hand phoned his Gf every 20 min, so I nabbed his phone while he was in the shower and phoned home ! It was only day 10 from our relaunch in Nelspruit, but it seemed like we had been away a lot longer.


Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 14, 2010, 04:00:06 pm
(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/IMG_7258-1.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/IMG_7271-1.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/IMG_7282-1.jpg)

Still riding in hiking boots !!!
(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/IMG_7283-1.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/IMG_7284-1.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/IMG_7286-1.jpg)
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Soundboi on December 14, 2010, 04:15:58 pm
Yes yes yes keep 'em coming. Nice!
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 14, 2010, 04:23:42 pm
I will finish off Zambia tonight and start on Malawi..  :thumleft:
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: cloudgazer on December 14, 2010, 04:42:21 pm
Loving this RR.

But you need more pics of pretty overlanders.
 :)
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: White Rhino on December 15, 2010, 07:04:29 am
Good on you for pushing the envelope. Your determination to get out of town likens to the early adventurers. Or is the receiver after you?

Long may the keyboard accompany you!

Next chapter please...
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: letsgofishing on December 15, 2010, 09:20:10 am
Awesome stuff Fuzzy - so pleased to hear you pushed on.
I've got a feeling this is going to get even better.... ;D
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Gee S on December 15, 2010, 07:22:39 pm
Vey nice! Jy Skryf n lekker storie, hou so aan :thumleft:
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: myni on December 16, 2010, 01:09:09 pm
Fantasies!  Gooi mielies!
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Spore on December 16, 2010, 03:43:17 pm
Awesome! Respect for vasbyt & pure adventure spirit! Thanks for sharing! :thumleft:
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Baches on December 16, 2010, 05:48:21 pm
Excellent Mussy.  :thumleft: :thumleft:
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 17, 2010, 09:11:27 am
ahhh, the man himself ! Sorry it has been so long since this rr, I promised it to you ages ago! You know how it goes ! I will post more asap, just have to sort out the pics and get it all down on paper.

Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Baches on December 18, 2010, 09:04:14 am
Definitely worth waiting for bud !!
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Brakenjan on December 19, 2010, 06:32:10 am
Loving it!!

Keep it coming.  :thumleft:
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Waynan on December 20, 2010, 04:03:39 pm
Muz where is the next installment?
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: bike bum on December 20, 2010, 04:10:57 pm
Muz where is the next installment?

+100

My wife is reading this with me....."julle is almal f@#ken mal."
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Kreef on December 20, 2010, 06:44:19 pm
Awesome RR so far! Keep it coming  :thumleft:
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 21, 2010, 09:01:38 am
For some reason I cant find my photos of Eureka at the moment. I was looking for them last night and was thinking about the camp, it was a place that made a good 1st impression. I had initially lost Martin as I barreled along in the rain completely missing the entrance and had to double back much to his annoyance. What a great spot ! wildlife galore, anything from giraffe to Zebra grazing. They actually have staff who have to keep on ushering the Zebra away from the bungalows. It seemed like forever since we had seen a TV, but there one was.. aargh, soccer ! that is all they watch in Zambia and after a few hours we head off to our rooms to chill and get ready for the next day. The overland truck that rolled in was almost empty which proved disappointing but they were just gathering momentum and anyway,  not having to pitch a tent in the rain has our spirits up. I met a pastor who lives about 6km from my house in Cape Town, interesting fellow, the less I say about him the better.. I have the utmost respect for guys who leave their family to travel through Africa to set up schools and clinics, but it smacked of corruption when the conversation turned to how many properties he has and how great the fishing is on his private spot on almost every lake in Africa.. all the proceeds of the church back home and part of the negotiations with local politicians, for a few hours of our time he would happily tell us how to get free land from central African governments!

Anyway, moving on. Zambia was showing us everything she had and frankly that was not much as we headed now from Bridge Camp on the Luangwa river towards Chipata cutting past  the South Luangwa National Park, finding anything was proving to be difficult. I remember the pastor saying to me that Zambia was the land of opportunity, all you had to do was bring something into the country, anything, and you would make a fortune. I remember pondering over this, and he was right, there was very little in Zambia, so in theory you could bring in a few cubes and make a ton, but the average disposable income of the average person in Zambia is so small and they have so many problems including basic distribution and infrastructure, that the thought is quickly dismissed, and it is a pity as the people of Zambia are willing to work and are hungry for opportunity. The further I rode into Zambia the more I started to sense the desperation of the people, maybe it was just me, maybe it was the hours of riding. As we roll up to the 3rd petrol station with checkered tape across the entrance we understand the frustration!!! fuel was becoming a problem and we had it easy, diesel was almost a swear word, this becomes a topic of discussion with the overland trucks, farmers, shop owners.. everyone ran diesel and there was none..
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 21, 2010, 09:07:13 am
Through everyone we had been in contact with South Luangwa National Park was something not to be missed. Heading closer and closer the riding in these parts certainly tested my abilities, deep troughs and bone hammering corrugations, factor in the domestic donkeys and dogs, it makes for some interesting moments. The ride to Flatdogs right on the perimeter of the park is simply something embedded in my memory, deep sand, more corrugations on a road carved through a forest.. breath taking and scary riding. Martin had insisted we visit Flatdogs ( which we found out later is a crocodile ) 
because they had these platforms, much like the base of a tree house, upon which you pitch your tent. Before the time I never actually asked myself why this was the setup, it just sounded like a great experience camping in trees. Upon arrival after what I considered to be a mammoth task as indicated by me collapsing on the welcome mat, we were informed that they were fully booked for the tree platforms but one was opening up tomorrow.. so do we push on, or do we wait for The experience.. we decided to wait and with glee, alongside a river we pitch tents, setup camp and head for the refreshing welcome of the pool ( with slide – oh yeah ) This may be a good time to mention that we entered with 2 warnings. 1) they spotted buffalo earlier, ok, so what ! well, apparently the lions follow the buffalo and the wild dogs follow the lions.. OK and 2) after dark you may not walk around on your own, you have to call a guard who will escort you.

Whatever, we are hardened, seasoned bikers, we did’nt arrive on an air conditioned bus with cocktails you know. And so the sun fell.. and every insect known to God himself came out to investigate the loveliness that was our light and all at once we realized why the platforms were there… needless to say, it was an early night with tents zipped tight, I may add that we endured this creepy crawly hell because a jaapie and his cherrie with a GP number plate refused to move his 4 x 4 from under the only available platform but we leave that be.


Camp attack.. wildlife so close they walked between the tents at night but the platforms were more for the insects.
(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/IMG_7295-1.jpg)

Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 21, 2010, 09:11:09 am
A typical platform tree dwelling that had Martin so excited.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/IMG_7296-1.jpg)

Because Martin had not experienced his platform camping extravangza, we stayed another night, moving ‘camp attack’ from the hostile environment it was currently in to the lofts of fluttering leaves in the trees.. at a cost naturally. Only one problem, there was only space for one tent. Ha ! no problem proclaims Martin, we will share the tent at the top and gear at the bottom.. problem no 2.. I couldn’t get up the stairs that lead to the promised land that was the platform, my foot was just not strong enough to take my entire weight and push myself up even with help.. so I gave Martin my blessing to have his treetop experience and I nested below. That night saw us having one of our biggest thundershowers and a few scares as drunk tourists proceeded to fall off their perched dwellings throughout the night with screams that resembled being eaten by lions, guards with flashlights running around in the general direction of the screams.. the covers went over my head and I did’nt move a muscle.

The next morning I lazed in the pool laughing over the previous nights events with some backpackers and guilty tourists as Martin stripped his bike to find out why it would’nt start, it was too hot and humid to be standing over him bothering him with suggestions and solutions, so while his battery charged I got a tan, but lunch was over soon enough and we were back on the road I had forgotten about.. but it was coming back to me now.
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 21, 2010, 09:12:59 am
By now local information as to when fuel would be available ranged from 2 days to 10 depending on who you asked. The lady at the station indicated with glee that the next station had fuel.. the words were hardly out her mouth and we were off at flat taps.. if they did have fuel, they would’nt have for long, the black market fuel trade is a thriving business and works  very simply ! when a petrol tanker comes and fills up at a station everyone who fancies to make a buck pitches up with 25l containers, wine bottles.. anything that holds petrol. Then all they have to do is wait a few hours for the petrol station to be sucked dry as the huge demand outstrips supply. The petrol station closes, and the 25L containers line the roadside at double the price.. and thinned out a little !

Even overland trucks with their one million km range had fuel issues, we followed these okes all the way from Livingstone to Chipata but it was time to say goodbye as they stretched their legs and did 1000km days.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/IMG_7285-2.jpg)

We were in luck at the next station, as promised they had fuel.. but where were the masses ??? oh no, explained the petrol pump attendant.. “we have no electricity, we can’t pump” we were heading for the Malawi border running on fumes, at this stage a bike with a longer range would be nice, not that I was convinced it would make any difference.

Mamarulas was a campsite spotted by Martin as we were heading out of Zambia, it is a campsite run by South Africans however the owners were away at the time of our arrival never the less it was great to be surrounded by everything South African .. Stormers, Cheetas, Sharks and Blue Bull flags lined the walls, droe wors on the counter, and for a moment you could be at a mates house down the road and not 1000’s of km away from home.. The pet sheep was a nice touch even if the heavy rainfall was making setting up tents somewhat of a nightmare.

Arriving at mamarulas in the Rain !!

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/DSC00182.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/DSC00183-1.jpg)

Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 21, 2010, 09:25:49 am
The next day the fuel problem was still there as much as we wished it was not so. The last station before Malawi and it was as dry as a bone.. we had a tough decision to make. We had enough fuel for maybe 20km, Malawi was about 10km away which means that if we find fuel at the crossing we will be ok, but trying to find out this information was proving fruitless. Amazingly the employees at the petrol station had no idea when fuel would arrive and did’nt much care.. anywhere from the following day to a week! We hung around for a while in the stroke inflicting heat, quietly hoping that it would make a difference and somehow we would be rewarded for our patience. Martin comments that a game of backgammon and a beer is all he needs but it does little to calm the mood.. do we sit or do we go, clearly there has been no fuel here for a while, we can’t even find black market fuel, we had better gap it to the border crossing and ta ta ma chance. So long Zambia thanks for letting us ride through you and experience you, your Zambezi thrilled us, your lack of petrol frustrated us, but it was awesome !

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/DSC00184-1.jpg)


(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/DSC00185-1.jpg)

As a kid I spent time in Zambia and Mozambique, most kids growing up in Rhodesia went to Moz on family holidays at some point but I had never been to Malawi, I can remember collecting Rhodesia & Nyasaland stamps from when these regions were joined by colonies back in the day of David Livingstone besides,  this was the furthest north I had ever been.

Of all the countries this one was my most anticipated, and immediately it did not disappoint, the crossing was quick and painless and the public servants were friendly and eager to assist in making sure we were treated fairly when exchanging currency even offering up their offices as to ensure it was safe and there was no interference, they even negotiated a better rate for us probably on a kickback system but we were glad for the smiles and assistance.. we wave goodbye to the throngs of kids shouting ‘ give me money’ and barely 3km away.. fuel ! We almost kissed the ground, which by the way was drying up making riding conditions much more comfortable.. things were looking up, as they always do in Africa. .

If I can describe happiness it would be this picture, we spent ages at this station just so happy that we had fuel at last.


(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/east%20africa/DSC00187.jpg)
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: The Badger on December 21, 2010, 10:10:23 am
What an awesome ride and RR...............Thanks and keep it coming.

Respect  :thumleft:
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Brandt on December 21, 2010, 10:17:32 am
 :happy1:
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 21, 2010, 02:33:03 pm
Although we came in too far north to visit Blantyre and the upper shire valley, that is destined for a future trip, for now we were heading east towards the lake, I was determined to ride from the southern tip to the northern tip. Lilongwe seemed like the logical direction and we wasted no time. Lilongwe is the political capital of Malawi. It has enough to keep you there for a few days as it hosts the best Malawi has to offer but we were not interested in cities, we had our eye on the lake and we zoomed right through. The road is full of villages and made for some spectacular adventure.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Malawi/DSC00189.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Malawi/DSC00190.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Malawi/DSC00191.jpg)
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 21, 2010, 02:35:00 pm
We were heading for Monkey Bay at Cape Maclear, and from there head down to Kwilembe, we had heard that Monkey Bay was a tourist attraction, but the closer we got reports started talking of wall to wall resorts with water sports.. eeeu, realizing that we had a long way to go, the idea of going south to back track north again was not what we wanted to do at the time, we were already running a few weeks late and we did’nt have the luxury if we wanted to make lake Victoria, so we stayed the course and headed for the lesser visited Senga Bay.. it was a decision that Martin knew I was not entirely comfortable with as with the added km’s we would be chasing daylight again, but it did mean we would be at lake Malawi, surely one of my milestones on this trip.

By now Martin knew that I hate arriving in the dark, not because I don’t like riding at night but lets look at whet you get.. 1) You can’t see the back okes.. and I am not being racist, but those okes are really black and thy walk on the side of the road which has no lights, a car coming in the other direction and you cant see shit, a silhouette could be anything from a goat to a kid, you have no idea 2) Animals – donkeys, goats, cows, chickens, dogs.. you name it, it crosses the road at night, the road kill the next day is a sight to behold, sometimes the rust bucket of a car is still there.. probably for good. 3) you get lost, you loose any sense of direction and stopping asking silhouettes for directions is not fun which rounds up no 4: you cant see who you are asking for directions – for all you know he is holding a knife, you will never know until it is too late.. I can go on forever.. so although riding into Senga bay at dusk was one of the most incredible experiences I have ever had, I could’nt let Martin know this or it would become a habit, so he got more than a few choice words from me at every chance I had cementing the ‘no night riding’ rule.

We were looking for Cool Runnings, it had quite a reputation and came highly recommended. We stopped off at a petrol station ( which had lights and fuel – two thumbs up ) to ask if they knew the way and by sheer chance we ran into the owner who gave us a lovely escort through the alleyways of the village all the way to her front door. Awesome, we have a safe place to stay.. food, company.. and the Malawi experience continues.. tomorrow I get to see it! Lake Malawi and I can’t wait.
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 21, 2010, 02:38:37 pm
Sam, the owner and founder of cool runnings is no ordinary person, she is short, well spoken, intelligent and one kick ass woman. Her surfer husband started Cool Runnings in CT with his mates, it grew into the cool runnings we knew a few years back, after the tragic death of her husband she moved to Malawi and what a difference she is making.

Her attention to detail made us feel right at home, and best of all, it cost peanuts.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Malawi/DSC00196.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Malawi/DSC00201.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Malawi/DSC00202.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Malawi/DSC00205.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Malawi/DSC00213.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Malawi/DSC00215.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Malawi/DSC00224.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Malawi/DSC00225.jpg)
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 21, 2010, 02:44:24 pm
Trying to even pretend to keep up with this woman is impossible as she builds the only library in the district, secures overseas sponsors to develop an aids wing at the local hospital, mainly US funded through church groups.

She has started a local police forum creating safe houses for domestic violence and orphans, she started a soccer league for the youth which started at 2 teams and has grown to 14 teams.. while we were there she was taking delivery of a custom built tractor, delivered my sponsors in the US.. it just never slowed down. We loved experiencing Cool Runnings in Senga bay so much that we made a generous donation to one of her many causes, our money went to providing school fees and bursaries so kids could go to school, we donated almost nothing and it was enough to put one kid through school from jnr school all the way to Matric, we intended to stay for one day and 3 days later we were still there, I even had their logo painted on my bike.. it’s an awesome and inspiring place where you don’t wake up to an alarm, you wake up to singing, you don’t sit in traffic in the morning, you watch the sun rise over the lake, and amazingly you have everything you need and more. As I get caught up in it all I can feel myself getting sucked in by Malawi and it is awesome.

The views of the lake did not dissapoint..

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Malawi/DSC00263.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Malawi/DSC00264.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Malawi/DSC00227.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Malawi/DSC00274.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Malawi/DSC00276.jpg)

She took us on a tour of the new libary she was busy building with the community.. inspiring how she managed to get this building donated by the department of defence.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Malawi/DSC00253.jpg)

Time for a bit of TLC for the bikes which were holding up like stars.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Malawi/DSC00247.jpg)

Seeing as I was riding with second hand plastics after the Nam off I got a local artist to give the bike a good going over with some traditional designs, the bike drew a massive amount of attention being so bright.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Malawi/DSC00272.jpg)
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 21, 2010, 02:52:31 pm
More pics of the lake.. describing this is impossible.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Malawi/DSC00279.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Malawi/DSC00281.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Malawi/DSC00282.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Malawi/DSC00292.jpg)

Seeing as we now had a bit of a base camp we left all our luggage behind and explored the area. I have always been a fishkeeper so when we heard of the malawi chchlid farm on the other side of the bay we headed out for a day ride coming across some gems.

This is Phillip, we bought a drum or 2 from him, where we were going to put them was another issue.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Malawi/DSC00286.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Malawi/DSC00284.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Malawi/DSC00294.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Malawi/DSC00301.jpg)
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 21, 2010, 03:02:08 pm
We cut back into Salima and headed up the lake to Nkhotakota where I was eager to find Livingstones Tree. It seemed disappointing that such an historical place was poorly marked but riding all that dirt and dust to get there was worth it.. greeted by 100’s of children.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Malawi/DSC00309.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Malawi/DSC00307.jpg)
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 21, 2010, 03:05:26 pm
(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Malawi/DSC00306.jpg)
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Gat Slag on December 21, 2010, 03:07:47 pm
 :thumleft:  vkn lekker sover! Wow
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 21, 2010, 03:24:44 pm
Malawi was proving to be awesome, the riding conditions are good although along the lake you can get some really nasty patches.. we came across a chap riding solo around Africa.. we quenched our thirst while having a chat to the lad who was doing a really great job, sweet ride.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Malawi/DSC00310.jpg)
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 21, 2010, 03:36:43 pm
now old age may be catching up with me but I have no idea where this place is, I know it is North of Nkhotakota and south of Nkhata Bay, all I can tell you is that we stumbled across it by accident as we had been riding hard that day and the sun was getting low, all in all, it was spectacular. It was a lodge of sorts which offered beach camping.. I will let the pics speak for themselves.

This place started us having a quote of the day. We decided not to cook our own food on this day. Generally speaking we would prepare our own food during the trip, but they had a lovely bar and a resturant. So we sat down and ordered pizza, this was going to be a treat and a half. Within 2 min of placing our order the electricity went out, our waiter, in his best english, announced and summerised the event.. " ladies and Gentlemen, everything was going good, now it's shit" We could not contain our laughter and hence the quote of the day was born.

Some views of the beach, campsite and the lodge.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Malawi/DSC00327.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Malawi/DSC00334.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Malawi/DSC00330-1.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Malawi/DSC00313.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Malawi/DSC00325.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Malawi/DSC00339.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Malawi/DSC00341.jpg)

Our campsite was simple but it was 10m from the beach, this is one of the more special days camping we had as it really came out of the blue.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Malawi/DSC00331.jpg)

The paint on my bike was holding up, for some reason I thought it would peel off the next day, but it was rock solid. Have you ever seen a transalp like this ??

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Malawi/DSC00338.jpg)
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 21, 2010, 03:50:28 pm
From Dwange we had heard rumors of a little place called Candy ( Kande ) Beach and we were attracted to it like bears to honey, by this time we were learning how to filter the massive amount of conflicting information we got on an average day. Riding through a country you have never been to before without maps or GPS was proving easy so far, but we had it easy, we knew we were following a lake, and everyone spoke English. We wondered how long that would last for.… Riding into Kande Beach was like walking into an oasis made for the gods, but, getting there was tough going, it was hot, very hot, the sand was so deep we considered turning around but that seemed even harder than pressing on, infact I distinctly remember trying to turn around at one stage proclaiming that it is just not worth it.. tough, it was forward or nothing, the bike was too heavy in the sand. Just before the gates the road was lined with stalls selling all sorts of locally produced crafts, we knew we were close.. woo hoo ! so naturally when we arrived full of sand, sweat and heartbeats racing from the exhausting effort, it was declared that 1st things 1st.. lets get a beer.

Oh boy, we got that and so much more. Maybe because the beer was cold for a change, maybe it was the tropical setting, maybe because there happened to be not one but 2 overland trucks full of honeys from around the world.. but wow, Kande Beach  I called it the land of milk and honey. If I was retired, I would open a place like this.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Malawi/DSC00342.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Malawi/DSC00344.jpg)

Even the bikes got some well deserved shade !!

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Malawi/DSC00368.jpg)

Just incase you thought the honeys were made up, and in hindsight I should have taken more photos.. hmm.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Malawi/DSC00349.jpg)

Martin was having the time of his life.. it was still so hard to get used to this as being a lake. With beaches like this diving into the 28 degree water and it being fresh water was amazing.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Malawi/DSC00351.jpg)
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 21, 2010, 03:57:52 pm
Now there was a downside to this whole thing.. not only did we say no maps or GPS, but we also said that we would’nt just buy food, we were going to be completely self sufficient along this ride up north. So we would buy groceries where we could, but generally there was very little, also space was a problem, we could’nt take a spice rack with us and there in lies the bad news. Unfortunately us bikers had the reputation of being the cockroaches of the beach camp as we scrounged prized items such as salt, sugar, coffee, spices, blitz, an onion.. anything we could get our hands on from the potential jackpot called overland tour guides.. our reputation deserved we retired to our side of the camp with our onion, piece of blitz and… Jaap.!!


Jaap was a great oke we met at Kande Beach riding solo from somewhere in Europe ( I think it was the Neatherlands ) to CT on a KTM 640.. he was writing a blog for a magazine back home and part of a radio show.. pfff, sponsored okes have it easy we tell ourselves, anyway he just shook his head when he saw our gear, he was a good 35kg lighter than us, serious, he had nothing according to us. He was the one who told us about the rain gear.. again he would laugh and we would just shake our heads at him, he had to lie down and roll into his tent it was so small, what’s up with that !!! He was working on very different assumptions than we were.

Who needs gorgeous babes from the UK when you have Jaap !!

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Malawi/DSC00359.jpg)

Jaap the next morning as he gets ready to depart, bless the size of his tent.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Malawi/DSC00363.jpg)

Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 21, 2010, 04:12:49 pm
Lake Malawi is simply magnificent and Kande Beach was just another magnificent place to chill and relax, so much so that we found ourselves staying there a while taking in the beauty before moving on. We were already starting to have discussions about how slow we were going, at this rate we would be lucky to make Tanzania. We were just enjoying Malawi THAT much !! Breathing a bit of reality into our conversations we had more or less started to have a return date in mind and it was already the 18th of November ( yes this all happened last year  and yes it has taken me this long to write the rr ) we had to get moving and soon because if we were to head that far north still and come back down through Moz we would be hitting rainy season, it was time to get real and make up some ground, again, our overland friends had pointed us in the direction of Nkhata Bay where there was apparently loads of places to stay.

Nkhata Bay was one I was looking forward to, based on what we had seen and experienced it had to blow our minds. From here we were thinking it was our last chance to stop procrastinating and try to find a way to explore Likoma and Chizumulu Islands but the bay was not what we were looking for at all, too many people, too much hustle and bustle, too many pale skinny tourists from Europe looking like they belong there and simply too dirty compared to what we had already seen, besides there was rain around and I would rather be riding in the rain than sitting in a tent.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Malawi/DSC00376.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Malawi/DSC00371.jpg)
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 21, 2010, 04:19:50 pm
So we skip town, leaving behind the quest to get to the islands that has proven to be difficult as the lake sinks one ferry after another, with no money to fix the ferries and no NSRI of any kind on the lake, it is just left to decay. With Mzuzu just 50km away and dubbed the capital of the North we get to moving on, we have time in the day. We also note that the bikes have been taking a hammering, Martin needs a tyre badly and I need to replace a bolt he lovingly snapped while trying to help me reattach my front wheel ( see this rr does not mention all the hardships along the side of the road ) pfff, what problems, we are riding Hondas !!

Mzuzu is  a place you can ride through without feeling guilty, it was good to get some fresh supplies and a full tank of fuel. I started asking around for a place that could replace a snapped off bolt but there was nothing around that really fitted the description and I was ushered to the government's department of public works, apparently they would be able to sort me out.

In the mean time Martin pushed off to source a tyre..

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Malawi/DSC00377.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Malawi/DSC00380.jpg)

Shame, the chaps at the public works tried hard, but with nothing except a blunt saw between the lot there was nothing they could do, they are underpaid, have no tools and get by every day with what they can find. They are humble and polite. When they see my tool kit their eyes light up and within an hour they had a bolt replaced. In hindsight i could have just done it myself but it turned out to be an experience.

Martin never found a tyre.

Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 21, 2010, 04:34:58 pm
 Nothing more can be said, if you haven’t seen it put it on your bucket list. The name Malawi was inspired by the word Malavi which means reflected light, flames or rays in Chichewa a language I just never got the hang of. This new name was seen as a reference to the sun rising over the lake, bringing a fresh light to the country.. no wonder they sing and smile all the time even though I have not witnessed so many with so little. The history of this country and its people is as fascinating as it is sad, the Banda era bought decades of  desperation, some 250 000 people either disappeared or were murdered under his rule of over 30 years and the new government faces massive challenges we can hardly comprehend. New laws may have been passed affording Malawians freedom of speech but they suffer heavily. Without reading about their history you would never know, I generally got the feeling that there was a great sense of national pride, something the Zambians seemed to lack.

Malawi was hardly finished with us yet, and if we were taking into account that by this time we should have been close to Burundi we knew we were far behind where we thought we would be, but who in their right mids rides past these places to reach a destination.. this is what it is all about.

We found more of the same wherever we went in Malawi. North of Mzuzu we were heading for Chiweta but we must have bad information again, so we take a jump a bit further up to Chitimba.. Immediately you could see this is the place and we found an aptly named place ‘ beach camp’, another hive of activity from young tourists exploring the coast of the lake. I was here where we met a father / son team riding BMW’s, also writing and blogging for a radio station back home in Belguim as they made their way through Africa down to CT. It is also where we packed up about 20kg of unused gear and sent it home in the back of a 4 x 4.. I fear if I talk too much about these places the rr will start looking like a book but Chitimba was special, I was looking for Livingstonia !!.

Beach Camp in Jitinga..

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Malawi/DSC00382.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Malawi/DSC00384.jpg)

The 4 x 4 in the background ended up a lot heavier as we sent a load of crap back home, mainly clothing and unused gear.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Malawi/DSC00387.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Malawi/DSC00389.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Malawi/DSC00394.jpg)

The BMW's of the father and son team. There was something like 20 years age difference between them, so the father rode a new bike and the son.. a 20 year old bike, shame poor sod. That being said, the older bike was doing much better and needed fewer repairs. They were doing a mamoth route which made ours look like a ride down to the suburbs.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Malawi/DSC00386.jpg)

Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 21, 2010, 04:40:35 pm
We head out for the day and leave Chitimba. Chitimba is the villiage where you turn off the main N / S road to reach Livingstonia and the Chitimba falls. Although our stay along the white sandy beaches with overland babes was a highlight, the historical and personal delight of reaching Livingstonia was trumps even though we clearly missed the sign that said ‘ FALLS”.

I learnt about Livingstonia in primary school as the colonial history classes were jammed down our throat like gospel. Basically Livingstone died somewhere around 1873, I don’t think the exact date is actually known as he had a tendency of getting lost and disappearing for years, but  in 1875 a mission was erected at Cape Maclear which was named Livingstonia however malaria was rife and forced them to abandon the mission and they moved it North to Bandawe, a village we passed through as well, but this too was unsuccessful, so around 1900 or so it was moved to its present position where the mission flourished and a town developed. The ride is steep, loose gravel and narrow but worth every second as you get a view you can’t describe overlooking Lake Malawi. At the top of the escarpment you get to discover the mission and the town, we even found a very enterprising beekeeper and eagerly stored some honey for later.


(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Malawi/DSC00414.jpg)

A place wide enough to pull over for a photo

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Views a photo cant display

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Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: letsgofishing on December 21, 2010, 04:49:28 pm
Awesome stuff FM  :thumleft: - makes me want to pack up and leave for Malawi NOW!!!  ;D
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 21, 2010, 04:59:54 pm
At the top you will not be dissapointed.. ok, well, maybe just a little. Malawi has all the history, it just does not have the money to pump into tourism. Thank goodness those english fellows knew how to build, because all the buildings are there and in great shape. It was a pity to be surrounded by such poverty. As we wondered through a graveyard it was hard not to miss the chap who came stumbling past as drunk as a lord without a care in the world, he ment no harm and his conversation with himself sounded serious. it made me wonder why in 110 odd years absolutely nothing seems to have developed in this region and in many respects it was bitter sweet.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Malawi/DSC00407.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Malawi/DSC00405.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Malawi/DSC00409-1.jpg)

At the bottom of Livingstonia you will find the best banana pancakes in the world. How we came across the best pancakes in the world is a long story and involves 3 very cute French / Canadian teens who were living and working in the community for about 4 months before we arrived, but all jokes and stories aside, feast your eyes on these.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Malawi/DSC00431.jpg)
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Katundu on December 21, 2010, 05:00:01 pm
:happy1:
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 21, 2010, 05:05:15 pm
Meeting such a proud Malawian who is doing everything he can to make his life better makes trips like this well worth it, to us it looks like a shack, and it is, but Rasta was awesome and made every effort humanly possible to make us feel like we were at home and in my book he gets a 10 out of 10.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Malawi/DSC00422.jpg)

The ladies.. very cute, very french, very ohh la la

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Malawi/DSC00424.jpg)

This is Frank.. over the 2 days we were there he became my biggest fan and just wanted to sit on the bike.. His job was to take the cooldrinks out the fridge and serve them, he was also the man in control of making the slup chips which is fried over a fire next to the road.. hey, it worked for them.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Malawi/DSC00426.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Malawi/DSC00427.jpg)

We were leaving Malawi the next day, eish what an experience, reflecting on what we have just done leaves us excited for what is coming up. Malawi was sucking me in to the point where I started looking for property as for all its hardship the people of Malawi are something special, I’m loving this ! , Malawi is always a place I will go back to but Tanzania was in our sights and that was very exciting. The last time I was in Tanzania it was with my mate Thomas, when we came back from Kili the year before we loved it so much that I helped him start a company taking tours up Kilimanjaro, he is doing 2 back to back summits as we speak with the 1st summit being on New Years 2010 ! go Thomas you biscuit.

We were on our way to the land of the Maasai and Swahili, we had no idea that what we were about to see would blow us away. Tanzania or bust !!


Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: The Badger on December 21, 2010, 05:59:37 pm
Classic.

I am learning so much from your RR, from what is needed( the bare essentials), routes, what to expect and writing skills. Thanks.  :thumleft:

Did you end up paddling in the sand or could you  find other lines off the road perhaps?? My biggest concern is thick sand with a full bike + pillion....... :-\

Cant wait for the rest.
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 22, 2010, 10:33:37 am
um.. well to be fair I was quite inexperienced when we took on this trip, I only got my licence a few days before we left and had been riding the bike for just over a year, my off in Nam was 100% lack of experience. So in the beginning the sand was really tough going expecially in Botswana and later in Northern Moz. Fork paddling, for the most part I was off the bike pushing when there was hectic sand.. In hindsight I would have liked to be a bit fitter as well.

After our Nam tour recently I got a ton of sand time. Myself Wayne and Martin have increased our skills 10 fold since the Africa trip and looking back on the Africa trip I think I would be a lot more successful at the sand, gravel and potholes. Pillions are a different thing alltogether as the weight is not only high up but it moves.. that would take some skill and training. Thankfully during the whole trip I only fell a handfull of times and that was mainly due to going too slow in sand or not having confidence.

For the most part you can get from Ct to Nairobi on Tar. Sometimes bad tar, but tar never the less. We did not choose the easiest route on this trip but we certainly did'nt choose the hardest mainly because we had to be safe. That being said you have to be prepared for anything and sometimes that means going off road and taking your chances.

Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 22, 2010, 10:52:16 am
Heading towards Tanzania I was giddy with anticipation, I was fascinated with the tribes of East Africa and I had spent a bit of time reading up on most of them although by the time I had reached the border I think I had forgotten most of it, there are so many and they are so diverse, there are the Akamba, Baganda, Haya, El-Molo, Kalenjin, Luo ( I remember because it is the tribe of US President Obama’s father) Kikuyu, Maasai ( who comprise of less than 5% of the total population in Kenya and Tanzania combined ) Makonde, Pare, Sukuma & Nyamwezi, I am sure there are some I have left out, each tribe has their geographical location, cultures and beliefs, I was hoping that during our ride we would get to experience as many of these cultures as possible.

As we headed up the last leg of Malawi passing through Karonga and Tunduma crossing the border which entails the usual procedure of having carnets stamped, however we had a slightly bigger problem to discuss. We had not only suffered a 5 week setback in Namibia, but we had really taken our time exploring as much of Malawi as we could, possibly staying in some places too long and possibly not covering as much distance per day as we would have initially expected, so, in a nutshell, we had to decide on a general direction. I wanted to head NW to traverse Lake Tanganyika destination Burundi, Martin wanted to explore the Southern Highlands, and head for Dodoma which is the legislative capital of Tanzania from there we would head north to Mwanza on the southern Tip of lake Victoria.. at least if we feel we are running out of time we would be in a better position. This is where not having maps and a gps hurt our ability to make a good decision, not knowing if there were parks ahead of us that we would not be able to pass through is one example.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/tanzania/DSC00437.jpg)

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In the end we had to face reality, the crash had set us back too much, we had no idea what to expect in Northern Mozambique with the rains approaching and we were not on an unlimited time schedule or budget. It was not an easy decision but there was a lot of road ahead so we set off in the general direction of Dodoma, from there we could peel off in any direction. At the end of the day we favored the opportunity to take our time.

Tanzania has its own feel, and it is something you pick up immediately much like passing from Zambia into Malawi, I thought Malawians were polite but Tanzanians place a premium on politeness, and courtesy. Greetings are essential and it is common to enquire about the well being of the person you are speaking to as well as his family before asking for directions, a place to stay or where petrol may be found. Although Tanzania has a fairly equal split of Muslim and Christian worshipers I found the Muslim influence more profound not only in the way people dressed but in the way they decorated and built their houses.

We stopped off briefly at Mbeya as it had been another long day with a crossing, so time was not our friend today.. I say briefly as the campsight we found was not great. You know when you would rather camp out in the bush than be subjected to a place that is so far out your comfort zone that you just can't get used to it, plus it was raining so we were miserable. Zanzania was turning out to be such an interesting ride going through villages and forests.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/tanzania/DSC00440-1.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/tanzania/DSC00441.jpg)

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The next day we wasted no time in heading for Iringa. What an amazing ride, everything was green and gorgeous, Iringa is perched on the side of a mountain overlooking a valley, getting there by car or bus would have been a nightmare but on the bikes it was a lot more fun although I missed the lake already, this was something very different.  We had heard about a place to camp for the night which was called The Riverside Campsite about 13km out of town so we did’nt stick around much to explore the town.

Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 22, 2010, 11:23:02 am
The Riverside Campsite was a gem, with shady riverside camping and twin tented bandas going for a steal. I still remember the glint in my eye the following morning as we dove head first into a breakfast fit for a king. It also gave us some time to unpack and sort out the smelly mess that had become our gear, grab a shower and get some rest. The campsight was clean, neat, lush and comfortable.. 10 out of 10. So with all our food, accommodation and bike issues sorted the debate about how to get into or around National Parks in Tanzania had us guessing on a route.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/tanzania/DSC00447.jpg)

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Our experiences so far had been fairly consistent, parks do not like bikes but just ahead of us was the Mikumi National Park which has a road running right through it and Morogoro was a destination just like any other. I was not very happy, I wanted to go North, not East.

 Martin was starting to get a little stick from the girlfriend back home who was apparently not very impressed about something almost every day, constantly needing attention and calls for some reason. It really started to piss me off as it swung his moods sometimes not speaking for hours after a call to her, it was frustrating for him trying to solve emotionally challenging issues back home with expensive and uncertain cell phone reception. I on the other hand left my cell at home !!
With Martin having to deal with the miss and traveling under such strained conditions of always having to find food, find a place to stay, are you safe, do you have fuel.. etc moods started to swing and before long we were not happy campers with each other.

Surviving more than a few blow ups on a trip like this just happens and you have to deal with it. There is no space for ego’s. Not working together can spell disaster, and quick, so no matter what you forgive, forget and do the best you can. When traveling you have to take the human dynamics into account and after so many days of traveling so close, making decisions on everything together it is bound to happen, you can’t plan for it, you just have to roll with it. During this rr I have not really touched on many of the problems and trying times you face, there is the ever lurking crime, poor communication, bad weather, terrible food at times, suspect accommodation, corrupt officials, you name it, you will have to face. How you face it will determine ultimately how you perceive the whole experience of traveling by bike through a country far away from home.

With Martins 12 year relationship back home on a knives edge we head off into the Mikumi National Park and like a magnet we were drawn towards Dar and the acceptance that that lake Victoria would have to be conquered another day.. It was disappointing but part of what the trip was throwing at us.
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 22, 2010, 11:29:14 am
With tensions easing the road was ahead and all was good.. for a while.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/tanzania/DSC00456.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/tanzania/DSC00458.jpg)

The picture above is easily the most pissed off I have ever been in my life, for the 51st time I got another puncture. So I tried tyre weld.. for fuck sakes it did not work. Which means now I have a puncture and 500ml of shit squiched in my tyre. It was easily 35 degrees, with gear on we were loosing 1l of water a min. So I pushed the bike off the road to this spot, only to pick up about 4 massive thorns.. I think I completly lost it at this point.. Martin is taking the pic, what you dont see is him laughing at me while I rant and rave about how kuk things are.
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 22, 2010, 11:35:56 am
With Martins 12 year relationship back home on a knives edge and my temper high after having to unpack the bike and replace the tube in 35 degree heat we head off into the Mikumi National Park and like a magnet we were drawn towards Dar and the acceptance that that lake Victoria would have to be conquered another day.. It was disappointing but part of what the trip was throwing at us. There is nothing you can do, accept it as part of the experience.

Riding through the park towards Morogoro was a great experience and within an hour we were all smiles again. It is strange how these long trips do that. We were not allowed to take our bikes into the main entrance of the park, as the guide pointed out to us the real threat of being eaten by lions, we tried to explain to him that we had no intention of riding through the park, we only intended to visit the restaurant about 300m away for a drink.. “ no sir, you cannot go in by bike..” but you can walk’ now, ordinarily this would be funny, I think we have a better chance on a bike against lions than walking, but in 30 degree heat and having to carry all our gear, we were not that impressed with the young lad at the gate who was keen to follow policy loud and proud.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/tanzania/DSC00462-1.jpg)

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We reached Morogoro a bit late in the day so decided to have a look around, grab some cash at a bank and find a place to camp for the night, without sugar coating it, Morogoro is busy, bustling and at times quite a dirty town. Finding a place to stay proved almost impossible as we rejected place after place. I refused to even stay in the campsite it was so over run and offered no security.

We did at one point enquire at the Morogoro hotel, but it was simply way over our budget, that being said, after a few frustrating hours riding around and after much discussion and debate we found ourselves tucked away in an airconditioned room at the hotel, bikes secure, ahh, it hurt to fork out the moola but in hindsight it was worth it. I picked up my 50th puncture and Martin had picked up a bit of an oil leak which he was keeping an eye on. While unpacking our bikes we noticed the hotel was swarming with police, apparently there was a conference of some sort going on, we were approached by a stern looking fellow escorted by very official looking lads, he was interested in where we were coming from and going to as almost every official seems to be. He turned out to be the minister of police for Tanzania including traffic.. I wasted no time in complaining about the lack of control he seemed to have on the busses that make our taxi’s at home seem asleep. As we relayed our experiences of being forced off the road and dodging overloaded busses overtaking on blind rises ( true story ) we noticed the official looking chap behind the minister ( who turned out to be the traffic chief ) catching a sweat and rightly so. The minister was clearly not impressed that tourists like us were giving his department a red card.

Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 22, 2010, 12:38:35 pm
The hotel was awesome...

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/tanzania/DSC00468.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/tanzania/DSC00475.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/tanzania/DSC00472.jpg)

The next morning I woke up more than a bit broken, the days of riding were tanking it out of me and stiffness was the order of the day. there was nothing like doing some stretched to the local morning fitness show which looked like it was from the 80's

Next stop.. Dar !!

Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: letsgofishing on December 22, 2010, 12:48:18 pm
FM, sorry, but I have to ask you this...what on earth posessed you to leave home without maps???
No GPS I can understand, but no maps.... ???
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 23, 2010, 11:41:44 am
In reality it not a decision we made upfront. It was just the way it worked out. We made the effort during planning to buy some maps and to try and plan routes but it just did'nt work for us. The maps either did not give us the detail we wanted, they did not show the reality of what was on the ground so I found working with maps proved frustrating.

Some of the guys we met along the way were glued to maps like they were the Bible and I am sure they ended up in better positions than we did at times. We wanted to be directed by local information and to decide on a route as we went. This meant that it was almost impossble to plan more than a day or so in advance and it really did cause some problems with regard to getting fuel etc, it also caused a lot of conflicting information regarding road conditions and security alerts, but for me it was also about interacting with the locals. Whenever we would catch up to some tourists we would look at their map and see where we were and where we were possibly heading so it was not like we never looked at a map. Especially in Northern Mozambique where it became a nightmare.

If we really felt insecure we would take photos of their maps and reference them if need be. The problem with going over such a long distance is detail in maps. Travelling with google maps would have been the best thing ever.
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: letsgofishing on December 23, 2010, 02:21:37 pm
That's a fair enough answer - I'm pleased it worked out for you  :thumleft:
But I still would have liked a map just to show the relative locations of towns if a decision needed to be made on which direction to go.
If you were to do a similar trip, would you take maps?
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: White Rhino on December 24, 2010, 06:37:35 am
Respect!

Leaving home without maps, cell phone etc.. wanting to travel further north when time was against you says one thing, you weren't in a hurry to come home.

Bring it on....

Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on December 24, 2010, 02:12:05 pm
That's a fair enough answer - I'm pleased it worked out for you  :thumleft:
But I still would have liked a map just to show the relative locations of towns if a decision needed to be made on which direction to go.
If you were to do a similar trip, would you take maps?

Dude, if I had to do a similar trip I am sure I would do quite a bit differently. I am not sure I would take maps,  like I said there are so many people travelling through Africa, and they all have maps so it is easy to reference if need be. Don't expect to buy maps on route, they just do not exist.

If I had to do a trip like this again I would take lonely planet books, they provide you with source information like health risks, food information, town maps, history and culture information which makes interacting with locals so much easier. I did take the East Africa lonely planet but it covered most of the countries we never got to visit like Uganda and Kenya.. they are well worth the money and the weight.

I will finish up the rr over these holidays, and will post again on the 5th or there about.

Muz


Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Wil on December 24, 2010, 05:14:37 pm
“ yup, I used to be you in that car thinking the same thing… enjoy work sucker!!”
:thumleft: Great Line for a GREAT feeling!
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Baches on December 28, 2010, 10:26:13 am
 :thumleft:
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: letsgofishing on December 28, 2010, 10:34:45 am
That's a fair enough answer - I'm pleased it worked out for you  :thumleft:
But I still would have liked a map just to show the relative locations of towns if a decision needed to be made on which direction to go.
If you were to do a similar trip, would you take maps?

Dude, if I had to do a similar trip I am sure I would do quite a bit differently. I am not sure I would take maps,  like I said there are so many people travelling through Africa, and they all have maps so it is easy to reference if need be. Don't expect to buy maps on route, they just do not exist.

If I had to do a trip like this again I would take lonely planet books, they provide you with source information like health risks, food information, town maps, history and culture information which makes interacting with locals so much easier. I did take the East Africa lonely planet but it covered most of the countries we never got to visit like Uganda and Kenya.. they are well worth the money and the weight.

I will finish up the rr over these holidays, and will post again on the 5th or there about.

Muz


Cool FM - looking very forward to the rest!  :thumleft:
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: flatty on December 28, 2010, 07:39:22 pm
Brilliant rr, looking forward to your next installment.
BTW, looks like you foot/ankle healed OK?
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: MatchStick on December 29, 2010, 09:55:24 am
 :thumleft: awesome subscribed
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Would I? on December 29, 2010, 02:05:30 pm
Great RR...... Looking forward to the rest.  :thumleft:
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Tenrider on January 01, 2011, 03:45:47 pm
Subscribed! :blob1:
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: JMOL on January 02, 2011, 10:25:36 am
Wonderful so far.

Respect
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: KwaiPappaGaai on January 03, 2011, 01:56:24 pm
Just skimmed through it and epic! Will read it later and then talk to you guys about my route up to Malawi! cheers
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Just Blip It! on January 03, 2011, 11:22:34 pm
Awesome man, keep it coming! :drif:
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on January 05, 2011, 11:43:20 am
Brilliant rr, looking forward to your next installment.
BTW, looks like you foot/ankle healed OK?


Yeah, it took a while to heal, mainly because I did not really treat it as well as I should have early on, also leaving before it had healed just delayed the healing process. It took about 3 months before I thought it felt ok. Sorry for the delay with this rr, family were down for holidays but I will start it up again from tomorrow.

Muz
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Janneman on January 05, 2011, 01:16:37 pm
  :o  ??? :o :o :o :o

Stunning! Subscribed
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: bradleys on January 06, 2011, 03:25:28 pm
More please ;DThis is a great read ,well done,now get typing :deal: :peepwall:
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Baches on January 07, 2011, 08:27:23 am
 ???
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: charlw on January 10, 2011, 07:31:05 am
very interesting. Look forward to the rest.
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: charlw on January 10, 2011, 07:31:28 am
excuse the pun.
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Soundboi on January 10, 2011, 03:16:05 pm
I NEED my fix.
Type dammit, NOW!!!!

Pwitty pleeease. 
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on January 11, 2011, 02:41:50 pm
Next installment on its way tomorrow... promise  O0
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on January 11, 2011, 03:28:38 pm
It is worth mentioning something about us unlucky okes who have tubes : getting a puncture in the middle of somewhere with 35 degree heat beating down on your fully packed bike is no fun, you can just imagine having to unpack the bike, pull the wheel off, take out the tube, attempt to fix it and pump it back up, get everything together, repack the bike.. then realise it did'nt work only to start all over again... so when you have a bit of a leak and you find a tyre repair place behind some dodge garage, you pay a few bucks with a smile to have them do it for you while you sit in the shade with a Fanta.. however, when you can hear the rims being murdered from 100m away clearly you get second thoughts, guilt creeps in, but it is too late now.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/tanzania/DSC00480.jpg)

These okes did an amazing job of scratching my rims to hell and back.. they fixed the puncture but somehow managed to put the tube back in all fucked up.. so in the next 60km I had a ripped tube again.. sometimes it is just better to do it yourself.
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on January 12, 2011, 09:29:57 am
I can remember walking into a Pick n’ Pay in Plattekloof a few months back and on the cover of a magazine was a chap who rode from SA to Zanzibar solo on a BMW 1200GS, I can remember being that guy who was just itching to do something epic like that. It may have been the Getaway Mag I’m not sure, but I thought of that cover as we headed into Dar which was surreal. Dar had always been a destination we would see on this trip, I just did’nt think we would be here so soon. We should be in Uganda by now. Anyway, I was trying not to think of what should have been and just take in as much as possible without getting totally lost. Besides the narrow winding streets overflowing with people the 1st thing you simply cannot miss is the traffic, I had to remind myself to look for traffic lights, after so many days of just riding wherever you wanted it seemed strange and annoying to stop at a red light. Where there are no lights the general rule of thumb is biggest bike goes 1st, and that was us.!!

It had taken us 25 days to reach Dar, that was about 10 days more than our mate Jerry who did this trip 2 months earlier. We may have been slow, but we were here and in one piece. Dar was an important stop over for us, it was to be more than just a rest day or 2, it was our chance to catch up with some crazy banking and currency exchange issues we were experiencing , Martin was in desperate need of a back tyre and needed to attend to that oil squeezing out the head, I needed a tube to replace my one which had multiple slow leaks from hastily applied patches, we both needed new oil filters and oil and the bikes needed a good lube service. Up to now the bikes had really performed well and we were very pleased but a little TLC was in order.
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on January 12, 2011, 09:36:45 am
As always, before I would do anything I insisted on finding a place to stay while there was daylight. I like base camps, it makes me feel much more secure and you can dump all the weight. From there the search can proceed for finding a spare parts place, a workshop of sorts, explore and take in some local flavor
.
From what I observed he overland trucks generally don’t stay in Dar, they head out to the Northern or Southern beaches and from there they take their clients over to places like Zanzibar and Pemba. After trying a few recommendations gathered from locals within Dar like the YMCA of all places, we realized they had the right idea so we hit the ferry and went in search of something a bit more quiet and exotic than the bustling streets. One of the 1st things I noticed was the queue of massive container ships that were waiting for their turn to come into port. Waiting for the ferry I got the chance to observe the locals, we must have stood out like sore thumbs. Trying not to look like a tourist was impossible, but I was very impressed, we were not swarmed, there were no beggars asking for some Shillings and no kids wanting to touch the bikes and ask for sweets. We were just left alone to do our thing and that was appreciated in the thick, sultry 35 degree heat. Getting onto the ferry was an experience, 1st the trucks and cars go on, then they allow bycicles and motorbikes to filter through the gaps of the parked cars and lastly the passengers filter through whatever is left.. on the other side mayhem is controlled only by the fact that the road narrows as you disembark. The passengers gap it off 1st then there is a free for all.. on my way out I thought I bumped into a truck but chose to ignore the sound of scraping metal, a short bit down the road Martin caught up to me frantically waving for me to stop. I had apparently ripped a bumper clean off a truck and the annoyed driver was in hot pursuit. Not wanting to challenge local temperament we waited a few min for him to catch up and a negotiation on damages was immanent. Upon inspection of the said damage I was not in the least surprised why the bumper and light fell off. A butterfly could have landed on it and caused the same damage. A cable tie and a handshake later we were on our way heading up South Beach.

Waiting on the ferry to cross over to South Beach.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/tanzania/DSC00483.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/tanzania/DSC00485-1.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/tanzania/DSC00486.jpg)

Getting off.. where I managed to dislodge a chaps bumper..

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/tanzania/DSC00488.jpg)
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on January 12, 2011, 09:40:36 am
Riding along the coast I saw a sign from heaven .. I was not sure what the whole sign included but I saw the words “Swimming Pool” I think it was the quickest I have ever turned.. boy oh boy was it worth the extra time and ferry ride.. we found a slice of paradise called Mikadi beach Camp. I will let the photo’s speak for themselves. We settled down for the day after securing a sweet deal for a boma right on the beach.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/tanzania/DSC00495.jpg)

The bar where we ended up spending a bit too much time chatting to overland chicks..

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/tanzania/DSC00496-1.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/tanzania/DSC00498.jpg)

Our home for the next few days.. awesome !!

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/tanzania/DSC00501.jpg)
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on January 12, 2011, 09:44:14 am
Martin making friends with the maasai guard.. there were 3 of them, one at the gate and 2 on the beach, their job was to ensure we stayed safe. They watched over us all day and night and were very particular about what they did.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/tanzania/DSC00500.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/tanzania/DSC00504.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/tanzania/DSC00505.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/tanzania/DSC00519.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/tanzania/DSC00520.jpg)
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on January 12, 2011, 09:50:25 am
Make no mistake Dar has everything life can offer if you have the budget and the time but we were tight on both so there was no 3 star lunches for us, this was our local roadside dining experience. It was dirty, smelly, hot and the food was suspect to say the least, there was no knives or forks and flies just come as a side dish if you order them or not, that being said, we ate ourselves silly for almost nothing ad we never suffered any side effects. There is the option of eating king prawns at one of the hotels, but that money just always seemed better spent on petrol.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/tanzania/DSC00517.jpg)

While I was there i got a local haircut, it was an experience for me and the oke cutting. I think I was his 1st white customer, he took so long and made such a huge effort the sun went down on us.. it was a huge attraction for the locals.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/tanzania/DSC00518.jpg)

Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on January 12, 2011, 10:02:31 am
The next day, with a slight hangover, we headed off to source supplies and find that illusive back tyre for Martin’s bike.

After riding through Dar and making some enquiries we found an enterprising chap who asked us what we were looking for, without him the effort would have been much greater as we just followed him.. boy could that guy run. We were led to a shop supplying local bike spares. He had tyres and after a long chat the owner offered to take us to his workshop to service the bikes

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/tanzania/IMG_7399.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/tanzania/IMG_7400.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/tanzania/IMG_7401.jpg)

I could not believe it.. check out this impressive gem of a workshop. Seeing them strip Martins bike on the side of the road made me glad I was not him, but the chaps were friendly and always had a smile to go along with what seemed like some pretty crazy solutions to their daily working conditions. I am not convinced that given the choice I would ever have my bike serviced at this bikers paradise.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/tanzania/IMG_7402.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/tanzania/IMG_7403.jpg)
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on January 12, 2011, 10:26:15 am
With all of that out of the way we were free to explore or ride on, once again we had to make a decision on where to go next, I was keen on going north to the Kenyan border to revisit Moshi and the surrounds but we were running out of time, the reports of the expected rains and the unsure conditions of the roads in Southern Tanzania and Northern Moz were playing on our mind. On top of that we were in freaking paradise and neither of us were keen to leave just yet. There was enough to explore right here.

This is such a gorgeous part of the world for the most part and taking a day or 2 off the bikes to catch a local boat out to a deserted tropical island for a guided tour, lunch and an afternoon of diving a reef sounded like the best idea since we experienced the rapids of the Zambezi. It just gave us the chance to forget about the bikes for the day and have some fun. Happy with the decision that we would rather spend more time heading south we now had no need to rush off North and we made the most of it.

With 28 - 30 degree water and a setting like this we were in our element.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/tanzania/IMG_7314-1.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/tanzania/IMG_7319.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/tanzania/IMG_7324.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/tanzania/IMG_7325.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/tanzania/IMG_7332-1.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/tanzania/IMG_7335.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/tanzania/IMG_7342.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/tanzania/IMG_7348.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/tanzania/IMG_7377.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/tanzania/IMG_7378.jpg)

Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on January 12, 2011, 10:31:52 am
After 3 or 4 days of riding around, exploring, taking trips out on boats, giving the bikes some TLC and filling up on beer, the sun was setting on our stay in Dar.. it was time to make a move.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/tanzania/DSC00528.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/tanzania/DSC00530-1.jpg)

By the time we left Dar for Southern Tanzania it felt like we had barely scratched the surface, we were already discussing the possibility of shipping the bikes back to Dar one day and taking another look at this fascinating region.

Dar had been interesting and fun, we had met so many travelers and drunk a lot of beer, now it was time to head south. We had no idea what to expect, most of Southern Tanzania is very remote and unmistakably traditional with a load of wild animals roaming around. The plan was to head for the old Swahili trading towns of Mikindani and Kilwa, my goal, besides trying to deal with the sand we were about to encounter was to find Whale Sharks and I think I know the spot.. We had heard that they are around Mafia island around November and that would be a treat.
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Waynan on January 12, 2011, 11:16:31 am
Awesome stuff Murray, keep them rolling in Bud! Seeing it all like this makes me all the more sorry I could not join you guys for this leg of the trip...
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on January 12, 2011, 02:47:55 pm
Destination Mafia Island.. I had heard that there was a ferry from Mchungu, but then again that depends on who you ask. Stories change the closer you get and you just have to try to judge the character giving you the information. We were also told that there is no way we would be able to get to the coast on bikes from here unless we stayed on the main drag.. hmm !

We soon found out why this part of Tanzania becomes very difficult in the rainy season, in a nutshell it becomes a nightmare with the heavy bikes and although our skill level had improved, it had not improved enough to deal with deep mud. The rule of thumb is that no bikes or cars can pass on this road for 3 days after a good rain, it is really only open to large trucks and even then they take their chances, every now and again we would come across a truck that simply slid right off the road and had become bogged down, they come past with recovery trucks once the road dries out. There has been an attempt to try and make the road better but it has not helped as far as bikes were concerned, it just created larger ruts. In our case we got lucky, the road was just drying out, and although at times it was nothing but mud and sliding around, where it really counted we were able to get through. Our only real concern was that if it started raining it would be a long wait to get out of the area.. so we wasted no time and went like bats out of hell.

Boy oh boy, it was hard riding, but it was awesome fun.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/tanzania/DSC00555.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/tanzania/IMG_7420.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/tanzania/IMG_7415.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/tanzania/IMG_7416.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/tanzania/IMG_7418.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/tanzania/DSC00556.jpg)
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on January 13, 2011, 10:24:44 am
It sure seemed like we made excellent time on the dirt roads in Southern Tanzania, in part because the dirt and riding conditions changed up all the time making it so much fun to ride and in part because there is really nothing to distract you, apart from the sporadic scattering of kids as you pass through straw hut villages. I cannot for the life of me remember why we rode past Mafia Island, it is quite swampy in the area and reports of road conditions were dismal so it may have been adverse road conditions, maybe we missed a turning or just were not paying attention, what I do remember is being told on more than one occasion that Kilwa was a must see destination and so it came to pass that we headed in the general direction and ate up the dust and mud along the way. I have to admit some of these roads were pushing the boundaries of my skill limits and with the short rains on the way it was bound to get interesting.

I lost a few things off the back of the bike along this stretch of road and on more than one occasion we had to stop and readjust the strapping holding everything down, what appears to be unusually large dips in the road are actually potholes big enough to fit cars in often sneaking up on you creating spectacular bouts of absolute terror. The bike simply drops away from underneath you and as you launch out the other side you can swear the wheels have been knocked square. So we arrived in Kilwa a little more shaken than expected and the search was on for a place to camp. In these parts tourism seems almost non existent at this time of the year so it was not surprising that as soon as we were spotted we were given a personal escort to a place called Kilwa Beach Resort by an excited chap who turned out to be the chef, he ran his little legs off that day and it set the tone for how desperate these regions are for a slice of the tourism pie that pumps through Tanzania..
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on January 13, 2011, 10:30:34 am
sigh, exactly, another little slice of heaven. Warm, calm tropical blue water and palm lined white beaches It would have been perfect if not for the fact that we were the only people in the whole resort. It did however make for a great opportunity to strike a bargain and all was well.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/tanzania/DSC00557.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/tanzania/DSC00558.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/tanzania/DSC00563.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/tanzania/DSC00573.jpg)

The next morning I woke up a bit earlier than usual and took a stroll along the pristine deserted beach for a few Kodak moments until almost by mistake I stumbled across the deserted restaurant / dining area where our mate the chef tempted me with crispy fried bacon and eggs.. I almost felt guilty leaving Martin snoring away in bliss but just as I was coming to grips with the guilt in walked Martin making it a grand total of 2 for breakfast that morning.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/tanzania/IMG_7436.jpg)

Fully satisfied and ready to push further south we headed back to our lush accommodation to pack the bikes, I was pretty keen to ride around Kilwa Masoko which is simply stunning. Kilwa Kisiawni was once East Africa’s most important trading settlement, the seat of sultans and the center of a vast trading network linking the goldfields of Zimbabwe to the orient. The ruins that remain together with nearby Songo minara are considered to be one of the most significant groups of Swahili buildings on the East African coast and have been declared a Unesco World heritage site..

..however it was not to be.. When Martin wondered off to come and find me that morning and also got distracted by the lure of crispy bacon he had left the door open. The seemingly deserted beach resort was clearly not that deserted and an opportunist had run off with Martin’s tank bag that was on his bed.. thank goodness they did’nt take my tank bag, it contained my passport, carnet, currency.. my life..  we were equally thankful that Martin was carrying his passport with him, but the loss of the tank bag was significant for him as it contained valuables, glasses, chargers, his carnet and other documents, cash and a bunch of other stuff .. Within a few min a search party was organized by the locals who scattered in different directions. The local police do not have transport so I took off on my bike with a local as pillion to collect a policeman and Martin went searching for his prized custom made, bright yellow tank bag..
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on January 13, 2011, 10:34:43 am
For most of the day it became a series of frustrating and fruitless activities, carting police around to known hotspots, filling out reports and hanging around in vain as information or lack of it to trickle in. Eventually we called it quits, the day was running out of daylight, we were frustrated, pissed off and exhausted. We were not going to spend the night at Kilwa Dreams where we had being staying, we knew that it would just make us stew in misery and a change in scenery was the order of the day. Staying in Kilwa, the Kilwa Seaview Resort came highly recommended and we could see why, with gorgeous A frame cottages perched on an escarpment overlooking Jimbizi beach, restaurant deluxe, swimming pool however it was a very expensive option, running low on light, choices and energy we negotiated a much more agreeable rate for setting up camp on the far end of the resort.

Our view of Jimbizi beach as the day was ending

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/tanzania/DSC00576.jpg)
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on January 13, 2011, 10:46:17 am
The view of the A frame cottages from the beach

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/tanzania/DSC00578.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/tanzania/DSC00574.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/tanzania/IMG_7448.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/tanzania/IMG_7439.jpg)

The following morning we were still feeling the effects of being inconvenienced and there was a bit of debate as we tried to identify which documents were missing and how this would impact our ability to get out of Tanzania and into Mozambique. My spirits were low as I abandoned the idea of seeing the Arab fort, great Mosque and the impressive Husuni Kubwa but there was a lot of road ahead of us and much to see, the best thing for us was to move on and try to enjoy the ride.. I suspect this was a lot easier for me than it was for Martin. I try to make Martin feel better with coffee and the fact that over 600 people have been killed by lions in SE Tanzania over the last 15 years, at least we wer’nt one of them.

I had met a group the previous day who were from the UK and were presently working at a hotel in Mikindani called the old Boma.. it seemed that we at least had our next destination and we would be in a much better position than we were in now as we would have access to internet, post offices, couriers etc so that we could sort out our paperwork>

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/tanzania/IMG_7438.jpg)

Lets go, we pack up camp kick up a bit of dust and got out of Kilwa.
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: TerrorSA on January 13, 2011, 03:09:03 pm
Awesome, thanks for taking the time to post this ride  :thumleft:
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Diesel & Dust on January 13, 2011, 04:02:17 pm
Like the colour scheme on your bike :thumleft:
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: White Rhino on January 14, 2011, 07:03:01 am
Hey good to have you back Fuzzy.

Enjoying the suspense.....
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fishy on January 14, 2011, 07:04:43 pm
awesome RR thanks for making me green :thumleft:
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Rynet on January 14, 2011, 09:10:30 pm
Stunning , simply stunning  :hello2:
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Ian in Great Brak River on January 15, 2011, 05:34:35 am
Congrats Gents, this is Adventure in Africa big time!  I'm suitably impressed that it's done without maps or GPS.

What could possibly top this...? Oh, yes...the next part of your amazing trip... :)   
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on January 17, 2011, 12:57:15 pm
Riding through Southern Tanzania is a treat for any rider, the roads are unpredictable and you have to concentrate all the time but the rewards are worth it. For this stretch we passed Lake Mkoe and almost completly by chance stumbled across Mchinga.. THese parts really show you what Southern Tanzania is all about. Dont expect to find anything like electricity.. as the photos show these okes are still building their own trailers like the flintstones. We stopped off for a rest and chatted to some fishermen who were parking off on a deserted beach.. it was simply stunning.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/tanzania/DSC00584.jpg)

Fishermen make themselves these semi permanent structures where they fix their nets.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/tanzania/DSC00588.jpg)

Dont expect much by the way of boats, everything is hand carved out of logs. This particular fisherman was quite proud of how he had fixed a hole in his boat.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/tanzania/DSC00589.jpg)

Now you know why they made us think of the Flintstones.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/tanzania/DSC00590.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/tanzania/DSC00591.jpg)

Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on January 17, 2011, 01:05:57 pm
I find it hard to describe what it is like to pass through the villages as we work our way down the coast. In some cases people run out of the fields and huts to see what is coming and are dumbstruck when they see the bikes, if you stop you know that within 20 sec you will have up to 100 people standing around not sure to make out who we are, in some cases the women come out, grab their children and run away as the men come to investigate who we are and why we are there.

Interacting with the locals can range from a bit uneasy to pure joy, no one village gives you the same kind of reaction.

In this case we just stopped for some water and a few min rest from the unrelenting sun. The sand in these areas is hard work and I found myself suffering from heat stroke on more than one occasion. All I wanted was to drink some water and grab some shade but the kids had other ideas.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/tanzania/DSC00596.jpg)

Who knows what they were saying, we have not heard english in quite a while now and all communication is done by jestures, body language and smiles.

Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: DaveT on January 17, 2011, 10:41:40 pm
Very nice report, waiting for the rest!
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on January 18, 2011, 09:01:13 am
I can’t find any photographic evidence that we were in Lindi. I can remember riding through this town, at 1st glance it seems not that much bigger than any South Eastern town in Tanzania however the more you ride around the more it seems to surprise you.. once upon a time it used to be part of the Sultan of Zanzibar’s domain. Back in the day it used to be quite well known during the slave trade as slaved were bought up from lake Nyasa, now Lake Malawi. During colonial times it used to be a capital of sorts. These days it is quite hard to sugar coat it, I can used words like rustic to make it sound better but there is nothing much to keep you here for longer than a day or so unless you are chartering a boat and going diving but I did’nt see much of that going on. It is a pity that towns such as this that clearly had massive amount of development happening at some stage are just allowed to be swallowed up by time as trade routes were closed by longer distance shipping lanes. The people are friendly and have loads of energy, well a lot more than me anyway, but besides their good intentions and smiles we ride through the town feeling somewhat like I had expected more, like many small towns in SE Tanzania there is no money for development and it shows, yet somehow, it does not matter much. Well to us anyway passing through. I don’t mean to oversimplify things, life is hard here, if you get sick and cant work life here must be harder than we can imagine.

The longer I travel like this the less I miss the shopping malls full of products and services we just don’t need and I find that this is starting to apply to almost everything, it began in Malawi where I was just blown away by how happy everyone was even though they had so little and their lives were so hard, it makes me think of the millionaires who are going through bitter divorces just simply missing the point.. they should come spend some time out here and learn the real value of life, family and downright hard work, for now our minds were on getting to Mtwara where we were going to be forced into finding a way to get a duplicate carnet for Martin so we could get into Moz.
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on January 18, 2011, 09:14:33 am
We had very little information to go on at the moment, we had a contact for a place to stay in Mikindani called the Old Boma so we headed for that as our resting point for the day. The ride was tough, mainly due to the fact that the heat was insane. By the time we made it into Mikindani I was stuffed beyond belief and finding The Old Boma was like finding an oasis, there was just one problem, it was simply out of our budget. The Old Boma was gorgeous and clearly was built in the hay days of German occupation. The gorgeous French lady lounging by the massive sparkling pool was an attractive offer and Martin was already setting roots, but I was after some cheaper accommodation much to his disgust.. At the bottom of the hill we found Ten Degrees South, a modest place to stay, much cheaper and a bar we would call home for the next few days as we settled down to organize our lives, get Martins paperwork sorted out, find a bank, establish communications with the AA in SA.. there was some work to be done.

As far as today was concerned it was time to relax and catch our breath, we would leave all our luggage here at Ten Degrees South and head the 10km to Mtwara which is the Capital of SE Tanzania where we would be able to find everything we were looking for.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/tanzania/DSC00600.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/tanzania/DSC00646.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/tanzania/DSC00612.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/tanzania/DSC00644.jpg)

Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on January 18, 2011, 09:23:11 am
(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/tanzania/DSC00618.jpg)
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on January 18, 2011, 12:50:51 pm
The following day we headed into Mtwara, it is a sprawling friendly town which offers anything you really need like banking etc, we even found a DHL office through which we were to finally obtain a new carnet for Martin, but things move a little slower in this side of the world, so we knew that we would have at least 3 or 4 days to kill in the area. Mtwara was developed after WWII by the British as part of their east African groundnut scheme which saw massive planting of nuts in the area but the plan failed and today Mtwara is more well known for it's port, the development of the town came to a standstil and decay is starting to set in as years of neglect are evident. Interestingly there is no Mozambiquan visas issued at Mtwara.

We made the trip back an forth between Mtwara and Mikindani a few times, exploring the surrounding area, there are literally millions of palm trees making for a wonderful tropical feel. The locals are very friendly and we had some good times hanging out drinking beer and tasting the local food, but if we were going to be stuck here for a few days we needed more, so we decided to use the services of a local diving school situated next door to where we were staying and hit a few reefs.. what an awesome experience. Back at home I am an avid marine fishkeeper with a 2.5m marine aquarium in my lounge, so checking out some of the local reefs was a real treat and a great way to pass the time.

Loading the gear for a dive

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/tanzania/DSC00624.jpg)

there is still evidence that things are done the old way here.. these boat builders had been hacking away at these logs for a few months, very skilled and awesome to watch.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/tanzania/DSC00642.jpg)

Finding a bike rider with a helmet in Tanzania is a rare occurance, this one oke was very proud of his shoei. THere is supposed to be a fine for not wearing a helmet but I never came across a bike shop of any sort that sold helmets in these parts.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/tanzania/DSC00657.jpg)

Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on January 18, 2011, 12:52:35 pm
ahhh, the local beer tavern where we spent some lazy afternoons

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/tanzania/DSC00633.jpg)
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Baches on January 18, 2011, 04:30:51 pm
 :thumleft:
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Ian in Great Brak River on January 19, 2011, 02:52:32 am
Keep it coming     8)
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: White Rhino on January 20, 2011, 06:30:49 am
Sounds really cool and laidback. Bit of scuba thrown in. Some detail on the diving would be interesting, reefs, conditions, plant life, depths, types of marine life, boat ride, surf, swells, current etc. etc.

Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on January 20, 2011, 09:23:05 am
cool, I will do. Our instructor had an underwater camera, I will upload some pics of the diving as well. Just a bit hectic at work at the mo, but should be able to finish up the rr soon.
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Soundboi on January 20, 2011, 10:57:13 am
Grrrrr..... More! I want more!
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on January 20, 2011, 11:24:26 am
Sure, I will fiish up Tanzania and start up on crossing over into Moz tonight
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on January 21, 2011, 11:54:22 am
Diving in and around Mikindani was just short of spectacular, we had looked at a reef near Zanzibar but these were awesome. I could go on for days about the corals and fish we saw, being an avid marine fishkeeper it was heaven identifying the different species and wished I could take more than a few boxes home with me.

Here are some pics for the divers out there

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Underwater/IMG_1591.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Underwater/IMG_1597.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Underwater/IMG_1600.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Underwater/IMG_1603.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Underwater/IMG_1605.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Underwater/IMG_1669.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Underwater/IMG_1701.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Underwater/IMG_1726.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Underwater/IMG_1728.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Underwater/IMG_1732.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Underwater/3.jpg)
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on January 21, 2011, 12:00:06 pm
We ended up spending about 4 days right on the tip of Southern Tanzania and tensions were starting to run high, we were getting ants in our pants and were itching to ride again. It was frustrating being stuck in one place and it was even more frustrating not being prepared for the situation we found ourselves in.

There was no Mozambiquan consulate in the area and we really were not sure what would happen if we tried to cross over into Moz without the right paperwork. In hindsight we just should have tried 1st. Luckily the replacement carnet arrived by DHL fairly quickly and we were free to head towards the Moz border. There was simply no way to describe our mood, we were finally outta here, or so we thought. 

By all accounts the only way across the river into Moz was by tiny boats if we headed through Kitunguli.. Apparently the ferry had sunk a few months back and a replacement was far away. We heard stories of guys strapping boats together to get 4 x 4’s across, sometimes it worked and sometimes it didn’t, not only was it risky but it was expensive with guys making a killing off lost overlanders charging well over $100 to get across which was out of our budget, we knew at low tide it was impossible due to mud but as the tide came in and the river mouth swelled there was a good chance we could strap the bikes onto a boat and take our chances, after the last few days we were not in the mood for taking any chances.. besides, we had news of another way. One was to follow the river up inland to lake Chidya and try to cross at Kitaya or there was a rumour of a bridge that was being built further up river. Apparently the bridge had to be built so far up because of how the tides affected the swelling of the river, the closer it was to the coast the wider it would have to be.
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on January 21, 2011, 12:08:33 pm
Either way we knew that construction of the bridge had been started, as rumor had it, construction had started as far back as 2007 or 2008 but information about the bridge had not really reached these parts, it was like there was no news of anything in this country, naturally the idea of trying to find an internet connection somewhere was not what this trip was about and it never crossed our minds to check out google maps.. taking our chances to find this bridge became our new quest, we had no idea what we would find, we had no idea what the roads would be like, we had no idea if fuel would be available or even if there would be places to stay.. we had been through so much, but this was venturing off track more than even I expected.

Along many of our other routes there were overland trucks, busses, trucks, something.. at the very least we knew we would find help along the way, this was slightly different.. and with the rains coming it was going to be interesting. Like excited kids before Christmas we could hardly sleep, the bikes were packed, I even washed the bike. It was time to leave the coast we had known for so long and head inland along what would be some of the best dirt Tanzania had to offer.

And so we bid Mikindani goodbye, we had a good idea on the general direction, but we had very little information on what was ahead, time would tell. We got a very early start, I was hell bent on trying to find this bridge before nightfall, and if the last few days was anything to go by it was going to be hot.. very hot.

The days ride was hard work in the heat but it was so rewarding, the scenery was awesome, the roads were insane and the people were friendly, passing through remote villages made it really sink in that we were in the middle of nowhere. In these parts a man has his wives who give him children and work the fields, in the midday sun they would chill in the shade and afternoons were reserved for getting drunk. The level of deforestation can sometimes be disturbing but with zero development or industry the need for wood for daily living is just something that has to be accepted. If a family needs maize to survive they farm the land but as they use the seed from subsequent yields and fail to look after the soil the yield gets worse, so they chop down more trees and plant more crops.. simple yet unsustainable.

We eventually had to leave the river and hooked up with what seemed like a main road, these parts of the trip are a bit sketchy for me, I remember we had to find guy in a town who stamped our passports, I think it was Lukula, from there he sent us to another village where there was more formalities, this wasted a lot of time as there were no offices to speak of and the chaps who work there are normally at home so someone has to run off to find them. In the end we were glad we asked in every town about paperwork stamping or else we would have had to turn back.


this is a typical main drag heading to the bridge, you know it is a main road cos it is flat.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Mozambique/DSC00658.jpg)
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on January 21, 2011, 12:11:04 pm
It seemed like we were riding for ages, the more I ride this Transalp the more impressed I am with it, these roads were putting them through their paces. We were heading along a sand track that cuts through a forest, the only evidence it was made by man is the occasional deep track in the sand left by a large truck, I was just beginning to wonder if it would ever end, I was becoming mindful that the sun was going down and we had zero idea if we were on the right track.. all of a sudden.. tar !! loads of it.. At 1st I did’nt understand what was going on,  we had last seen tar in Mikindani and that was maybe 2 lanes at best, this was insane, it was the best tar we had seen since Dar, and it was at least 5 lanes wide ( well it seemed that way after the monkey tracks we had been following ).. best of all, it was deserted, it was like being in a dream.

THis pic is actually from the Moz side, you can see the construction still going on.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Mozambique/DSC00669.jpg)

I think I was still stunned and unsure as to what we had found but I could almost hear Martin laughing. The flat, level tar was fantastic after the bone jarring ride over the last few hours, so with huge grins on our faces we headed off down this massive deserted highway.. About 3km later we came across a few okes riding bicycles, they looked at us in amazement just as we looked at them in amazement.. where are all the cars this highway was built for, it seems insane that such a massive highway was made for a few okes on bicycles.

Rising up in the distance was one massive tusk with another one clearly under construction, we knew we had found The Unity Bridge and just in time, we had maybe 45min of daylight left, we had no idea if this was good or bad news yet.

Arriving at the bridge just as it was getting dark

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Mozambique/DSC00668.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Underwater/unity.jpg)


Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on January 21, 2011, 12:12:58 pm
For anyone interested I found this on the net about the bridge..

For other uses, see Unity Bridge (disambiguation).
The Unity Bridge (sometimes called "Unity Bridge 1") across Ruvuma River at Negomano, Mozambique[1], between Tanzania and Mozambique was proposed as early as 1975, shortly after Mozambique's independence. It was the idea of the two country's former Presidents, Mwalimu Nyerere and Samora Machel. Several design studies and limited construction work were completed in the early 1980s, but the Unity Bridge was not finished due to lack of funds.

In 2002 the two national governments made a formal agreement to build a new bridge across the river. First foundation stones were laid both on Tanzanian and Mozambique sides on October 10th, 2005. Construction was initially planned to be finish in 2008.

In 2005, Norconsult was awarded the contract for preliminary design and construction supervision of the bridge. It will be about 720 m long.

The project would boost development in Mtwara Region (Tanzania), Cabo Delgado (Mozambique) as well as in the Southern African Development Community region as it is an important component of the Mtwara Development Corridor. It will also shorten the distance along the Cape to Cairo Road.[2]

Environmentalists say it would destroy Niassa Reserve in Mozambique which is home to elephant, buffalo, sable and roan herds.[3]

The Unity Bridge over the Rovuma River was build by The China Geo Engineering Corporation and finally inaugurated on the 12th of May 2010 by the presidents of Mozambique and Tanzania.

The rehabilitation of access roads on both sides of the bridge is to be started.
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on January 21, 2011, 12:17:52 pm
So the bridge was opened in May 2010, we had arrived almost 6 months after it had been opened and I can tell you there was nothing happening and we began to understand why there was so little information on the bridge, it was slap bang in the middle of nowhere, a few houses and camps on one side and a guard hut on the other with nothing for 30km on either side.

After riding right up to the bridge we could see that 90% of the construction had been done.. YES !! we would at long last be able to cross over the river into Moz.. as usual the bikes attracted their fair share of attention, we managed to find one very happy oke who spoke English and pointed us in the general direction of the watering hole frequented by people passing through, he assured us that they would have rooms for us but upon enquiry it turned out the place was full.. business was good ! this did not help us. You have to understand that although we were at a bridge and there were buildings, we did not feel very safe.

The construction workers working on the bridge have very little to do all night except drink and with zero police force for a long way we were not very sure what to do. In the end the owner of the , dare we say ‘lodge’ offered us a patch of dirt in her back yard where we could pitch a tent.

This set the scene for one of our worst fights since Senga Bay in Malawi where I had a problem with Martin waking up too late, now, I have no idea what started it, I think it was because my tent was a few inches to the left but all hell broke loose with myself and Martin, after the shouting match of the trip finally ended we grabbed a few beers and tried to shrug it off but some things were said and we were both unhappy campers with each other. Sometimes after a hard days ride in the heat you just get frustrated, it is also a side effect of not being prepared, and yes having no maps contributes to this. Sometimes it gets you into situations you are not 100% comfortable with and then there is good old dehydration, exhaustion and hunger.. the smallest thing can set it off and within seconds your best pal is the biggest twat and you are hell bent on telling him all about it.

The said gent who referred us to the swell dwelling earlier returned a bit later with his girlfriend which calmed things down a bit, after all, we had a visitor. After a chat and a beer or 2 it was clear that his girlfriend was not very impressed with him drinking nor with us for offering alcohol to him, we buy her a coke to appease the lady love in his life alas it did not last long and the whipped lad bid us farewell all the while trying to look as cool as possible.
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on January 21, 2011, 12:23:40 pm
At 1st light the next day we packed up in relative silence, the bliksem session from the night before left a bad taste, bruised ego’s and a few battle scars, there was only one thing that would make this right.. a good ride ! It took us all of about 1km and we were best mates again thrilled with the Unity Bridge and our ability to not only find it but we were finally crossing the river into Moz. Northern Moz had been the big thorn in our side, we just had no idea what to expect and we were very worried about the rains although almost every farmer we had passed we found in their fields scratching their heads, most of them had already planted and there was just no rain.

Our problem with crossing a bridge in the middle of nowhere is that there was nothing.. no border crossing for starters, I always ride in front, so looking ahead I did’nt see anything, ok, there was a rusty old STOP sign but we never took notice of them, so I roared off into the distance, nothing except a massive strip of tar in front of me. About 1km later Martin overtook me signaling like a wild man for me to stop.. apparently there was a guard on the other side and he had to stamp our passports, his hut was so small I missed it. Never the less he had a rubber stamp and this was considered to be important.. awesome, we waited 4 days for a carnet and we did’nt need it. To top it off the guard instructs us in Portuguese to travel 260km in a direction we had no intention of heading to get the proper documents stamped again.. we smiled and rode off ignoring his request figuring that we were in the middle of nowhere and we would be able to explain our situation if need be.. both of us were all smiles, we were in Moz, and we were heading for the coast again.

Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on January 21, 2011, 01:15:53 pm
Well, it seemed that way for about 5km.. the tar stretch of highway came to an end, infront of us was.. well.. forrest !!  :imaposer: we could not believe it, there was no road, no gravel road, no mud path, not even a foot path, it was 100% rain forrest.

We stood around and took some photo's and decided the best thing to do was go back and ask where the road was..


(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Mozambique/DSC00670.jpg)

one teenie problem, the guard did not speak english. So we had to draw pictures in the sand, a technique we soon found out we would become very good at. For anyone travelling Northern Moz.. take along a phrase book or something similar, communicating became a big issue.

After a while of drawing pictures we finally figured out that about half way along the strip of tarmac you had to dive off to the right, there would be a dirt road there whicj lead through the forrest.

Take 2.. we only found it because we saw a chap pop out of the forrest, wondering where he came from we went closer and sure enough we found a road, if you could really call it that.
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on January 21, 2011, 03:35:13 pm
Many hours or riding along these roads, paths and tracks started to take their toll, it was very humid and hot, I was not prepared for the heat and frequently suffered from heat stroke. On our way heading to the coast i just had to stop, I could not ride anymore. I had fallen in some very deep sand about 500m back, picking up the bike was murder but we pushed on, at the 1st sign of shade I was done for !!

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Mozambique/DSC00660.jpg)

I could hardly stand here, for the 1st time since we started this trip I could not ride another second. Martin could not help capturing my buggered state.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Mozambique/DSC00662.jpg)
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on January 21, 2011, 04:01:32 pm
Unfortionately the road to the coast is bumpy and we were just keen to get there so we did'nt stop and take many photo's, I can say that if you have the opportunity to get her are ride around it is well worth it. Especially through Mocimboa do Rovuma through to Bomera.

We knew we were close to the coast again, all of a sudden, out of nowhere.. ahhh ! thank the sweet lord, tar. Again, it was quite surreal as far as experiences go, we would ride for 30min before we maybe saw one truck or car, then another 30min..

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Mozambique/DSC00671.jpg)

Stopping for a rest and some water,, it is a beautiful part of the world. Again, the extent of deforestation in these parts is shocking, you would be in the middle of a massive forest then for km there would just be stumps. Illegal logging here is rife.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Mozambique/DSC00677.jpg)

We hit Mocimboa de Praia.. we were at the coast !! a few cold ones were waiting at a lovely bar overlooking the sea. Things were looking great.
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Baches on January 21, 2011, 06:16:21 pm
Respect !! Petrol doesn't seem to be hard to find !!
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: GO GIRL on January 21, 2011, 09:03:27 pm
This has been really great reading, what a thoroughly enjoyable RR... :thumleft:
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: White Rhino on January 22, 2011, 07:24:14 am
Those underwater pics look amazing!

Still locked in. Loving the "well let's see what happens".

This is proper adventure. Roll on...
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Billbob on January 22, 2011, 08:54:52 am
Good one :thumleft: Keep it coming pleeez ;D
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on January 24, 2011, 09:48:16 am
Traveling through Northern Moz was turning out to be awesome, the only real problem we were experiencing besides getting lost on many occasions was the massive language barrier, Martin and I would become increasingly frustrated with not being able to find out where fuel was or a place to try and find food. We knew that getting on the coast was key to solving many of these problems as the costal towns were simply more developed as the sea provided food and development along old trade routes.

Sometimes the information from locals was misleading and they did this on purpose, especially when it came to finding fuel in remote parts. On this occasion Martin and I were running very low n fuel, according to all the information we were getting the next petrol station was about 150km away and we had enough fuel for maybe 30km. We had no choice but to buy black market fuel. Something we generally were not happy with, mainly because we had no idea what it had been mixed with to make it more profitable for the seller, but also because it cost in some cases more than double the price. We had no idea that the bikes would cause such an attraction, it started off with about 20 locals coming to check out the bikes and the numbers just swelled by the second, at one point it became a bit unsettling, we never felt in immediate danger but we had to be careful of being distracted while the opportunists helped themselves to whatever they could swipe off the bikes and disappear into the crowd.


(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Mozambique/DSC00729.jpg)

Thankfully everything went off without a hitch and we had more than enough fuel to get us to the next major town.. what do you know, as we exited the village about 2km out was a brand new petrol station that had been open only a few days.. we were their 1st bike customers.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Mozambique/DSC00828.jpg)

Although we couldn’t help but feel ripped off by the locals we understood that this is what they do to survive. All we know is that we have fuel, food, water and daylight, all we need to carry on. Stunned at the stark contrast between filling up locally with black market fuel and moments later standing in a petrol ststion so new you could still smell the paint. THe petrol pump attendant was so nervous putting petrol in my bike I had to give him some advice and a bit of training, the oke was shaking so much he kept on missing - clearly it was his 1st time, poor oke.

 Although we couldn’t help but feel ripped off by the locals we understood that this is what they do to survive. All we know is that we have fuel, food, water and daylight, all we need to carry on.

We hit Mocimboa de Praia fairly early, we were amazed at how we churned up the km, the road was simply awesome to ride throwing everything from mud to sand at us, but it was the long straight bits where you could really twist the ear and fly.. We hit the shore and rode up and down looking for a place to have some chow which was easy enough, we ordered some food and had a good laugh about the days riding which was full of events, everything to my very animated bos kuk to Martin nearly being wiped out by a bush pig and her young who darted across the road right in front of him – it was sooo close !!. the view of the ocean was a welcome sight.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Mozambique/DSC00678.jpg)

Martin having a chat with the owner after she gave a local a snot klup for coming into her establishment drunk. We were there on a weekend and apparently this one oke was a well known trouble maker. All I know id that the bar counter was one of the best I had ever seen.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Mozambique/DSC00680.jpg)

Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on January 24, 2011, 10:34:31 am
It was always our intention to stay here and move on in the morning but with daylight still burning we decided that if we hauled ass down the coast we could possibly make Pemba, it was going to be tight even if everything went 100%, if the roads slowed us down or we had a puncture, this would see us enter Pemba in the dark, something I hated with a passion. Our problem.. we had no currency, we had tons of Tanzanian Shillings but nobody accepted them.

We needed to hit Pemba so that we could find a bank and try to exchange some currency, something that is always a frustration. Banks in Mozambique will not change Tanzanian Shillings which stuffed us because when we were in Tanzania and we had no money they will not give you Moz Meticals if you begged on both knees and they will only give you Dollars if you have a plane ticket, so sorry for you if you are traveling by bike. We did’nt know this when we wired enough money to Mtwara to last us the rest of the trip, we thought we could exchange it anyway we wanted, there is a host of other exchange rules that can get frustrating but as always in Africa you can make a plan. In our case, we had a ton of Tanzanian Shillings with no way to spend it. The guys who deal in black market currency rip you off but in many cases we had no choice. Finding currency solutions can take time and cost money, this is one area I would really research and do better with next time.

We had to go on local information of raod conditions here, Mos was ravaged by floods a few years back, not to mention a small war which simply stuffed their roads, by all indications going along the coast through Quitarajo to Pemba was a shorter distance but it was made clear it was suicide and we would never make it. Ordinarily this would put a grin on our face and we would do it anyway, but everyone we spoke to gave us the same information. With daylight not waiting for us we chickened out and took the 246 down through Chai and Macomia. When we hit Sunate we turned East and headed to Pemba.. we needed this town, it was our lifeline.

Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on January 24, 2011, 10:43:57 am
We had been riding freaking hard in some sandy conditions which was made insane by heat reaching over 35 degrees. From fearing the rain we had ended up wishing for it. As predicted we arrived in Pemba in the dark, we were really surprised to find a massive beach party in full swing on the main beach, ordinarily this would make me excited, but after a long ride, not knowing where we are yet alone where we would sleep and now having to dodge drunk partygoers in the dark was a mission with my tinted visor, even with the visor up there are no street lights to speak of so dodging darkies was a mission, to make it worse the road turns from tar to deep sand !! aargh, you can’t go fast or you are bound to whack someone and slow was torture.

At long last we are advised to find Russels Place, apparently a big hang out for South Africans who work out this way and a stop over for many travelers, we find the gate, enter and just smile as we find one of the nicest bars we have seen. Awesome spot, the bikes roaring up in the dark attracted the attention of everyone, nearly falling off the bikes when we stopped from sheer exhaustion did nothing for the ego but I was too tired to care..

Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on January 24, 2011, 10:46:43 am
We got a good few greetings from South Africans who are there having pizza and beers and the night becomes one of telling tales, gaining valuable information and eventually setting up camp.

The next day was admin day, we needed supplies, foreign exchange and we needed to find out who was going to stamp our passports and carnets, we were now well into Moz and besides a small rubber stamp from some guard in a hut sitting next to a bridge, we did’nt really have the formalities done. We tried the international airport but no luck, after following some advice from a South African working in Pemba we hit the port. The doom and gloom prediction he gave us turned out to be crap and we breezed in and out of the customs office with no problems at all.

The 1st thing that really struck us as we hit Russels place was equal and instant.. white people ! the one group had kids.. it has been almost 50 days since we had seen white kids with blonde hair, it was cool and made me miss my boy. The other thing that really stood out was the massive mentality change, all of a sudden we were sitting with people who were arrogant, had a sense of entitlement and although they were not native to the area felt like they owned it, they felt that without their gift to humankind the blacks in the area would not survive or would not have what they do.  The racial undertone was a bit of a culture shock. After being so close to families in Malawi and Tanzania and spending a lot of time with lodge owners who rely on the community for their success and who support local customs and traditions I could not help wonder why this mentality existed here.

Be that as it may, Russels Place is awesome and I would go back anyday.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Mozambique/DSC00704.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Mozambique/DSC00682.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Mozambique/DSC00687.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Mozambique/DSC00688.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Mozambique/DSC00696.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Mozambique/DSC00726.jpg)

Ahhh, this oke.. part time barman, part time spliff roller, part time trouble maker.. awesome chap and full of laughs.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Mozambique/DSC00727.jpg)
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on January 24, 2011, 10:49:49 am
Martin was now coming under some pressure from the girlfriend to get back home, and I use the phrase ‘some pressure’ loosely. It was becoming a nightmare with phone calls now flooding in 2 or 3 times a day if not more with crisis after crisis for him to deal with, there was nothing he could do about any of them and he was getting frustrated.. women !!

I was lucky, I left my cell phone at home. Martin was not so lucky and soon it became evident that this was a problem that simply was not going to go away. He had been dating his woman for 12 years and the relationship now hung in the balance. Not really willing to give up such a long and strong willed relationship over a trip into Africa he made the commitment to be back in Cape Town by the 19th of December.. a commitment I was not happy with, I was only planning on being back sometime mid Jan as this trip would include riding all the way down the SA coast from cozi bay through the Drakensburg all the way down the garden route. Martin considered splitting up and riding off alone to chase a deadline. That is the best way to find trouble and is just crazy. After much discussion and frustrating deliberation we agreed to cut the trip short by about 12 days and agreed ( with much protest and shaking of fists ) to not hang about and take our time as we had been doing, we would now be riding like many of the guys who do these trips and increase our average km per day, this means in real terms that we would have about 10 days to get from the north of Moz back home in Cape Town.. squeezed into that I planned at least 2 or 3 dives looking for the illusive whale sharks on some rest days so this cut it to only a few days left.

For now it was time to rest up, go into town to get the banking issue sorted, buy supplies, wash the bikes and go south, further it was time for some decent food and beer. While we were indulging in pizza and beer we met so many people travelling North, this was great as we could now milk them for information on places to stay. We were told that The Island of Mozambique is a must see. It is a small coral island at the mouth of Mossuril Bay on the Nacala coast of northern Mozambique, first explored by Europeans, in the late 1400s.. it was done and dusted, this would be our next destination.

We also met a very interesting oke who was up from SA.. he was doing a lot of road work up here and we chatted about our experience crossing the Unity Bridge, we all laughed about how the tar comes to an end. He was one of the okes who made the dirt roads after that.. the story of the bush pig and the bos kuk came up as we roared on about our experiences.. the oke turned white !! with a look of shock and horror on his face he asked.. " I hope you did'nt go more than 3m off the road for that bos kuk !!" I mentioned thet there was a fallen tree about 15m off the road which made for an excellent seat.. " I just ask" he croaks " because when we make the roads they only clear for landmines 3m on either side and that area is full of mines".. we all went a little silent.

Russels Place.. interesting place and well worth the visit.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Mozambique/DSC00707.jpg)
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Soundboi on January 24, 2011, 10:58:12 am
Awesome  :drif:
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on January 24, 2011, 11:21:26 am
At long last we had sorted out all our money troubles.. we could pay our bill, what a relief!  :eek7: We had now overstayed, time was not on our side and we made plans to split. It was tough leaving Pemba, it is an awesome spot.

Leaving Pemba on the tar road.. I think. The sign says N1  ???, not following maps I have no idea, I think it is the EN1 but i was convinced we were on the 106 leaving Pemba.. not sure

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Mozambique/DSC00773.jpg)

We had a short days ride planned although we had hoped for some nice off road conditions, if it failed badly we would be able to double back and go on the main tar drag that heads south. I think we only had about 150km planned for the day, but the plan was to hit Island de Mozambique and explore the island in the afternoon, sleeping over there and heading off the next day.

I have no words for the road to lle de Mozambique, you have to go ride it yourself, WOW !! We hit a small place called Naguema and from there it was tar all the way to lle de Moz.. my eyes did a dance when I saw that we would cross one of the longest bridges to get there.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Mozambique/DSC00737.jpg)

Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on January 24, 2011, 11:33:11 am
Nothing and I mean nothing can prepare you for this place.. it builds up so much emotion within you in such a short period of time.

The Island of Mozambique bears important witness to the establishment and development of the Portuguese maritime routes between western Europe and the Indian subcontinent. The town and the fortifications on the island and spectacular, and on the smaller island of St Laurent, are an outstanding example of an architecture in which local traditions and Portuguese influences are everywhere. At one point you can see it was simply magnificent and you can't help it but picture what people were doing when it was in it's prime !

Inhabited by a Bantu tribe now, it is sad to see the reality of what it has become as squatters now inhabit what used to be, in some cases magnificent courtyards>

I had to look up a bit of history surrounding the place :  "the territory of Mozambique was occupied around AD 900 by Arabs who set up trading posts. In their search for a maritime route to India to avoid Muslim forces, the Portuguese decided to go around the continent of Africa. King John II (1481-95) sent Bartolomeu Dias to explore the African coast. Sailing beyond the coast of the Congolese kingdom, the great navigator rounded the extreme southern tip of Africa, unaware of the feat he had accomplished. It was not until his return that he discovered the 'Cape of Storms', which John II renamed Cape of Good Hope.

Manuel I (1495-1521) ordered Vasco da Gama to continue the search for a maritime route. Leaving Lisbon in July 1497, he reached the Island of Mozambique on 2 March 1498, where he was well received by the sultan and the people, who thought the Portuguese were Muslims. During his second voyage, he occupied the territories of present-day Mozambique and returned to Lisbon in 1503 laden with gold."


Some years later, Mozambique had become one of Portugal's principal ports and trading posts on the sea route to India. The first fortress, St Gabriel, was built in 1507. At the end of the 17th century, after enjoying strong economic expansion, the town with its fortifications, along with the smaller island of St Laurent, went into a period of decline. In the second half of the 18th century, the economy was revived by the slave trade.

In 1898 the capital of Mozambique (the Portuguese colony) was transferred to Laurenço Marques (Maputo), considerably slowing down the economy of the town on the island of Mozambique. The town had developed unequally over some 400 years. Less than half of it was built from stone, a little more than a quarter in macuti (straw), with the remainder being the various fortifications.


(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Mozambique/DSC00740.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Mozambique/DSC00742.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Mozambique/DSC00744.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Mozambique/DSC00746.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Mozambique/DSC00747.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Mozambique/DSC00749.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Mozambique/DSC00753.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Mozambique/DSC00769.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Mozambique/DSC00770.jpg)

Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on January 24, 2011, 11:35:40 am
The llha fortim de Sao Lourenco looks like it rises out of the water.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Mozambique/DSC00760.jpg)
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on January 24, 2011, 12:08:04 pm
We spent that afternoon exploring the island with the help of a very young lad !! I still don't know where his mom was, but these lighties are very enterprising. In order to make some bucks they offer to escort you wherever you want to go, so while we were riding our bikes around he was either following us or leading the way. At one point he bacame a bit anoying so we decided to ditch him and darted off with a blast.. ha !! never, within a few blocks he had taken a shortcut and had caught up again.

We found a place to stay that was in budget and it was frankly crap, but it was just a bed for the night and teh bikes were safe. lle De Mozambique was a treat and worth the visit.. of all the places we visited this place is still very vivid in my memory bank.

The following morning we had no real plans, it was one of those days where we just decided to ride and see where we end up, as long as we were going south it was fine. We started up the bikes, twisted their ears and got out of there looking forward to a full days riding. We had little or no information on anything in the area, we may have missed some lekker places, but off we went. The idea was at about 3pm to look for the nearest town and settle in for the night.. little did we know that not having a plan can end up in disaster.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Mozambique/DSC00784.jpg)
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on January 24, 2011, 01:51:02 pm
Moz has something like 2500 or 3000km of shore line, it is vast and unpredictable, I swear you could spend 3 months exploring this shore line and not even come close to visiting everything. That was the case with this part of the trip, it just seemed like we were passing jewels but there was nothing we could do about it, if you had to stop for everything we simply would never get home and nor would you want to , it is a gorgeous stretch of beach.

Moz is full of interesting places but you can sure see the effects of the War out this way, development has taken a large step back, deforestation is rife and everything can be sorted out by slipping over a few notes. For this reason it was fair to say we started to skip some places we ordinarily would have stopped at in countries like Malawi. the people are friendly enough but there is something lacking in Moz, I can't put my finger on it, I am not sure if it comes down to a 'vibe'.. in Malawi there was a collective happiness even though times are tough, in Moz it is like there is an underlying current of sadness although everyone will make time for you and will be friendly, maybe because feeding their families depend on it.

As things turned out we really did not have much of a plan for the days riding, all we knew is that we would ride until we saw something we liked or until the sun went down. Our plan not to plan failed dismally on us on this day as we wondered a little off direction, well so it seemed.. we were just having so much fun riding in this region we simply did a crap job of gathering information. Stuff my 3pm cutoff for finding a place to stay, by 4pm we were in the middle of , well, who knows where. Short on food supplies, short on fuel and short on daylight, just the mix of things that makes me happy - not !! Again I stress children, after a long days ride, don't pick a fight with your riding partner over things he has no control over, like a sinking sun! It is a display of how to achieve nothing.. instead just nod, agree and enjoy the situation.. one day when you sit back in your armchair at home, bored to death, kids screaming, wife burning the food while the lawn needs mowing and the car needs servicing.. you will look back on your trip and wonder why you picked a fight in the middle of nowhere about a setting sun !

Eventually we figured out more or less where we were and were directed away from the westerly swamp lands we were heading towards and turned south. We headed in the general direction and found a few villages and small towns, we thankfully found fuel which sorted that out but dismally we did not find a place to stay so we headed onwards using up the bit of daylight we had left until we saw a sign " Gongorosa National Park" we were out of time and out of ideas, the sign had a little tent on it so we were pretty sure we would be able to find a spot.

Riding into the park was another one of those awesome experiences, awesome dirt roads through a forest with the dying sun creating a fantastic light display through the trees. About 15km later we came across the main gates and were welcomed by the park guards.. however, not only had they closed for the day bt even if they were open there was no way bikes would be allowed inside. This made foe a bad situation, the campsight was 2km in from the gates and was quite secure from wild animals but the park rules were very clear about bikes. We were in a jam, we had no daylight left to ride in and the roads were just too dangerous at night, never mind the animals, the potholes will highside you in a second.


(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Mozambique/DSC00785.jpg)


After a bit of negotiation we all became mates and they allowed us to camp outside the gates and offered us the use of their water supply from a tank as well as their fire to cook on. I need to mention that the fire was inside a small room to the one side, It felt like being inside a burning building but we could not make our own fire so with a smile I endured 2nd degree burns and a collapsed lung from all the smoke.. when all was said and done we at least had a camp, some food and water and some of Mozambiques finest tobbacco to smoke.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Mozambique/DSC00786.jpg)



Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on January 24, 2011, 01:54:57 pm
(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Mozambique/DSC00787.jpg)

Armed with new information from passing tourists in the area we figured just how far inland we were and made a bee line for Beira which was where we were supposed to have spent the night before.. oops!  :imaposer:
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on January 24, 2011, 02:09:35 pm
Once we got our orientation we figured it was not as bad as it seemed, we were not that far from Beira, once we were on the road I told Martin that we coudl skip Beira which was one of the places I remember having family holidays when I was a jellytot, I was much more keen to hit Bazaruto which was easily within striking distance and we were guaranteed to get some diving in !!.. and so it was that we found ourselves once again with full bellies, full tanks and not a care in the world.. well I did'nt, Martin was still fending off his girlfriend.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Mozambique/DSC00794.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Mozambique/DSC00813.jpg)

We wasted no time once we found the EN1.. ahh, tar and a good day. We passed through places like Chiboma past the Rio Save Game Reserve and onto Pambarra where we turned towards the coast and headed to Vilankulos following the citi golfs packed with college students hanging out the windows. Ok, I saw one car with sexy babes in it and created my own reality.




Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on January 24, 2011, 02:30:15 pm
ok, for anyome who has not been to Vilankulos.. for the love of everything awesome, just GO! what a lovely spot.

Quite popular with South Africans we hooked up with 2 gorgeous babes from Stellenbosch but by far the most interesting okes were a group of travellers who had just spent 6 months in South America and were now heading up through Africa.. I coudl have spoken to them for weeks and it is because of one 4 hour conversation one night that I am convinced that my next big bike trip will be from Central to South America, without doubt!

Vilankulos itself is a great little town, Martins Back tyre was on its last legs, we managed to find a guy who owned a tyre exchange place on the side of the road, we had to give him a lift home but somehow he dug out an old second hand tyre that was better than the one Martin had. We found our camping spot for the night, right next door to a dive shop.. woo hoo.. all was well.

Some images from Vilankulos.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Mozambique/DSC00795.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Mozambique/DSC00796.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Mozambique/DSC00797.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Mozambique/DSC00800.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Mozambique/DSC00802.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Mozambique/DSC00805.jpg)

We loved Vilankulos so much we stayed an extra day just to take it all in, this is not a place you want to just pass through in 2 hours. Unfortionately the okes at the dive place were idiots, I was so excited to go for a dive but they wanted a min of 4 people, deposits, perfect weather.. blah blah. Even when I found 2 other people to join us there was an issue so with a big fat middle finger i left them aolne. We did hear that the whale sharks were moving south and heading for Tofo, so we made that a destination to dive.

Vilankulos has some awesome resturants, prawns for Africa, great beaches.. lovely. We met a chap from SA there who loved the place so much he flew there in his plane, bringing along his daughters and their boyfriends for a dive.. divorced and full of bucks, but a great oke, we had fun getting him so trashed he could hardly stand.. enjoy your dive tomorrow bud!
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on January 24, 2011, 03:18:30 pm
It was so cool to meet up with so many travellers again, we had mostly been on our own for the last few days, many of the overland trucks pass straight through Northern Moz or head through Malawi, but we were finally getting to the bottom bits and travellers were starting to picth up, this gave us access to some information that was somewhat a lot more reliable than local information, now that I think about it I may have messed up the story about the one petrol stop as now that I think about it it happened somewhere about here..

anyway.. we were looking forward to the next leg, basically down through Massinga to Baia de Inhambane and onto Praia Tofo, whil ewe were there we would take a spell offroad to Miramar to have a peek at the end of teh bay, see what the fuss is all about.
It would end up being a short day , only about 300km for the day, and all tar, so it was a lekker ride, taking it easy and taking it all in.

Inhambane is fantastic, you can see it is really becoming a holiday destination for South Africans as we start to come across more and more of the god damn aweful 4 x 4's with blow up pool toys stuffed up against the windows. That being said, you can understand why, awesome beaches, good accomodation and food is offered and the diving is magnificient.

This is what you get .. relaxation

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Mozambique/DSC00819.jpg)
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on January 24, 2011, 03:22:16 pm
Tofo.. what a place, we mainly went there to take on a dive, I was after giant manta rays and whale sharks, we chatted to some okes who had dived the day before and they had seen both so I was super excited. After catching a camp at a really awesome place in Tofo the next day we headed for a dive and some well deserved resturant food.. I was going to post the pictures of the menu, I think I counted 23 spelling mistakes on it, we could not help but laugh.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Mozambique/DSC00820.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Mozambique/DSC00824.jpg)
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on January 24, 2011, 03:41:08 pm
I remember reading on WD that a chap wanted to ride to Xai Xai, so all dived out for the time being - by the way I never did see whale sharks much to my dissapointment, the dive was spectaculer never the less and I hope to return to these areas one day to dive again.

So I could not help but think Xai Xai must have something special in it in order for a WD to go there, on the way we were just haviong a blast riding every road we came across.. this is the reason why I think the Haidanu K60 rear tyres are the biggest pieces of shit ever made, I dare anyone to tell me differently, I beg anyone, pick with me on this.. The Haidanu K60 IS A PIECE OF SHIT! I put a brand new one on before I left, it did exactly the same thing just into Malawi. So 2 for 2 the tyre failed.

The tyres tear long before any tread has gone..

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Mozambique/DSC00830.jpg)

So distraught and having used up all our spare tyres we had to limp along for a lot of the day till we hit Xai Xai. Martin had some really old Tyre with him we could use in an emergency, it had no tread but it did not have a hole in it.. we figured we should just change it out and carry on. Now I mentioned earlier, if you get a puncture or have to change a tyre just do it yourself, but in 35 degree heat and being a bit lazy and flustered I opted to have it done for me, bad move. I could hear the paint coming off my rims from over the road. I did'nt care, I was pissed off with the tyres performance and it was hot, I was just happy I could carry on, Xai Xai never got explored because of this delay.

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Mozambique/DSC00831.jpg)

(http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u282/Muz-Album/Mozambique/DSC00832.jpg)
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Baches on January 24, 2011, 03:56:04 pm
Excellent Muzzy !!!  :thumleft:
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on January 24, 2011, 04:04:30 pm
We did have a long discussion while in Xai Xai as to where to go to from here.. I wanted to go to Maputo. A few years ago I went to Inhaca and I wanted to go again, from there I wanted to go to St Lucia, but it was not to be.. we were heading for Martin's moms place and the start of the whole trip nearly 60 days earlier - Nelspruit.

It would nearly be the end of the rr except for one event that nearly changed everything, Komatiepoort !! as we headed through Moz to komatiiepoort all was well, it was in our sight, a lovely full sunny day. As I headed to the post I saw a building on my left, i for some reason thought that this is where we had to stamp our passports and carnets so I pulled over to the side of the road, Msrtin followed me, I signalled to him that we have to turn around and check it out and we both did a u turn. On the side of the road where we pulled over was an official on his cell phone leaning against his car, I glanced at him thinking he would point us in the right direction, then I looked at  the building which was elevated up a bank, I could see a big truck coming down from there along a dirt road, so I crossed over the road building up speed to hit the dirt road.. all I heard was screeching breaks.. I looked up and saw a white Hilux 4 x 4 about 3m from me swerving out the way, I did'nt have time to even react I just closed my eyes. The car missed me by inches.. he must have been doing at least 120km/h.. I stopped my bike on the opposite side of the road.. Martin was following me.. he could hardly get off his bike.. he ran up to me and gave me a huge hug, already crying, he could hardly speak.. the official who saw this happen right in front of him was shaking so badly he could hardly hold his phone..

"I thought you were gone for sure' is all Martin coudl say to me, later he said he had no idea how that driver missed me, it was that close.. From what I understand it was all my fault, I simply crossed over the road without even looking. Thinking about it afterwards I know that it was from riding so many deserted roads for so long, you just dont think!

It was nearly a fatal end to a long trip. I am not going to write on our trip back to CT, most okes know that way, in any case we did'nt ride, we took the train from JHB - CT and spent hours chatting about the whole experience. It was life changing for the both of us and was full of drama, advenutre and total enjoyment even through the bad times. To finish off I will post pics of the bike restoration, the Honda Transalp was an awesome bike to travel with, not a seconds mechanical problem the whole trip.


Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: White Rhino on January 24, 2011, 04:51:22 pm
Really damned inspiring and such a good literary journey. I keep looking at the calandar to find dates where I can head out to the north of Mozo!

Thanks for such a great report!!
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Ian in Great Brak River on January 24, 2011, 06:49:51 pm
Stunning RR !! TG you were not totalled by that bakkie...

Thanks for sharing, it's been a magnificent read.

 8)
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: ernies on January 24, 2011, 09:15:42 pm
Fuzzy Muzzy, thanks for sharing an excellent ride report.
 ;)
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: zetman on January 24, 2011, 10:30:16 pm
Nooo... it cant be finished what happend to martin and his girl?... and did they live happily ever after...
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: yahoo on January 25, 2011, 02:56:13 am
Listen boet, thanks a million for this I know how much effort goes into these rr's.

All being well, we're doing southern africa anti clockwise starting mid-May and after stumbling on your trip 2 days ago I could'nt stop reading. I am now well and truely fired up for this. Who know's when we end up in CT we might have to say a personal thank you with a few beers!

Definately a "Roll of honour" candidate.

Cheers!
Jaco
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on January 25, 2011, 10:16:43 am
Thanks very much.. yeah an epic rr like this is a labour of love but it was really cool doing this and I enjoyed every bit of writing it, remember the ride was done a year ago, since we have been back we have done 'The Revenge of Namibia" you can find Waynans rr. It was just cos my mates kept on bugging me that I did this rr. I had to really dig deep and try to remember where we went and what we did because so much of what we did was by the seat of our pants and unplanned but as I got back into it everything all came back to me.. i am still a bit sad that we never made it to Uganda but all in all it worked out well.

What I try to express to people I know who are not bike riders is that trips like this just simply change who you are, you stop sweating the small stuff and really start to appreciate what you have because the people you meet and the places you go have so much less than you do at home. For sure the Africa trip was a teenage dream of mine. No regrets.

All I can say to okes thinking of doing a trip of 60 days plus is to just go for it.. don't wait, don't delay, don't overplan.. you will love every second of it even if you find yourself in a deserted place with no fuel, no food and a puncture. Everything can work out if you use common sence and don't take hectic risks. The people you meet change your mindset and the places you see alter your reality.

Getting home was awesome, we had some friends waiting for us and special braai's were organised because so many people wanted to know all about it. Stories were told for months afterwards.

For me personally it was a tough trip emotionally and I did not go too much into this in the rr. My fiance and I had split a few monthe before the trip and I was having a hard time with getting to grips with the situation, the trip was also my way of getting out there into a different environment and finding myself, who I am.. you get so bogged down with daily life, work, commitments and the daily slog that i wanted to get back to raw living and reconnect with who I was.. I am just so happy that I did this trip because it was mission successful in that regard. I had no contact with anyone for the whole trip except my son who i phoned twice. It was that total disconnect which made the whole trip so hectic spiritually for me.. I am pleased to report that whan I got back my ex and I knew that we just had to be together.. we started dating again as soon as I got back and we got engaged again 4 months ago.

Martin had a different experience personally and emotionally, he left when things were stressed with him and his GF, his business had failed and things were in a very rough state, so this trip for him was for very different reasons. Upon his return he saved his relationship by getting back before Xmas and spending the holidays with his GF.. they have just sold their house in CT and are moving to JHB.. they are trying for a baby.

My next dream trip is Northern to Southern America in possibly 2013.

Happy riding guys, be safe out there and remember, we do this because we love it.
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Waynan on January 25, 2011, 10:31:29 am
Awesome stuff bud simply Awesome stuff!  :ricky:
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on January 25, 2011, 11:51:19 am
Thanks bud.. I will do a separate thread on the bike revamp after the trip.  :thumleft:
Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( COMPLETE )
Post by: Baches on January 25, 2011, 05:45:02 pm
Muz could you give a estimated cost of the trip. Will be interesting when one wants to set up a type of budget for a similar trip.
Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( COMPLETE )
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on January 26, 2011, 09:27:11 am
Um, the cost of the physical trip was actually very cheap, much cheaper than I expected. On average we were spending between R400 and R500 a day which includes fuel, food and accomodation. I can hear everyone thinking that this is far too cheap but I did'nt go into how we actually lived and ate on this trip much in the rr. We really went budget, 4 out of 5 days were camping and making our own food. The days we did sleep in a dwelling of sorts it was because we negotiated a rate that made it worthwhile not to unpack the tents.. In many of the places camping can be found for anywhere between $4 to $7, we did not eat steaks.. trust me, we ate local food on the side of the road, cereals etc. Also we did'nt buy things like coffee, if we could'nt make it ourselves we did'nt just go and buy it. After a few days of living like that we would splash out on a pizza or burger and chips. I eat very little, but Martin, who eats double what I eat really struggled and at times complained that he was so tired of always being hungry so he carried extra food with him. The whole trip cost me just on R25k over 60 days. This excludes anything I spent on the bike prepping it, equipment and gear.

Prepping the bike and equipment costs were probably more than actually doing the trip. Chain, Sprockets, Oil, Tyres, all the small things like pressure guages and on the bike itself things like handle bar raisers, crash bars, higher screens and gear like neck braces, knee guards and boots, I also had a huge expence of sorting the bike out after the off in Namibia.

But yeah, actually travelling through Africa can be done on R500 a day, if you really go large you can still come in at under R1k a day.
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: DirtHound on January 26, 2011, 10:03:29 am
Thanks very much.. yeah an epic rr like this is a labour of love but it was really cool doing this and I enjoyed every bit of writing it, remember the ride was done a year ago, since we have been back we have done 'The Revenge of Namibia" you can find Waynans rr. It was just cos my mates kept on bugging me that I did this rr. I had to really dig deep and try to remember where we went and what we did because so much of what we did was by the seat of our pants and unplanned but as I got back into it everything all came back to me.. i am still a bit sad that we never made it to Uganda but all in all it worked out well.

What I try to express to people I know who are not bike riders is that trips like this just simply change who you are, you stop sweating the small stuff and really start to appreciate what you have because the people you meet and the places you go have so much less than you do at home. For sure the Africa trip was a teenage dream of mine. No regrets.

All I can say to okes thinking of doing a trip of 60 days plus is to just go for it.. don't wait, don't delay, don't overplan.. you will love every second of it even if you find yourself in a deserted place with no fuel, no food and a puncture. Everything can work out if you use common sence and don't take hectic risks. The people you meet change your mindset and the places you see alter your reality.

Getting home was awesome, we had some friends waiting for us and special braai's were organised because so many people wanted to know all about it. Stories were told for months afterwards.

For me personally it was a tough trip emotionally and I did not go too much into this in the rr. My fiance and I had split a few monthe before the trip and I was having a hard time with getting to grips with the situation, the trip was also my way of getting out there into a different environment and finding myself, who I am.. you get so bogged down with daily life, work, commitments and the daily slog that i wanted to get back to raw living and reconnect with who I was.. I am just so happy that I did this trip because it was mission successful in that regard. I had no contact with anyone for the whole trip except my son who i phoned twice. It was that total disconnect which made the whole trip so hectic spiritually for me.. I am pleased to report that whan I got back my ex and I knew that we just had to be together.. we started dating again as soon as I got back and we got engaged again 4 months ago.

Martin had a different experience personally and emotionally, he left when things were stressed with him and his GF, his business had failed and things were in a very rough state, so this trip for him was for very different reasons. Upon his return he saved his relationship by getting back before Xmas and spending the holidays with his GF.. they have just sold their house in CT and are moving to JHB.. they are trying for a baby.

My next dream trip is Northern to Southern America in possibly 2013.

Happy riding guys, be safe out there and remember, we do this because we love it.

This has been one of those "can't put it down" reading moments. Well written with a passion for bikes, and the feeling of freedom they bring. I read "The long way round" a little while back, and thought that was cool until I stumbled upon this. Kudos to you guys!  :thumleft:

Some of this RR gave me goosebumps, and some of it brought a tear to my eye. I love the way you guys make do, and make a McGuyver when the time comes.

Having a wife and young kids makes things a bit more difficult to be away from home for so long, but I'm slowly getting them all into it! Kindof the inverse of "if you can't beat 'em, join 'em"  ;D.
Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( COMPLETE )
Post by: Baches on January 27, 2011, 08:55:23 am
Thanks Muz. Now why do people spent thousands to fly overseas and do the tourist thing. Rather explore our own continent on a bike. Great RR.  :thumleft:
Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( COMPLETE )
Post by: onderbroek on January 27, 2011, 10:01:40 am
great RR,

I stopped reading after i read about the accident thinking that's how the RR ended.  big up for going at it again!!!!  :thumleft: :thumleft:
Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( COMPLETE )
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on January 27, 2011, 11:04:39 am
lol.. no dude, we don't give up that easily !! The off prevented us having enough time to ride around lake Victoria which was our goal but we still went off and did whatever we could.

I think I understand why people pay to go overseas when you could do a trip like this.. bottom line, it is uncomfortable! You have to really have this in your blood, it really has to be something you want to do. there are things to deal with like dust, bugs, bad food, fuel shortages, saftey issues and it is really physical.

I will give you an example, I read the rr on Zim, now i want to go to Kariba.. nice ! so I ask the miss to join me as pillion and she gets excited.. this morning she sends me a mail.. 10 days in Patong, in a 3 star hotel for R9k, flights etc all included. Now one can make a good case for 10 days in Thailand for under 1k a day. Especially if you are a girl and you don't like spiders  :imaposer:
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on January 27, 2011, 02:39:00 pm
Thanks very much.. yeah an epic rr like this is a labour of love but it was really cool doing this and I enjoyed every bit of writing it, remember the ride was done a year ago, since we have been back we have done 'The Revenge of Namibia" you can find Waynans rr. It was just cos my mates kept on bugging me that I did this rr. I had to really dig deep and try to remember where we went and what we did because so much of what we did was by the seat of our pants and unplanned but as I got back into it everything all came back to me.. i am still a bit sad that we never made it to Uganda but all in all it worked out well.

What I try to express to people I know who are not bike riders is that trips like this just simply change who you are, you stop sweating the small stuff and really start to appreciate what you have because the people you meet and the places you go have so much less than you do at home. For sure the Africa trip was a teenage dream of mine. No regrets.

All I can say to okes thinking of doing a trip of 60 days plus is to just go for it.. don't wait, don't delay, don't overplan.. you will love every second of it even if you find yourself in a deserted place with no fuel, no food and a puncture. Everything can work out if you use common sence and don't take hectic risks. The people you meet change your mindset and the places you see alter your reality.

Getting home was awesome, we had some friends waiting for us and special braai's were organised because so many people wanted to know all about it. Stories were told for months afterwards.

For me personally it was a tough trip emotionally and I did not go too much into this in the rr. My fiance and I had split a few monthe before the trip and I was having a hard time with getting to grips with the situation, the trip was also my way of getting out there into a different environment and finding myself, who I am.. you get so bogged down with daily life, work, commitments and the daily slog that i wanted to get back to raw living and reconnect with who I was.. I am just so happy that I did this trip because it was mission successful in that regard. I had no contact with anyone for the whole trip except my son who i phoned twice. It was that total disconnect which made the whole trip so hectic spiritually for me.. I am pleased to report that whan I got back my ex and I knew that we just had to be together.. we started dating again as soon as I got back and we got engaged again 4 months ago.

Martin had a different experience personally and emotionally, he left when things were stressed with him and his GF, his business had failed and things were in a very rough state, so this trip for him was for very different reasons. Upon his return he saved his relationship by getting back before Xmas and spending the holidays with his GF.. they have just sold their house in CT and are moving to JHB.. they are trying for a baby.

My next dream trip is Northern to Southern America in possibly 2013.

Happy riding guys, be safe out there and remember, we do this because we love it.

This has been one of those "can't put it down" reading moments. Well written with a passion for bikes, and the feeling of freedom they bring. I read "The long way round" a little while back, and thought that was cool until I stumbled upon this. Kudos to you guys!  :thumleft:

Some of this RR gave me goosebumps, and some of it brought a tear to my eye. I love the way you guys make do, and make a McGuyver when the time comes.

Having a wife and young kids makes things a bit more difficult to be away from home for so long, but I'm slowly getting them all into it! Kindof the inverse of "if you can't beat 'em, join 'em"  ;D.


Thanks for the comments, it is appreciated.

I know what you mean by finding it tough to get away, having a family and a business or job makes it almost impossible to get away. For sure long trips mean making sacrifices. I was away for my kids 10th birthday and it was a tough days riding when your eyes are all welling up.

Our original plan which was to go around Lake Victoria really did not have a deadline, we figured that 4 months would be more than enough time and that was the plan. Basically from Sep to Dec. We really were penny wize pound foolish trying to make our own panniers and luggage sets and ended up being so unprepared that we only left in October, then I had my off in Namibia which set my foot back 5 weeks so we really only left at the end of October, so it ended up being 2 months. With the original 4 months we would have done places like Burundi. Uganda and Kenya.

I tell you , for 2 pins I would ship my bike to Dar and carry on, I would love to do Kenya, I really wish we could get through some of the parks thou
Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( COMPLETE )
Post by: bud500 on January 27, 2011, 04:37:20 pm
 :eek7: :drif:

WOW! Your RR just cost my employer a bunch of money....

Really great reading, well done on the trip and a big thanks for a thoroughly entertaining read... :thumleft:
Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( COMPLETE )
Post by: BlueBull2007 on January 27, 2011, 08:14:15 pm
Yeah, I just toasted the whole morning reading this awesomeness.

:notworthy: :hello2: Brilliant brilliant brilliant. Kudos to you for pushing on despite that very hectic crash. Thank God you never got hit by that bakkie either, it would have been tragic.

Quote
When traveling you have to take the human dynamics into account and after so many days of traveling so close, making decisions on everything together it is bound to happen, you can’t plan for it, you just have to roll with it. During this rr I have not really touched on many of the problems and trying times you face, there is the ever lurking crime, poor communication, bad weather, terrible food at times, suspect accommodation, corrupt officials, you name it, you will have to face. How you face it will determine ultimately how you perceive the whole experience of traveling by bike through a country far away from home.

Very very wise words these.  :deal:

So if Im still here when you come to Peru, you have a place where you can R&R for a couple of days. PM if you need any help with routes, planning etc. - Ah I forgot you dont like maps!  ;D
Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( COMPLETE )
Post by: Waynan on January 27, 2011, 08:50:32 pm
I can tell you guys one thing NEVER and I mean NEVER allow Muzzy near a map, it will just never be the same afterwards  :pot:
Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( COMPLETE )
Post by: Lem on January 28, 2011, 08:01:59 am
epic journey!
Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( COMPLETE )
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on January 28, 2011, 09:19:49 am
Yeah, I just toasted the whole morning reading this awesomeness.

:notworthy: :hello2: Brilliant brilliant brilliant. Kudos to you for pushing on despite that very hectic crash. Thank God you never got hit by that bakkie either, it would have been tragic.

Quote
When traveling you have to take the human dynamics into account and after so many days of traveling so close, making decisions on everything together it is bound to happen, you can’t plan for it, you just have to roll with it. During this rr I have not really touched on many of the problems and trying times you face, there is the ever lurking crime, poor communication, bad weather, terrible food at times, suspect accommodation, corrupt officials, you name it, you will have to face. How you face it will determine ultimately how you perceive the whole experience of traveling by bike through a country far away from home.

Very very wise words these.  :deal:

So if Im still here when you come to Peru, you have a place where you can R&R for a couple of days. PM if you need any help with routes, planning etc. - Ah I forgot you dont like maps!  ;D

Hectic.. thank you very much for the comments, coming from you it is an honour. I am only planning Peru in 2013, possibly 2014, before then there is a possible Zim trip to be done and now the miss is begging to do Malasia, Thailand, Cambodia & Vietnam, inbetween all of that I have to make enough money to do these things. I will pop you a mail though I do have some questions.

Thanks a mil

Muz
Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( COMPLETE )
Post by: Mzee on September 14, 2011, 02:18:30 pm
Excellent RR.  I did a similar African trip here: http://mzee-jaki.blogspot.com/2009/10/everyone-has-dream.html
Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( COMPLETE )
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on September 14, 2011, 03:03:18 pm
Yeah thanks, it was an awesome trip, one which I would love to do again, for sure I will go back to Malawi which was a real highlight and Diving off Tanzania.
Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( COMPLETE )
Post by: White Rhino on September 21, 2011, 05:34:58 am
Excellent RR.  I did a similar African trip here: http://mzee-jaki.blogspot.com/2009/10/everyone-has-dream.html

Great Odyssey there Mzee! :thumleft:
Title: Re: Africa our way !!
Post by: LangKat on September 21, 2011, 03:37:54 pm
Riding along the coast I saw a sign from heaven .. I was not sure what the whole sign included but I saw the words “Swimming Pool” I think it was the quickest I have ever turned.. boy oh boy was it worth the extra time and ferry ride.. we found a slice of paradise called Mikadi beach Camp. I will let the photo’s speak for themselves. We settled down for the day after securing a sweet deal for a boma right on the beach.


Stayed at Mikadi beach camp last year; absolutely awesome place. The owner and staff were all very keen to help us out with where to go and the best places to exchange money.

Would definitely recommend it to anyone staying in Dar.
Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( COMPLETE )
Post by: kwagga-sakkie on September 21, 2011, 06:40:52 pm
Hi FM. Thanks for the report man. I just waisted the whole day on it. I will save this one as reference as I realy want to do Malawi and Norhtern Moz.I enjoyed your report very much.And your sentiments.
South America is also on my bucketlist. Well done. Thanks again.
Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( COMPLETE )
Post by: wildside on September 21, 2011, 09:18:53 pm
What a fantastic read  :thumleft:.  An adventure that is so good for the soul !!
It certainly gets the 'riding juices' flowing.
Well done to both of you - memories for a lifetime.
Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( COMPLETE )
Post by: McOets on September 22, 2011, 01:39:43 pm
Great RR thank you  :thumleft: Glad you guys got home safe !
Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( COMPLETE )
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on September 22, 2011, 02:39:02 pm
Yeah.. awesome okes, thanks for the comments.

I think the lekker thing about these ride reports is it shows that anyone can do this kind of trip.. all you need is a bag of goods strapped to your bike, about R25k, 2 months and the will to go with the flow africa time.

This trip came at a time in my life ( probably a mid life crisis.. who knows) when I really just needed to get away and reflect on what was going on on my life, we get so consumed with small issues, stupid problems, money, time, family, work.. the stress gets a bit much sometimes.. when you go on a trip like this you understand how lucky we are to have what we have and reminds us not to take it for granted.

If you have every wanted to go see Africa.. there is no time like now. The world won't stop when you leave, and it will be better off when you get back, thinner, more tanned and with an appreciation for life you never knew existed.
Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( COMPLETE )
Post by: TeeJay on September 22, 2011, 04:11:05 pm
Just read the whole RR - awesome reading and thanks for the effort in writing this - great stuff!
Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( COMPLETE )
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on September 23, 2011, 10:11:58 am
 :thumleft:
Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( COMPLETE )
Post by: KTM Jagermeister on September 24, 2011, 11:38:02 am
Hall of fame !!!
Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( COMPLETE )
Post by: DirtHound on November 21, 2011, 06:52:03 am
Yeah.. awesome okes, thanks for the comments.

I think the lekker thing about these ride reports is it shows that anyone can do this kind of trip.. all you need is a bag of goods strapped to your bike, about R25k, 2 months and the will to go with the flow africa time.

This trip came at a time in my life ( probably a mid life crisis.. who knows) when I really just needed to get away and reflect on what was going on on my life, we get so consumed with small issues, stupid problems, money, time, family, work.. the stress gets a bit much sometimes.. when you go on a trip like this you understand how lucky we are to have what we have and reminds us not to take it for granted.

If you have every wanted to go see Africa.. there is no time like now. The world won't stop when you leave, and it will be better off when you get back, thinner, more tanned and with an appreciation for life you never knew existed.

Well said!!  :thumleft:
Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( COMPLETE )
Post by: Hermit on January 11, 2012, 08:37:07 pm
Very nice RR and photo's Muzzy !!! Just finished reading it. Busy planning a similar one for later this year and a lot of info to use here. I might bug you for some more info if you dont mind.  :deal:
Thanks.
Hermit.
Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( COMPLETE )
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on January 12, 2012, 09:23:01 am
Yeah for sure, I am also planning a trip to Zim.. I am just not sure I want to do it on the R.. looking for a bike with a bit more comfort but shout if you have any questions, I recently helped a mate prep his bike and plan his route, he is heading into Zambia as we speak and he is having a blast.

I am planning on going up to Kariba but I think I will touch on lake Malawi again, it is the jewel of Africa IMO.
Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( COMPLETE )
Post by: zniper on April 03, 2012, 08:14:00 am
we had a similar trip planned.... :( never worked out ! and then i sold my dual sport.... :(

but stuff it !!! I am defenitly buying one again after reading this !!!!

Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( COMPLETE )
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on April 03, 2012, 10:17:45 am
Thanks..

Actually I was talking about this Trip to a mate 2 nights ago.. It was such a jol although daunting at the time, the experience you pick up from doing a lekker long trip really makes you want to do more.

When i get the 1200GSA one day I will take the miss up to Tanzania.. it is well worth the visit.
Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( COMPLETE 2010)
Post by: jeff on April 04, 2012, 03:31:10 pm
wow ! did F all work today just read the whole RR brilliant and inspiring trip thks for sharing
Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( COMPLETE 2010)
Post by: Trippple XC on April 30, 2012, 09:08:56 am
Great RR,pouring with rain so I sat reading from start to finish with hot coffee  . :thumleft:
Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( COMPLETE 2010)
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on April 30, 2012, 07:37:26 pm
thanks.. in this trip we did a detour around Zimbabwe as the details around how stable it was varied so much depending on the locals experiences, but by all accounts Zim is very nice to travel through now, at the time we avoided it like the plague.

I am sorry we missed Kariba but I have the bike now so the trip will happen as soon as my hand heals.

Glad okes still enjoy this RR, it brings back a special time.
Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( COMPLETE 2010)
Post by: madmax on April 30, 2012, 10:55:23 pm
lovely
Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( COMPLETE 2010)
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on November 05, 2012, 10:27:26 am
Website for Eureka Bush Camp, if you find yourself looking for a place near lusaka

http://www.eurekacamp.com/
Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( COMPLETE 2010)
Post by: Cheetah on November 05, 2012, 08:35:17 pm
Great stuff Fuzzy !!!!! You have been around the DS block. Awesome RR.
Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( COMPLETE 2010)
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on November 06, 2012, 10:54:20 am
Shanks.. at the time we went Zim was a bit dodge so we gave it a miss, I'm keen to do a Zim trip next year.. I am a Zimbo so would be keen to go visit the house I was raised in, and Kariba. as a kid we stayed at Carribea bay which I see is still there but quite an expensive resort now. During the war my dad was based on Kariba dam wall for a while so as a kid we would go visit him every few weeks.

 :thumleft:
Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( COMPLETE 2010)
Post by: Mzee on November 06, 2012, 11:50:50 am
How did I miss all these action.  Muzzy Godspeed. :thumleft:
Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( COMPLETE 2010)
Post by: CoolBreeze on November 06, 2012, 03:17:56 pm
Respect Guys. Doing something like this is honestly one of my biggest dreams.
Good writting aswell.

Have you fixed up the bikes yet?
Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( COMPLETE 2010)
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on November 06, 2012, 03:24:43 pm
yeah the bikes got all fixed up, this was quite a while ago, I ended up selling the Transalp 650 to a chap who was here from the UK, he wanted to ride the bike back to the UK from CT.

Seeing as I had pretty much done everything known to man on the bike he bought it ( minus the scott oiler, crash bars and one or 2 small things ) and off he went, he did Namibia, Botswana, Zambia, I think a little Malawi and quite a bit of Zim.. a few months later he phoned me from Harare and said he had done enough riding..  :laughing4: I think he bit off a bit more than he realised.

Anyway he came back to Cape Town and he sold the bike to someone but that bike did about another 10 000km trouble free. :thumleft: freaking bulletproof those Transalps.
Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( COMPLETE 2010)
Post by: ButtSlider on November 07, 2012, 12:43:40 pm
Wow, what an epic RR.  :sip: Well done guys.  :drif:

And here I'm wondering whether my 700V will make it . . . . . . .soon.  :ricky:
Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( COMPLETE 2010)
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on November 07, 2012, 10:22:08 pm
Well after I sold the 650 I spent a really long time looking at a replacement bike, I got the 700V because it is probably the most underrated bike out there, more than enough power, confortable and can hold 130km/h loaded no issues, and it is flippin good value for money.

The 700 would do a trip like that no problem, I would spend a few bob and upgrade the suspension, I have progressive springs front and back on my 700 and it makes a world of difference, even on the 650 standard bottoming out the suspension was normal on some of those roads.
Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( COMPLETE 2010)
Post by: mcpan on November 08, 2012, 06:22:09 am
wohoooo what a report.... im green...... gosh what a continent for riding....

i see this report in the roll of honour.....

beslis top 10 stuff



thanks for taking us on your trip!!!  :thumleft: :thumleft: :thumleft: :thumleft:
Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( COMPLETE 2010)
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on November 10, 2012, 08:37:57 pm
 :thumleft:
Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( COMPLETE )
Post by: BuRP on June 01, 2013, 10:15:55 pm
Muzz, pls shout if you still want to go to SA, Peru or wherever. Got a pig that wants to travel ;-)
Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( COMPLETE )
Post by: DirtHound on June 01, 2013, 10:43:42 pm
Muzz, pls shout if you still want to go to SA, Peru or wherever. Got a pig that wants to travel ;-)

Is your pig looking for a rider, or is the rider looking for a riding companion? :)
Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( COMPLETE )
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on June 02, 2013, 08:41:03 pm
Muzz, pls shout if you still want to go to SA, Peru or wherever. Got a pig that wants to travel ;-)

BuRP.. South America is on the bucket list, actually I was chatting to a mate a few weeks back about riding through SM and climbing Anconcagua at the same time, but.. yeah.. bucket list.
Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( COMPLETE )
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on September 10, 2013, 02:56:51 pm
Muzz, pls shout if you still want to go to SA, Peru or wherever. Got a pig that wants to travel ;-)

Pop me your e-mail BuRP, we are planning a coast to coast tour next year if you are keen.
Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( COMPLETE )
Post by: DirtHound on September 10, 2013, 03:54:24 pm
Muzz, pls shout if you still want to go to SA, Peru or wherever. Got a pig that wants to travel ;-)

Pop me your e-mail BuRP, we are planning a coast to coast tour next year if you are keen.

Who's "we"?  :peepwall:
And is it Africa coast-to-coast, or South America coast-to-coast?
Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( COMPLETE )
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on September 10, 2013, 05:07:56 pm
Hey Tony

It will be up Nam coast to Angola.. then Caprivi, vic falls, Kariba , touch the base of lake malawi and across to Moz and back down the Moz coast, vilanculos, tofu etc. By we I usually mean myself and Martin my travel buddy.

Sadly due to financial reasons the South America trip will be shelved and put on the bucket list, the maths just did'nt add up, the cost of getting a bike over, riding for 2 months and coming back is too steep for my pocket.
Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( COMPLETE )
Post by: DirtHound on September 10, 2013, 07:03:52 pm
Hey Tony

It will be up Nam coast to Angola.. then Caprivi, vic falls, Kariba , touch the base of lake malawi and across to Moz and back down the Moz coast, vilanculos, tofu etc. By we I usually mean myself and Martin my travel buddy.

Sadly due to financial reasons the South America trip will be shelved and put on the bucket list, the maths just did'nt add up, the cost of getting a bike over, riding for 2 months and coming back is too steep for my pocket.
This sounds like it's gonna be a real good one!
I'd subscribe to the ride report now if I could  ;D
Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( COMPLETE )
Post by: stan1975 on September 10, 2013, 11:27:54 pm
Complete indeed, there are RR's then some... This is an epic.  :thumleft:
Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( COMPLETE )
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on September 12, 2013, 11:50:44 pm
Hey Tony

It will be up Nam coast to Angola.. then Caprivi, vic falls, Kariba , touch the base of lake malawi and across to Moz and back down the Moz coast, vilanculos, tofu etc. By we I usually mean myself and Martin my travel buddy.

Sadly due to financial reasons the South America trip will be shelved and put on the bucket list, the maths just did'nt add up, the cost of getting a bike over, riding for 2 months and coming back is too steep for my pocket.
This sounds like it's gonna be a real good one!
I'd subscribe to the ride report now if I could  ;D

Come Tony, pack your bags lets go.. I'm sure your wife wouldn't mind  :laughing4:
Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( COMPLETE )
Post by: DirtHound on September 13, 2013, 12:41:21 am
Hey Tony

It will be up Nam coast to Angola.. then Caprivi, vic falls, Kariba , touch the base of lake malawi and across to Moz and back down the Moz coast, vilanculos, tofu etc. By we I usually mean myself and Martin my travel buddy.

Sadly due to financial reasons the South America trip will be shelved and put on the bucket list, the maths just did'nt add up, the cost of getting a bike over, riding for 2 months and coming back is too steep for my pocket.
This sounds like it's gonna be a real good one!
I'd subscribe to the ride report now if I could  ;D

Come Tony, pack your bags lets go.. I'm sure your wife wouldn't mind  :laughing4:

I'll meet you at your place in 20 min, kay?  :lol8:
Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( COMPLETE )
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on September 13, 2013, 05:33:33 pm
I waited and waited  :spitcoffee: we are talking about a short spurt up the Moz coast in Dec.. just saying
Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( COMPLETE )
Post by: DirtHound on September 14, 2013, 07:57:29 am
I waited and waited  :spitcoffee: we are talking about a short spurt up the Moz coast in Dec.. just saying
Ayi yai yai... you have no idea how tempting this is!! Keep me posted please  :peepwall:
Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( COMPLETE )
Post by: MegaPix on October 10, 2013, 11:58:25 am
Muzzy

As a novice I read this RR with so much interest in the trip and especially the photos.  I take my hat off to you for doing this after the big fall in NAM.

Since joining this forum this was the one RR that kept me glued to the PC, laptop and I Pad. 

Thank you for this report.  I now also want to do something similar.  Just a smaller scale as MUMMY thinks this is a MIDLIFE CRISIS.  ;D

Well with 2 kids at varsity and baby going to Matric it might be just a dream. 

Once again THANK YOU :thumleft:
Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( COMPLETE )
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on October 10, 2013, 02:12:44 pm
 :thumleft: your comment is greatly appreciated.

If you want to do something smaller scale just go to Malawi and back, that will cut the trip in half at least, it all depends on how you like to travel, where we took something like 59 days on our Africa trip some okes do the same trip in 30 days. There are some nice threads at the moment with guys going to Malawi.. up through Bots, Vic falls and cut east through Zambia to Malawi, head up lake Malawi for a day or 2 and then head home. Or do something like my Zim trip which was only 10 days.

http://www.wilddog.za.net/forum/index.php?topic=133901.0 (http://www.wilddog.za.net/forum/index.php?topic=133901.0)

We are so blessed to have so many options, I have done Namibia a few times and it is one hell of a beautiful ride, if you want to swap dessert for palm trees go to Moz  :thumleft: The best way to do it is to just leave.

Just tell your wife it is a mid life crisis and you are embracing it  :laughing4:

I am !!
Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( COMPLETE )
Post by: Jacquedup on October 10, 2013, 03:16:09 pm
Reading this RR, made me open my GPS software and start planning. We are planning on visiting friends in Zambia next year.

So will start planning a nice route....

Great RR :thumleft:
Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( COMPLETE )
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on October 12, 2013, 10:31:10 pm
Where about in Zambia?, if you get a chance to go to Flatdogs it is well worth the visit,

Good luck with the planning and post about it, I would like to see where you end up.
Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( COMPLETE )
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on February 04, 2014, 10:17:20 am
Jacquedup.. did you end up going??
Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( COMPLETE )
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on September 08, 2015, 11:20:55 am
looks like part 2 of this trip is on the cards for next year,. whoot
Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( COMPLETE )
Post by: 0012 on September 08, 2015, 01:13:45 pm
looks like part 2 of this trip is on the cards for next year,. whoot

 :sip:
Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( COMPLETE )
Post by: Casting from Turd on September 08, 2015, 01:32:00 pm
looks like part 2 of this trip is on the cards for next year,. whoot

Tune tune. Where to?
Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( COMPLETE )
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on September 08, 2015, 02:25:19 pm
boet if my stars align its going to be Venezuela, Colombia, Peru, Chile, Argentina, Urugay and up to Rio, while we are in Argentina we are going to take 2 weeks to climb Aconcagua.. its going to be 2106 or 2017 but its gonna happen.
Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( COMPLETE )
Post by: 0012 on September 08, 2015, 03:33:50 pm
boet if my stars align its going to be Venezuela, Colombia, Peru, Chile, Argentina, Urugay and up to Rio, while we are in Argentina we are going to take 2 weeks to climb Aconcagua.. its going to be 2106 or 2017 but its gonna happen.

really hope it's 2017, cos 2106 is still quite a way off  ;)
Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( COMPLETE )
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on September 08, 2015, 03:37:04 pm
ba ha, Aug 2016 is a year away , it all depends on what my mate wants to climb 1st, if we do mt Elbrus then we will do Russia 2016, Aconcauga 2017, ill be chuffed if im still riding in 2106  :laughing4:
Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( COMPLETE )
Post by: shanti on September 12, 2015, 11:46:46 pm
I read this a few years after you wrote such a beautiful piece , I  got a slow travelling , spliff making , nature enjoying , free thinking , Africa embracing vibe about your journey - nice one , thank you for your time to express that journey
Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( COMPLETE )
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on August 19, 2016, 11:02:35 am
6 years later and finally.. the 2nd instalment is coming

Africa our way - Unfinished business.

in this RR everyone found out that we had to cut time off the trip because of the off, which meant that we missed Burundi, Rwanda and Uganda..

Last week Martin phoned me.. " hey Muz, what are you doing in December? " .. me.. ah well you know, same old same old.. braai, drink, swim, beach, family get togethers, bike trips into the Cederberg, dating, dinners, the usual stuff.... WHY?

Lets go back.. we have unfinished business in Africa..

Im in..
Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( Complete...... or is it? )
Post by: 0012 on August 19, 2016, 11:38:53 am
Faaaaaark, finally!      :drif:    :drif:    :drif:

Super sub    :thumleft:


 :ricky:
Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( Complete...... or is it? )
Post by: zetman on August 19, 2016, 12:04:54 pm
 :ricky: :ricky: :3some:
Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( Complete...... or is it? )
Post by: ButtSlider on August 19, 2016, 03:38:52 pm
Farking awesome.

Cannot wait for the RR Muzzy.

Let us into the planning etc as well.
Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( Complete...... or is it? )
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on August 19, 2016, 03:52:17 pm
Everyone that knows me knows that I don't plan.. I see these okes pouring over maps, google earth, counting every km, rest days, routes, weather patterns etc.

Im going to prove that you can get up off your couch, get on a bike, make a list of stuff to take, like passport and a few certified ID's, fill up the bike and ride through 7 or 8 countries with nothing more than the will to do so and the love of the African earth.

I will go through the list of prelim planning starting with the bike.. naturally a new chain, sprockets, tyres and an oil change.I may need to find the funds for a giant loop bag, but other than that im going pretty standard. Im not making any mods to the bike, ill wear gear I wear when I ride on weekends.. that's about it.

Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( Complete...... or is it? )
Post by: Fransw on August 19, 2016, 04:24:33 pm
Everyone that knows me knows that I don't plan.. I see these okes pouring over maps, google earth, counting every km, rest days, routes, weather patterns etc.

Im going to prove that you can get up off your couch, get on a bike, make a list of stuff to take, like passport and a few certified ID's, fill up the bike and ride through 7 or 8 countries with nothing more than the will to do so and the love of the African earth.

I will go through the list of prelim planning starting with the bike.. naturally a new chain, sprockets, tyres and an oil change.I may need to find the funds for a giant loop bag, but other than that im going pretty standard. Im not making any mods to the bike, ill wear gear I wear when I ride on weekends.. that's about it.



Mossie, I agree. To much planning can spoil the trip. Kingsley Hollgate always says," let the trip take you, not the other way around"

Get the paperwork in order take some $ and of you go..
Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( Complete...... or is it? )
Post by: Ian in Great Brak River on August 19, 2016, 05:41:29 pm
Cool Bananas!!

 8)
Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( Complete...... or is it? )
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on January 24, 2018, 09:34:04 am
Casting from Turd

Try this to see the pics

http://www.wilddog.za.net/forum/index.php?topic=216568.0

let me know if it works
Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( Complete...... or is it? )
Post by: silvrav on January 24, 2018, 09:47:05 am
 :thumleft: :drif:
Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( Complete...... or is it? )
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on January 24, 2018, 10:03:48 am
I checked it out and it works like a bomb.. just follow the link, add the extension to chrome and then reopen, all the pics come up.
Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( Complete...... or is it? )
Post by: McKracken on January 26, 2018, 02:51:15 pm
What an epic trip. And an inspiring RR.

I'm almost twitching with cabin fever after reading of your adventures. (I'm at work on a  ship somewhere near Sri Lanka) and I've long had a plan to ride Cape to Killi, Climb it, and ride back another route. It was the deciding factor in choosing  to work at sea, (3 months solid work, but then 2 months of leave) and your story gives me motivation to get up and make it happen. I'm due home in a month, and will be taking my first trip on my new steed as soon as I can.
Thanks for a mind bending story! Much respect :biggrin:
Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( Complete...... or is it? )
Post by: Fuzzy Muzzy on January 30, 2018, 12:03:46 pm
Yeah go for it

If I had to do it again I would try to follow the original plan of riding around lake Victoria and arrive at Kili via Kenya but that is mainly because Rwanda is on my bucket list. 2 months is what we did the route in but bear in mind that we were in no rush and at times stayed in the same place for a few days and some days were under 100km of riding, so if you plan of following the rift north to Uganda and then head for Kili and then Dar you will have enough time, just remember to allocate your time to climb Kili, if you need help climbing Kili I can tell you which operator i used and the hotel we stayed in. You will have to plan ahead if you going to be using your own gear which is always recommended.. so possibly pack all your gear and ship it to the hotel before the time for safekeeping.. as a last option you can hire gear at the hotel.  I want to climb Aconcagua one day when i do a ride through South America so im busy thinking of the best way to do it, although expensive it may be best to go through a tour company that provides the gear rental and plan the ride around the climb, the only issue I have is taht you really not sure if you will arrive in Tanzania on that day, so the only other option is to arrive and wing it.
Title: Re: Africa our way !! ( Complete...... or is it? )
Post by: Casting from Turd on January 30, 2018, 02:01:11 pm
Casting from Turd

Try this to see the pics

http://www.wilddog.za.net/forum/index.php?topic=216568.0

let me know if it works

Works shap shap.

Amper soos n m.....  met ETS se nuwe blou crocs