Saturday, 10 September 2011

Days 11, 12 and 13 Things can only get Hotter

Outside The Kasbah in Boulmane Dades
A well deserved nights sleep for Me and Paul was our reward for our hard 2 days in the mountains, with a lovely breakfast consisting of bread cheese jam and omlette. The mission for the morning was to ride the final tarmac section of the dades gorge with Geoff and Pirate who had missed out due to coming around on the road and then ride 100miles west past the Valley of Rose to Bikers Home in Ouarzazate.

Moroccan Citizens Celebrating
We left the kasbah at about 9:30 and continued up the gorge and we noticed a huge amount of celebration with the native people later we found out they were celebrating the fact that the king was giving them the chance to vote on a new consitution. After the uprisings in Tunisa an Egypt the Moroccans had staged a small protest and King Mohemed VI had amended the consitution to appase the younger side of the population. Then on Friday, 4 days later they were going to vote for the new consistitution.

Riding Down the Dades Gorge
We set off up the gorge with geoff filming the ride up the twisty and beautiful dades gorge, The local berber villages harvesting the field of wheat either side of the river. The ride up was relativley cool in comparison to the heat in the town. When we got to the top of the Gorge I turned around t go get an action shot of the other 3 riding through the narrowest part of the Gorge. I ended up waiting there for an hour as Pirates bike had developed a problem with fuel pipe from his tank to the carb leaking. The fix was made by cutting off the problem end of the pipe and attching to the carb again.

Peter and Zineb at Bikers Home
We came down from the gorge and started moving south west to Ouarzazate, We had another hour and a half as the fix on Pirates fuel lines had not worked and the pipe had split even more. Pirate and Paul fabircated a dual skin fuel hose buy cutting as section of tubeing away from Pirates fuel syphon.

Cooling off in an Irragation Channel
We arrived in Ouarzazate (which we had re-named Oo-Ar Zat to make It feel like west country a home from home) and we stayed with a Dutchman called Peter and his wife at Bikershome. We received fantastic Hospitality and great home cooked meal all included in the price of our stay. Most importantly he has a secure garage for storing the bikes over night. Peter also offers GPS guided tours of the Sahara and the Atlas mountains and he provides support in a 4x4. It was very hot over night and Paul and Pirate slept on the roof to try and cool down as much as possible.

The next day we contiuned further south to Zagora and into the Sahara desert and it was the hottest and most uncomfortable day so far, It was so hot that we had to keep stopping to keep our selves from falling asleep on the bikes. The irragation channels that ran by the side of the road we useful for keeping us cool. The next most important thing was getting hold of water to stay hydrated.
Getting stuck in the Dunes

After 200km we arrived at the Sahara Sky Hotel, a place Geoff was extremely keen to stay at as it has an obseravatory on the roof. The room was reasonable due to being off season an we were the only guests of the hotel apart from one german amateur astronomer. Once it got cooler we headed out into the dunes with Geoff and his camera. Even with it getting cooler we were getting drained by the heat every time we stopped or had the bikes stuck in the sand.

I was still being boneheaded and stubborn about wanting to go into the desert the following day however my fellow adventurers made my descion for me as they all decided that it was too dangerous to head into the desert in this heat, I had to conceed it was definitaltely too dangerous to go alone. The following morning I was suffering with mild heat stroke so I had to concided that the rest of the team was right.

Filming with Geoff in the Dunes
It had always been Paul's intention to head home early as he wanted to go into Portugal and Gibraltar on his way home also his ferry from Santander was a few days before our in Calais, But it was that evening at dinner Geoff announced his intention to head home as the trip was costing more than he had expected, so he was going travel with paul as far as Gibraltar and then take advantage of the BMWs cruising ability and comfort to be back in Bridgewater by Sunday (It was tuesday). So the following day we would all ride back to Bikers Home and Geoff and Paul would head further north towards Marrakech and continue on with their adventures.

Relaxing at Bikers Home
That night we were invited on to the roof to look at the sky by the hotel owner, we were all struck with how beautiful the sky was so far away from any light polution, even tho only a quater of it was visable due to cloud cover.

I woke up the following morninga and couldn't really eat any breakfast as I had a mild heat stoke, I forced my self to drink as much water as possible before we left and headed back to Bikers Home, the ride was fairly uneventful.

Geoff and Paul left after we stopped for a drink at Bikershome.That evenin Pirate and I Plotted our choice of route home, we planned to take back roads and tracks over the mountains then take the coast road up the east of spain and over the pyrennes, we still had 11 days before our ferry in calais, so we were looking to get the most out of the rest of our Journey.

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