Mauritania!

Trip Start Sep 05, 2012
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Trip End Dec 22, 2012


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Flag of Mauritania  , Nouadhibou,
Saturday, September 29, 2012

Hectic day today! Left Dakhla bright and early after a good night sleep! We were aiming for Nouakchott but only made it to Nouadibou (452km).

Again, beautiful scenery and more desert riding, great, but getting a little bored now! Crossed the tropic of cancer - momentous!

The highlight of the day was the border crossing. The real realisation that were are truly into Africa. We pull up and there are cars everywhere, some lazy looking officials in uniforms but no one giving directions. We agree for Adrian to watch the bikes and me tackle to the Dounes and police! So...

12pm after joining the scrum of 30-40 people gathered around a window with a slight crack in it (honestly only wide enough to slip a passport through and lots of jostling the passports get snapped from my hand and placed in a pile (at the bottom!). A good mix of Arabs and Africans and one pinky stuck in the middle, one big guy has appointed himself co or donator. In the meantime Adrian is approached by a guard who says he can make the process quicker for 200dhm. We discuss and decline, I really want to try my best to not pay bribes.

We wait 2 hrs and finally we get processed. Came close to giving a bribe of 2 cokes to not rejoin the back of the queue after realising a mistake on our paper work. Haha he declined the coke as he had been whispering whiskey, I misheard him, I was shooed away as the good Muslim boy didn't want to be herd asking for alcohol! 2-0 to us!

Then it's over to customs for vehicle checks, the military check and another vehicle check, filled out the same info 4 times now!

Finally we pass out of morocco and into Mauritania across 3km of no mans land.no mans land means absolutely no man cares for it. Theres is no raid just rocks and deep sand, Adrian nearly falls.

Enter Mauritania, all the soldiers and police are wearing ray bans and headscarfs with the odd AK thrown in. We dodge the dodgeys and after going through 3 sets of checks and filling out the same paperwork again (I'm strangely enjoying this! It's new and challenge!) we at are free to go, only 8 euros lighter...no bribes again.

4 hours!!!! It took four hours for that and we just entered another desert! It's too late to drive on so we head to Nouadibou for the night. Not much to say but after working out the a change rate, getting cash, finding camp and stepping over one dead bloated goat we decide on bread, chews and Viennas for dinner and an early night. Haha did try get a flag sticker for the panniers...really!! More about that later...
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