December 14, 2016 BH South Africa

Afrikalegburn – Grant Clark – 14 December 2016

“To raise exposure, funds and books for Shine, I will endeavor to cycle from Cairo to Cape Town arriving in time for the 40th Cape Town Cycle Tour on the 12 March 2017. One week later I will be on the start line for the toughest mountain bike stage in the world, The ABSA Cape Epic which will kick off 8 days of grueling riding on the 19 March 2017. One week after completing the Cape Epic, I will line up for the IRONMAN SA Championships in Port Elizabeth on the 2 April 2017.”

14 December 2016

I should do a piece on the Sudanese and their cars 🙂 ⛟? While I wait for the electricity and wifi to come on again here at my hotel…the night before last, I crashed on the side of the road at a temporary forestry camp on my way to my last town in Sudan, El Qadarif. That’s my bed in the background. I really was hoping not to camp as it’s a huge faff to unpack everything off the bike and set up the tent etc. I was also pretty exhausted from battling a headwind for 7 hours and 130 km, so when I saw these guys I pulled in and made the “Can I sleep here?” mime….Amir (standing) got on the phone to a mate who spoke some English and I repeated my request. No problem! A mattress and blanket was found for me and I set up base next to the small brick building for the night. I gave myself a wash from a bucket of water at the back and had some leftover biscuits an for dinner. I was caught short today on this interminable road! It was mentally tough and actually turned out to be hotter temps than the desert, hitting 44 degrees, with fewer rest camps and supplies. So I was just running out of food and water just before I pulled in here. Lots of people came and went during the evening and I was the topic of conversation and stares each time, but they always smiled and said welcome ? At one point I had a tractor idling next to my bed and at 2 am a Bedford truck (like the one in the pic) pulled in next to my head and there was a long conversation about something before it pulled out again! Not so much sleep then that night! In the morning I said my shukrans and headed off at first light. And just 10 more k’s down the road there was a massive rest camp with all kinds of supplies! If only I’d known…then 70 km later and disaster, sigh…