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Old 12-17-2012, 10:34 AM   #226
kimangao OP
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ata View Post
where did you start in africa?
Ceuta or Melilla?

both cities are Spanish over 500 years

You got it, Melilla. Though it wasn't that difficult for you, was it?

For those of you not that familiar with Melilla and Ceuta check out the map where those cities are in relation to Spain.


Größere Kartenansicht

I hope you don't mind, but I'm nevertheless surprised about the geopolitical anachronisms that are still alive in the 21st centuries. Melilla and Ceuta are just one example. Gibraltar would be another one. And recently that tiny spot of Bosnia-Hercegowina that accesses the Mediterranean Sea and separates Croatia into a nothern and a southern part.

I'm not judging about all this all this. I'm just watching the map ... and yes, I wonder.

Cheers

Dirk


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Old 12-17-2012, 11:22 AM   #227
kimangao OP
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Originally Posted by LethPhaos View Post
is that a Vaude tent? which model?
thanks for the report, awesome as always :)

Yes it's a rather old version of the Vaude Space III. Mine is nearly 10 years old now. The zippers are still working but I'm afraid they'll start suffering from scurvies next year.

Cheers

Dirk
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Old 12-17-2012, 12:44 PM   #228
kimangao OP
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Originally Posted by panzerrocket View Post
Yup, another viking here following your ride - as I always do.
Great job Dirk, keep it up

Greetings from Copenhagen
Welcome!

Have a nice evening

Dirk
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Old 12-17-2012, 01:40 PM   #229
Don T
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Question Regarding Melilla..?

I'm planning a ride to Morocco in the spring.
I expect to arrive at Tanger Med and leave from Melilla (to Almeria) - do you think it will be necessary to book the ferry from Melilla in advance or can I just show up and get on the next boat?

PS. I love this RR

Don T screwed with this post 12-18-2012 at 07:31 AM
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Old 12-17-2012, 01:48 PM   #230
ata
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there are problems only in july-august and september, don´t worry abuout that

and DO NOT MISS al-hoceima area, it worth it
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Old 12-17-2012, 03:02 PM   #231
kimangao OP
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Don T View Post
I'm planning a ride to Morocco in the spring.
I expect to arrive at Tanger Med and leave from Melilla (to Almeria) - do you thing it will be necessary to book the ferry from Melilla in advance or can I just show up and get on the next boat?

PS. I love this RR
Thank you Don :-)
I agree to ata. Shouldn't be a problem. I was there last in October. No worries about the ferry. And the Al Hoceima region is really nice. A strong contrast to the inner country.

Cheers

Dirk
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Old 12-18-2012, 03:02 PM   #232
kimangao OP
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Europe in Africa

Now this is why I was surprised. Imagine you take a ferry to Africa and you end up in Spain, Europe. Of course, I knew before that Melilla is spanish but - I don't know why - I somehow expected something different.



The town is an exclave in Northern Africa, bordering the Sea and Morocco.




As long as I'm staying in the heart of the town I don't recognise that I'm on another continent.



Ok, let's start the day with a coffee. It has become a kind of addiction to me to stay in coffee houses. Contact to locals is easily made and only few other places offer a such convenient look into peoples lives.



The owner of the cafe is an addict, too. Art is his thing.




Just outside the cafe.



I'm too lazy to change the tire I bought in Malaga myself. A workshop does it for a reasonable price. It won't take long till I have to do it myself.



Meanwhile I check out the historical part of Melilla.



The earlier settlement gathered around the fortress ...



... which nowadays inhabits a military museum.



From the walls of the fortress I see some seagulls playing in the breeze. It's amazing to see how excellent these birds maneuver through all kinds of wind.






Melilla is also home to the probably southernmost spanish bullfight arena. But no corrida while I'm around.



Ok, tire (the Tourance) is on the HP2. A last coffee in Europe ...



Leaving the city centre and getting closer to the border makes me feel very strange. What I see here reminds me of the times Germany was devided in East and West. The iron curtain ... In a way I feel ashamed that this is Europe, too. My Europe ...



I little thought cheers me up:
Morocco behind the fence is very beautiful. And the EU is aware of that. So they have erected big fences with watch towers and armed guards around the city so that the Europeans who live in Melilla cannot get out into the beautiful and less expensive Morocco. And as the government wasn't sure if one fence would be enough, they built a second one right behind the first one.






Of course the truth is just the other way round. When I pass the turnpike in direction Nador the next morning, the outer borders of Europe are lying behind me. Europe starts in Africa. Strange idea, though. But there will be more odd things in the weeks to come. Only a 160 kilometres further to the East, the next oddity will be right in front of me.


Cheers for today



Dirk
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Old 12-18-2012, 09:12 PM   #233
Blader54
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kimangao View Post
And recently that tiny spot of Bosnia[SIZE=2]-Hercegowina that accesses the Mediterranean Sea and separates Croatia into a nothern and a southern part.

I can relate a humorous story about that little piece of Bosnia. 7 or 8 years ago I was riding a bus from Dubrovnik north to Split. It was a big bus, with all the luggage underneath in a compartment. My girlfriend and I were sitting behind a young Parisian couple. Everyone was enjoying the views of the Dalmatian coast, then the bus came to a stop at some kind of checkpoint. A young man in uniform, armed, got on board and went down the aisle asking each passenger to show their passport. When he reached the Parisians the woman demanded to know, in a loud and irritated voice, "why do I have to show you my passport to travel within Croatia?" To which the uniformed man calmly replied in excellent english, "Because, madame, you are no longer in Croatia. You are now in Bosnia." They were the only passengers not to have their passports on their person, and were forced to disembark and find the passports in their luggage down under the bus. Score: Bosnia 1, Paris 0 on that one.
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Old 12-18-2012, 11:16 PM   #234
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Blader54 View Post
"Because, madame, you are no longer in Croatia. You are now in Bosnia."
This is what I meant by oddities ;-) For less than 10kms in Bosnia. Then back to Croatia.

Have a nice day everyone

Dirk
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Old 12-19-2012, 08:13 AM   #235
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Yes, that little bit of Bosnian coast is a funny thing. According to a purported map of the Soviet Republic of Yugoslavia it has been like that since WW2 and does not appear to have been created at the end of the post-communist wars. Perhaps an inmate from Croatia or B-H can enlighten us. In the late 1860's Bolivia had a small coastline as well, but this was lost as a result of a war with Chile and Peru over mineral rights in the Atacama desert and seacoast guano deposits.
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Old 12-19-2012, 09:31 AM   #236
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Originally Posted by Blader54 View Post
Yes, that little bit of Bosnian coast is a funny thing. According to a purported map of the Soviet Republic of Yugoslavia it has been like that since WW2
According to wikipedia it has been like that actually from 1699 (Treaty of Karlowitz) where the Republic of Ragusa (today Dubrovnik) gave the region of Neum to the Ottoman Empire to create a buffer from the Venetians. There was supposed to be build a bridge form the peninsula to unite the south area but it has not started yet and it's it doubt if ever.

btw. there was never a Soviet Rep. of Yugoslavia, just Socialist Rep. of Yugoslavia.

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Old 12-19-2012, 04:13 PM   #237
Blader54
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nkms,
Sorry for the mistake. Of course you are correct, Yugoslavia was never part of the USSR. I must have had a brain freeze as I was writing that! Thanks for the information on the Bosnian coast -- it is very interesting that it goes back so far in time.
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Old 12-20-2012, 12:01 AM   #238
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Originally Posted by nkms View Post
According to wikipedia it has been like that actually from 1699 (Treaty of Karlowitz) where the Republic of Ragusa (today Dubrovnik) gave the region of Neum to the Ottoman Empire to create a buffer from the Venetians.
Always good to know a bit of history. Even better to get someone to know who knows more. Thank you, nkms!

Dirk
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Old 12-20-2012, 01:08 AM   #239
kimangao OP
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I pass the customs without any problem, welcome to Nador, Morocco.
A quick snapshot of the border post and off I go, again following the coastline where possible.


In one of the tiny ports along the way I meet some fishermen networking in the original sense of the word. Staying with them for a while I easily pick up that their jobs are far away from any kind of romantic fishermans live.


I stop at this huge beach. Yes, there's a little cafe (closed) but almost no sign of any kind of tourism. What a contrast to the European side. In the distance I can already see the hills of Algeria. Though knowing that I won't be able to cross the border (closed for ages) I'm heading towards it. Simply because I'm facing a little problem ...




What problem? Well, my visa for Algeria which I've already got has expired. France (including the dead time waiting for the white HP2) and Spain simply took too much time.

Morocco's flag is flapping in the calm wind and right behind the Algerian one. The good thing is that here at the border they have a consulate. For what you may need a consulate at a border that is closed for more than a decade I don't know. But I can renew my visa here. At least this was what I'm thinking.



My visit to the consulate is a quick one. Quick and unsuccessful. It won't be a problem to get a visa, the haggard employee behind her scuffed desk tells me. Unfortunately this can be done only in Rabat, the capital. And when I am back on my HP2 I am enjoying the thought to do a little detour through Morocco in order to get the visa.



In Midelt, a town in the Atlas Mountains I bump into a group of French and Spanish riders. To be precise: It's a repairshop where the Spanish try to solve some probs with their 12's. The French boys intend to do a track in the mountains which I'd like to take as well.

Pic by Remi.


Let me introduce them to you: This is Thomas riding a DR600 Rebel.


Remi doing the trip on a Dominator.


And here's Benjamin also doing his best on a Dominator.


Unfortunately I didn't take a portrait of Thierry. But you'll easily recognise his Honda XL600LM.

Ok, here we start climbing the Atlas towards the Cirque de Jaffar, a kind of huge mountainous basin.




The idea of Remi, Thomas, Benjamin and Thierry was to by bikes for the trip not exceeding €1000.-. So there's enough money left to enjoy the trip. And, as Benjamin says: "These bikes were brilliant some 10 or 15 years ago. So what should be bad about it riding them now?"

Here's Remi and his Dom.



Thierry and his LM.




And Benj on the second Dominator.



Everyone is a keen offroad rider and I'm happy that I'm with the boys as the terrain get's a bit rougher. Spot the bike at the bottom of the picture.


The fertile areas are behind us now. There's only rocks and stones around now.



We're getting closer to the Cirque de Jaffar. I feel my heart beating watching this scenery. Man, what a landscape!


We decide to follow a Oued, a dry riverbed which according to our maps is supposed to be a little shortcut. But ...



... this doesn't only turn out to be a misinterpretation of the map. The track get's rougher and rougher.



Rocks and stone work on destroying bashplates, pegs, brake- and shift pedals. Though we're already in a decent altitude we're sweating like on Sumatra



No shadow at all, rocks and more rocks ... shall we go on or turn back?


Pic by Remi


Pretty exhausted faces as I look around. And I have to admit that the thumpers did a lot better than the heavy boxer. Or was it about the riders?


Pic by Remi


Anyway, let's get out of here!

Cheers

Dirk

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Old 12-20-2012, 02:25 PM   #240
kimangao OP
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Thank you all for following up to here. Maybe I'll find the time to add another little chapter tomorrow. If not: Merry Christmas everyone and a joyful 2013.

The story continues after Christmas ;-)

Cheers

Dirk
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