i did say in my original bog how great the country and scenery of marocco were do not believe the crap they say about getting into maro or the hassle i can only asssume they have never been here the german and french bikers come here in droves what about seeing a few more brits. Even the police are nice and its pretty cheap
As i have just deleted by mistake the whole of the Marocco mauritania Mali blog i will give you a quick precee and do the full monti tommow Maroc was a dream chefchaouen; rabat, azrou, tinihir Gorges of todra and dades tried to do the circular route including middle piste first i had a puncture then got caught in horrendous rain in middle piste bit ending the worst biking and worrying day of my life
lesson learnt here
By the way thanks to Liz Ross of Trailblazzers for your translating skills
on to quarzazate great biking all the way to here
then on to tiznet over the anti atlas here i met a super brit couple who live in france with a VW camper van they where great lovely wine, fruit salads g and ts beer i will always remember them by the way after you left i found i could buy a bottle of plonk at the hotel opp for 4 euros , i hope you got back to france okmore tomorrow
once you leave Tiznet (a nice small town) the sahara really comes into your life the scenery gets starker dessert one side of the road and the atlantic ocean via massive cliffs the other side. By the way looking left there is one other tarmac road running between me and the nile and too the right the atlantic to the americas
Most of the time the mid day heat is about 40 degreess great while your riding awful when you stop
Distances between comunities and petrol station start to spread out, by the way you see fisherman with rods casting straight down into the atlantic must be a couple of hundered feet
it was a hot and tiring 267 miles to the next big town Tan Tan, imagine going london to manchester with 3 filling stations and 2 very small towns to put things into perpective
Its about now you start to realise how long going down the sahara is OH by the way i dropped my laptop on the marble floor of my hotel room in rabat hence internet cafees now
Do not try and understand the rules of the road in Maroc, Mauri or Mali the locals dont understand them either except in Mali give way to the biggest so a 600 honda beats a moped one of thousands. Cyclists should be given a wide berth but you can see them picking themselves up in your mirrows
I stayed on a empty camping site by the beach in TanTan Plage because there was no lights about at nght you could see the lights of Fuertuventure across the sea
From Tan Tan down to the penninsula of Dakla theres just desert both sides of the road 470 miles and aboou 4 filling stations i sang its a long way to Tipperary for hours to relieve the boredom some youngsters have ipods in stead
You really get a sense of the sahara on this strech By the way ptrol was tax free from Layonne down due to it being UN mandated territory at the moment
Meeting Ben Ware
In Dahkla i met up with Ben for the future bit of the trip he proved to be a gem of a guy we headed south for Mauratania border sand sand and more sand At the exit border of marocc we had been warned it was a slow process it was worse than that, after 4 hours waing to be stamped out a official noticed my age and pulled me to the front of the queque but he wouldnt do the same for ben
Always look old at borders certain countries have respect for the eldery take note siblings and youngters at Ethicall
Then the no mans land bit piste between two minefields ok really nothing difficult except sand and rock to ride on Muari border no problem on to Nouadibbou and the sahara campsite.
The Sahara Campsite Nouadibou
This used to be the meeting point for the 300 mile beach run before the tarmac road to Nouakachott was built 2 years ago now sadly its empty and run down Except for the 3 ladies that occupy the previos renting rooms one of the ladies invited ben and me to see her room It had a toilet with no door in the middle of telling us what she could offer; the word began with f she lifted up her skirt and promptly had a pee in full view of us showing off the goods on offer We promptly made our excusses and left. The next day we did the boring 300 mile run to Nouakchott no villages or building just 3 filling stations it wass44 degress in the shade
In noouakchott at the Mali embassy we met Georgie a canadian lawyer and very expreience africa biker we agreed to travel as 3 to Bamako Mali
It was on paper going to be an easy first day 163 miles to Aleg Mauritania across the souhern sahara It was until Aleg what a shit hole the two lane highway became one in the town due to rubbish we decided to press on We filled up wth petrol
At about 50 miles on we decided to top up our tanks The Twat at the pump put deseal in all three tanks i had the most we decided as a third of the tanks was petrol although they would run rough we would be ok The Sukuki and Bm cleared
after we were able to top up with our spare fuel, Mine didnt and i had a max speed of 50 miles an hour for two days until i changed the spark plugs
THings got worse in one small town we found the whole valley was flooded and we would have to cross the piste desert track for15 miles to get round it.
Early on i quickly came off in powder sand and didnt quite now how i was going to ride the next half mile Ben quickly came to the rescue offerd to ride my bike and walked back to his in 40 d heat what a gem hes on my xmas card list After the worst part of the piste i started to get the hang off it Thank god
By the way we did two river crossing also that day and ended up riding the last hour to Kiffa and a campsite in the dark not to be recommended in the third world
What a Feckin day
Oh well we were now fully payed up overlanders now Not bad for 65 By the way theres no petrol really after Aleg to Kiffa 214 miles carry spare
The next day was straight forward to Ayouin other than my stuttering engine
Before leaving Ayoun for Mali border the next day we decided to change my plugs
the campsite owner sat looking on, in the midle of the work i heard a dove cooing in the tree above me i looked up , the owner must have thought it was annoying me; he got up opened the boot of his car got out a rifle and shot the poor dove, smiling at me he quietly put the gun back in the boot.
The Border with Mali was bliss easy friendly on hearing my proffession was retired the police man laughed heartily and said "at last you have the best job in the world"mabe hes just hit it on the nail
The road to Bamako
What a change excellant tarmac no constant police roadblocks and empty roads until that is BAMAKO thousands of chinesse mopeds to a posh hotel at last The Relais; aircon, showers good food and even a Patisserie next door bliss im in seagou now in north mali on the side of the mighty Niger river lovin it the journey people everything you soon forget the bastard hard times
Very important fact ATMs are in nearly every town up to now making access to money a lot easier
Well im in Segou now going to move on to Dogon County, Mali. Bukini Faso and then on to Ghana tomorrow will fill you in on my next blog Bamako to Ghana in about 3 weeks time
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