Bush camps and inept guides

Trip Start Dec 16, 2005
Trip End Jun 12, 2006

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Flag of Namibia  ,
Tuesday, May 2, 2006

The campsite at Otjitotongwe was full of interesting things. They had a pool, a tower that we climbed to watch the sunrise, lots of birds around the grounds such as red billed hornbills and white crowned sparrow weavers. The bar had some interesting trophies. A warthog butt and a stuffed elephant trunk and penis. I ended up buying a warthog tusk that had been made into a bottle opener, definitely my favourite souvenir to date. All the water in the camp came from underground and like a lot of places in the area there was a windmill pump that bought it up from and underground reservoir.

After breakfast we wandered down to the farmhouse to see the Cheetahs. It's amazing how these guys just treat them as pets and I think everyone was amazed at how we could interact with them and how everyone could just stroke them. Their purring sound was just like a small car engine! When not chasing each other around the yard the would often chase the poor Jack Russell dog, picking him up with their teeth.

Back in the truck and our first stop was in the town of Kamanjab for a little shopping. This seemed more like how the real Namibia should be, dusty and run down. The Herero women here still wore these huge, often colourful, Victorian dresses and headgear from a long time passed.

As we drove south west the scenery became very barren and turned into a red rock desert area. There were small hills poking up from the ground they looked more like piles of boulders. Much of it reminded me of areas of Arizona and the Joshua tree NP that I had driven through.

Our destination was Twyfelfontein and some rock engravings that are believed to be up to 6000 years old and also some rock paintings. I have to say things like this don't excite me too much, but they were amazingly well preserved. Everyone else seemed to like them but I spent most of my time looking for lizards and scorpions.

It has to be said our guide was up to the usual African standard, and was therefore bloody useless. So lethargic and with a set spiel, any question over and above the speech they had memorized would be met with blank stares. I guess this place did provide some work for the local people though.

There were 2 main rock paintings very close to each other, but for your $5 you were only allowed to go and see one. We chose the dancing kudu as oppose to the lion man. Close to the rock painting we also visited an interesting rock formation called the organ pipes. With a name like that I will leave it to your imagination of how they looked.

We drove that night until after dark and set up camp for what was to be our first bush camp. What a great location, tucked in behind one of the big red boulder hills with a fantastically clear view of the Milky Way up above. Liam and Charlie decided to sleep under that stars, much to the concern of Patrick who warned them about all the scorpions and snakes in the area.
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