Swakopmund to Solitaire – 260km
Dune 7 – the highest dune in th coastal dune belt beloved by Quad Bikers, motorcyclists and 4×4’ers’
Onto the Kuiseb and Gaub passes. ‘A stark but picturesque beauty to this region. Take care on the two narrow bridges with access for only one vehicle at a time’
Day 28 – Swakopmund to Solitaire, 260km
The most challenging driving day yet! Roland, the South African mechanic who travels with us and keeps our motor homes from falling apart completely in the rough conditions, reduced our tyre pressures from 4 to 2.5 bars in order to facilitate driving in the sandy conditions we were going to encounter. Nonetheless, we were unable to average more than 40km/hour and the conditions required constant concentration. Those in the group who do not share the driving with their partners were very tired by the time we arrived in Solitaire.
They also missed some of the most fabulous scenery so far! I regret using the word stunning in previous articles as I need to use it now to its fullest capacity. We were subjected to vista after vista of glorious mountains, geology, and desert. Can’t get enough superlatives to describe the variety of colour and views. Just looking at it re-arranged the molecules of my mind into a more peaceful, polarised orientation Not my metaphor, but some jazzer talking about his reaction to the music of, I think, Thelonious Monk, but so very apposite here!
Finally arrived in Solitaire, which makes one-horse-towns look metropolitan and has little but a garage, a campsite … and a bakery doing specialist breads and apple crumble to die for. The baker, a Dutchman called Moose, though it is not clear whether this was his first name or second had a copy of Ewan McGregor’s and Charley Boorman’s ‘The Long Way Down’ on his shelf, so I guess that the boys went by his place for apple pie as well.
After Roland had fixed our water pump, which had been shaken loose by the travel, we had a braii, a glorious sunset and quite a lot of chat and a bit to drink. A shorter day tomorrow, and onto the Dunes of Sossusvlei.