Stage 23 - back to the coast
This was going to be a short run today, just 50 km with the only significant climb being done and dusted in the first 15 km.
A late start decreed the night before meant I could sleep an extra hour, always appreciated. Waking up close to 6:00, it was already decidedly warm.
After a quick breakfast, I gave my tires a good inspection and brushing off, looking for any of the thorns all too common in this campsite (and which had been readily penetrating my pseudo crocs). A rapid descent out of camp followed. Another wonderful morning and virtually no traffic.
We saw what we identified as a jackal tearing down the slope above us, right across the road in front and then disappearing into the scrub below. No chance of a photo, but still nice to see. We’re passing through desert scrubland; goats being the predominate animal species. These are after the Argan fruit, it seems.
* photo courtesy M. Hildebrand
The battery on my simple cycling odometer died yesterday as I think I mentioned. The main thing I use this for (given my GPS) is just the Time, although it’s a handy check on Distance travelled, too. This morning, the GPS battery died; I really had meant to change over to fresh batteries last night. Oh well, I’m cycling with Brad, he’s using his iPhone in navigation mode, all should be fine.
We decide to make the day more challenging by missing a critical turn. Later, after +5 km up a hill which I don’t recall as being on the profile of today’s ride, we check our respective gizmos and sure enough, we’re off course. After short discussion, we decide the safer approach is to backtrack to the last known point on route. Fortunately, this is pretty much all downhill. A nuisance but … no worries.
We eventually find a much needed coke stop another hour or so later, when our minor country road intersects the busier N8 highway. The day now definitely hot. We’ve only a few kms of N8 before we turn off, to the coast and our designated campsite. Several hills later, and occasionally getting a blast of cool air coming up off the ocean, we crest the final climb and see our destination.
One more rapid descent and I’m wondering about my brake pads, thinking that I’ve been giving them a real beating. Must ask Micah to check this ‘avo.
Lunch is still on offer when Brad and I finally roll in, but just. Time to seriously hydrate, as I’m thinking I’m just not putting down enough water. A couple litres of that, restorative shower and various batteries on charge, time to explore Insoumane.
This is evidently a laid back fishing village transitioning to surfers and tourists. But it’s still pretty relaxed, and I could see coming here for a week of just nothing.
Back to camp, and wondering if we’ll be having fresh fish again for dinner (I hope so!). And still thinking about the dramatic contrast of the past week with this beach scene.
Brakes checked over by Micah; all ok and should be fine for the remaining tour. There’s still lots of hills ahead.