Rideforsmiles, Solo Australian to Africa Europe and Beyond, starting June 26th 2011.

Discussion in 'Epic Rides' started by rideforsmiles, Jun 19, 2011.

  1. rideforsmiles

    rideforsmiles Sheldon

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    Looks like there will be plenty of places to watch the Champions League matches here in Morocco.


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  2. rideforsmiles

    rideforsmiles Sheldon

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    A trip to Morocco wouldnt be complete with the old rug sales pitch


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    Or the silk shop where Ben actually bough something then saw it later for 150 dirham which is about 15 euro only to see it later that night for 2 euro, probably not even made in Morocco but in China


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  3. rideforsmiles

    rideforsmiles Sheldon

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    Got up reasonably early and decided to leave with Ben, I was contemplating having another day in Fes I was still somewhat tired we really haven’t stopped since we got here and when I go back into Europe I want to be fresh and ready to ride not exhausted as I plan to ride up to Scandinavia and as far as I can and I only have 45 days left on my shengan visa and when your talking between 8 and 10 000 k’s in 6 weeks it’s a long way so I need to be ready to haul ass not have a break, id like to think I could get to Nordkapp but we will see the Norwegian fiord coastline is the first stop.
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    We hit the road around 10ish and headed south to Ifrane its where the king lives and is quite modern all the roads are good the housing is nice and there is no sign of run down buildings anywhere.<o:p></o:p>
    We download maps for free or some program Ben had put us not and its great so Ev was doing the navigating so needless to say when we got to the first turn where we needed some advice we got lost ahahahah oh ok it wasn&#8217;t totally Ev&#8217;s fault it might help to tell her where the hell we are going.<o:p></o:p>
    We ended up in the cedar forest and with Ben being a tree surgeon he found it to his liking although it was pretty average roads in there and not to exciting for me. We stopped off at a nice little dam for breakfast and then headed back the way we cam in. The road forward only basically took us in a big loop and it was all that much chop to be worried about it.<o:p></o:p>

    We hit the highway again the road was great we were making good time and enjoying the ride. Me and Ev had talked about staying near the cedar forest but I was enjoying the ride some much we just kept going and going and going. Was fast hilly the landscape changed to a drier one and the roads were fun to ride.

    Along the way we stopped at a little workshop and shop for a drink and for the first time since africa I took a few photos and grabbed the printer out to print of the photos for the kids. The the workers wanted one so why not they were all really nice and friendly. People are surprised when I tell them I carry a printer but how many times in your travels do you take a picture of a local and show them on your screen the walk away never to see them again its just so nice to be able to print it out on the spot for them and to see the kids generally skipping down the road like they have just one lotto showing everyone who cares to look is a great thrill for me too.


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    We arrived at this little campsite about 150 k&#8217;s from the desert that we had planned to get to. Ben has less time than me and Ev he only has two weeks so if we keep up with him for much longer we will be out of Morocco to early. The time I spend here is off my shenghan visa and every day we are down here it warms up that little bit more up in Norway and Sweden.
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    Another great day camping in remoter parts of Morocco is great and only cost us about 4 bucks each so nice for the budget.


    Ben and Ewa making me my dinner gawd lov em lol no hurry up im bloody starvin


    Just around one more corner to the campsite a great days riding


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  4. RobBD

    RobBD Been here awhile

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    Thanks for the updates. What visa is running out?
  5. rideforsmiles

    rideforsmiles Sheldon

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    Hey Rob

    When I get back to the Shenghan zone which is the EU countries I will have 40 odd days left on my visa, The shenghan zone is all the mainland europe countries and your allowed 90 days ever 180 period and as its not jsut continuous but comunalitive by coming out of the Euro zone I will still have that time when I get back to Europe and it will be warmer when we get up to Norway and Sweden

    Ive had a few people saying just go in and extend it but I was way over what I was allowed last time and if they did any checking of where I actually was I could be in overstay trouble so im not going to risk it. A year in europe or in this part of the world anyway is long enough for now plus flying to New York in early July puts us on a good time frame for summer in Canada and Alaska which will be amazing as well.

    With the internet being pretty crappy here got a moroc sim card and will be using that network again, it always seems to be better to use the 3G network in Africa and the sim cards only cost 2 bucks and 10 for 400 megs a day download for the month so should be able to get up to date and stay in date from now on.

    By the way Morocco is absolutely amazing and although I know ive said this before, alright ive probably said that about everywhere ive been to, but Morocco is quickly running up the ranks of my favourite countries ive been too.

    I know mumsy's out there somewhere waiting for another update too so here it is.

    Cheers mate

    Sheldon


  6. rideforsmiles

    rideforsmiles Sheldon

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    We got up pretty early as you do when you camp and packed up ready to go. Said our goodbyes to Willem and Mariet and off on the road we went.
    The riding was great long roads through the canyons with hill climbs and descents. We were getting pretty stuck into it and was coming up over a rise and there was some oil on the road. I saw it and went onto the other side of the road to miss it but Ben who was a few hundred metres behind us went straight through it and I was watching in my rear view mirror to make sure he was ok and saw him sliding all over the place back and forwards trying to keep it up before high siding it and going down. He slid for about 30 metres we were going pretty fast.
    I came to a stop making sure as I crossed back through the oil still on the road that me and Ewa didn&#8217;t come down. We ran back up the road another car with a few English guys had already stopped and were helping him pick the bike up.<?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:eek:ffice:eek:ffice" /><o:p></o:p>
    The handlebar had been bent right down on the clutch side fortunately the clutch handle was still in one piece. Ben was ok a little shaken but he was saying later it was his first crash and hadn&#8217;t actually slid down the road before. I said to him well its good that you got it out of the way and are ok. It was funny only the other night I was telling Ben about the oil on the African roads with the truck&#8217;s so poorly maintained over here.<o:p></o:p>
    As we were standing there I was saying lets get this bike down the road a little with all this oil there will be a car come around and take us all out so we pushed the bike down and across the road a little and sure enough as we got there another motorbike came around the corner and down he went as well.<o:p></o:p>
    We straightened Bens handle bar up a little so we could ride, we were tossing up on going back to the last town but with that being 60 k&#8217;s away we decided to push on and see what the next town that was further on had. We went down the hill and stopped again near the truck that had dropped all the oil and had a chat to him there was not much he could of done other than driving 3 kilometers dropping oil all over the place as he went.<o:p></o:p>
    We ended up in the next town and stopped to chat to the local cops who were on the road and they didn&#8217;t seem to fussed on what was going on up the hill so we carried on and found a service station grabbed a metal bar and wrenched the bar as straight as we could.<o:p></o:p>
    We thought we may as well keep on heading to Mozounga on the edge of the Sahara Desert and find somewhere to camp or stay for the night. As we came into town we bumped into the Portugese guys again and stopped for lunch with them. <o:p></o:p>
    We hung out for awhile they give us a tip on a good hotel and we headed off into the desert to find somewhere to stay and just rode until we got to the dunes and went in and sussed out the first place we came to.<o:p></o:p>
    It had a pool camping and dinner, breakfast and a room was only 50 bucks so me and Ev grabbed a room and Ben being on his budget camped out the back. <o:p></o:p>
    While we were waiting for dinner we went for a walk up into the dunes in the Sahara it was really nice up there, we didn&#8217;t go to far about 20 minutes in but to one of the higher dunes and just sat there taking it all in. We headed back to the lodge and were sitting out the back as they served dinner and a scorpion came along and was right next to my foot . Ben motion to me and I looked down and whoa I only had flip flops on and this thing was right next to my foot. Apparently these ones arent the ones that kill you it&#8217;s the black ones that you have to be careful of but it was a bit of a wake up call. Ev wouldn&#8217;t come near it and was hanging back maybe it had something to do with the stories of the foot long scorpions that take your legs off that had her a little scared.
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    A very eventful day in the end but a great day and everyone is ok and we are in a nice resort right on the Sahara Desert.

    The scenary around here is amazing


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    <o:p>Ben back on the road after the crash very lucky indeed.</o:p>
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    <o:p>The hotel on the edge of the Sahara Desert</o:p>
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    <o:p>Ahhhh let me in there</o:p>
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    <o:p>Its a dirty job but someone has to do it </o:p>
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    <o:p>Bloody little scorpions, lucky the little begger didnt sting me he would of been sick as a dog</o:p>
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    <o:p>Lovin up in the Sahara Desert, I must admit ive been pretty lucky to find such and easygoing beautiful girl to share this adventure with.</o:p>
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  7. rideforsmiles

    rideforsmiles Sheldon

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    We got up to leave the next morning we weren&#8217;t in any hurry and you could easily spend a few days here but with the riding so good and Ben having to make inroads with his lesser time both me and Ewa were only to happy to get back on the bike and ride into the unknown to see what other beauty was on offer. Ill let the pictures do the talking of our next few hours riding and you will see how nice it was.


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    Having a bit of fun with the video camera crawling to an oasis in the distance




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    Honey if you got to go you got to go no ones going to see you out here TRUST ME



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    Local boy having a walk with the Atlas mountains in the background



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  8. DariusTheGreat

    DariusTheGreat Adventurer

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  9. RobBD

    RobBD Been here awhile

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    Now you've got Ewa you dont want to get thrown in jail for overstaying your visa:rofl
    I look forward to your take on the Yanks when you get there- I'm getting closer to heading there myself
    Cheers
  10. rideforsmiles

    rideforsmiles Sheldon

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    Cheers Darius had a quick look at the blog, Ewa will read through it and pick up some tips on where to go and what to see, at this stage we are going to ride the E39 in Norway then up as far as we can in the time I have left. Id like to get to Nordkap but the Artic circle is a definate goal. Thanks for the link.

    Sheldon

  11. rideforsmiles

    rideforsmiles Sheldon

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    I just say to Ev if I ever get put in jail its free accomadation and board might just get us back on budget with Scandinavia coming up. Where you heading to in the states Rob?


  12. rideforsmiles

    rideforsmiles Sheldon

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    Up and through this spectacular gorge tonhga Gorge or somethign we are heading for the dades gorge on the other side of the mountain range maybe ill google it and find out exactly where i was. The riding was fantastic again ill let the pucitures do the talking.


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  13. rideforsmiles

    rideforsmiles Sheldon

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  14. rideforsmiles

    rideforsmiles Sheldon

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    70 k's to the top of the Todgha gorge or whatever it is and the riding and scenary is incredible


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  15. rideforsmiles

    rideforsmiles Sheldon

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    We came across this girl on a Honda Nx 250 in the middle of nowhere in the northern regions of the Dades Gorge out of fuel all upset. It was getting late in the afternoon so Ev and I decided to stay with her till her friend came back with fuel who had already been a few hours. I convinced Ben the Welsh guy we had been travelling with to push on. Sort of low on juice, getting late, riding into the 70 kilometres of unknown... off road solo was great training for his year long adventure through Asia to Australia.

    Ev started to talk to her and realised she was Polish so that made them both happy. Not long after her friend turned up with the fuel then another group of Poles. We followed them back to a hotel not far away so here I was the odd man out with about 15 really nice Polish people and Ev was happy as surrounded by her fellow countryman.

    We found out later Ben got there safely that evening and Ewa and I had a great night with the crew drinking Polish vodka and had an amazing ride the next day where we saw no one else for most of the ride through the Dades Gorge so again the right decision was made.



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    The Polish crew were up and at em early


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    She was pretty distressed no wonder, all alone out here for a few hours later in the afternoon it would be daunting for anyone let alone an inexperienced rider, took this photo the next day where we found her, it was pretty much in the middle of nowhere.



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  16. rideforsmiles

    rideforsmiles Sheldon

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    Now just some pictures of our ride through the Dades gorge.


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    It just went on and on was great fun


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  17. rideforsmiles

    rideforsmiles Sheldon

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  18. rideforsmiles

    rideforsmiles Sheldon

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    The actual Dades Gorge finally



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  19. rideforsmiles

    rideforsmiles Sheldon

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    The Dades gorge was just the first half of the days amazing ride heres a few photos of the second half.


    What are you looking at Ev


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    Ahhhh I see, nice hey.


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  20. rideforsmiles

    rideforsmiles Sheldon

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