50k – what good is a shrub?

Posted on

Google Maps

By loading the map, you agree to Google's privacy policy.
Learn more

Load map

When I got up this morning, I figured I’d do a bit more walking than the day before:

TLW-20160803-065015

It was easy at first:

TLW-20160803-075347

I walked a light 20km, and I basically felt invincible. There were no villages. One time these two serious-looking guys stopped just to give me a lollipop:

TLW-20160803-073954

I offered them some of the cookies I had in my backpack, then I kept walking until I got to this place:

TLW-20160803-112527

A bunch of cars and trucks parked around a house. I parked the Caboose between them and went in to investigate:

TLW-20160803-112520

It was a food place with an attached shop. I wasn’t hungry, so I just got some water and a coke.

The people in the place thought I was funny to be walking around here. They went on to warn me about the road conditions ahead. They turned out to be right, of course.

I kept walking and reached a large bridge:

TLW-20160803-115143

It went across the Ili River which I had seen (or not seen) once before in Yining.

The river looked huge here:

TLW-20160803-115316

Then I ran into Thomas and his friend, both from Germany, both riding their motorcycles across Central Asia:

TLW-20160803-122127

“Why do you do this?” they asked.
“Well, why do you do this?” I asked.

We all knew that there was no real answer.

We went our ways, and I found a resting place under a tree:

TLW-20160803-123743

There were some ants and mosquitos, but it was all good:

YouTube

By loading the video, you agree to YouTube's privacy policy.
Learn more

Load video

I stayed there for a few hours, trying to get some sleep (which I somehow couldn’t), then I got back onto the road, which was basically one long construction site:

TLW-20160803-163034

I figured I would walk for two or three more hours and then just pitch my tent somewhere, but there were shrubs on both sides of the road:

TLW-20160803-190534

Remember the Knights Who Say Ni?

Well I could have given them not just one shrubbery, but a million billion shrubberies.

And then the mosquitoes came back, and when they did, they came back in force:

YouTube

By loading the video, you agree to YouTube's privacy policy.
Learn more

Load video

Yes, there are times when walking sucks.

I put my little headlamp on and gave the Caboose another one so we would be seen by the drivers:

TLW-20160803-203119

And we were. Unfortunately, we were also seen by every blood-sucking insect ever. Sometimes when I looked up the swarm of mosquitoes buzzing around my forehead looked like a cloud of white snow.

And sometimes, when I turned my head to the side, I could see water next to the road:

TLW-20160803-204239

Was I walking through a damn swamp?

I reached a settlement at around ten. That’s when I saw a travel coach parked outside a large restaurant:

TLW-20160803-210340

Hallelujah, I thought, because this place seemed to have it all: a large banquet hall, a shop, lots of people dining, everything!

“Do you have rooms?” I asked a person who worked there.

“Nope.” She shook her head.

…and I might tell you tomorrow where and how I slept.



  • Elena

    It can be hard walking in sumer time, I saw lots of insects when I went to seaside, you have them everywhere near water and vegetation…maybe mosquito water and mosquito nets even veils can help.

    Reply

  • Joshua

    Thanks Christoph for shedding light on
    The steppes
    And
    Kazakhstan

    Got me thinking and dreaming about mountain
    Lakes and wild horses

    Reply

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *