Namibia - Sand Dunes

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February 4th 2010
Published: February 8th 2010
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Sand Dunes

Thursday 4th Feb

Today is a really early start. We have packed up the camp and are on the road by 5:15 a.m. The first reason is that we are heading into the sand dunes and we need to get to the National Park as soon as the gate opens. We then drive to Dune 45 {That’s the only name it’s got so far} and climb it in time to see the sunrise over the sand dunes - I actually only get about half way up before picking my spot to watch the sunrise.

Bush Man

The next reason for starting out so early is that, after a break for breakfast, we are taken for a short walk through the desert at Sossusvlei. We walk from about 8 a.m. until 10:30 a.m. but, even by 10:30 most of us are really struggling with the heat. I can’t see myself being able to do such a walk unless it was really early in the morning or late in the afternoon.
Our walking tour of the desert was excellent. Our guide introduces himself as “Bushman”, he hasn’t worn shoes for 12 years and he is a complete expert about everything in the desert. He explains everything really clearly to us and I think everyone in the group was impressed with him. I’m a bit disappointed to find out at the end of the tour that he lives in a house and drives to work every day - I had visualised him sleeping under a bush and eating lizards!
The walk takes us to Dead Vlei - an area that once used to hold water but has been dry for more than 500 years leaving a hard lime surface with dead Acacia trees punctuating the surface. The landscape, a combination of sand dunes, the white hard lime surface and dead trees, is like nothing I’ve ever seen before. It’s supposedly famous because it was used in a Jennifer Lopez film - not one I’ve ever heard of though!
On route “Bushman” demonstrates his knowledge of the landscape, identifying tracks, explaining the shapes of the dunes, showing us how to catch beetles and lizards, finding spiders nests and explaining the lifestyle of the Bushmen.


After lunch we head off again towards Solitaire, stopping briefly at Sesriem Canyon. The campsite, Solitaire Country Lodge, again exceeds my expectations - as well as flushing toilets, hot showers, electricity and a large swimming pool, this one also has a bakery!

Additional photos below
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A tour party came this way

11th February 2010

I'm on board
Hey Buddy, hope those feet of yours are coping OK. I have finally remebered and found the time to hope on the bus and start touring with you. I think I'm your no. 1 fan. Have a great trip Steve and a beer for me at every opportunity........Tony
7th April 2010

Cheers, Tony. It's great to have you on board! I'm sure I'll be sat on the bus talking to my "imaginary friend", Tony all the time

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