See the previous installments at http://groblerdupreez.blogspot.com/
The Quiver Tree Forest, Giant's Playground and Brukkaros crater
Early rise at the Quiver tree Forest near Keetmanshoop to share sunrise with the Rock Hyraxes between the quiver trees (there's one against the trunk just below the branches of the big quiver tree).
Then breakfast and breaking up camp. More information on quiver trees here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aloe_dichotoma
Driving a few km's north-east on the C11, we visited the "Giant's Playground", consisting of thousands of black or brown rocks piled onto another to form interesting formations.
After Rene finished a small oil painting colour study, we traveled back to Keetmanshoop for fuel, wood and food and then North on the B1 to Tses where we turned off on a gravel road towards the small town of Berseba, nearest town to our next destination, the crater of the extinct volcano, Brukkaros. A few km's before Berseba we turned North to Brukkaros. At the entrance gate, the attendant told us that we won't make it to the camping site on the rim of the crater - we needed a 4x4. We decided to push on. The attendant told us to pay when we come back, expecting us back within a few minutes. We made it, but only just - with a lot of grace...
Bukkaros mountain, an extinct volcano with the bridge over the Fish River to the right. The name "Brukkaros" was derived from the Afrikaans words "Broek" (Trousers) and "karos" (leather apron)
Rene and myself walked to the inside of the crater through a break in the wall - an hour and a half hike - not a level walk, strenuous at places. It was the best rain year in Namibia's history - beautiful grass plumes covering the crater and slopes - normally only rock and sand. The crater is approximately 5 km x 3 km in diameter. Zoom in to see the crater on the interactive map further down below.
Camping on the rim of the crater - no water available and only very basic facilities. Disaster struck - the 12v to 240v inverter refused to work - our pump for the air mattresses works from 240v - we had apply mouth-to-mouth resuscitation to the two mattresses... Only us tonight - nobody for km's, only silence, except for the fat from the meat of our braai (barbeque) dripping on the coals...
Total distance traveled today: approximately 150 km, of which 70 km was gravel road, the last few km a very bad mountain pass.
The map below is an interactive Google Map showing the actual GPS track we followed (imported from a .gpx file). Zoom in to follow our route. Click on a balloon for more information.