The day began while the moon still shined in the sky. Bright and early, we scurried to breakfast to start our day on the right note and prepare us for what the day really had in store. With our water bottles filled, and our cameras charged we began to head out to embark on our first journey in the Namibian dunes. The first 20 minutes consisted of yet other bumpy ride filled with amazing and breath taking scenery. In awe, nearly everyone was posted near a window ready to take a shot of that perfect picture when the opportunity came. Our first stop was along side of the road. The air was chill and people were still half asleep, but those were two minor challenges that were easily overcome. Beautiful pictures of the scenery were produced. Props such as a unicorn head and a glittery shawl were used to create surrealist images that would go on to tell a unique story. We loaded the buses and proceeded to another stop where we did the same thing. At last we made it to the real challenge of the day, Big Daddy.
Upon arriving to Big Daddy we stopped before hiking up the vigorous mountain to take a quick group picture. We were separated into two groups, those who wanted to climb up the easy route and those who wanted to climb up the hard one. We had no idea what we were getting ourselves into. We began our way to the first small dune. We all said it was going to be easy, but ascending the first dune, was a complete disaster. Only being about twenty feet high, we were all exhausted in the first 10 minutes. This is when we realized that the climb to the tip would be difficult. We continued up the dune cheering each other on, no one wanted to quit because the ending prize would be a remarkable view of the Namib Desert. After an hour and half, maybe two, and several stops on the way to the 325-meter (1,066 feet) summit, we finally arrived to the top. We sat and chatted for a good forty-five minutes, took pictures and caught our breaths.
After relaxing for a little bit we started to slowly descend the dune one by one and some with groups. As we ran down the mountain, it felt like we were on the moon. The adrenaline and breeze felt amazing. By the time we got to the bottom that is when the exhaustion and excitement hit us the most. Ahead of us, we had another thirty-minute walk to the car in the sizzling Namibian sun and another forty-minute drive to our hotel, the Kulala Desert Lodge.
After our long and exhausting morning, we relaxed and jumped into the pool. At six in the afternoon those who wanted to go bike riding went. We biked through the desert and saw some animals on the way, such as oryks. We biked to the top of a mountain and watched the sunset. We continued out descent down to hotel and had an amazing outdoor dinner near the pool. We received beautiful singing and dancing from the staff members and we decided to join in and dance with them. The entire day was remarkable and we couldn’t wait for what up next.
Ashley and Jordyn