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> Egypt - can I see the desert menu?

I got my new credit card in Cairo, and all was well with the bike thanks to Ahmed and Raed. Time to hit the desert again!

After a day trip to the Fayoum Oasis, I decided that I wanted to go from there directly to Bahariya. This involved cutting a corner of little-travelled desert, so preparations centred on a detailed route (thanks to Ahmed and Landsat). If I didn't check in after a few days, the guys would come looking from Cairo. I had to leave the highway before the police checkpoint, or they would have probably turned me back.

The waypoints took me through some rugged and wind-sculpted country, once the bed of a prehistoric sea (and the resting place for the only four-legged whales). There was no-one about, not even any new tracks - it is said that tyre-marks from the earliest explorers' Model T Fords can still be seen on these sands, yet on sections of mobile sand sheet there was no trace of life.

After feeling my way through windswept valleys and picking through boulder fields, I finally emerged onto vast scrub, only crossed by the parallel road and railway, leading 300km south the Bahariya, the next oasis and gateway to the Black and White deserts.

Uploaded 5th August 2004

The Cairo traffic is an eye-opener.

Colonial buildings.

Luckily there is a Git Centre.

A brick shop (!)

The Nile and modern Cairo.

Cruisin' south in the heat.

Egypt has only one waterfall.

Camels and pyramids...

Tracks from the 1920's have been found here..

A nice spot for a cuppa.

Qasr al-Sagha, a non Pharaonic temple.

I spent the night in the Ptolemaic city of Dimeh.

Scouting the desert without luggage.

The mysterious split rocks of Wadi Hitan.

Strange rock formations dominate.

Whale skeletons in the desert - more than 240 lie here!

My eye-view as I head for Bahariya.

Amazing (man-made) Wadi Rayyan.

With no horizon, navigation can be tough.

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