Day 16 – 26: Purros to Rundu

5 872 Km from Malelane.

At Purros we left the Skeleton Coast group and we had to meet the Angola group at Rundu 10 days later.

We filled up on fuel at Sesfontein for the first time after Terrace Bay – 825 km, including the dunes.

The landscape is so green and lush, we could not ignore the opportunity to drive around Damaraland, down to Swakopmund and then through the Namib Naukluft Park to Rundu.

Purros to Sesfontein

This area is vastly different from how we experienced it last year – grasses waving in the wind and green everywhere. Signs of water are visible at all the river crossings and the Huarusib river still has lots of water.

Huarusib river
Lone man #7 for the trip
Another river crossing
Nomadic Himba structures – they pull animal skins over these to use as huts when they visit the area again
Lone man #8 for the trip

Sesfontein to Spitzkuppe

We camped at Ongongo Waterfall Campsite for the night. The campsite is near Warmquelle and is a natural hot water spring amongst the sandstone rocks. Luxury campsite with private ablutions.

Hot springs swimming pool
Sandstone formation between Warmquelle and Khorixas
Lunch in the Aba Huab river
Camping at the Hais Ra campsite near Khorixas
Full moon at campsite
Towards Uis
Towards Uis
Spitzkuppe from direction Uis
Camping at Spitzkuppe

Messum Crater

The Messum Crater is located north East of Henties Bay within the Dorob National Park in Namibia.

The Messum Crater is not a meteorite or asteroid impact crater, it is part of an igneous ring complex on an once active volcano the centre of which collapsed. It consists of a wide flat basin of 18 to 25km in diameter surrounded by a ring-shaped range of hills and dates back about 130 million years. The entire formation consists mainly of quartz-rich basalt.

We decided to visited the Messum Crater and we camped in the Messum River after driving around in the crater.

This place is desolate beyond description. The views are gorgeous, the silence is deafening, there are more stars in the sky than anywhere else.

Lichen fields on the way to the crater, welwitchia plants in the crater, rock formations, caves…

When one exit the crater via the Messum River the walls of the river are carved through eons into spectacular formations resembling “Horses Heads”.

We really enjoyed the visit as this place is so unique.

In the middle of the crater – this is the real location of this famous sign doing the rounds on social media
‘horse heads’ sandstone formations in the Messum River
Camping in the Messum River bed
Composition of the river wall – rocks and mud

Swakopmund to Rundu

From Windhoek to Swakopmund before departing on the Skeleton Coast trip, we drove through the Namib-Naukluft Park. We then promised ourselves that we would spend a day or two camping here if time allows.

So we stocked up and did some cleaning and washing at Windpomp 14. Then we camped at Ganab for one night and near Blutkuppe at Tinkas for another night – in the middle of this section of the park – in the middle of nowhere.

Totally different from previous years – waving grasslands where it is normally only sand. We saw less wildlife than before, but we saw giraffe, springbuck, zebra, gemsbok, ostriches and vultures.

Ganab campsite
View from our campsite – Ganab waterhole
Flowers in the Namib
Towards Tinkas
Camping under a rock – shelter against the wind
Middle Tinkas campsite
Water near Tinkas
Tinkas dam in the desert
Near Karibib

It is always a privilage to camp in the desert. We love the solitude, remoteness and silence of the desert. The desert landscapes are always beautiful, but to experience it this year after the rains was special.

We camped at Otavi Vinyeards campsite before proceeding to Rundu where we will meet the group to Angola on Monday.


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