Erg Chebbi, Merzouga, Morocco Week 97 28th January -15th February 2013
This sort of sums up the last three weeks.

A time for pause, thought, reflection, and planning.

We came to Morocco with an idea of finding a beach.

We need a bit of a rest from moving every few days. Need to build up our energy for the return to Australia.

Erg Chebbi is simply a beach without a sea.

We're not sure why we've stopped here.

I guess it was just time! 

And of course the temperature is nice. And the wind not as bad as at the coast.

Shopping in Merzouga is basic.

A couple of small grocers to get the basics.

And several tour outlets.

Town is about one and a half kilometers away.

Bread from the auberge.

We didn't need electricity but it was available.

Along with water, somewhere to empty the loo and a good size shower..

We have been carefully watching the dune (150m high) to make sure it didn't move.

We decided not to try taking our truck to the top.

There's a steady procession of tours through the auberge.

The camels are brought in from many a direction and are waiting.

The tours arrive from Marakesh and other towns.

This was the largest evening.

39 camels.

And 39 tourists.

Always just enough of each.

Meanwhile our planning progressed. The major hurdle is all the bureaucracy of visas, carnet, vehicle rego, international drivers licence renewal, travel insurance extension, and so on.

But its doable.

Then they all amble off into the sunset.
Some sort of salute.

Arms outstretched holding a mobile phone.

I wuz here.

We've also updated the blog with links to maps - with coordinates from the tracker (thanks yet again to Dave). 

Now we know where we've been!

Also fixed the big photo links that have been missing since Mongolia.

We tried to spot things other than beetles, but failed.
Time for maintenance.

While crawling around underneath I spotted something leaking from the shock absorbers.

The rear are worse than the front. But all four.

They've covered 7,000km.

After a few emails (yes I should be concerned) and a phone call some new ones, of different brand, will be waiting for us in Spilsby.

We'll check the temperature every so often on the way. Most of the rough driving is behind us hopefully.

Also replaced a few bolts that had come loose and flogged.

Needed the hacksaw to remove - lying on back at arms length.

Parked near us were Jean-Jaques and Babette.

Their last evening visit to the top of the dunes.

More camels.

We've become too lazy to walk around the other side so the sun is behind.

Many weeks ago the slider for the main zip on Ali's Aldi jacket failed.

We both have them and they are warm.

Its a long time since I had to fix a zip. I forced the slider off a zip on a pocket and wasn't looking forward to trying to fit it to the broken zip.

When I looked carefully there's a groove in the end bit that's just right for fitting the slider.

Easy really. Progress I guess.

After a record breaking (for us) 24 days in one place its time to move again.

A last trip up the dune.

A last look at the evening camel parade.

Would you believe we've never seen them return ....

And a campsite (La Tradition) that at one time had only us as occupants was home for a night for another Amsterdam to Dakar challenge - a charity drive with vehicles costing EU500 to be auctioned in Dakar.
Rissani, Morocco Week 97 15th February 2013

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