Sunday, August 12, 2012

Botswana Cycle Trip - Day 11 & 12

Johan and Howard's Botswana Cycle Trip - Day 11 & 12

Day 11
Met one or two of the old Kasane stalwarts last night at the Old House Restaurant & Guest House. A happening little place where the locals tend to gravitate. Day 11 started with probably the steepest climb yet ... A 1.5km granny gear climb up the plateau that overlooks the Chobe River - even had to take my jersey off.

Today was also possibly the easiest 94km we covered, this being because we were forced to hitch a ride on the back of a truck throught the Chobe National Park for 57km to Ngoma Border. The game guard at the west end of the transit road was somewhat disillusioned when together we did the maths and discovered he'd been working here for 17 years and not the 12 years he had thought! He did see the humor, but was truly surprised. From here we entered Namibia's Caprivi, pulled over at a local eatery for pap & steak (staple diet) and a quick thrashing in pool by 2 of the local bar flies - these okes were sharp!

Pulled in at a roadside bike mechanic to see if they could perform some magic on Johan's ailing bike ... We arrived with 2 of his top gears not working and left with a new rim and 2 of his middle gears not working ... But nice people nonetheless. Spent the night at Salambala community campsite about 6km ride down a dirt track that winds through a mopane forest. Really cool campsite, each site with its own private hot shower , toilet, braai, in the bush, still in elephant counry - worth a visit.

Day 12
Day 12 started with another 6km of winding sand track back to the tar road, for 64 uneventful kms, except for 1 chop who tried to ride us off the road ... That was followed by 2 German self-drive tourists who pulled over in front of us, full of smiles and amazement, that after our road side chat insisted on issuing us with a bottle of red wine and a litre of fruit juice - cool people!

Reached the Zambezi River just short of Katima Mulilo for a night at a manicured campsite overlooking the river.

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