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Author Topic: Virgin Sand In Kaokoland (a post lockdown adventure)  (Read 17385 times)

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Offline punisher

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Re: Virgin Sand In Kaokoland (a post lockdown adventure)
« Reply #100 on: December 03, 2020, 06:13:58 pm »
this is toomuch lekker
just wanna have fun , and ride ... and ....... ride
 

Offline Welsh

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Re: Virgin Sand In Kaokoland (a post lockdown adventure)
« Reply #101 on: December 03, 2020, 06:41:43 pm »
But where the hell did Funacide crawl out from? :eek7:

I was also very surprised to see the fcuker is still alive and well and still drinking too much coffee.

Sorry, hijack off

Been around all the time just not posting much. With all the none riding I am so interested in trips to Kaokoland, I NEED A NAMIBIA TRIP!!!

Will you get let off the leash?  :biggrin:
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Offline BoskakBruce

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Re: Virgin Sand In Kaokoland (a post lockdown adventure)
« Reply #102 on: December 03, 2020, 07:47:03 pm »
On a bit of a technical note, how often do you service the KTM 500 and how do you handle that on these long trips?

Thanks
Every 2000 - 3000km for an oil change seems to be the agreed milage based on dual sport use. The entire trip was 2800km, so I did it without changing the oil.

Had I been riding more, I would have carried 1.5 litres of oil with me and changed it in the field.

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Offline BoskakBruce

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Re: Virgin Sand In Kaokoland (a post lockdown adventure)
« Reply #103 on: December 03, 2020, 07:48:17 pm »
Thanks for the coffee advice everyone. Going to sit down and write up Day 3 after Cyril's announcement tonight.

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Offline Ian in Great Brak River

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Re: Virgin Sand In Kaokoland (a post lockdown adventure)
« Reply #104 on: December 03, 2020, 08:48:59 pm »
How would the Husky 501 have been on this ride?
1978. It's 6am, mid winter...two up on a XL 185S ... off to my first casino ever with all of R40 and we've got a full tank of fuel, so enough to get there we reckon.... that's determination...

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Offline swakop_toe

Re: Virgin Sand In Kaokoland (a post lockdown adventure)
« Reply #105 on: December 03, 2020, 10:00:54 pm »
Thanks for the coffee advice everyone. Going to sit down and write up Day 3 after Cyril's announcement tonight.

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OK, can I also chirp an option?
Been using mine for 7years already.
Very nifty.
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PS: really appreciating your RR Bruce.

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Offline BoskakBruce

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DAY 3 – Palmwag to Sesfontein
« Reply #106 on: December 03, 2020, 10:37:03 pm »
I sleep like a baby that night. Apparently, elephants were walking around our tent all night, but fortunately, I didn’t hear them.

I get out of bed and head outside to make coffee. Fortunately, the glamping setup at Palmwag Lodge comes with a French Press, so good coffee was definitely on the cards this morning.

As I exit the “tent”, I stop dead in my tracks. Right in front of me is a gigantic elephant… It’s quite something to be that close.
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Offline BoskakBruce

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Re: Virgin Sand In Kaokoland (a post lockdown adventure)
« Reply #107 on: December 03, 2020, 10:38:12 pm »
No bike maintenance this morning. I think I can live with the handling now that the sag is set right. The front end still dives into sandy corners threatening to throw me over the bars, but at least it’s sort of predictable.

After a good coffee, we shower and head to breakfast. Marc gives me a ride to the restaurant on the back of his bike. Marc may be a little homophobic, I’m not sure. So I tease him by clinging tightly to him as he pulls off. Jan Lucas caught the moment on camera and I think Marc’s face says it all! 😊 We laughed so hard at his reaction.
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Offline BoskakBruce

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Re: Virgin Sand In Kaokoland (a post lockdown adventure)
« Reply #108 on: December 03, 2020, 10:38:40 pm »
Half way there, Marc sees some elephant shit and decided this photo is in order….
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Offline BoskakBruce

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Re: Virgin Sand In Kaokoland (a post lockdown adventure)
« Reply #109 on: December 03, 2020, 10:39:29 pm »
We’re having a great time and the morning’s mood is optimistic because we’re well rested and looking forward to seeing the Klein Serengeti and camping at a hot spring tonight.

Also, the night before we met Zulma and her husband Jurgen.

Zulma is a voluptuous, charismatic Colombian who is as charming as she is sexy.

I can’t speak for the other guys, but I suspect that we were all quite taken by her spirit and looking forward to more of her this morning.

It’s her birthday and so the staff come out and sing happy birthday. Zulma jumps up and begins dancing with them. Afterwards her .and Jurgen sit at our table and share birthday cake with us. It was a fun way to start the day. 😊
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Offline BoskakBruce

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Re: Virgin Sand In Kaokoland (a post lockdown adventure)
« Reply #110 on: December 03, 2020, 10:41:24 pm »
Eventually, 4 hours after waking up, we leave.

We check out through the environmental security gate where the guard asks us if we are carrying any fruit or meat? Apparently, we’re not allowed to carry meat or fruit products into the neighboring region.

I’m not a dishonest person by nature… In fact, I have presented a TEDx talk on the topic of honesty

But today, I’m not going to give up my precious droewors just because some security guard is following protocol.

So, we all lie and say "no", because of course we’re loaded to the hilt with biltong and droewors.

We blast down a long straight section for 60km until we arrive at the entrance to the Otjitheka 4WD trail.
« Last Edit: December 03, 2020, 11:10:11 pm by Overland Bruce »
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Offline BoskakBruce

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Re: Virgin Sand In Kaokoland (a post lockdown adventure)
« Reply #111 on: December 03, 2020, 10:41:46 pm »
Along the way we pass this guy on the side of the road.
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Offline BoskakBruce

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Re: Virgin Sand In Kaokoland (a post lockdown adventure)
« Reply #112 on: December 03, 2020, 10:42:34 pm »
The trail turns into a fun ride with sweeping sandy tracks and challenging rocky climbs.

During one of them, my front wheel deflected of a rock which sent me off to the other side of the rocky 4x4 track onto a rock and then onto my ass. Fortunately, the other guys didn’t see, so I jumped back on and kept blasting pretending to have made it up in one go.

We stop and assess the route…
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Offline BoskakBruce

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Re: Virgin Sand In Kaokoland (a post lockdown adventure)
« Reply #113 on: December 03, 2020, 10:45:04 pm »
The closer we get to Klein Serengeti, the sandier the track becomes until it opens up into a spectacular plain.   

We open the throttles and blast through the sand for a while.

At one point, a giraffe runs right across my path and turns in front of me and continues loping along at full speed. Almost in slow motions, it’s legs sway from side to side as he runs. Time stand still and I marvel at the immense privilege of being able to ride a motorcycle beside a giraffe.

I slow down so as not to frighten him and let his run into the bushes.
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Offline BoskakBruce

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Re: Virgin Sand In Kaokoland (a post lockdown adventure)
« Reply #114 on: December 03, 2020, 10:46:35 pm »
My GPS tells me that I need to turn left into the Khowarib Schlucht 4WD trail.

It’s another riverbed trail, but as Namibia is in it’s 7th year of drought, it’s dry.

I catch up with Marc and Jan Lucas and they are looking for a place to stop and have lunch. 

“Lunch” seems to have different meanings for each of us. For Marc, lunch is a cuppa tea. For Jan Lucas it’s instant soup. For me it’s food.

“Guys, WTF? You’re boiling water??? Have you not noticed that we’re in a desert and its 30+ degrees in the shade? You’re seriously going to boil tea and soup now?”

They looked at me as if I was an ignorant child and continued to set up their gas burners and start boiling water. I pulled out my biltong and passed it around. 

Not being a tea drinker, I passed on Marc’s offer of a cup, but Jan Lucas insisted that I try the soup. Actually, it was tasty and quite filling while still being light on the stomach.

Soup for lunch in the desert would become a ritual that I would learn to appreciate over the coming days.
« Last Edit: December 03, 2020, 10:50:12 pm by Overland Bruce »
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Offline BoskakBruce

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Re: Virgin Sand In Kaokoland (a post lockdown adventure)
« Reply #115 on: December 03, 2020, 10:51:17 pm »
As we’re about to set off again, we hear a noise in the distance. Soon afterwards a 4x4 appears with a young German couple inside. These are the first tourists we’ve seen since we started.

We stop and chit chat for 15 mintes. They are very curious about the bikes and what it’s like travellign on the bike.

They also tell us that there are a ton of giraffe further up in the riverbed. Yay!
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Offline BoskakBruce

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Re: Virgin Sand In Kaokoland (a post lockdown adventure)
« Reply #116 on: December 03, 2020, 10:52:23 pm »
We get back in the saddle and begin exploring the riverbed. The dust is awful, so I try to ride alongside Marc and Jan Lucas, but because we’re all trying to find a safe line, riding side by side in an ever-changing riverbed prevents spontaneous sideways movement, so we soon spread out again.

I’m getting tired of riding at the back and missing out on all the animals, so I make a mad dash for the front position.

It takes something to catch and then safely overtake Jan Lucas.  He used to race, so he's quick.

By the time I have him in my sights, I have my sand shoes on and I’m in my flow, power sliding around the corners and lofting the front wheel over the holes in the sand.

God, I love the 500. It’s the most fun bike I own and if I only had to own one bike, this would be it.

I lose all sense of time as I blast through the river canyon.

It opens up into a greener area where I stop to wait for the guys – exhilarated and feeling amazing.

They don’t arrive. I peer at my GPS and notice that I’ve drifted off our planned track. Perhaps they took the actual GPS track instead of staying in the riverbed.

5 minutes later, I turn around and begin retracing the actual GPS track to see if I can find them.

It takes a while, but eventually I see them under a tree. As I pull up, they are oddly silent. No excitement.

“What’s up, guys?”

“Marc almost hit a giraffe.” Jan Lucas says somberly.

The giraffe had suddenly run out from the bank of the riverbed and crossed right in front of Marc. Apparently, Marc only just missed crashing into it.

Afterward, they had stopped to regroup. I could tell that something was up with Jan Lucas. He was not smiling as usual and had a distracted look on his face.

« Last Edit: December 04, 2020, 09:16:01 am by Overland Bruce »
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Offline BoskakBruce

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Re: Virgin Sand In Kaokoland (a post lockdown adventure)
« Reply #117 on: December 03, 2020, 10:56:46 pm »
We continued and eventually left the riverbed behind and started down a Fesh Fesh infested track.

If you don’t know what Fesh Fesh is, it’s extremely fine sand, like baby powder. Riding in it is almost impossible as you just can’t get any traction. Worse still, the fine dust gets EVERYWHERE, and I mean everywhere. In my air filter, in my eyes, in my boots, even in my balls. Everywhere.

Just before the Fesh Fesh section, I notice a solitary man standing on the side of the road in the heat.

I stop to say hello and chat with him.

He’s selling wooden crafts – animals and the like - to tourists.

I look at the ground in front of me and there are no car tracks nor bike tracks, meaning that no tourist has been down this path in at least a week, maybe even in 8 months.

And this man comes out and waits here every day, all day, in the boiling heat, hoping that one day a car will drive by again, like they used to before COVID-19.

I feel for him… and even though I have no space in my luggage to buy tourist shit, I buy a wooden elephant from him (and give him double what he asked) just so that he can buy some food.

Soon the local kids arrive having heard the motorcycle. We take a photo together and talk a little more.

He doesn’t seem to understand why the tourists have suddenly stopped coming. I ask him if he knows about the virus. He nods. I tell him that until 3 weeks ago, the borders to his country were closed and that nobody could enter Namibia.

He nods.

I tell him that hopefully December will be better as South African and European travelers will begin arriving again. He smiles. I hope I didn’t give him false hope.
« Last Edit: December 04, 2020, 09:19:39 am by Overland Bruce »
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Offline BoskakBruce

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Re: Virgin Sand In Kaokoland (a post lockdown adventure)
« Reply #118 on: December 03, 2020, 10:58:00 pm »
We move on towards Ongongo planning to stay at the Warquelle Hot Springs campsite. It’s a beautiful place to camp I’ve heard and I’ve been looking forward to it all day.

We arrive at the turnoff and Jan Lucas pulls up next to me and says, “I’m not going to camp. I’m not feeling well. I need a bed. I’m heading to Sesfontein (30km away). Why don’t you camp there so that you can see us and then meet us in Sesfontein in the morning?”

I ponder the idea of camping alone and think, “Well, if there’s a pornstar convention at the campsite, that might be fun, but how likely is it that there will be a pornstar convention at Warmquelle Campsite?”

“Tell you what…” I say “You head to Sesfontein and I’ll ride to the campsite just to check it out and then meet you in an hour.

They ride off and I blast up to the campsite. It’s as beautiful as I imagined, nested in a rocky mountain with a (luke) warm spring and waterfall running into a pool.

The only problem is that there is no pornstar convention and I’m the only person in the entire place.

I leave soon after testing the water in the pool.
« Last Edit: December 03, 2020, 11:54:33 pm by Overland Bruce »
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Offline BoskakBruce

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Re: Virgin Sand In Kaokoland (a post lockdown adventure)
« Reply #119 on: December 03, 2020, 10:58:44 pm »
I meet the boys in Sesfontein. Marc parks his bike on the street so that I know where they are. They’ve negotiated a simple room in a B&B.

Almost as soon as I arrived, I heard two other bikes approaching. As they flew past, I could tell that they were 690s.

What? More bikers? In Sesfontein?

I jump back on my bike and scream after them until I find them at Fort Sesfontein Hotel.

I introduce myself and they are just as surprised to see me as I am to see them.

They’re from Germany and introduce themselves as Heiner and Peter.

I invite them to come and stay with us at our B&B.

They accept and we ride back together.
« Last Edit: December 03, 2020, 11:03:05 pm by Overland Bruce »
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Ride Reports: Virgin Sand In Kaokoland (a post lockdown adventure) | The Long Way To Moab