It felt like a long day today, with more dirt and corrugations. The old cars are taking a bashing and the mechanics got into the hotel late. We had one test section where the road curved through Zarishoogte Pass on wide gravel roads. I had a dream that night that I was sitting in the back seat driving, but I’m not sure it was actually a dream.
Tilly’s shock absorbers held up but Gunther tried to take it easy. We travelled further into the desert and (pic) at one stage the car filled up with dust and we couldn’t find out where it had come in. I think now we know.
We finally arrived into the Sossusvlei Desert Lodge at about 6pm and had a panorama of red earth and mountains in the background. It was dead quiet and we had dinner under the stars and a choice of kudu steaks, warthog, impala, zebra and wildebeest. A beautiful night.
Up at 5.30 we were sitting in desert appropriate buggy type vehicles that took us along a corridor flanked by huge sand dunes, the tallest of which are ‘Big Daddy and Big Mama’ stretching up to 300 metres high. We walked along the ridge of a dune and ran or rather slid down the side at least 150 metres to the bottom. Gunther helped a friend down the slope. It was difficult for people afraid of heights to tackle letting yourself virtually fall down the side of the dune.
After this the hotel had set up breakfast for us under some old acacia trees. The trees grow up to 500 years old and have roots reaching 80 metres under the ground. Once a decade in the rainy season the ravines are deluged with flash floods and this part of the desert can be up to a metre deep in water which covers the floor of the desert. Hard to imagine except for the mud flats that are dried hard under the sun.