The great HOT Sahara

sahara Travel Blog

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Hanging out in the desert heat

I finally found a computer that works....YAY.  Hold on while I do a cartwheel!  

The Sahara was quite an experience.  We first drove about 9 hours through some incredible heat.  Even with the air conditioning it was HOT....up to 45 above outside.  Our tour bus is kinda roughing it.  I have short legs and my knees are pushed right up against the seat in front of me.  I dont know how the taller people are managing it.  We switch seats all the time because some are better than others for leg room. 

It was very cool to see the change in scenery as we trekked through the atlas mountains to the desert.  Eventually we reached an area where we had to leave our tour busses behind and hop into 4 wheel drive vehicles to venture over the sand and rough terrain to get to our final destination by the dunes of Erg Chebbi.

The 4 x 4 to get through the sand
  Many of us have bought scarves to wear in the Berber style on our heads (what you typically see people in the Sahara wearing).  Its really great for blocking the sun and your face from the heat and sand.  I have never felt heat like the Sahara desert.  Seriously there are No words to describe it.  In the middle of the afternoon people just stay indoors and lay around because it is too hot to even move.

The 4 by 4 driving was awesome....feels like the Indiana Jones ride from Disneyland...only for real.  To get across the sand they have to rotate the wheel back and forth so that you dont get stuck in the sand.  Our auberge where we stayed was pretty awesome.  The whole area us filled with Berber tribes....often known as the Blue Men (they always wear blue and used to dye their faces blue).

The reason for the 47 degree heat
  It was perched just at the bottom of huge red sand dunes.  It is so beautiful....I saw the white dunes in the desert in Peru but the red is quite spectacular.  All of the soil here in Morocco is red so the sand is too. 

The first night we stayed in a traditional Berber tent at the base of one of the dunes.  It was too hot in the tent though so we pulled our sleeping mats out and slept under the stars instead.  I have NEVER seen stars like that before.  Once the moon went down it was absolutely spectacular....I could see the band of the milky way and even saw two shooting stars.

Now the stars were quite amazing but it was a little nerve wracking knowing what is out in the sand with you so I didnt get so much sleep.

The base of Erg Chebbi (where we left on our camels)
  Also you're forced to wake up with the sun because it is so HOT.  Oh well...it was worth it to see the stars like that.  In the Moroccan Sahara you can find many poisonous types of scorpions which usually hide under the rocks, many dung beetles which are harmless but big and black and scary looking, and of course vipers or cobras (cant remember which one it is).  The snakes stay away from humans though.  When they feel vibrations they bury themselves in sand.  Also there are poisonous rats....I was doing okay and actually fell asleep until Sarah and Polly (a couple of other girls on the trip) came back from the bathroom and were freaking out a bit because there were giant earwigs all over their sleeping mats.....its actually kinda funny looking back on it now.
An aquaduct in an oasis of the Sahara
..Nevertheless, I spent the night hiding under my bed sheet.

The next day, we all hopped on some camels and went through the sand dunes for about an hour to another Berber camp.  It was better....there were no bugs or anything so we got a good nights sleep under the stars again....The next day we trekked back on our camels to our original camp.  Riding camels is not the most comfortable thing in the world but the scenery sure was spectacular!

After the Sahara adventure, we drove high up into the Atlas mountains where we stayed for a couple of nights at a beautiful little place in the middle of a red gorge with a swimming pool.  I made good use of that pool....the heat in Morocco is incredible.  Unfortunately, I also got sick.

The temporary lake leftover from the flashflood. There are flamingos on the other side and the lake is contaminated with meninjitis.
....hey, travelling in a developing country isnt complete without a little Monsoomas revenge.  There are quite a fez of us not feeling so great....I am so happy that I got sick in such a nice place though and not in the Sahara like some others...

Today, we are venturing through the Valley of 1000 kasbahs and through the Valley of Roses.  It is Moroccowood...not really called that....where many films have been shot like Gladiator and the Bourne Ultimatum, etc. 

So I am drinking lots of water and coke and not eating much and wishing I hade some rehydration salts but overall, having a great time.  Did I mention how happy I am to be on a tour?  The people in my group are so nice and very diverse.  I am enjoying getting to know everyone as we venture through.

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Hanging out in the desert heat
Hanging out in the desert heat
The 4 x 4 to get through the sand
The 4 x 4 to get through the sand
The reason for the 47 degree heat
The reason for the 47 degree heat
The base of Erg Chebbi (where we l…
The base of Erg Chebbi (where we …
An aquaduct in an oasis of the Sah…
An aquaduct in an oasis of the Sa…
The temporary lake leftover from t…
The temporary lake leftover from …
Some music in the Sahara
Some music in the Sahara
The kids were so cute...maybe I sh…
The kids were so cute...maybe I s…
Camels blocking the road
Camels blocking the road
My camel...so cute
My camel...so cute
The sunset view.  Our camp was set…
The sunset view. Our camp was se…
Nice and soft.
Nice and soft.
San was here.
San was here.
Berber guy (Mr. January) and camels
Berber guy (Mr. January) and camels
Our tent...
Our tent...
sahara
photo by: mario26