A nice ride to a bit of a dump - The ninth step ... Somewhere in South Africa - CycleBlaze

December 10, 2020

A nice ride to a bit of a dump

Loxton to Carnarvon

Strong north-westerly winds were once again forecast for today so we made sure we got away early.  We were on the road at about a quarter to six and rode well in pleasant cool conditions for the first hour or so.

Some lovely clouds this morning when we left Loxton.
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We stopped for breakfast after seventeen kilometers and the wind had already picked up.  Within a few kilometers after breakfast we had got the highest point of the day and after that it was simply a matter of heads down into the wind.

Wikipedia lists Dorper sheep as the main item of industry in the Carnarvon area. The Dorper breed was created by the South African Department of Agriculture during the 1930 by crossing Dorset Horns with Black-headed Persians, creating a hardy mutton breed suited to the harsh conditions of the Karoo.
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I have been surprised at how lumpy this part of the Karoo is.
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Lots of water to seen after the rain of two days ago.
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Wow! A river almost in flow.
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The rain has brought out a multitude of millipedes, known in South Africa as Shongololos. It was impossible to avoid all of them on the road, unfortunately.
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Despite the wind we really enjoyed our ride.  We drafted a lot of the way, taking turns to ride point.  As the ride went on Leigh got stronger and stronger.  It is hard to believe that she only got out of bed from a bad bout of the flu three weeks ago.

Everyone has been warning us against cycling through the Karoo in the heat of the summer but so far we have hardly had a day hotter than low to mid twenties.  I guess it has got to break at some time but hopefully the wind will be less of a nuisance then as well.

Our first impressions of Carnarvon are not too good.  The scatological term used by a current one-term world leader  to describe African countries comes to mind.  Hopefully my use off the word is proved to be as unjustified as his was.  Unfortunately, it seems to be run down and dirty and the impression one gets is that a disturbing amount folk are unemployed.

We have checked into the Lord Carnarvon for the next two nights while we wait for the wind to be less against us because the next destination, Williston, is a hundred and thirty kilometers away.

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Today's ride: 66 km (41 miles)
Total: 637 km (396 miles)

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