Saturday, April 14, 2012

Central Kalahari, Mahurushele to Zeerust

Water consumption, Drinking : 30l
Water consumption, Washing : 55l
Fuel consumption : Fuel gauge shows just below half.

The long trek back home began today.  One thing one can't do is to attempt a trip like this and be worried about very long hours in the car; the car is a part of the experience, not the means with which to get to the experience.

When graeme was packing up the rooftop tent he noticed that the one bracket holding the tent onto the roofrack had broken so he spent some time securing the rooftop tent with some tie downs.  We were a bit worried about the distance today so caron was champing at the bit as is her custom while graeme packed up and fixed.

Since the next stop as far as fuel is concerned is a fuel station I emptied the remaining jerry can into the tank just before we left.

Instead of taking the direct route to the gate we decided to take a little bit of a detour around the southern section of the park which was a very nice way to remember the park; we didn't see too much game but having our last sight of the pans was fantastic.  It's hard to describe, it's just a flat area with grass on it surrounded by trees but this description, although correct, does not describe the experience adequately.  There is something undefineable that turns it from a grass field with buck on it into an unforgettable experience.

At the one water hole we stopped at james was walking on the rock between the water and the mud and lost his balance or missed a footing and fell into the mud so there was a little todo for a while before he recovered his humour.
 Graeme and child off to scare the springbok.
Gill having one last look at the last of the pans within Khutse park.

Once out of the park I didn't inflate the tyres until we actually got to the tar which turned out to be a very good idea, some of the district roads were a little worse for wear.  We arrived at the tar and filled up at the petrol station which was pretty simple; they even had 50ppm diesel but they didnt' have card facilities so we were thankful to have had cash to use.  Since we last filled up in Mopipi we have done 972km on 130l of fuel giving an average consumption of 13.37l/100km which isn't too bad at all.  We had 30l left in the tank so we would have easily had enough to get to the next town if this filling station hadn't had fuel.  Nevertheless, it was nice to have a full tank again.

After inflating the tyres again which went pretty quickly but is more difficult than one expects because the temperature of the tire has a bearing on the pressure so I did the opposite of what I did before; just added 1/2 a bar to whatever pressure it happened to be.  We were a bit worried about when the border which we reached at about 19:00 but it turned out that it was open until midnight.  The border times marked on the map that we had and one the map that graeme had were different so we changed the border post we were going to use.

Saturday afternoon/evening seems to be the social event of the week because we drove past numerous taverns each packed to the rafters with people having a good time and a drink or 2,3,4,5 ...  Glad to be driving past now and not when they try to go home; the botswana driving is atrocious enough without alcohol thrown into the mix.

Going through Tlokweng border post was a walk in the park, no queues at all.  The personnel on both sides of the border fairly leapt onto their chairs to serve us as we walked into the border post which means that it must have been a very quiet day indeed.

The drive from the border post to Zeerust was uneventful other than one anxious moment when a oncoming car veered into our lane but other than that we arrived in Zeerust very tired but safe.

The Bed and Breakfast made a really nice change; lots of hot water and no cooking or washing up to be done.  We thought that the highway and train noise might keep us up because both are very close to the B&B but we didn't hear a thing.  As soon as our head hit the pillow we were out for the count.

No comments: