Camel herds are a daily appearance in the Sudan. A herd crosses road, we must wait. Camels have right of way. One is well advised to let pass animals, no matter which, because they are not used to traffic and can not assess the risk of a vehicle.
The gravel ends here and we have to continue on tarmac, because we want to get to Karima before sunset. On the tarmac, we are progressing quickly, there are 120 kilometres to the pyramids of Karima.
Along the way again and again slender minarets rise from the plain. This is unusual and fascinates us, not only the form and method of construction is unusual, but also the paint.
Shortly before Karima we turn off the main road and then along the Nile in search of an overnight stay. This time, it is difficult, because this bank is very densely populated.
We must still do shopping,in the village shop Alexandra and Bine have not got everything. A quick stop and wait, the ladies go shopping. During the waiting time I observe the village life.
We wander around a bit and can not find a suitable campsite for the night and it’s getting late. There are days while travelling when nothing works out right, and usually something happens. Today is one of those days.
We must continue to Karima, in the evening light we pass Jebel Barkal, the sacred mountain and can also take a look at the pyramids, we want to visit tomorrow, but now we turnoff in half-dark into the desert. I follow Bodo’s truck and the inevitable happens, we get stuck in the sand and have to liberate us in the dark yet.
Only next morning, we can see how badly we were stuck.
In the pitch dark, we had to shovel both cars free and release air, at least to get on solid ground. Now we are left with half-filled tires, it doesn’t matter to Tara, she seeks shade because it is pretty hot early in the morning. Now it’s time to fill air in the tires, because we will drive on tarmac.
Our mini compressor is thanks to the care of my wife. Originally we did not want to buy any because we were traveling in a group where there were large powerful compressors. But my wife saw this little thing and insisted on buying it. I was skeptical, but now we are glad we have it, for it is often being used, and makes us well, even in the depths of Africa, we will need it often, not only in the desert.
And surprisingly, it works quite well too. For 30 € a bargain. Bodo is also filling hir tires. The truck has air brakes and it automatically has a compressor on board. After the tires are warmed up, I check again and correct the pressure bar to the required 4.5.
In a short time we are at the Pyramids of Karima. It is a site of about 20 pyramids on the west side of the Jebel Barkal, the holy mountain. They are built differently than the pyramids in Egypt, they are built much smaller and steeper. They are clad with sandstone.
It is a large site, which consisted of the pyramids and some temples, but from the temples hardly anything is left.
Nevertheless, the whole area is shrouded in a mystic atmosphere.
A few kilometers further we visit the royal cemetery at El Kurru, a World Heritage Site. We must find the supervisor that unlocks the graves.
The graves have no light, so we help ourselves with our torch. Great wall paintings come to light, we are impressed by the good state of preservation and the mystical mood of these graves.