At 11:30 we had a pit stop at a very nice little restaurant with friendly ladies. The group decided that they would pay out of their pocket to eat there instead of our lunch boxes. We were visited by a group of Himba women... a very costly photo op.
On the way we distributed the lunch boxes to several children and artisans selling stuff on the roadside. They were very happy, a win-win situation.
The landscape is very rugged, gravel plains alternate with mountains. Small spiky bushes and some succulent plants dot the landscape. I haven't seen any cacti.
We stopped at Twyfelfontein, the first UNESCO world heritage site in Namibia, which features ancient rock carvings (petroglyphs). This site has been inhabited by the San Bushmen and the Khoikhoi hunters and gatherers since 6000 years. They made the petroglyphs from 2500 to 2000 and probably used the site for shamanic rituals.
The animals were beautifully done and the setting grandiose. I have read several books of Sir Laurens Van Der Post, such as "The Lost World of the Kalahari", they are wonderful books and helped me to imagine the gatherings of the Bushmen.
And then we arrived at the most beautiful lodge of the trip; Camp Kipwe. Since receiving the Gate 1 brochure, I have been dreaming about Kipwe. Every room is a round house with a patio. The bathroom is in an adjacent courtyard with no roof. That means the most inspiring night pee under the most spectacular sky you can imagine. No light pollution and very clear air; fabulous. The water is heated with a stove outside the walls. All the buildings are very ingeniously built between the rocks .
At sundown we were invited to climb to the top rock for a drink (quite a clim, Bill counted 100 steps). From the terrace you have a 360 view. Due to more rain than usual, the grass is still green, with long silvery tops, the earth is red and ocre and the sun has its own palette.
All this with good company and wine, it doesn't get any better.