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Author Topic: Virgin Sand In Kaokoland (a post lockdown adventure)  (Read 12275 times)

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Offline BoskakBruce

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Re: Virgin Sand In Kaokoland (a post lockdown adventure)
« Reply #220 on: December 07, 2020, 11:34:53 pm »
Four hours and a lot of sandy gravelly tracks later, we arrive at Marble Campsite.

Along the way, I was entertained by these two goat herders who appeared out of the bush to lift my spirits.
 
I succeed in making them laugh and this photo is one of my favorites of the trip.
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Ride Reports: Virgin Sand In Kaokoland (a post lockdown adventure)
 

Offline BoskakBruce

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Re: Virgin Sand In Kaokoland (a post lockdown adventure)
« Reply #221 on: December 07, 2020, 11:36:25 pm »
We rent a cabin at Marble Camp and tonight itís my turn to sleep in the double bed. Marc cooks up a fantastic dinner that consists of a can of vegetable curry, rice and some beer that a friendly local organizes for us.
   
We sit around recounting the tales of the day, relieved to be safe and grateful to have been able to ride such epic dunes.

This is a day that none of us will ever forget. But then, almost every day on this trip has been one of those.

I doze off to sleep to the sounds of Marcís farts and Jan Lucasís snoring. What more could I want?
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Ride Reports: Virgin Sand In Kaokoland (a post lockdown adventure)
 

Offline Ian in Great Brak River

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Re: Virgin Sand In Kaokoland (a post lockdown adventure)
« Reply #222 on: December 08, 2020, 12:19:12 am »
Absolutely epic! Wow! And wow again.
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 McSack

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Re: Virgin Sand In Kaokoland (a post lockdown adventure)
« Reply #223 on: December 08, 2020, 06:23:19 am »
Legend RR. I can check I'm going to be reading through this and drooling over the pics and vids multiple times

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Offline OomD

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Re: Virgin Sand In Kaokoland (a post lockdown adventure)
« Reply #224 on: December 08, 2020, 07:59:30 am »
Loving the short impromptu vids too! Keep it going! :thumleft:
 

Offline Amsterdam

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Re: Virgin Sand In Kaokoland (a post lockdown adventure)
« Reply #225 on: December 08, 2020, 08:22:06 am »
Itís true that I was uncomfortable in this area. The bikes were straining like mad and consequently using a lot of fuel. We went to this area because it said on the map something along the lines of: ďVery high dunes, impossible to passĒ.  The route on the way in was over high yet passable dunes. The planned way out was a loop further West. Bruce went that way and scooted up a high dune at speed. That is, until about half way up. At that point even the lighter 500 could go no further. Down he comes and disappears around the mountain thatís only partly covered in sand. Two minutes later he is back as that too led to impassable dunes.

I was feeling very uncomfortable. I could see us finding a way over one or two dunes and then ending in a hole that would take us ages (and too much water and fuel) to get out of again. A breakdown at that point would be a bit more than a minor hassle.  I told Bruce he can go that way if he wants to but I am taking the easiest way out again. I am not stopping anyone elseís fun but I know when I want to get out of somewhere. And today was not my day.  As you will have read so far Bruce was determined that not a grain of Namibian sand would be missed. I was willing to leave a few for a future return trip.  And I was tired, very tired. In my usual enthusiasm I had not allowed for rest days in the planning. When Bruce and Marc suggested a rest day at Epupa I was wondering what kind of wussies they were. I had not realized how much this ride was taking out of me and how smart they were to suggest a day for rest and maintenance.

To be honest, I was too bushed at that point to navigate and ride at the same time. And Bruce, who was initially saying we were riding to fast, seemed to have found his inner Toby Price.  So he led us over a really cool route out of the dunes. And he did it super smart. He would blast ahead for a bit and then stop and wait. Just as I caught up, and was hoping for a break, he dashed of again into the distance. Today was clearly his day and not mine. Marc seemed to have no problem and he only slowed to make sure I didnít take a wrong turn.  And today was a day that showed (to me at least) the strength of riding in a good team. Fun after the rides, sharing the good sights during the day and helping each other push along when needed. It really turned out to be a good day.
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Offline funacide

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Re: Virgin Sand In Kaokoland (a post lockdown adventure)
« Reply #226 on: December 08, 2020, 08:41:03 am »
This report just keeps getting better and better!!!!

You even have me researching the price of 500's  :ricky: :ricky: :ricky:

Loving it!
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Offline peter stuyvesant

Re: Virgin Sand In Kaokoland (a post lockdown adventure)
« Reply #227 on: December 08, 2020, 09:28:32 am »
Keep it coming Bruce, great stuff. The Kaokoveld truly is one of the most magical places in Southern Africa.
 

Offline Greenshields

Re: Virgin Sand In Kaokoland (a post lockdown adventure)
« Reply #228 on: December 08, 2020, 10:39:09 am »
Good call to not go further towards the mouth of the Kunene.
The dunes that you were riding cannot be compared to the dunefield further in.The lodge to Hartmans route has a lot of gravel,sand tracks and not just the unending dunes that you would have encountered further in.
There is no way on earth that your bikes could slip slide down the reverse face and then climb through the gullys before attempting the following face.
I did that section with a well organised 4wd convoy and ,in my opinion ,is only doable with a very light unladen bike,but more importantly,your fitness levels would have to be Dakar level.
Amazing report,brings back memories of our fantastic 4WD trip
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Offline Greenshields

Re: Virgin Sand In Kaokoland (a post lockdown adventure)
« Reply #229 on: December 08, 2020, 10:57:09 am »
Some pics to give you an idea of what you missed!
Sorry for the hijack
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Offline Greenshields

Re: Virgin Sand In Kaokoland (a post lockdown adventure)
« Reply #230 on: December 08, 2020, 10:58:01 am »
some more
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Offline Amsterdam

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Re: Virgin Sand In Kaokoland (a post lockdown adventure)
« Reply #231 on: December 08, 2020, 02:19:05 pm »
Good call to not go further towards the mouth of the Kunene.
The dunes that you were riding cannot be compared to the dunefield further in.The lodge to Hartmans route has a lot of gravel,sand tracks and not just the unending dunes that you would have encountered further in.
There is no way on earth that your bikes could slip slide down the reverse face and then climb through the gullys before attempting the following face.
I did that section with a well organised 4wd convoy and ,in my opinion ,is only doable with a very light unladen bike,but more importantly,your fitness levels would have to be Dakar level.
Amazing report,brings back memories of our fantastic 4WD trip

Thanks for this info. Makes me feel better about my decision. I always describe my riding level as ďhappy hackerĒ and thatís a long way of Dakar skill level.
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Offline Swazi Phil

Re: Virgin Sand In Kaokoland (a post lockdown adventure)
« Reply #232 on: December 08, 2020, 03:25:24 pm »
SUB! looks amazing! thanks for Sharing, definitely a bucket list trip.
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Offline 51Mobile

Re: Virgin Sand In Kaokoland (a post lockdown adventure)
« Reply #233 on: December 08, 2020, 06:05:54 pm »
Sub. What an awesome trip, almost topped by the Ride Report.
 

Offline Minxy

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Re: Virgin Sand In Kaokoland (a post lockdown adventure)
« Reply #234 on: December 08, 2020, 08:50:59 pm »
Loving the photographs! We never had a chance to visit the Hartmansberge, nor to go higher up towards the Angolan border due to time constraints. It looks absolutely amazing, I can personally not wait to revisit the area now!!!
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Offline BoskakBruce

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Re: Virgin Sand In Kaokoland (a post lockdown adventure)
« Reply #235 on: December 08, 2020, 11:31:15 pm »
Thank you everyone for the fantastic feedback. I so appreciate your comments. I've had a long day preparing for a week-long motorcycle trip with my brother that's coming up on Thursday. Haven't had time to complete Day 9 yet, so I'll compelte it tomorrow... I'm sorry for leaving you hanging, but I promise that this ride report will be finished and it will be worth it. :-)
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Offline BoskakBruce

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Re: Virgin Sand In Kaokoland (a post lockdown adventure)
« Reply #236 on: December 08, 2020, 11:33:40 pm »
Good call to not go further towards the mouth of the Kunene.
The dunes that you were riding cannot be compared to the dunefield further in.The lodge to Hartmans route has a lot of gravel,sand tracks and not just the unending dunes that you would have encountered further in.
There is no way on earth that your bikes could slip slide down the reverse face and then climb through the gullys before attempting the following face.
I did that section with a well organised 4wd convoy and ,in my opinion ,is only doable with a very light unladen bike,but more importantly,your fitness levels would have to be Dakar level.
Amazing report,brings back memories of our fantastic 4WD trip

Thanks for the inspiring pics. What a trip that must have been. That's definintely somewhere I'll return too - next time with a LOT of fuel :-)
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Ride Reports: Virgin Sand In Kaokoland (a post lockdown adventure)
 

Offline BoskakBruce

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Re: Virgin Sand In Kaokoland (a post lockdown adventure)
« Reply #237 on: December 08, 2020, 11:34:42 pm »
Loving the photographs! We never had a chance to visit the Hartmansberge, nor to go higher up towards the Angolan border due to time constraints. It looks absolutely amazing, I can personally not wait to revisit the area now!!!

Let me know when you do, and I might join you guys if you're looking to ride in a group.
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Ride Reports: Virgin Sand In Kaokoland (a post lockdown adventure)
 
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Offline geopat

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Re: Virgin Sand In Kaokoland (a post lockdown adventure)
« Reply #238 on: December 09, 2020, 06:21:22 am »
Nice to finally put a face to the voice notes hopefully we can catch up for a ride soon
 

Offline Amsterdam

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Re: Virgin Sand In Kaokoland (a post lockdown adventure)
« Reply #239 on: December 09, 2020, 07:14:09 am »
Thanks for the inspiring pics. What a trip that must have been. That's definintely somewhere I'll return too - next time with a LOT of fuel :-)

This whole section could be much more doable by leaving all travel luggage and camping equipment at Benís shop. You then have an empty bike, a full fuel tank and sufficient water. You can then go explore that area in a way that was not possible for us. An added bonus is the certainty of an after ride cold beer at the end of the day.  Hypothetically speaking, this could be an interesting expedition.
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