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We entered Namibia's namesake, the Namib desert, world's oldest arid region. Avid geologists know that the desert conditions are caused by the Benguela current running beside Namibia's coast. The current flows from Antartica and its freezing waters do not evaporate easily, thus keeping moisture locked offshore. Inland, the air is dry and hot. We drive on a lonely road. Flat-topped hills, called inselbergs, break up the featureless plains and look like scattered, mini-table mountains. Scrub brush and hardy plants eke out an existence in the gravel soil at the desert fringe, living off water carried by fog that rolls overland from the ocean during the early morning (fog created when warm air hits cold water). Plants grow here that are found only in Namibia, such as kokerbooms, tree-like aloe plants, and elephant trunk trees, so-named for their uncanny resemblance to an elephant's proboscis.
Fish River canyon: second in size only to the Grand Canyon.
If only we had bungee cords.
Tonight we pitched camp in South central Namibia, near a town called Aus.