Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Fascinating Namibia

We spent a week in Namibia, driving between Windhoek, Sossusvlei, Swakopmund, Okaukuejo (Etosha), and then back.

I've only covered the natural beauty in this series - but our eyes were opened with the cultural history and issues that still face Namibia - the second least densely populated country (after Mongolia), and exceedingly high inequality (Gini ~60; recently became a middle-income country (not good for the lower incomes there!)).

We absolutely loved our trip and would encourage all to visit!

Oryx (Gemsbock) were my favorite animal of the trip, despite not too many photos!

Can't get enough zebras...

Springok simplicity and beauty
Yellow mongoose (I think?)
Jackals are sometimes easy to spot...
And sometimes tougher (I could have made it even harder for you, but you get the idea)
Giraffes on the move!
Black Rhinos drinking up at the watering hole 

Steenbok!  Love those ears!
Can't remember this one!  But check those feathers!
Everlasting sunset at the watering hole!

Our rig with pop-out tent, fridge, stove, dining furniture and all!
We used a variety of solar lamps for fun -- Nokero, d.light, and the sun itself.  ;-)
Something's tippy on this side of the continent!
Some friends would get pretty excited to see these signs on the road!

Some folks had a long road ahead...

Can't recall - anyone?

And now the section on the dunes!  

We spent a few days in Sossusvlei -- very highly recommended!

Early morning dune hike!
Late arrival cars coming through the valley -- see the white trucks?
Love those curves! (Probably yesterday's footprints!)

Hiking up Big Daddy (one of the tallest dunes in the world, around 350 m) and then descending into Deadvlei!

Big Daddy's the tall dune in the distance:

Lizard, check.
Beetle, check.
White dot thingy kinda like a ladybug?  Check?

Chasing an adventurous woman!

Second guessing this massive dune...

Such curves!

It was a bit windy by the time we got to the top.

And when we came down, we had lots of sand in our shoes!

Adventure buddy on a long walk...
And showing off her Tree Pose from yoga:

Such sky! Such sand!

Our road rig!

The living desert tour was one of the best activities of the entire trip!

Curious lizard!
Strange beetles at each turn:

Sidewinder was here!

The simplest things can be the most pretty!

Little lizard -- I think he's called shovel-nosed lizard?

THIS guy was amazing

So little!
So cute!
And a chameleon I found!  Do you see it yet?
Eating a worm -- I tried to catch a pic of him eating like 5 worms, this is as close as I could get. That tongue is FAST!

Getting a bit darker as we walked back 15 minutes later

Buddy, you're sticking out like a sore thumb!

Horned adder!

I see why they call you the horned one!

Cute little bird - no idea the name.

Sneaky friend with a sparky tail!

Poised, and striking the air a bit!

Amazing vanishing move, vibrating itself into the sand!

Flamingoes outside our place

So... we're driving into a lake with telephone poles?

Elephants?!  In the desert!?

Termites building mounds taller than a person!

Horse graveyard from ~WW1. Dunes cover and then uncover over time. Yikes. 1695 horses.

Not sure what you're eating there, buddy. But keep it up.

Hiking in a canyon nearby

Sunset with rainbow at Elim Dune!

Wow, those purple mountains in the distance vs the red sand here -- not half bad!