Choum and more fuel!!
Choum Travel Blog› entry 21 of 98 › view all entries
visitors the next morning as we where about to set off. A couple of old diesel two wheel drive
Mercedes, they saw our bikes and came to talk with us. They said we could get petrol at the next
village (a small collection of huts) and they would help us. We all set off and these guys didn’t slow for
anything, I think they put a brick on the accelerator! They were slipping away from us and I looked
at my speed, 85kph. With these two wheel
drive cars you have to go fast to make it through the sand, this also applies
to bikes. Lean back and steer using your
feet, trying to keep the front end as light as possible so it glides over the
sand and the rear sinks in so you give it more power hoping the forward
momentum doesn’t stop or hit a very soft pack that could through you off.
place had none and we went to the next, at this speed and sand we were eating
fuel, we really needed to find some. After finding the boss man he said we could
have some government petrol and we asked for 25liters. But on looking at the petrol it was
black! It smelt ok and we poured some on
a cloth to check it. With my bike being
so young and the compression of the engine very high I couldn’t risk putting
this stuff in my bike, this could stop my whole trip if I risked it. Tim understood and he offered me his petrol
in his bike and he would use this black petrol, a very generous offer. So we transfer about 18 litres to my bike (he
has a massive 35 litre tank), I had used a load of fuel despite riding as
smooth as possible!! And also managed to get a good mouth full of Tim’s petrol when
sucking it out, it brought tears to my eyes, coughing and I was almost sick,
had that taste in my mouth all day.
had died down a bit the sand wasn’t in the air like the previous day and we
rode on the piste where we could and the track.
We rode around the dead man stops on the line trying not get stuck. Beside every dead man stop was a small white
brick hut and near by someone lives and their job is to shovel the sand away
from this emergency stop, now that’s a lonely job! We would always give them a good wave as we
pasted. Tim came off once going around
one of these and I got stuck a couple of times.
As we approached the eastern end of the route we were forced back onto
the track because the piste was getting very sandy and the bikes were sinking
in and it wouldn’t be too long till we would have to start pushing using up
much energy and water.
It was all good at Choum where we stop riding east and turn south, found more petrol and I had another 15 litres from a couple of drums. Bought a coke to try and wash the taste of petrol still with me and a couple of bubble gum sweets. The track down to Atar was easy and we bush camped by a huge boulder to shelter from the wind. Was nice sleeping in the open air under the stars and I used my material hammock and panniers to give me a wind break and ground sheet (great when something does more than one job). We had a good old chat as we ate, talked about lots of things, Tim has done some big overland trips and has been on the road for 3years. Top man but can snore like a freight train! That’s ok because I was going to sleep thinking what if a sneak or scorpion decided to join us, not with Tim’s vibrations! hahahaha Bush camping is great.