Cycling along Namibia’s Fish River Canyon is a silent treat. The scent of a cool morning lingers in the air while the sun slowly warms my back. As I ride along, I notice the canyon inhales sound as much its beauty draws attention. Patches of desert grass shiver from ghostly winds, the rustling gasped by the canyon. The somber colors of these sparse shrubs contrast the radiant purples, reds and blues of the canyon walls. The ride is tranquil and is the ideal time for reflection.
It was difficult to ride away from Namibia’s serenity, but entering South Africa was especially exciting as it the beginning to the end. Many were expecting a lush landscape similar to Zambia, but northern South Africa feels as though we are cycling along the contours of a crocodile’s back. The rippling and swelling hills are like scales—cracked, dry and in a predictable pattern. Recent rains have spurred the growth of desert flora and add a dark green hue to the hills.
Four days lie between us and achieving a goal we have focused on for the past four months—cycling across Africa.