Nate and David have finished their stage of the Tour d’Afrique and handed over the virtual baton to Tom Hall (LP’s Travel Editor) and Mara Vorhees (LP author). Tom and Mara will ride the next stage – dubbed the ‘Elephant Highway‘ – from Victoria Falls (on the Zambia-Zimbabwe border) to Windhoek (capital of Namibia).
Photo: David (centre) bids bonne route to Mara (left) and Tom (right)
This update comes from Mara, dated April 13, at the end of Day 1 of this ‘Elephant Highway‘ stage:
Day one was a wonderful way to start. We had beautiful blue sunny skies, a smooth paved road and a relatively short route: 82km.
I was pretty excited and nervous this morning. Tom and I set off before 7am to take advantage of the cool morning air. Unfortunately, the first few miles were rocky dirt roads and Tom promptly got a flat!
But after that inauspicious start, everything went smoothly. When we rode through villages, the children would come to the roadside to shout greetings and cheer us on. The roads were paved and smooth – just a few hilly spots but just enough to keep us on our toes.
Highlight was the border crossing from Zambia to Botswana at the confluence of the Zambezi and Chobe rivers. After getting our exit stamps from Zambia, we rode a ferry across the river and disembarked in Botswana.
After getting our Botswana stamps in our passports, we had to ride through a puddle of murky grimy water as a precaution against foot -and-mouth disease!
Photo: Mara’s bike is declared foot-and-mouth free
Tom and Mara have just finished Day 3 of their stage (Day 2 and Day 3 were both 100-milers – over 160km), and are currently in Nata, in Botswana. Another update from them is due tomorrow.