October 19, 2009 GMT
Posted by Archie Taylor at 03:20 PM GMT
October 20, 2009 GMT
The road to Mali

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

Posted by Archie Taylor at 03:12 PM GMT
November 04, 2009 GMT
Segou, Mali and beyond

Segou proved to be a haven in africa set on the side of the Niger it had quiet tranquillity good food increadabe Malian music, even a cheap streetside eatery run by one lovely smilling malian who even did a 3 coarse plat de jour and wait for it turned the telly to english league football on my secound trip to segou i watched man u v blackburn something i would never do in the uk Man u won of coarse.
someone gave me a sticker of drogber for the bike who does he play for.
Geordie moved on after 2 days to go to mopti and get a boat to tomboctou(I dont swim so wasnt getting on any rickerty boat Tomboctou or not) and then bus back to mopti and bike then a mad dash to europe and canada , I was sorry to see him go ben had already left in Bamako for Ghana he was then going to ship the bike back.
I was now on my own i decided i would head north for the world famous Dogon County and duly set of after 100 miles i realised i had missed a small junction and was in fact heading south for Bobo in Bukini Faso oh well, go with the flow so to speak 200 miles later and one very very lonely breakdown that i fixed , Yes I fixed it Tim, no AA, no ring Tim just a shepard boy helping,clever archie god i felt bloody on my own Nearest town about 80 miles away and very little, like non traffick going by
I hit Bobo just as a tropical storm exploded not being able to get a street map out in the rain i shot into the first hotel i saw. It was the most expensive 60 yes 60 euros a night and they even gave me the shits next day after an expensive feekin meal
I was forced to stay a 2nd night as being away from the toilet was not possable i the moved to a cheap backpacker hotel for a day there being no other guests i headed for; wait for it Quagadougou pronounced wag a do gou what a name better than derby eh oh by the way what was Bobo like Ok i headed back there after Quaga
People may wonder what west africa is like well in the northern part its savanna mile after mile the same A few days ago i took a pic of the road and surroundings the same after another 50 and so on for300 miles lookin at the pics later you would have thought they were a mile of each other
You pass thru small very very poor villages and every 100 miles or so a small town that looks like a rubbish tip I must say the people are always very friendly.
On a bike you often feel and are on your own Other bikers ive met all feel the same we all dread puntures on tubbed tyres
Pretty high really petrol about same as uk cheap tatty hotel about 15 euros meals food about same im currently more than double over budget.
Female company what female company you sit on your own every night contemplating your navel by the way theres some cracking lookin birds, all on their rubbish chinese mopeds they get them for about 350 quid new there crap and no spares but the two look nice together
After realising ghana for cost reason was out and being rolled over by to bent cops i headed back for bobo
Here i met an Aussie couple Zander andTam on an africa Twin both members of XRV.org of which im a member they tried to persuade me to come back to waga and beyond with them but as they were shipping on from ghana it would mean a long lonesome return on the same roads , no i had made my mind up i was heading for Senegal and the Gambia (english speaking) and then the worst corrupt border in the world The rosso northern senegal exit to mauritania
Am i still enjoying it well you have super days and bad days but its an experience not to be missed and a thousand stories but as a one finger typist its hard work
Next blog fro the Gambia i hope The bike going well Well it is a HONDA and its dosent have metal panniers a must for riding in england Bah what crap You dont see BM riders down here its to far for them and their bike might get dirty (hope i dont meet a BM riding here if im in need

Posted by Archie Taylor at 09:50 AM GMT
December 05, 2009 GMT
exstension of yesterdays blog above
Posted by Archie Taylor at 03:51 PM GMT

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