A walk on the wild side

A walk on the wild side ….

Despite the luxury of the accommodation in Namibia there is no shortage of real expedition adventure. Duncan and I are travelling alone so decide to take a big loop through the remote north west corner of Namibia on a reasonably well travelled route. Some other people we met, travelling in groups of three or four vehicles took even more adventurous routes up dry river beds completely off any form or road for multiple days, could be fun in the future.

Our reasonably conservative route still takes us through wonderful wild and unpopulated country for three days, we only met three or four other cars on the road in these days so we had a real feeling of adventure and remoteness comparable to the routes of Bolivia without the altitude.

Along the way we come across some of the “stone men” sculptures that are scattered across the desert of the Kaokoveld. On occasions the track is rough and tricky, on occasions deep and sandy with evidence of other trucks having become trapped in the soft sand.

Once again I am glad that Nelson has been set up to be very capable off road, tyre pressures are lowered for sand, low range and differential locks help us up the steep rock climbs, strong grippy tyres are undaunted by the sharp rocks and the expedition suspension proves it’s worth over mile after mile of rough corregations on the roads. Nothing important breaks, everything gets covered in a film of dust inside the truck by the days end.

The reward is spectacular scenery overlooking the skeleton coast and the mountain ranges behind, it is hard to capture in a photograph the sense of wide open desolation of the landscape, although even here we see running ostriches, and other animals from time to time.

The feeling of remoteness and going back in time is strong here, quite unlike the populated and lush countries up to this point, the feeling is more like the Sahara but with mountain scenery added.

At the end of the day a well deserved cup of tea overlooking a dried up river hoping for elephants to pass as they did the previous night, sadly disappointed but not a bad view for a £2 camp site with its own loo, shower and water supply
Two days of remote scenery Occasionally tricky sections are navigated with care, in this case the rocky shelves could puncture a tyre wall if the wrong line is We take rough uphill sections in our stride these days, in the past I would have scouted it out but confidence has grown a lot in the off road capabilities of Nelson
Low tyre pressure is the key to floating over the soft sand sections without getting bogged down
A thinking man
In other spots the track cuts through pebble fields of desolation
Gravel gives way to open “piste” on sand comparable to the deserts of Morroco
A hanging man statue surprises us as we round a corner
The road winds through canyons and mountains
Spectacular mountain formations along the road

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