31.05.2017, Mauretania

I entered to Mauretania at the begin of June. At this time, it was Ramadan. The live was more lazy and most of the restaurants were closed. Because it could be about 50°C inside the country, I cyceled along the coast. There was only one road and long distances between the cities. I had to carry a lot food with me. Specially water. After lunch my water reserves were already as hot, as I usualy like to drink my tea and the strong wind was blowing sand everywhere. On the bread in the morning, in the pod when I was cooking at lunch and even though the mosquito net in my tent when I was sleeping. It was terrible to be here with the bike and I cycled as fast as possible through this country. The last three days had an accompaniment cycling with me.

Cost (10 Days, 31.05.2017 - 10.06.2017)

# Category Sum Per Day Percent
1 Food 79.04 € 7.90 € 36%
2 Lodging 34.42 € 3.44 € 14%
3 Transport 23.13 € 2.31 € 11%
4 Miscellaneous 78.30 € 7.83 € 36%
5 Tourist attraction 0.00 € 0.00 € 0%
6 Equipment 1.38 € 0.14 € 1%
7 ------------------------ ----------------- ----------------- ----------
8 Totally 216.28 € 21.63 € 100%

31.05.2017, Day 136, Nouadhibou: Cross the Boarder

55€ costed the visa, to stay 30 days in the country. After 1 hour, the paperwork was done and we could continue. Ahmeida offered me to drive me to the next city Nouadhibou. We packed the bicycle in the back of his car and drove to the camping “La baie du Lévrier”. There I had a small room with two beds, just big enough to park the bike inside as well.

We ate some fried dumplings with an onion sauce. Here in the city were a lot African women which sold street food and it was very delicious. The rest of the evening I spent to prepare my material and myself for the next stage.

01.06.2017, Day 137, Nouadhibou: City walking tour

I explored the city by feet. First, I went to a big port were a lot of wooden fisher boats were parked. The smell of death fish was everywhere. On the way to there I saw some goats. The Mauritanian desert is even more sandy and dry then the western Sahara one. The animals have absolutely nothing to eat, they just hope for some rests in the waste. The main street is asphalted and all the side streets are made of sand, rocks and waste. I haven’t found any interesting building or place in the city. Maybe there is also less attraction because of Ramadan.

02.06.2017, Day 138, Boulenouar: Worlds longest train

Because there was nothing that made me stay longer in the Nouadhibou, I continued cycling. Because I had to cycle to the north I had a very strong headwind. The road was next to the rail with the longest train on earth. The industrial train, which transports iron from the mining area around 800km away from Nouadhibou, can be up to 2.5km long.

I also passed another lagoon where the “Auberge des Dauphins” is placed (the same owner as in Dakhla). This is also a spot to do Kite-Surfing. The Bungalows were built close to the water ant there were no other people in the lagoon. Unfortunately the wind was too gusty and it was not possible to rent the material. I continued cycling and the wind was getting stronger and stronger. The sand in the wind whipped nonstop at my legs and my face. I found an empty village and placed my tent in the wind shadow of a house.

03.06.2017, Day 139, Chami: Sand, sand, sand…

The wind blow the whole night and I often woke up to clean my face from all the sand which was blown inside my tent. In the morning everything was covered by sand. The bike, the shoes, the tent, my glasses, my sleeping bag… just everything! I tried to shake off as much sand as possible and packed it as fast as possible in my bags before it was covered by a new layer of sand. I ate some bread with jam, but the sand in the air stuck on the jam before I could eat it. Even the short moment between opening the water bottle to drinking was enough to blow some sand in the water.

At some parts, the street was already half covered by a sand dune, that the tracked loader had to remove it. On the ground, the blowing sand was very obviously visible. The sky was grey and the sun didn’t set at the horizon… about one hour before it would set at the horizon, it was behind a wall of sand in the air.

04.06.2017, Day 140, Chami: Unexpected village

During the night, the wind was shaking my tent very strong. And in the morning I had finally my first day without strong wind. I crossed a village were most people were building new hoses with bricks and some others were sifting for gold. I didn’t expect one more village and was happy to be able to fill up my food stock.

Next to the road there are often placed wooden houses or tents. The empty ones were oblique and sometimes destroyed from the wind.

05.06.2017, Day 141, Chami: Just cycling

It was another hot cycling day in the sandy desert. The police were always very concerned of me and asked me to sleep at their post. Today the distance was too long to reach the next post and I didn’t’ reached it before it was getting dark.

06.06.2017, Day 142, Nouakchott: Helping a desperate traveler

The last police post gave me advice to go to the Camping Sahara. “This is a cheap place to stay with bicycle, direct next to the main street”. There I met “Atekana Amewouho Komla”, a traveler from Togo who get scammed and didn’t had enough money to get back. His story was very credible and another guest and me gave him some money that he can go back. He was so happy that he was almost crying. As exchange he gave me tips for my route till Togo because he knows these countries very good.

07.06.2017, Day 143, Nouakchott: Meet the Chinese again

The night in the Camping Sahara was very loud. The cars on the main road were driving and horning even in the night. I decided to change the lodge. I wrote the Chinese guy called Hobby, I’ve caught up in Dakhla three weeks ago. He would arrive today in Nouakchott and I gave him the address of my next accommodation.

Hobby took the train to Atar and drove on another road than me. My speed was fast enough to caught him up again. He arrived and we shared a room with air condition to have a restful night and less mosquitos. We went out to buy food, prepared our luggage and cooked a big meal for dinner This time we decided to do the last part together. I had to reduce my speed just till the boarder of Senegal, for about 200km. There he would return back to Hong Kong.

08.06.2017, Day 144, Bomri: Cycle with Hobby

To cycle with Hobby in this dreary desert gave me new motivation. We started early in the morning before sun raised. The temperature was pleasant and we’ve made a big distance already before lunch break. In the shadow of some houses and a tree we stopped and warmed up some rests from the dinner yesterday. We waited till 4 o’clock to continue because it was too hot.

Later we crossed a big village with a lot of food markets. Because we had a big stock from Nouakchott already we passed. On a cross road we had to check the direction and immediately we were surrounded by interested kids.

09.06.2017, Day 145, Bavreichiya: Cycling day

10.06.2017, Day 146, Rosso: Boarder to Senegal

Today we had our last part to cycle in Mauretania. As closer we cycled to the south as greener the landscape gets. Trees, bushes, cows, goats, humans and even water in oasis… The air was more wet and smells of grass and trees.

The boarder runs along the river Senegal. To cross its necessary to take a ferry. It was the first big and clean water we have seen since weeks. People at the boarder were swimming and washing themselves. Because I was not prepared for the procedure at the boarder I get scammed by some bandits. They placed themselves in an office next to the police post and described me that it’s necessary to have the local money to enter Senegal. So I changed there some money and get a very bad exchange. After that they want to have some money again for the ferry ticket, but I’ve paid before already some money for the luggage. On the ferry itself, other people want to have money for the ferry… I ignored them and I could cross without any other tickets. At the other side of the river they don’t even asked if I’ve got Senegal money. I was angry to be that gullible but happy that I exited Mauretania.