Go Back   Horizons Unlimited - The HUBB > Regional Forums > North Africa
North Africa Topics specific to North Africa and the Sahara down to the 17th parallel (excludes Morocco)
Photo by Michael Jordan, enjoying a meal at sunset, Zangskar Valley, India

I haven't been everywhere...
but it's on my list!


Photo by Michael Jordan
enjoying a meal at sunset,
Zangskar Valley, India



Trans Sahara Routes.

Like Tree33Likes

Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
  #16  
Old 4 Aug 2016
Registered Users
HUBB regular
 
Join Date: Aug 2016
Posts: 21
Ok cool thanks for the info, what do you mean when you say 'we have seen more mines...'?

I've read that it's ok there so I'm just getting conflicting information. I was just wondering where you got your info from?
Reply With Quote
  #17  
Old 4 Aug 2016
Registered Users
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: May 2009
Location: Sweden
Posts: 1,460
Going Maure - Algeria - Tunisia wouldnt count as a crossing of anything. really.
From Morocco you cant get anywhere except north and south.
Let's speculate.
How about Mauretania - Algeria - Niger - Chad - Sudan?
Impossible, of course, but take it bit by bit and analyze it.
Supposing you have all the visas arranged.
Make a route with suitable distance between water holes.
Figure out where to get camels and guides.
Only five countries

Is it possible to cross from Mauretania to Algeria? If not, why not?
From In Guezzam to Agadez you would need an escort.
Then probably another escort from Agadez eastwards. Hugely exepensive, if at all possible.
Is it possible to get into Chad from Niger these days?
Why would it be impossible to cross Chad, even with the mines, if you find the proper guides?
Can you cross inte northern Sudan from Chad?
Once in Sudan you should be ok I think. "Almost there".
The answer to the questions is "probably not"
but we dont really know, since noone has done it and noone has asked.

Paula Constant might have made it, if there hadnt been a tuareg uprising in Niger.
Diplomatic Niger… | Paula Constant
And then there was the Arab Spring and everything that followed.
Reply With Quote
  #18  
Old 4 Aug 2016
Registered Users
HUBB regular
 
Join Date: Aug 2016
Posts: 21
Thanks for your post priffe.

Yeah I hear what you're saying, basically unless I'm part of the special forces I won't be able to do it, at least not in the current climate. Closed boarders etc etc, yet in other posts people are openly talking about how they're crossing boarders and the most annoying thing is the time it takes.

I've sort of let go of the 'big crossing' since delving into my research. Now I'm thinking Atlantic to Mediterranean. Seriously looking at boarders, guides etc. Surely there must be a way to walk with some friggin camels from one point to the next! I've learnt a lot in a week thanks to the help of everyone, I'll make it happen!

Please keep posting with any info...
Reply With Quote
  #19  
Old 4 Aug 2016
Registered Users
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Jan 2016
Location: Montreal
Posts: 104
Did we say that the Morocco/Algeria border has been closed for 20 years? Only registered nomads are allowed thru the border. The only way to cross for us is to go thru Spain but I doubt a camel is allowed on the ferry ;-) And if you think you can smuggle your way in, then be aware that a very long trench has been dug along the border )on both sides) and that they have outposts every few kilometers with night vision equipment etc to check smugglers. Got caught there myself for 6 hours in an army truck in a sand storm because I got too close, while the map showed no border line. That was East of Tendrara... ;-)

OP - If your goal is to lose yourself in the rocky desert or in the mountains to appreciate the value of life, don't worry, Morrocco has plenty for you to do that. If you are into a survivalist mood, go there in July. ;-)

The trenches.



Reply With Quote
  #20  
Old 4 Aug 2016
Registered Users
New on the HUBB
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: NZ
Posts: 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by DanNewBeginnings View Post
Thanks for your post priffe.

Surely there must be a way to walk with some friggin camels from one point to the next!

Please keep posting with any info...
sure there is, what about OZ with Camel, no border crossings, no guides, no language problems, .... to easy for you?

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Australian_feral_camel

Last edited by Globi; 4 Aug 2016 at 17:16. Reason: added link
Reply With Quote
  #21  
Old 4 Aug 2016
Registered Users
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Mar 2001
Location: zürich
Posts: 292
mines and UXO s

« what do you mean when you say 'we have seen more mines...'? »

I have not seen mines but wrecked cars and UXO s on our trip from Gueltat Zemmour to Foum Zguid.
We used the old Spanish Road, asked local people whenever it was possible, drove only on pistes with fresh tracks, made even camp in the middle of the road - in any case there was nobody else on the way but us.

So one could say it is safe when you stay on the road – but with a camel caravan ? with grass and acacias left and right of the piste ?

A few years later a car hit a mine between Zag and Assa, a piste where we had passed before.
(confirmed by Landmine Monitor and UN Mine Action)

The German Demining Troups report 12 accidents with 14 wounded and 13 killed in 2015
http://www.einsatz.bundeswehr.de/portal/a/einsatzbw/!ut/p/c4/LYvBCoMwEET_KGugYukt4qW30ku1F1nNIktjIulaQfz4JuAMDM w8Bt6Q7PHHEwoHjw5a6Ea-DZsaNks9sf-i7KniR1Zy7pxIdoJXPltSY_AkOYW8cMopooSolhDFZbLGmIhiC 12hm1pXl-KUPkxZmUdbXnVzr5-wzLP5A4V2vFY!/

Read also
http://removethewall.org/the-un-secretary-general-landmines-and-other-explosive-remnants-of-war-continued-to-endanger-the-lives-of-local-and-nomadic-populations-in-western-sahara/

http://www.the-monitor.org/en-gb/reports/2016/western-sahara/casualties-and-victim-assistance.aspx

Reply With Quote
  #22  
Old 5 Aug 2016
Registered Users
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: May 2009
Location: Sweden
Posts: 1,460
As I understood it, Paula Constant even gave up on crossing Australia with camels because of 'being utterly fed up with bureacratic issues"
Still alive, sorry! | Paula Constant
Reply With Quote
  #23  
Old 5 Aug 2016
Registered Users
HUBB regular
 
Join Date: Aug 2016
Posts: 21
Yeah that is a big trench, I was aware the border with Morocco is closed, so was thinking of heading in via mauri. I've read Algeria has basically closed all it's borders, you need permission get through.

I'm going to do a search of this forum regarding crossing borders and maybe create a more specific thread later on, as clearly an e/w Sahara trip is sort of impossible nowadays.

Yeah I do want to go on a long journey through the desert, off the tourist path, and my gut feeling is that it can be done. It's exciting finding out more info.
Reply With Quote
  #24  
Old 5 Aug 2016
Gipper's Avatar
Contributing Member
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: Saltspring Island,Canada/Poole,UK
Posts: 1,081
You could try to get on a camel train from Timbuktu to the salt mines at Taoudenni and back. Its a well worn route so you are not going to feel like you are exploring new tracks, but it might more than satisfy your interest in camels - personally Id rather ride a Penny Farthing without a saddle - or a KTM


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mZ1eQ99Triw


Security wise Timbuktu has had some issues and a couple of kidnappings, make sure you are up to speed with AQIM activity, but its not as sketchy as some of your other ideas good luck!
__________________
Cheers
Grif

'11 KTM 450 EXC
'09 Suzuki DR650
'00 Discovery Series 2 V8
'95 Defender 90 300 Tdi Overlander
http://gipperstravels.blogspot.ca
Reply With Quote
  #25  
Old 5 Aug 2016
Registered Users
HUBB regular
 
Join Date: Aug 2016
Posts: 21
Timbuktu would be nice, but it's to far east for me. I think camel riding will be kept to a minimum as well, I'll be walking them mostly I imagine.

Yeah I've had some pretty crazy ideas about the crossing, but the more people I speak to the more it feels like it's doable. Everyone is being so amazingly helpful, and realistic too which is what is so good.

Thanks for the youtube vid too, those guys work hard...
Reply With Quote
  #26  
Old 5 Aug 2016
Tim Cullis's Avatar
Super Moderator
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: London and Granada Altiplano
Posts: 3,082
Quote:
Originally Posted by DanNewBeginnings View Post
the more people I speak to the more it feels like it's doable
Really?

Your first point of research should be the UK Foreign Office travel website (or an equivalent in another country) to check out the conditions in the various countries.

Five minutes research should be enough to convince anyone that it's a non-starter. An unbridled optimism isn't the best attribute for this type of adventure travel.
__________________
"For sheer delight there is nothing like altitude; it gives one the thrill of adventure
and enlarges the world in which you live,"
Irving Mather (1892-1966)
Reply With Quote
  #27  
Old 5 Aug 2016
Registered Users
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Jan 2016
Location: Montreal
Posts: 104
I would take that UK website info with a grain of salt. Pe exemple, Morocco and Tunisia seems to have been treated with two very different standards. Morocco having received the UK's seal of approval in term of safety, while one should only travel to Tunisia in absolutely necessary... Really? My two previous experiences in Tunisia have proven very safe. They have terrorist shootings in Tunisia? Yes. Two or three of them in the past two years... But much less people died than in the US where mass shooting is a weekly occurence. How is the US treated in term of safety for travel? Should France also be on the list of countries not to visit? After all, they had the Bataclan attack where 130 people died, and 80 more people died in Nice last month.

I am sorry if I offend some people, but things aren't always what they seem.
Reply With Quote
  #28  
Old 6 Aug 2016
Registered Users
HUBB regular
 
Join Date: Aug 2016
Posts: 21
Thanks Tim and Massive Lee,

Tim yeah I've checked out the government safety warnings, the Aus one basically says avoid the whole of North Africa. I don't think it is unbridled optimism, I am researching this carefully and in terms of what I'm reading it's about 50/50, some people say avoid it like the plague, some people say they found it fun and felt safe. I think it's far to great an opportunity to let slip just because of 'terrorism', granted though that Westerns do stick out a bit more there.

I hear your point too Massive Lee, in terms of safety statistically the US is worse, regarding the tragedy of common mass shootings there (I'm sorry to all the US readers, but that's really all the news we hear about the US, that and Trump). However I love the States and have visited many times and feel safe there.

I think because we hear about kidnappings and bombs from these countries that's all we associate with them, statistically though I'm more likely to be eaten by a shark when swimming at my local beach. It's because we feel we have no control over the situation, and that it's an unfamiliar situation that we fear it. Families, cultural events, universities, tourists, commerce, development all happens in these countries, they're just very rough around the edges (literally, at the borders).

I do take safety seriously and I acknowledge there's risk in everything.
Reply With Quote
  #29  
Old 6 Aug 2016
Contributing Vendor
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Apr 2001
Location: Tallinn
Posts: 403
FCO warnings

As Sir Humphrey once said, the Official Secrets Act is not there to protect secrets, but to protect officials. Similarly the FCO travel warnings serve the prime purpose of being able to say "I told you so" should something actually happen. The warnings are far too general and outdated (and sometimes outright ignorant) to serve as any practical guidance for the real situation on the ground.

Many of the countries in question are huge with vastly differing regions, different ethnicities, and correspondingly different security situation. Case point Chad, where some of the safest regions in the North of the country are marked red, while others which I would consider much more dodgier from experience are marked "only" yellow.

This being said, to be able to judge the actual risks and overall situation requires local knowledge and much experience, in absence of either it is not a bad idea to adhere to the FCO advice.
__________________
Happy Travels, András
http://www.fjexpeditions.com

Last edited by andrasz; 7 Aug 2016 at 18:09.
Reply With Quote
  #30  
Old 8 Aug 2016
Registered Users
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Mar 2001
Location: zürich
Posts: 292
first step

Mauritania – Algeria – Tunisia

What about talking what you need to cross the borders the legal and official way?
(for the illegal one you better ask the smugglers J

- Mauritanian visa on arrival at the airport for Australians, visitors not holding return/onward tickets could be refused entry
- get the permissions in Nouakchott to travel from Atar to Chegga
- get a guide who dares to escort you there
- get the Visa for Algeria : condition - a Travel Agency has to ask for the ok in Algier for the planned track, probably they can/must provide guides to escort you all the time up to Tunisia
- from Chenachen, Algeria, where would you cross the Sahara to pass the tunisian border ?
- visa : Australians can stay in Tunisia for 3 month and dont need one (as far as I know)

I hope you are aware that on this route you will meet all kind of armed people, particularly at the water points in the triangel Mauritania/Mali/Algeria.

Step by step – its a looooong way before you can start…

Last edited by ursula; 8 Aug 2016 at 21:08.
Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
adventure, camel, desert, sahara, unsupported


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 2 (0 Registered Users and/or Members and 2 guests)
 
Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
2015 - Heading east from Europe, add your itinerary / plans kim Travellers Seeking Travellers 190 5 Mar 2016 07:38
Crossing CHINA east to west around Oktober 2015 - looking for a group LCramses Travellers Seeking Travellers 2 26 Nov 2014 07:59
Afghanistan; crossing east to west 2009/10 danielsprague Ride Tales 0 10 Sep 2013 19:44
Crossing from West Africa to East Africa Fearless sub-Saharan Africa 4 11 Jan 2013 13:01
Nigerian crossing East to West Landygirl sub-Saharan Africa 8 13 Dec 2012 09:20

 
 

Announcements

Thinking about traveling? Not sure about the whole thing? Watch the HU Achievable Dream Video Trailers and then get ALL the information you need to get inspired and learn how to travel anywhere in the world!

Have YOU ever wondered who has ridden around the world? We did too - and now here's the list of Circumnavigators!
Check it out now
, and add your information if we didn't find you.

Next HU Eventscalendar

HU Event and other updates on the HUBB Forum "Traveller's Advisories" thread.
ALL Dates subject to change.

2024:

2025:

  • Queensland is back! May 2-4 2025!

Add yourself to the Updates List for each event!

Questions about an event? Ask here

HUBBUK: info

See all event details

 
World's most listened to Adventure Motorbike Show!
Check the RAW segments; Grant, your HU host is on every month!
Episodes below to listen to while you, err, pretend to do something or other...

2020 Edition of Chris Scott's Adventure Motorcycling Handbook.

2020 Edition of Chris Scott's Adventure Motorcycling Handbook.

"Ultimate global guide for red-blooded bikers planning overseas exploration. Covers choice & preparation of best bike, shipping overseas, baggage design, riding techniques, travel health, visas, documentation, safety and useful addresses." Recommended. (Grant)



Ripcord Rescue Travel Insurance.

Ripcord Rescue Travel Insurance™ combines into a single integrated program the best evacuation and rescue with the premier travel insurance coverages designed for adventurers.

Led by special operations veterans, Stanford Medicine affiliated physicians, paramedics and other travel experts, Ripcord is perfect for adventure seekers, climbers, skiers, sports enthusiasts, hunters, international travelers, humanitarian efforts, expeditions and more.

Ripcord travel protection is now available for ALL nationalities, and travel is covered on motorcycles of all sizes!


 

What others say about HU...

"This site is the BIBLE for international bike travelers." Greg, Australia

"Thank you! The web site, The travels, The insight, The inspiration, Everything, just thanks." Colin, UK

"My friend and I are planning a trip from Singapore to England... We found (the HU) site invaluable as an aid to planning and have based a lot of our purchases (bikes, riding gear, etc.) on what we have learned from this site." Phil, Australia

"I for one always had an adventurous spirit, but you and Susan lit the fire for my trip and I'll be forever grateful for what you two do to inspire others to just do it." Brent, USA

"Your website is a mecca of valuable information and the (video) series is informative, entertaining, and inspiring!" Jennifer, Canada

"Your worldwide organisation and events are the Go To places to for all serious touring and aspiring touring bikers." Trevor, South Africa

"This is the answer to all my questions." Haydn, Australia

"Keep going the excellent work you are doing for Horizons Unlimited - I love it!" Thomas, Germany

Lots more comments here!



Five books by Graham Field!

Diaries of a compulsive traveller
by Graham Field
Book, eBook, Audiobook

"A compelling, honest, inspiring and entertaining writing style with a built-in feel-good factor" Get them NOW from the authors' website and Amazon.com, Amazon.ca, Amazon.co.uk.



Back Road Map Books and Backroad GPS Maps for all of Canada - a must have!

New to Horizons Unlimited?

New to motorcycle travelling? New to the HU site? Confused? Too many options? It's really very simple - just 4 easy steps!

Horizons Unlimited was founded in 1997 by Grant and Susan Johnson following their journey around the world on a BMW R80G/S.

Susan and Grant Johnson Read more about Grant & Susan's story

Membership - help keep us going!

Horizons Unlimited is not a big multi-national company, just two people who love motorcycle travel and have grown what started as a hobby in 1997 into a full time job (usually 8-10 hours per day and 7 days a week) and a labour of love. To keep it going and a roof over our heads, we run events all over the world with the help of volunteers; we sell inspirational and informative DVDs; we have a few selected advertisers; and we make a small amount from memberships.

You don't have to be a Member to come to an HU meeting, access the website, or ask questions on the HUBB. What you get for your membership contribution is our sincere gratitude, good karma and knowing that you're helping to keep the motorcycle travel dream alive. Contributing Members and Gold Members do get additional features on the HUBB. Here's a list of all the Member benefits on the HUBB.




All times are GMT +1. The time now is 11:03.