We start the day fairly early with breakfast just around sunrise at a bit before 8 in the morning. Apparently we got a long day with a lot of driving. We are leaving the bus behind – it actually left the day before and we are getting in a convoy of Toyota Land cruisers we got 5 for the passengers and one for the kitchen. All the driving is gonna be off road – so nobody seems to believe we are actually going to drive no less than 450k today – on sand.
But soon it appears we will indeed be doing the 450ks in one day. We may be on sand but that don’t slow the driving down. We are actually driving faster than we did on the tarmac road yesterday – the speed is between 80 and 100 per hour. The sand is fairly hard but at these kind of speeds the Toyotas makes a lot of dust and we try to avoid the dust from the cars in front of us.
We drive along at high speed and suddenly the lead driver decide to make a sharp left turn – this is a bit of a problem because all the other cars behind him is to his left because of the direction of the wind. But he turns with 100k and is almost hit by the car in second position but this car just manage to avoid him. Now all the Toyotas are turning – we don’t understand why. But then the reason appears – there are a Libyan wolf in front of the lead Toyota. And the wolf is trying to escape running an impressive 80k per hour and making sharp turns now and again – but it is being chased by 6 Toyotas and has a minimal chance of escape. The drivers keep chasing the wolf and it has nowhere to go and is almost hit by one of the cars – but it gets away. Finally the lead driver lets it go and it runs away fast.
Apparently the drivers wanted us to see the wolf – but it looked more like we were chasing the wolf with the intend to run it over – so much for the companies environmental friendly profile.
We are getting our lunch in a small wadi with lots of green vegetation around – a nice change from the mainly completely dry landscape we have been driving through.
After lunch we drive to the main reason we have been travelling to this part of Libya. The famous rock carvings and rock paintings. Today we will see some of the best rock carvings in the area from about 10 thousand years ago or more. They are along a long area of about 12 kilometres but we only walks along for 750 meters – but there is still lots to see at that short distance.
The rock carvings vary from the naïve work in progress to some really detail stuff which you think could have been made just last week – but all of it is apparently from ancient times.
From the rock carvings we continue through the dessert and the landscape change once again – we are leaving the hard sand country and are getting to a place where there is soft sand. The soft sand also means lots of giant sand dunes all over. We get to the camp site and most us make it up the sand dune without any trouble – but there is one car which gets stuck in the sand – the only car driven by someone who don’t actually own his own car. This means the car is a piece of crap ready to breakdown at any second – and it does so on a regular basis.
But eventually all of us make it to the campsite – a few had to walk the last mile to get there but they made it.
The campsite is just in the shade of the biggest sand dune around. This means there is a challenge you just need to get to the top of the dune. This means walking in soft sand which is pretty hard but then again I have had no exercise during my stay in Libya so I push along up there. From the top there is a splendid view over the rest of the area – of course there are limits to the distance you can see – somebody have been playing in the sand and build large structures all over. As the sun starts to set the colours of the sand change into amazing dark red colours and the shades on the sand creates unfamiliar scenery.
After sunset we get ready for diner after all it is Christmas days eve tonight and we look forward to a feast. What can be on the menu for such a feast? The same as always – camel and couscous what else could it be. We all dig in and eat over camel once again.