08.07.2017 30 °C
4 July 2017
We left Desert Camp at 7.00am. Despite the cold nights sleeping under a canvas roof I loved staying here because of the vast open spaces, the beautiful sunsets and the wild animals – we saw a jackal, springbok, oryx and a fox but I'm sure there are many more animals that remained hidden.
Today wasn’t a long travel day in terms of kilometres (around 230kms) but the road conditions were difficult and we had a stop for a desert walk with a local expert at 9.00am – supposedly before it got too hot but it was already 30C by 9.00am.
We all loaded onto the seats on the back of a 4 wheel drive vehicle and our guide Hans drove for a while before getting out to talk about the plants and how they survive in the desert. We stopped to watch the herds of mountain zebra and continued on the track. We stopped at some sand dunes and Hans lead us on a walk – he showed us the animal track in the sand (and he knew what each one was) and the spider holes hidden in the sand. He removed the cover of a spider hole and dug down until he came up with a curled up spider, a dancing white lady spider.
He talked about how the sand dunes were formed and how the dry pans we saw yesterday were once part of a river that was cut off by the moving sand dunes. He also caught a tiny lizard and held it up as it latched onto his finger. As we walked back through the sand we could see that the spider had already made a new home. Despite the searing heat this was a very interesting stop with plenty of wildlife to photograph.
Back in the truck we drove for a few hours through a changing landscape, all of which was dry, dusty and barren. But it did change from having a little grass cover to rocky canyons, to flat stony ground with no vegetation in sight. We finally came to an area with a few trees and bushes spaced out. It was really hot and we needed some shade to stop for lunch – it was only a little bit of shade and we moved the chairs in close together for a quick lunch. While we were out doing the desert walk Clever had cooked up hamburger patties for lunch.
Back on the road again for another couple of hours before we arrived in Walvis Bay (we made it to the coast of Namibia). Walvis Bay is a decent sized town but there’s no escaping the sand dunes. We had to go through a weigh station because there is a levy imposed on the number of kilometres travelled in the country. Then we headed to the lagoon, hoping to see the flamingos. The tide was out and the sun was low so it wasn’t ideal to see the flamingos but there was plenty there.
We drove up the coast to the larger town of Swakopmund. A fog descended and blocked out the dunes on either side. We stopped for a while at the adventure centre for people to book activities for tomorrow – sky diving, dune buggies, sand boarding, dolphin cruises and light plane rides. I booked them all … only kidding. Tomorrow I’m looking forward to a free day!
After stopping off at the B&B we went back into town to have dinner at a restaurant - pizza. Another long day as we didn’t get back from dinner until 10.00pm.