It is hard to imagine a greater contrast in landscape from the desert and sand dunes of Namibia last week to the flower strewn meadows of South Africa’s Namaqualand where we are now. With our Kiwi friends Brian and Sarah aboard we drove endless miles of parched white sandy desert in Namibia and now we are camped in fields of blooming Namaqua daisies.
Crossing our first section of desert brought us to the forbidding Skeleton Coast, which lived up to its name on the day of our arrival. It was a bleak wintry scene with wild storm tossed ocean waves breaking over the discarded wreck of a stranded cargo ship. Farther along in Namibia we made a pre-sunrise climb to the top of a 1,200 meter sand dune in Sossusvlei and later proved our mettle by getting stuck once again in the sand- and getting unstuck on our own. More desert travels including two flat tires in one day brought us to Fish River Canyon- a mini version of the Grand Canyon. We tried a puncture repair but with minimal success then continued on with crossed fingers and no spare tires. The road ahead was the same section that had caused the two flats so it was with great relief that we finally reached a town just as our right rear tire sank into the pavement. Three new tires and $600 poorer we were on our way towards South Africa.
This section of South Africa is famous for its fields of daisies which usually bloom from mid August through September but we are in luck as they have bloomed early this year and we have timed it perfectly. How pleasant to again be driving through wonderful scenery and colorful meadows.
We have come nearly 20,000 kilometers and Cape Town, the end of our road is not far now.