Day 36: Into the Tropics

Soutpiel Safari
John & Jenny
Fri 10 Dec 2010 20:30
Day 36: Friday 10 December 2010.  Bush camp by the sea about 100 km north of the Mauritanian border. N22 23.599 W016 27.559 Distance driven 517 km, our longest day so far.
Off by 0800 again and onto the long road south. Again it was pretty straight, little traffic and went through quite varied country although all of it was very arid and insufficient vegetation to support any animals.  Last night had been very humid and when we packed the tent away it was sopping wet.  It should not have been a surprise then to find early morning fog on the road - but it was! It was quite thick in places and took until 1000 to burn off entirely. For most of the day the road ran alongside the coast and we had stunning sea views with hundreds of miles of deserted golden beach with huge surf.  Surely, this should be a surfer's paradise?
We had a pretty easy day with road blocks today and only used up two fiches.  When we reached the turning for Ad Dakhla we decided to carry on for the boarder and to bush camp further down the road so that we would be nearer to the border tomorrow, and earlier. Dakhla is at the end of a long sand spit, 40 km long so it would have meant an extra 80 km to stay there, as well as being very late at the border. Shortly after the Dakhla turn we passed over the Tropic of Cancer and recorded the event with a photo. We really are in the tropics now!  Jenny remarked that by the time we finish this trip we shall have passed over equator and both tropics.
En route we met two Germans in a green Heinnemac truck set up as a 4WD camper but they were determined to reach the border today, so we eventually pulled off the road when we found track suitable for Thomas' camper, and camped right on the beach. There is an awful lot of litter, mainly plastic, left by the fishermen, but it is lovely to be right by the sea.