Caprivi strip

 

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// Nikon D7200

After this magical encounter, we drove across the caprivi strip, but hey, this is Namibia after all……. not easy to bushcamp ! In fact, there is people everywhere and it’s simply impossible to find a place to sleep !
Our best option is the national parks, since this part is very remote , parks are cheap, and camping inside usually cost around $5. Our next good option was the Mudumu national park, and the camping spot was so nice we spent 3 days there !
Bbq every night, looooot of noise at night from nearby hippos, and even lions, but nothing came close, with the notable exception of vervet monkeys, always trying to get inside our vehicles.

I also managed to repair my CB radio (4 faults to find and re solder !), and we now have a long range radio system between the 2 vehicles ! Alleluia ! I’ve got this radio since the beginning, and we never managed to use it so far, I guess it was about time, but we need it here !

Next day, we decided to explore a bit the park and his deep soft sand tracks. We spotted a lot of zebras and antelopes, but highlight of the day was to get stuck in the sand for the first time… Alright ! Time to get the sand ladders and shovel out ! First time, so couple of mistakes, here is the thing to do :
Everyone talk about low pressure on tyres, do you have time to deflate your tyres everytime you see a small patch of soft sand ? No, you only do it on long sandy sections, because it takes a good 15min to deflate and re inflate your tyres. So every small section is a potential trap. So what to do is :
stay in low gear, and keep some speed/momentum to cross those small sandy sections. If stuck, don’t insist too much or the vehicle will sink, making the recovery process even more painful.
Dig the vehicle out, position your sand ladders in front of the back wheel. Don’t put them flat, curve them a bit in front of the tyre so they can roll below the tyres as soon as they spin ! Very important ! If the sand ladder is sitting flat on the sand, the grip on your tyre won’t be enough to climb on it !
Done in about 15min, but with this sun, it was fairly exhausting…

Time to get back to camp, I made another bonfire to keep everyone warm at night, but if I was by myself, I would simply go to sleep, that day just killed me.

Next, we went to the Mamili national park, where we had the opportunity to meet the most unfriendly park ranger in the continent. It almost felt like she was paid to be in a bad mood behind a fake smile.
On top of that, this park had nothing to offer but a challenging curve in deep soft sand (this time I got stuck by driving mistake), and I had a new chance at getting mister fox out of his sandbox. This one ended up being very challenging !

But so far, I managed to get out every time by myself. I’m glad Eiji and Chizu are nearby to help me just in case, but it is very important to figure out everything myself, in case this happens when I’m travelling alone. And it may in the future !

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