Monday, January 16, 2012

Day 28 - 15.01.12

We got our earlyish start after having some coffee and as we were leaving it started pouring with rain, IMO had a small fall on the soft sand road but all is good and we are both in high spirits, we get on the road and my clutch is not right, I rev and the revs just go up but nothing really bites, still able to ride though, but it cant be healthy for the clutch or the fuel consumption. This is Sunday and I'm thinking who can I phone, I tried phoning one or two people with no luck. I eventually pulled over and got the good ol number 12 spanner out and loosen the clutch adjustment, it is a little bit better, the whole time it is raining and quite nippy. Ride on a little, and then adjust it again, finally I got it right and the bike is going good agan and I am happy again.The big concern with the whole clutch adjustment is also riding up hills as the route to Dedza is apparently quite a mountanous route. We got to the crossroads and decided to follow the GPS to Dedza, the route on the GPS is the shorter route (60km shorter) and bypasses Lilongwe, we were warned by a local that the road is not a good road. But for every warning there were 4 people saying it was a good road. Followed the GPS until it said we must go up a small dirt path and then it recalculated to another route, it was pouring with rain at this time. Following the GPS (she had not let us down yet!!) and next thing we see the signs for Dedza and follow the road in the pouring rain, this takes us up a very steep mountain pass, it is 16c and we are both soaking wet, maximum speed on these sharp bends up the pass is 15km/h and unfortunatley we could not see any of the apparently great views, just cloud and rain.
We got to the top of the mountain pass and in a gap, it looked like we had ridden to the end of the earth!
The edge of the world!!

We got to the Dedza border and a local warned us that the nearest thing to warmth or petrol was at least 60km from the border in Mozambique. I had already done about 475km on this tank of petrol and had been riding on  reserve for the last 70km already, (my last economy run before thr trip I had only got about 425km on a tank!) The recommendation was to stay the night at the Mapika Golf Lodge as this was the best plac in town. So we followed the directions back to the police road block and the local police made the same suggestion and very happily gave us directions, (pleasant chaps!)
We got to the lodge after an intersting muddy road in the rain and we were both soaking wet, were greeted warmly and shown to our room where we got changed into dry clothes and they took our wet stuff to dry for us. Settled down with some soup and enjoyed being dry inside while it bucketed down outside. The soup was great, supper was not so great. Had very comfortable beds compared to the beach cabin so we both slept pretty well.

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