Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Sun 10th May to Tuesday 12th May

10th Sunday - Today we woke very early as we had a 650 km journey ahead of us. We rode from Baobab Camp in the Rua Valley to Moshi in the North of Tanzania; Moshi is at the foot of Mnt Kilimanjaro. Unfortunately due to heavy rain and mist right down to the ground we did not see the mountain.

On route we rode through the Mikumi National Park. All of us rode with eyes wide open. We had been warned that there are Lions, Buffalo and Elephant in the park. On a motorcycle it’s not a very good idea to bump into any of the above. We did see a lot of antelope and giraffe and as we were getting to the end of the park and starting to relax we rode around a bend and there in front of us was a herd of elephant with their young. They seemed relaxed and not to disturbed by us on our bikes so we stopped to take a few pics then headed on.

As we got closer to Moshi the traffic volume increased and one driver of a Toyota Land Cruiser (I think had had a good Sunday lunch) He came hurtling up behind me and overtook at a great speed almost taking me and my panniers with him. About 100 meters down the road he did the same to a local fellow who was lifting his girlfriend on his motorcycle, this poor guy was not so lucky and was knocked clean off his bike. The two of them ended up in a ditch and the driver of the Cruiser did not even slow down or stopped! Jaco pulled over to check on the riders and except for a few bruises and bumps and very shaken up they where ok. Made us very conscious of the dangers of driving in outer - Africa.

After 8 hours riding in weather that alternated from hot to very cold and wet, we arrived in Moshi and headed for the Keys hotel where we checked in to a room, All three of us sharing one very small “rondavel” then headed to the bar for a well earned Kilimanjaro (Beer) then headed for bed and a good nights sleep.

Monday we hit the road with the intention of making it through to Nairobi where we are due to fit new tires to the bikes. on route we stopped at the Pannar office in Arusha to say hi to Zak the area manager, While we were at the office Zak phoned to check where our tyres were and was told that they only left KZN on Monday morning and are only expected to land in Nairobi today.

We then decided to find a place to stay over in Arusha as accommodation is a bit cheaper here than in Nairobi. Zak offered to take us around in his car to find a place to stay. Now this is the first time we have been in a car since leaving SA three weeks ago, Hurtling around in someone else’s car amongst all the maniac drivers in this place is something I would rather do without.

Anyway we survived the trip and found a very comfortable camp site about 20 km’s out of town at a snake park owned by an ex SA couple, Ma and BJ . Ma is Kork and Dozi Ballingtons sister and was very happy to see us bike riders stop over at there place. Apparently my mate Mike Grant was here last week. Sorry to have missed him. Mike used to be my sponsor when I was still racing motor moto cross for his Kawasaki team. This site is on the road to the Serengeti and is a stop over for all the overlander tourist trucks on there way south or north.

Tuesday - Today we are relaxing and using the time waiting for our tyres to service bikes and change oil.

Talking about the tyres, we have been amazed to see how well our tyres have held out. We are on TKC’S and run at 3 bar pressure, except on the sand roads and gravel. We have so far traveled 6800 km’s on the tyres and looking at them we could possibly do another 2000 km’s.
We are not going to chance this though and will sit here and wait for our new tyres. Hopefully they will be here this afternoon, this sitting around waiting is very frustrating and we are itching to get back on the road and continue north.

Tomorrow we head for Nairobi fit tires then start the long haul to Ethiopia.


  1. Hi Guys, well done so far! We are following ur progress with the atlas close at hand. Green with envy, that's what we r, all well at home, no problems. Just keep eyes and ears open and keep safe!!

    Love and miss u all
    The Deane's Thulini

  2. Hey guys glad to see that you are going well hope everything else goes ok we miss you lots and lots chat soon.


  3. Hi guys. We are all so proud of you. Still praying for you every day..