AUSTRALIAN adventurer Kate Leeming became the first person ever to cycle from the mouth of the Kunene River to the mouth of the Orange River on the shoreline of the Namibian coast and she completed the epic journey in just 32 days.
CYCLING from the mouth of the Kunene River to the mouth of the Orange River along the 1 600 kilometre coastline on the beach has never been done in Namibia’s history, the fearless explorer is completed the journey braving the Notorious Skeleton Coast, the huge dunes between Walvis Bay and Lüderitz and also the Sperrgebiet until she sreached her goal six days ahead of schedule.
In her blog Leeming describes her arrival atthe orange river and said she set her heart on completing the Sperrgebiet stage in three days.
“I covered 93km and100km in the first two days respectively, setting myself up to finish as I had planned. On the final morning, I left myself 100km to get to the Oranjemund Gate.”
She said the first 30km of the third day was slow due to a headwind and soft road.
“But then the road altered direction slightly and the wind switched to coming from over my left shoulder. At lunch, I had just 30km to go and was starting to get quite excited. The road edged closer to the beach where I could see the mining operations.”
According to Leeming about six kilometres from the gate she came over a hill and could see Oranjemund with South Africa in the distance.
“At the gate we were greeted by Francis, the communications officer, waiting to take images for Namdeb. After a few security checks we were free to go through. That was the first cause for celebration, but to complete the expedition there was another 13 km to ride to where the Orange River meets the ocean. I cycled past a golf course that appeared to be mown and fertilised by springbok and Oryx and eventually along a dirt track to the end. That was it!”
She said the epic journey was unprecedented and after 1621 km she was very proud to say; “I have made the first ever cycle journey along Namibia’s whole coastline, from the mouth of the Kunene River to the mouth of the Orange River.”