To set the scene: its a calm evening, mid thirties with a gentle breeze hitting our skin. We are on the edge of the Black Desert and in the near distance, pyramid like orange sand dunes stand high and proud.
We mount our ride. These animals are Dromedary's given the fact they have one hump and not two like true camels. Leanne is on the crazy lead camel called Bob Marley whilst Mick is given the quieter second camel Jimi Hendrix.
Our trekking guide is a lovely older Moroccan named Hassan who's years of experience has perfected his tourist humour. Our multinational caravan is also made up of a lovely Italian couple with whom we share a few non verbal laughs, some French, Chinese, Spanish and a couple of Czech's to top it off! Language, as usual, is a hurdle to be overcome as it has been our whole journey. It's really quite amazing what can be accomplished with a few grunts, a smile and alot of gesturing!
Within 20 minutes or so we are into the dunes on a track the camels must have walked many a time. "Camel chocolate" litter the orange dunes. The
Leanne on Bob
Photo bombed by Jimi
scenery is quite spectacular to say the least. Leanne is offered to lead the caravan, she accepts as she has camel butt and needs to stretch. Hassan seems to be giving Leanne special attention, once again!
There it is our Sahara Hotel for the night - traditional Berber tents with an upgrade to first class (mattress on the floor). Every body settles in then scatterers into the dunes to explore and watch the sunset. Sadly too cloudy for an orange sunset but still exhilarating. We galloped back down the dunes (wishing we had sand boards) for our traditional tagine dinner. After dinner they turned off all lights and the band played in darkness (stagefright?), only to be seen when someones flash went off.
Being Sahara smart we had managed to conserve some ice and poured ourselves a very enjoyable "JD Shloi" (JD and diet coke with a shitload of ice) which we then sipped under the stars drawing some envious stares from our fellow travelers who only had hot water to drink. Time to try out these Berber beds. Our tent was stuffy and hot forcing Mick outside in the middle of the night, our bed hard and
Asked me to take his picture with the flower
uncomfortable but hey, we are in the middle of the Sahara! Hellish night haha 😊
We wake at dawn eager to see the desert sunrise. Armed with our cameras, still half asleep, we clamber to the highest dune competing with our fellow travelers for the best vantage point. Once again we are underwhelmed by the sunrise but marvel at the awsomeness of our surroundings. "How's the serenity Darl?"
Time to get back in the saddle (two blankets over a rock hard hump) and head back to the Riad for breakfast and a long shower. We mount Bob and Jimi again (err... that is to say we climb onto their back's) but a few minutes in and we are struggling more than we did yesterday, finding it very hard to hang on as we have camel butt and Berber bed back and the fact we had little sleep, the ride home was hard!
Hassan pointed out numerous animal tracks along the way. Stopping by a little hole he said to watch for the little mouse. We watched in silence, waiting, for a little mouse. Instead a big white head popped up about the size of a guinea pig,
looked at us indignantly and disappeared again.
Saying goodbye to the desert and after a shower and brekky, we jumped backed in the 4x4 and took off for our next stop which is about 6 hours away. Seeing Casbah Amridil and Toudra Gorge on the way we are glad the driving is nearly over. Checked in to a quaint new Riad in Ouarzazite and collapsed on yet again another rock hard bed!
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