The road to the Kgalagadi

23 March 2019

Seven months after returning home from our epic trip through seven countries, we are happily on the road again in our trusty Hilux and Klippie.

Krista and Digby de Villiers invited us and the Shaw’s to join them for 2 weeks in the Kgalagadi. I have been longing to return to the Kalahari – we visited once, very briefly, for a wonderful few days for Phil and Sam Hockey’s wedding at !Xaus Lodge. This time we are bush camping in the Botswana side of the park.

Richard and I left home this afternoon and headed to Muisbosskerm camp site outside Lambert’s Bay. A first visit for both of us. Lovely grassed campsite, with shrubs acting as divisions between the sites for a windbreak and a bit of privacy. Fabulous ablution facilities. We just parked, plugged Klippie in to the power provided to keep the laden fridge and freezers going, popped up the roof top tent, changed and walked over the road to the Muisbosskerm restaurant for sundowners and a typical West Coast meal.

We were so lucky to experience one of those magnificent sunsets that just keeps getting better. Flocks of gannets, gills and cormorants flew past over the waves breaking on the shore continuously to their roosts. Then, a flock of Lesser Flamingoes in neat formation, necks and legs outstretched, crossed the setting sun… wish I had the decent camera at hand.

The food at Muisbosskerm was delicious…eat with your hands or with a back mussel shell as your implement. Fresh fish, including snorkel, crayfish, calamari, fresh bread, steak, bredie, potato, pumpkin, all done over the fire, plus salad, mielies, jams etc. and the best Koeksisters I have ever eaten for dessert.

We trotted back over the road to climb into our comfy bed in Klippie, lulled to sleep by Boere music played by our fellow campers and the laughter of children enjoying their school holidays.

Sunday morning we awoke to West Coast fog, lovely cup of tea, shower in spotless ablution block, packed up, and headed to the Wimpy at Klawer to meet up with our fellow travelers.

We drove through Lambert’s Bay, and in the harbour is a large Cape Gannet roost….such spectacular birds in their thousands, dotted with gulls and cormorants, next to a quaint fishing harbour. Time to head inland to Klawer for our breakfast meeting….

We landed up connecting with Digby and Krista at a truck stop outside Clanwiliam – there is a biltong shop there, and oh my, it is lekka biltong! Thanks for that recommendation De Villers’s :). Wimpy Klawer welcomed us , and many other holiday makers, around 10:30, and much to the amusement of our waitress, the men ordered granola, yoghurt and fruit, and us ladies had eggs and bacon! Just as we were finishing up, the Gericke’s arrived, so we enjoyed some more coffee, and all 3 couples then headed to Kakamas via Springbok.

Giant cappucino

Wow, it is dry west of Springbok.  I have never driven that stretch ….long straight roads, passed turnoffs to small hamlets and villages with names of San origin.  From desert sand to rocky, to a little hilly to pancake flat again. And then some mountains appear, and one is nearer to the mighty Orange River. Suddenly one sees carpets of green….miles and miles of vineyard in the desert, hugging the banks of the Orange River. Quite incredible. At last we arrived at our overnight accommodation- Vergelegen Guest House. Highly recommended for a really comfortable night, and delicious supper.