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Author Topic: Beach bumming Mozambique  (Read 10522 times)

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Offline ClemS

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Re: Beach bumming Mozambique
« Reply #40 on: January 30, 2019, 04:43:43 pm »
 :sip:
 

Offline sackett

Re: Beach bumming Mozambique
« Reply #41 on: January 30, 2019, 05:23:33 pm »
Hardcore!!!
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Offline fcprinsloo7@gmail.com

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Re: Beach bumming Mozambique
« Reply #42 on: January 30, 2019, 05:44:59 pm »
@Xpat.

How did you like the Motoz Desert HT for that kind of trip. What mileage did you get out of the tyre?
 

Offline Amsterdam

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Re: Beach bumming Mozambique
« Reply #43 on: January 30, 2019, 05:51:08 pm »
One thing I don't understand about your ride reports.  You often refer to yourself as a gastro-tourist yet you keep running around the more obscure places in this part of the world.  Often not much of a culinary choice around.

One thing I have been told is that to prevent the side stand bolt failure issue is to always have the little rubber band over the end to prevent it bouncing around.  When you have the camel toe on the end of the side stand this is not much of a pain as it hooks quickly and easily that way.
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Offline Xpat

Re: Beach bumming Mozambique
« Reply #44 on: January 30, 2019, 06:28:29 pm »
One thing I don't understand about your ride reports.  You often refer to yourself as a gastro-tourist yet you keep running around the more obscure places in this part of the world.  Often not much of a culinary choice around.

One thing I have been told is that to prevent the side stand bolt failure issue is to always have the little rubber band over the end to prevent it bouncing around.  When you have the camel toe on the end of the side stand this is not much of a pain as it hooks quickly and easily that way.

The gastro-tourist is a bit tongue in the cheek, but there is also some substance to it. If I have a choice of making my own food or going to restaurant on a trip I would always go for the latter, even if quite pricey. And on number of occassions I have altered my plans on a whim and have gone through a lot of effort and risk (for example deciding to ride in the dark in Botswana which is one of the most stupid things one can do on the bike) just to make it to medium rare steak, especially after day or two of eating crap from cans somewhere in the bush, I'm very susceptible to this. I'm no gourment or anything, but I will go the extra distance if it is going to get me better food (or at least ability to buy condensed sweetened milk, which is my comfort food of choice on trips like this (I don't eat/drink that crap at home)).

As for the sidestand you are probably right, and my situation was even worse as I had already steel sidestand that was heavier and hence wiggling the bolt out much more. However as we speak I'm having the final solution installed - ProMotoBilles stand that clamps to the frame: https://promotobillet.com/fastwayproducts/all/ktm-husqvarna-kickstand-730. JustBendIt has it, Straatkat has it and all the worries about broken sidesstand are gone. Moreover, it is so sturdy that you can step on and off the bike when it is on the sidestand, which is quite an advantage for non-flexible/older people for adventure riding as otherwise you have to lift your leg all over your luggage strapped at the back.

Offline Xpat

Re: Beach bumming Mozambique
« Reply #45 on: January 30, 2019, 06:49:00 pm »
@Xpat.

How did you like the Motoz Desert HT for that kind of trip. What mileage did you get out of the tyre?

I have used them only for this trip - which was about 3000 km long. At the end they still had IMO at least 1000 km in them, probably more (see attached images of the tyres at the end if the trip - just bear in mind that I have done relatively limited hard surfaces on them and always pumped them up for that). I didn't have any problems with their performance while riding, but I'm not going to be using them going forward and rather stick to the tried and tested C02 for trips like this (not for Lesotho where I'm going to go for softer tyres next time).

The reason is I had about 6 or 7 punctures on the way back home as we will see later, when my tubeliss failed and I had to use tubes (and source them continuously along the way). To be fair, it was extremely hot and I'm not sure if it really was caused by the tyre, but it is very soft walled tyre that definitely doesn't provide much protection for the tube and probably makes the tyre to heat up much more while riding in hot conditions at low tyre pressures, as I was in the sand. I have no way to prove that it was the tyre - may very well have been the tubes (though I went through like 3 of them), but my gut feel is to stay away from them and rather stick with the tried and tested C02 (which to be fair has its own limitations in terms of lower grip on hard packed surfaces, but I'm used to it).

Here is the Motoz after the trip







« Last Edit: January 30, 2019, 06:49:38 pm by Xpat »
 
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Offline Xpat

Re: Beach bumming Mozambique
« Reply #46 on: January 30, 2019, 07:17:17 pm »
So Bots cutlines, Koakoland, Moz beaches or Lesotho rocks - if you had to choose your favourite ?

That is easy - all of them, why do I need to chose?

Look, they are all very worthwhile doing, but at the same time (or maybe because of being) very different.

Kaokoland (and I include Damaraland into this as they are for me tightly interconnected) is the tourist hotspot with the best visual experience of them all provided by combination of stunning desert mountains scenery, freely roaming wild animals, and Himbas. On the other hand the riding there - while prety extensive is relatively limited to the main tracks, as it is conservation area and you are not supposed to ride off the main tracks. Now those tracks are very worthy and extensive, but the fact is that if you take your time and do them properly (which isn't going to take more than 2,5 - 3 weeks), you are kind of done with it. It may be worthwhile to come back few years later for refresh, but generally speaking it is not the best place for free form exploration.

Mozambique (I'm talking lower half here up to Vilankulos) is very differen from the rest because of its tropical (or sub-tropical) vegetation, Caribean like beaches, great food and latin vibe (it reminds me strongly of Brazil - though I have never been there  8)). It is the most user friendly of them all as it is very close compared to Kaokoland (if you live in GP, Mpumalanga, KZN, Limpopo and maybe eastern FS that is), there are lodges with good restaurants all along the coast so no need for selfcatering, and it is also very low risk compared to other locations as the south along the coast is heavily populated (it doesn't show in my report as I dont' like bothering people with pictures) - there is always some kind of settlement within km or two from where you are and tar EN1 for most part is only few km away with plenty of little paths to take you there. That means you don't need to carry excessive amounts of water or petrol like you might need to in Kaokoland and especially Botswana, and there is always help readily available should you get in trouble. So it is quite fine to ride there even solo (and yes, people are very friendly once you get off the main roads). I see sometimes people here going on bike tours to Thailand or some such (nothing wrong with that at all), while there is very similar scenery and probably even better riding available right here for much less (granted, you will not get the Thai culture and cuisine in Moz, but you will get very tropical treatment/vibe anyway). Also - if you chose your bike carefully (your Rally should be perfectly fine even though a bit heavier than mine) riding that sand is no problem even for relative bimbo like me - unlike Lesotho, where you better be on top of your game.

Botswana is by far the wildest and most risky of them all. It is unique, because in its north half (past veterinary fence0 you have wild african animals roaming freely everywhere. That, together with dense bush and deep sand gives it very unique character, that will be appreciated by people who like to explore and really get out of their comfort zone. It is also by far the most risky of all these areas (Moz being the least risky) - you will probably not find more remote places anywhere else in Southern Africa (if not in the whole of Africa) than in Bots, so you better be ready to get yourself out of bind if riding solo. For example those cutline often go for over 200 km of wild bush with big 5 everywhere. That means that if your bike breaks half way through, you have 100 km to walk. I was told by locals that healthy man can walk 30 km a day in deep sand - but I doubt it in hot summer. So your choice is to walk during the day in hot sun, or walk in the night when lions and hyenas are prowling everywhere. And you better have enough water for that walk. For me Botswana is one of the last places (if not the last) on this planet where one can explore in almost complete wilderness. But because of the dense bush you will be often limited to the already existing tracks as I would not advice trying to just crash through 100s of kms of virgin bush.

Lesotho is unique because of the mountains, but more so because of the complete freedom you have to explore. You can literally ride anywhere you want, as long as you are good enough. Your only limitation will be your skills and terain, which makes for great fun trying to plot and then ride routes connecting different places over the mountains. It is the best place if you want to explore off the beaten track - even more so than Bots because you are not limited to existing tracks. You can literally spent months discovering new interesting routes from one place to another. But you have to have right tool - bike for it. Out of all these I believe this is the only place where your Rally would be extremely limiting.

So pick whatever suits your fancy  ;)

Offline Xpat

Re: Beach bumming Mozambique
« Reply #47 on: January 30, 2019, 07:21:05 pm »
Hardcore!!!

Not really - you could have easily done this on your Xt250 or XR600. No worries whatsoever. And as I said in the response to sidetrack, this is the most user friendly riding compared to other remote places in Southern Africa as it is heavily populated (so help and water and food is available readily) and also there are enough nice lodges and restaurants to provide for nice overnighters.

I'm actually wondering often why that place isn't crawling with adv bikers from north east SA (that for me would probably be North East of Bloemfontein. Obviously it is not a territory for big adv bikes, but any old school single up to 600 cc and any modern DS will do just fine (depending on ones riding abilities of course - but no you don't need to be riding god to ride that sand, just pick lighter bike).

Offline Xpat

Re: Beach bumming Mozambique
« Reply #48 on: January 30, 2019, 08:24:57 pm »
Day 5 - Zona Braza to Zavora

I woke up before sunrise and went for a stroll on the beach just as the sun came up:


































With that sorted, I packed up and headed out.





« Last Edit: January 30, 2019, 08:27:34 pm by Xpat »
 
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Offline Xpat

Re: Beach bumming Mozambique
« Reply #49 on: January 30, 2019, 08:38:08 pm »
Objective for the day was Zavora beach some 155 km away.




I continued on the tracks I have plotted - they mostly followed the coast just behind the coastal dunes, and was glad to see that they continued to deliver  :ricky:













There are plenty of inland laggons like this all along the Moz coast:










The track run mostly on a little foot paths used by locals and their cattle, crossing the main east west running dirt roads connecting EN1 and coast once in a while:










The tracks connect little settlement - often housing just one family - dotted with their little fields along the coast:








« Last Edit: January 30, 2019, 08:42:27 pm by Xpat »
 

Offline Xpat

Re: Beach bumming Mozambique
« Reply #50 on: January 30, 2019, 08:54:12 pm »
The whole coastal area from Bilene onwards is one big rolling dune field overgrown by bush, populated by the locals and crisscrossed by numerous footpaths. The more north I went the less used the tracks seemed to be. Often I had to navigate on the little divides of little plots of fields and little footpaths through dense vegetation to get to the next section of the track.










I often came across this kind of decreipt buildings in the bush and for some reason they gave me heebeegeebees - though much less so on nice sunny day like this. Most of the settlements were empty as people were out tending to their fields or whatever chores they had to do.


















« Last Edit: January 30, 2019, 08:56:34 pm by Xpat »
 
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Offline Xpat

Re: Beach bumming Mozambique
« Reply #51 on: January 30, 2019, 09:06:15 pm »
And another turquoise lagoon:







Most of the day was like riding through a tropical garden (excuse the un-biker like sentiment):






























« Last Edit: January 31, 2019, 06:15:50 am by Xpat »
 
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Offline NoRush

Re: Beach bumming Mozambique
« Reply #52 on: January 30, 2019, 09:16:23 pm »
Nice RR as always Xpat. You make a lot of effort with photos. Thanks
 

Offline RobC

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Re: Beach bumming Mozambique
« Reply #53 on: January 30, 2019, 09:33:05 pm »
Epic RR with all the pics. :thumleft:
 

Offline Xpat

Re: Beach bumming Mozambique
« Reply #54 on: January 30, 2019, 09:38:54 pm »
In the track I have plotted at home about 20 km before Zavora I had to divert inland to Inharrime on EN1 to bypass big lagoon sitting in the way. However in one of the stops I have noticed on a german map I had on my smartphone that there could be little bridge across the lagoon at its narrowest point. So when I reached the lagoon I turned right instead of left and took a little footpath to see what is at the other end. And sure enough, there it was - a bridge!




Note the high tech side stand I fixed myself  :snorting:

The bridge looked a bit finicky so I went to investigate on foot. This is what I found:



















Sorry for too many pictured - I got a bit mesmerised by this contraption. It felt dodgy in places, but was able to carry me to the other side (and another probably 10 locals who crossed while I conducted this thorought study). As I'm heavier than the weight on each individual wheel of 500, I argued in my head (well I might have actually spoke to myself loudly as well to crank up the currage) that the planks should be able to take it. But I wasn't exactly sure, until two locals rocked up and told me it is perfectly safe. Who am I to argue (plus I was too lazy to go around the whole lake) so I decided to give it a go. Fully aware that flooded engine here would be moerse pain in the ass, I decided to push the bike across with engine switched of, so should it crash through I would hopefully not end up with flooded engine.

The two locals helped me to push it across - for a small fee of course - and I was elated to find this little nifty shortcut that eliminated need to go through big smoke Inharrime.

Job done with my two helpers (and structural engineering experts):




Seems like locals do not question the world famous Moz bridge building quality at all (yes - an excuse for more picture of the bridge):




OK - the last two  :peepwall:







After a short break, I jumped on the bike and pushed on following along the eastern shore of the lagoon and some bushes covering the dune separating the lagoon and the ocean:






















Once past the lagoon I T-boned the main dirt road between Inharrime and Zavora beach in a little village and rode it the last km or two to the Zavora lodge.




In the lodge I booked a room in one of their wooden baracks on top of the dune. They are pretty stuffy as they have no aircon and are sittin in direct sun. On top of it for some reason they recently tarred them and the vapours were to rob me off few years of my life in the night. But hey - with no other options availalbe, still better than slumming it in the tent  :snorting:

View from my tarred dune room:
















As a proper beach bum, I spend the afternoon soaking in the ocean and lazing about in the lodge restaurant.
« Last Edit: January 30, 2019, 10:09:13 pm by Xpat »
 
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Offline wildside

Re: Beach bumming Mozambique
« Reply #55 on: January 30, 2019, 09:48:16 pm »
Wow....an awesome solo ride and an interesting route. Nice to see some new places as well other than the usual popular holiday destinations. Lovely photos showing great scenery which all makes up for the frustrating border experiences. Well done and thanks for sharing  :sip:
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Offline Xpat

Re: Beach bumming Mozambique
« Reply #56 on: January 30, 2019, 09:51:39 pm »
Wow....an awesome solo ride and an interesting route. Nice to see some new places as well other than the usual popular holiday destinations. Lovely photos showing great scenery which all makes up for the frustrating border experiences. Well done and thanks for sharing  :sip:

Thanks wildside  :thumleft:

And sorry about your accident on the way home from Malawi. I'm going to catch up with your RR now.

Offline Xpat

Re: Beach bumming Mozambique
« Reply #57 on: January 30, 2019, 09:52:45 pm »
@RobC & @NoRush : cheers and thanks  :thumleft:

Offline ClimbingTurtle

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Re: Beach bumming Mozambique
« Reply #58 on: January 31, 2019, 07:26:42 am »
Zavora was one of my favourite places for a long while - we hired one of the houses at the other end of the "resort" for 3 weeks for my 40th - was a brilliant holiday, one of my best ever. Stayed there for about 2 weeks a few years after that again, booked the same house - had a great time!
But its now changed ownership, so i dont know if its better or worse - was very rustic (  :biggrin: ) when we used to go there, only had power in the day-time etc.
I should go back at some point and see - however there are soooo many other places to see......
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Offline Brucet

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Re: Beach bumming Mozambique
« Reply #59 on: January 31, 2019, 07:45:17 am »
Epic trip. I have travelled Moz since the late 80's and never done this route.....Ive have been dying to do it. My old man used to own a resort in Vilankulos (Blue Waters) which he sold.
So great to see someone doing this route.

Thanks for sharing.
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