Khuri in Thar Desert National Park, Rajasthan, India Week 144 January 1st - 3rd 2014
We left Jaisamer and headed south west, further into the Thar Desert.

A quick look back at the fort that rises out of the desert.

The Desert National Park shows up in several locations on different maps.

We suspect its all around.

Khuri is apparently less developed than Sam.

We didn't find any of the car parks at guest houses inviting.

Not a Great Indian Bustard.

There are apparently some in the area.

A chinkarah (Indian) gazelle.

Its seen the truck!



We are camped a couple of km from the village of Khuru.

Just on the edge of a patch of sand dunes (about 3km x 1km).

Shortly after arrival a tractor passed.

Shortly after that a friendly visit from a well spoken villager. Just checking us out. Very friendly and helpful. Liked our vehicle.

Towards sunset we went for a stroll through the dunes, to the high spot.

We declined the offer of a camel ride - there are camels on the skyline.

And a couple of tourists on camels circumnavigating the dunes.

Not endangered.

Khuri in the distance from the (not very high) high point.

Spelled Khoodie on our maps.

Its a bit draughty.

Which means the leading edges of some dunes have patterns.

No sign of insect tracks.

And our own tracks disappear fast so just as well we have a compass and know where the truck is.
Another of those rainbow bee eater things.

Its probably a plain ordinary green bee eater.

Nice to see the tail.

Its either young, or a bit cold like us.

The wind is a bit biting.

We are downwind and with the sun behind us.

They obviously know we are here.

About as close as we could get.

We also briefly saw a desert fox, and nilgai (bluebull, a large antelope).

They seem to live in the edge of the dunes. 

On day one the gazelles knew we were there before we saw them.

Day two our hunting skills have been honed to a level of perfection that is still somewhat lacking in finesse.

I don't think we'll tire of watching them.

Graceful comes to mind.

And the bee eaters remain cooperative.
We don't know what the gazelles (and goats) are eating off the ground.

Too fine for our eyes whatever it is.

We've also spotted them chewing on low tree branches.

Relatively small animals. They can obtain all the water they need from vegetation. They can survive lengthy times without water.

This squirrel is about half the size of those we've seen elsewhere.

Peak day time temperature is struggling to reach 20 deg C.

In summer it can be between 45 and 50 deg C.

Probably the squirrels are smaller so maintaining their temperature is easier.

Not sure what its finding to eat among the camel dung.

Just finished reading a new scientist article that describes changes in animal size as temperature changes, with some reference to climate change.

There's a few more people around today.

We were watching the gazelles from the truck but they were disturbed by camels being led by.

We think the tourists and camel leader were too interested in us to notice the gazelles.

Not sure where this guy was racing off to but impressive to watch. Maybe practising for camel races in February's desert festival.

I'd walked across the flat bit trying to get closer to a Nilgai, which turned out to be a cow!

And as the sun set slowly in the west ....

Maybe we'll need the heater again tomorrow morning (6 deg C).

Now we've had time to stop and think .... 

We thought India was going to be a bit of a challenge, despite all our travel experience, to the extent we wondered if we were coming here because we thought we ought to. 

Rather we've found the travel much easier than anticipated and the mixture of cultures, religion, history and wild life thought provoking.

not exactly picture of the month material ...

There's a fox near the right edge of the photo.

Taken through the window. It watched us as we watched it. More shy than the gazelles, and solitary.

Now all we need is for a nilgai to wander past!

Perhaps this is what the bee eaters are eating.

The vacuum pump on the loo had been stalling a bit recently before reaching cut off vacuum.

They are interested in the carbon filter for the exit of the vacuum pump.

Figured that the lower volts from the new batteries and the circuit board edge connectors becoming tired meant there wasn't enough oomph.

Connected pump directly to switched power supply. Indicator lights work as normal. Turn pump off manually when light goes green!

Its our day for visitors.

I was spotted fixing the loo.

Some time later motorcyclist turned up. "Could I fix the ignition switch, the desert made it stop working".

These camel riders were in a party of eight or nine from the next village. Stopped for brief chat and offer of chipatis at their village.

Earlier we were filled in on the difference between Sam and Khuri for dunes.

Sam is Muslim. All about money. Khuri is Hindu. Respect for visitors.

Between Khuri and Sam these fence posts had us suspicious of the standing stone we'd seen by the roadside near Dholavira.

And of course, by connection some of the entries in the UK Megalith website.

Looks like we chose well with Khuri.

There wasn't much space left near the dunes at Sam, rows of tent hotels.

Everything accessible by camel or jeep.

For the adventurous there's always flying behind the jeep.

Across Northern India, back to Nepal Weeks 144 - 145 January 4th - 10th 2014

Ian & Jan  Sun, 05 Jan 14 18:35:32 +1100
Hi Folks! Like you we have seen a lot more Camels on this trip than the previous one. Liked to see you had the full tour of the Solar Park and Tea with 'The Boss' reminded me of the greeting I got in Bouzikane when we asked to see the Fire Engine! Remember? Sadly that nice little campsite has closed down. Some of the 'roads' you get to travel along look quite challenging, and those old Royal Enfield Motorcycles bring back memories! Enjoy & stay safe. I&J

Peter Mon, 06 Jan 14 10:45:00 +1100
Fantastic last few weeks Guys!
The Royal Enfields are great, but what about the Ambassadors (1956 Morris Oxfords, I think, still in production).

Sorry, comments closed.