Monday (6th) was pretty chilly and misty in the morning. I woke up fairly late and by the time I got out the caravan Koos and Lieta were all packed, hitched up ready to leave. I was quite sad watching them go as they had been great company for the past 2 days. They were planning to travel through the Richtersveld and then into Namibia to go and visit many friends at various locations.
Koos and Lieta
Koos and Lieta Prince all hitched up and ready to continue their journey.
About an hour after they had left the monkeys were back with vengeance. It was not pleasant as I was now the only one there and they went mad around and on my caravan. There must have been at least 20 of them from little babies to pretty big adults. There was nothing I could do as I watched them use the rally tent in front of the caravan as a trampoline. I was, after about an hour of this, getting really angry and frustrated and decided enough of this I have to leave. I even started packing up some of my things when suddenly they were gone and peace returned.
I boiled the kettle, made some rooibos tea and sat down to think it through. I really did not want to leave yet as I still had to explore Alexander Bay and the only place I could move to was Port Nolloth 80k’s away and very expensive until after the school holidays. I decided the best thing to do was to go into Alex Bay so I could get away from Brandkaros for a while and calm down.
Driving on my favourite dirt road to Alex Bay, to be honest without the caravan behind the road was not too bad, I wondered how I was going to get information on where to go and what to see. I had been to Alex Bay 40 years previously and remembered very little of what it looked like but knew it had changed a lot.
After signing in, to get into the town, I managed to find a Sentra shop, buy a few things and decided to have a cup of tea at the only restaurant in town. On chatting to the lady serving me I found out that the only person to talk to was a guy called Pieter van Wyk and he was the librarian. Found the library and walked in to find Pieter. What a shock!! I had somehow conjured up the image of an elderly man, as he new all the ins and outs of the town, and there was this young man of 21 standing in front of me. What a nice guy. (More about him later) We made an appointment to meet on Wednesday morning, as he only starts at 1pm on Wednesday, and he would show me round.
It was still quite early so I decided to take a drive down to the beach and take a few photographs.
Alexander Bay beach
The old watch tower
The guards old watch tower on the beach. This used to be a restricted area.
If you would like to see more pix taken at the beach please click on this link: Alex Beach
The next morning (Thursday 2nd) I took a drive, without the caravan, into Springbok to get petrol (Gulp!! it was worse) and to have a look around. Again it was a trip down memory lane as I used to travel to Springbok as a rep for then Reckkit and Coleman (not sure if the spelling is correct) and stayed there many times. I found the hotel I always stayed at, The Masonic, and it looks exactly the same as it did as it did then.
Back to the park, hitch up and on my way to Port Nolloth via Steinkopf, Alexander Bay and then onto Brandkaros about 30 k’s from Alexander Bay where, after all the stories from my 4×4 man, I planned to spend a few weeks.
The drive was great as there was very little wind and it was pretty flat, apart from one section, so I made good time and knew my petrol consumption was much improved.
Pajero and Sprite on the road
My set-up on the road between Springbok and Port Nolloth.
The road from Springbok
As you can see the road is in good condition, it was a dirt road the last time I was on it, and pretty flat.
Arrived at Port Nolloth about 11.30am had a quick look round and then onto Alexander Bay and Brandkaros. The road to Alex B. was also good and flat so made good time and was there by 2pm and that is where all my troubles started.
My 4×4 man had told me that Brandkaros was fantastic and that the road was tar all the way. Ha-ha on both counts. From 3 k’s outside Alex the tar road became a dirt road and a bad one for towing a little old caravan like mine. I went about 20 k’s down the road and thought ” this is crap”!! I really thought the caravan was going to fall apart. The guy did not know what he was talking about. I even stopped and asked someone where the camp site was and they had no idea. So around I turned and drove all the way back to Port Nolloth as there was no where else to stay in Alex Bay.
Arrived back in Port Nolloth and found a place called McDougalls Bay also on the recommendation of 4×4 guy as being wonderful etc. (ha-ha)
The site is huge, about 180 stands, and is situated right on the beach front. So far so good!
Went to check in to be told the price was R123-00. I am used to half that for 1 person at an over 60’s discount, and there was no discount. The reason – it was in season (read school holidays) and that was the price per site for up to 4 people. Reluctantly paid and went to find a site. I could choose from 178 as there were only 2 other caravans there. So much for in season. Had a chat to the lady about Brandkaros and she new exactly where it was – I must have stopped about 8 k’s from the camp site – so I have determined to give it another try tomorrow and just hope my caravan does not fall apart .
The sites themselves are just hardened sea sand and you track the sand everywhere. Also the ablutions left a lot to be desired. Actually I could write a whole post on the ablutions at all the parks I have been to so far. They are all bad but some are really terrible. Anyway what can one do. Sorted out some food and had an early night.
Sunset at McDougalls Bay
Pic taken from just in front of my caravan.
To be continued…