The longest day - to Nouakchott

Nouakchott Travel Blog

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the ride back down the track

Today’s ride was about 550km south west to Mauritian capital Nouakchott near the coast.  Had arranged to meet Nigel at Daes Nomad, we would get our Mali visa here and he had a couple of days to look into it.  Felt good back on Katie, we had covered a big route crossing the Sahara over the past days and you always feel more at one with your bike after some extreme riding.  Once I had cleared to usual check points and showing my passport the road was very straight and hot.  Could see the edge of the big dunes but that’s not what the Sahara all is, it has huge areas of rough rocky dusty land also with not much growing.  Some people think this type of landscape is boring but not me, with so little going on you can start to see the smaller details of the area you’re travelling leaving nothing unnoticed.

the long road south west
  With less to look at your mind is more free to explore…maybe that’s why I like the seas and oceans. 

About the half way point going through the small town of Akjoujt I looked for petrol to top me up, the first had no petrol, most are diesel out here.  The second the guy waved me to a pump and with 10 litres more I was off.  I got just outside of town when I heard a banging from the engine and I knew what it was, diesel!!!   Rode back and sure enough he put diesel in and I was very verbal (but it was my fault not checking but that’s hard to see when you got the red mist).  A couple of locals helped me push the bike to a mechanics place and we drained all the 28 litres out into cans.

feckin camels!!
  I got on with draining the carb and took off various pipes blowing through them.  I spent about three hours working on poor Katie and had the tank off/on/off/on/off/on… replaced the spark plug, removed the baffle from the exhaust to let the exhaust breath easy (makes her sound very loud and you’ll hear me coming) and eventually had her going.  It’s at times like these I know why I bought a simple KTM 640Adventure and not one of these BMWs fuel injected machines with loads of electronics!  Loads of solutions for problems you thought you never had… 

I had 275km to get into the city and not enough daylight left.  I opened her up to 120km/h making the most of the light but killing my rear tyre (still had my knobbly on).  I thought about bush camping as I knew wouldn’t make it before dark, I’ve no problem rough camping but decided it was best to push on to the city in case I had problems in the morning starting the bike.

building sand is free out here (haahaa)
  Daylight went and I had eased off on the speed to under 100km/h, soon after I had a very close encounter with a camel on the road.  Had more words with myself about not riding at night but sometimes it’s going to happen.  I cruised behind other slow moving vehicles to protect me and give me advance warnings from the brake lights, they also shielded me from the lights of oncoming traffic who think it’s best to flash their lights when they see another vehicle.  Bloody ejjits!!!     

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the ride back down the track
the ride back down the track
the long road south west
the long road south west
feckin camels!!
feckin camels!!
building sand is free out here (ha…
building sand is free out here (h…
Nouakchott
photo by: eefab