The desert

(Photos to follow due to poor internet)

The desert….

One of the great impressions of this trip is the empty vastness of the Sahara desert where it touches the sea. We will cover nearly 2000km of the desert by the time we reach Senegal tomorrow and three countries (one disputed) before we cross it. The charchter is changing as we drive and the proximity of the sea at times moderates the heat but yesterday for example it was so hot that I flinched if my leg touched the shaded inside of the truck and we could have made tea with the water from the tank under the truck.

We of course are on a ribbon of tarmac, well mostly tarmac, and there is a gradual trickle of traffic so its pretty safe, we have a lot of water and some shade if we break down so there is no real danger, however as you drive along mile after mile in the scorching wilderness you cannot help imagine if you were a couple of kilometres off the road and the car died you would be in real danger of dying. In fact some bikers did just that near the town of Merzouga, they went for a little excursion got stuck just on the other side of the dunes and by the time they were found they were dead from the heat.

For us things are very safe and Nelson has trundled along day after day for the 5 days or so it has taken to cross the desert, one more day tomorrow and we should be out of it and into mosquito country, but the unforgiving relentless Sahara is a memory that will stay with me forever.

About Gerry Mulligan

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