Still having a great time out here, since starting my tour this is the first bit of civilisation that we have come across so I will warn you now that this might be a long blog!
On Thursday I went to see about the abseil but was told that the conditions at the top of the mountain wern't good so unfortunately couldn't do it. Was a bit annoying but a couple of girls from my room were climbing up that day anyway so I joined them. It took us 1.5 hours to get to the top and the whole way was climbing up rocks! Was quite hard and we were well puffed out by the time we got to the top. It was quite strange as we could tell from the bottom that it was cloudy on the top of the mountain and we were walking right into the cloud. One minute it was sunny and the next it was cold, cloudy and rainy!! When we got to the top it was so cold and really windy! Was a bit of a shame because we couldn't see out much but it was still good to do!
Met my tour group on Thursday evening - they are all really nice - quite a few couples but there are a few others like me who have braved it on their own. On our first day we went down the Cape Peninsular to Cape Point, which is where the 2 oceans meet, and to the Cape of Good Hope, which is the most South Westernly part of Africa. Was a nice clear day so we could see out quite far but it was still a bit windy amd a bit chilly! For lunch we stopped at a nice picnic area on the side of the road and our crew soon got us organised and had sandwiches made for everyone! That afternoon we drove a fair way to pur campsite towards the north of South Africa. We got to the campsite a bit late so didn't have time to make dinner to the campsite cooked us up an african meal that was like chicken stew, rice and frsh bread, folloed by apple cruble! Was so good!! The camp site was also part of a vineyard so the owner came out and did wine tasting for us.
The next day we headed off quite early to go across to Namibia. We spent most of the day driving. just stopping for lunch and breaks to stretch our legs. Finally got to the border and crossed with no problems. Our camp site was just down the road from there and looked out onto the Orange River. The next day we had the chance to canoe down the river so a group of us went and enjoyed the 2.5 hour canoe from near the border to our camp. Was really ncie but was quite hard work at times! After we got back to the camp we had a relaxing late morning and lunch before heading off for another fairly long drive.
The days here are nice and warm and are getting warmer the further north we go, but nights are so so cold, especially as most nights we are camping!!! On our drive we stopped at a small town and most people got extra blankets for the nights!! Our next campsite was near the Fish River Canyon which is the second largest canyon in the world. We quickly set up our tents and jumped back in the truck to see the canyon at sunset. It was breathtaking when we got there, I don't think any of us realised how big ity would be, quite deep and went on for further than we could see. We walked along the edge a little way and stopped at a viewpoint to watch the sunset with a drink in hand! We had a bit of drama for the journey back - one of the windows blew out of the truck!! But apparently it happens fairly often and they could get it fixed when we get to Swakopmund.
The next day we had another fairly long drive to Sesriem which is near where the sand dunes were. We didn't do much that evening as when we got to camp we just had time to put up tents and make a start on dinner before it got dark. The next morning we were up very early to head to the sand dunes for sunrise. We had to be on the trucky by 5am so we would get there in plenty of time. We climbed Sand dune 45 (the best for sunrise) and from the bottom, in the dark it didn't look that bad, until we got about half way and realised how far we had left to go!!! It was worth it when we got to the top though, the views were very impressive and as the sun rose we saw the sand changing colour. We stayed up there for a little while and then all ran down the sides for breakfast outside a truck - bacon sarnies! yum!! After breakfast we headed over to the Sousvlei to be shown round by a bush men. It was really interested and he pointed out different tracks and creatures that lived in the sand. We also saw the Dead vlei which is a bit patch of limestone with dead trees in it that used to be a lake. It was quite impressive with the white surrounded by the bright yellow of the sand!
Our next camp we were told was a basic bush camp, but I dont think any of us expected what we arrived at. We were literallty camping in the desert in the middle of nowhere! As far as we could see, we couldn't see anything, just more desert!! Was very surreal camping out there but nice being completely away from other groups!
This morning we drove thew short distance to Swakopmund where I am now. It's a smallish town where we will be for 2 days and are staying in bungalows!! So nice after living in tents so far!! We have today and tomorrow free here and a group of us are going sandboarding down the dunes tomorrow which sounds really fun!! Tonight we are going out for one of the girls birthdays!
Anyway, think I've gone on for long enough now!
Thanks for all the messages and keep them coming! Will put pictures up when I can but not sure if the computer I am on likes it very much!