It is starting to get a little crowded down here in Africa. The road that is, and it is not necessarily a bad thing. We are quickly finding out that Africa is definitely the place for overland travel and adventure. There are people from all over the world here in North Africa in their desert rigs, custom off-road RV’s and expedition vehicles. In fact, we have probably seen more overlanders in the last few days than we have on the entire expedition combined. In Mongolia, we spotted a couple different groups heading towards Beijing and Shanghai from Europe. In Kyrgyzstan, we met up with the guys from Trabant Trek, and at the ferry depot in Kazakhstan, we ran into a couple of French guys headed east as well, but that was about it.
Now, it seems like every day we meet new groups of people. Most seem to be headed in the opposite direction, and although it would be nice to caravan for a while with some other people in the lonely stretches of empty desert, we have been getting some pretty detailed intel about what lies down the road for us. In Dahkla, Morocco, we crossed paths with three South Africans who have been surfing their way up the west coast of Africa for the last 11 months. We soon became good friends with the guys from African Surfer and they passed on a lot of helpful information including assuring us that we would not be disappointed by taking the west coast route.
Tim sets up camp in the African Surfer ’81 Toyota
Here in Nouadhibou, Mauritania, we have also met numerous overlanders headed in all directions. We have been camping with a couple from Germany, learned the complexities of trying to sell a vehicle from a group of kids from Poland, traded stories from the road with another group of South Africans and exchanged GPS coordinates with a couple from France. Everyone has unique experiences and words of advice and encouragement to share with everyone. Even though the stories are different and the words of advice may conflict from time to time, if one thing has remained constant, it has to be the abundance of adventure and the rewards obtained from driving overland in your own vehicle. Nowhere else on the expedition have we met more people who understand why we are doing what we are doing. No one ever has to explain why they are driving overland because everyone already knows. It is a refreshing feeling. Oh yeah, and most of the vehicles happen to be Toyotas…
The Germans get ready to head north into Morocco
If you are in the market for a couple of Land Rovers we know some guys in Mauritania
Some more South Africans arrive on the scene
The SA’s logo is pretty cool
Just another day in expedition-ville central