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Desert Travels - Motorcycle Journeys in the Sahara and West Africa!

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  #1  
Old 28 Jan 2011
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Mauritania-Mali (unusual) border crossing...

Hi to all fellow travelers!

I'm planning a bike trip, with a friend of mine, to Mauritania and Mali for April-May 2011. I'd like to ask for your help on my following questions in order to determine the itinerary of the trip:
1. Has anyone done Atar-Tidjikja piste (R10 according to Chris) on bike recently? What is its actual length (kms from map to map differ)? Is it possible in 2 days?
2. Nema(Mauri) to Timbuktu(Mali) through Fassala Nere (border crossing)? Has anyone followed this route? Is this border open? What is the condition of piste from Nema to Fassala and then Lere-Nianfouke?
3. I'm looking for actual inputs for bike shipping by air from Bamako? It 'd be very helpful to specify the air company, local agent, full cost, preparation (crating?) and to which european destination of course! I know about azfreight.com but I'd like your personal experience?

Thank you in advance,
jumaru
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  #2  
Old 28 Jan 2011
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Atar to Tidjikja is possible in two days on a motorbike if you push. April-May will be very hot, so I would allow at least 10 litres of water per person per day.

The piste is about 400kms, but you should take fuel for at least 450kms, as there are several sections of the track that are not easy to follow (particularly around the Suzuki wreck), and therefore there is a good chance you might do a few extra kms taking detours. The fuel in jerry cans at Tidjikja used to be terrible - check the quality before you buy.

This trip report is from the start of 2007. Possibly others can comment if they have done the piste more recently.

http://www.horizonsunlimited.com/hub...tidjikja-24983

There are a couple of older posts about the piste from Nema to Timbuktu route if you search the HUBB. As I am sure you are aware there is a lot of AQIM-related instability in this border area.
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Old 29 Jan 2011
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Four of us are planning to do the same route in Nov 2011 (political situation allowing) so I would be keen to hear how you get on.

Keep us posted, and if you manage to update any waypoints that would be even better

Good luck
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  #4  
Old 31 Jan 2011
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You should speak to Richard Kempley from beast of burden expeditions. We rode an expedition that way on Salt and Gold 2009 but he was back that way recently with his Salt and Gold 2010 tour. He has been that way more often than anyone I know and usually seems to have inside info on the the state of security etc etc as well as fuel availability etc.

Dave
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  #5  
Old 31 Jan 2011
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Hi Dave!
How can I speak to Richard?
Should I sent a mail to beast-of-burden-contact "generally"?
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  #6  
Old 31 Jan 2011
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I would stay clear of Nema - Tim border crossing. Doubt they will even let you go there at the moment. Just a few months ago the Mori army was coming off worse with AQIM in battles around here and even before all that it was sketchy. (See this, a few days later).
Do the crossing south of Nema (Nara?) then Lere Nianfouke. That was mostly a fine wide piste 25 years ago. It cant be much worse now.

Ch

Last edited by Chris Scott; 2 Feb 2011 at 08:15.
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Old 3 Feb 2011
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try mail(at)b-o-b(dot)co(dot)uk. Let me know if you dont get a reply.

Dave
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Old 4 Feb 2011
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Thank you Matt and Chris for your helpful replies!

Dave, I followed your advice mailing to b-o-b.co.uk!
Waiting a reply...
Thanks anyway!
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  #9  
Old 8 Feb 2011
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You can still leave Mauri and enter Mali this way. But I would reiterate the advice above to AVOID this border area.There is just too much going on there at the moment and there are safer options to the West.

Atar-Tidjikja unsupported in the heat of May, might also be too much. I think once you make your calcs (50+kg liquid load?) you may find yourself drawn further North where there are shorter and equally exciting runs to be had.
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