Overland through Niger, Chad, Central African Republic

Xenobian

Active member
Apologies again for a second (and last) aviation post, rather than overland. The next stage of the journey was an excursion by air, from Bangui. The destination was very much open ended...

The flight was meant to be out to Bakouma, of uranium mine fame, in the east of the C.A.R. I received a phone call the night before - "rebels have taken over Bakouma and residents have fled into the forest" - I study the map and look for other places with airstrips nearby - "shall we go instead to Dzangha Sangha?" - completely in the opposite direction - They make some checks and call back - "yes it is possible". If only it were to be so simple in reality!!

Cessna Grand Caravan 208
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Preparing for take-off
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Flying over the Bangui outskirts
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Bongo Soua Island, in the middle of the Oubangui River. The distant shore is the D.R.Congo
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A rapidly brewing tropical storm forced us down in Berberati, for several hours before it cleared enough to continue. We will return later to Berberati, by road.
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Xenobian

Active member
Patiently waiting to leave Berberati for Dzangha Sangha. A few excellent days in the jungle there (sadly no photos) and then back to Bangui to be reunited with the Landcruiser.
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Xenobian

Active member
About 60 miles out of Bangui on the road to Bouar, you eventually reach the Boali Falls along the Mbali River. The falls are about 800ft wide, 165ft tall, a great spot to spend a day and a night. In principle, this is the top tourist attraction of the Central African Republic. In reality, there are virtually no tourists.

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Xenobian

Active member
Just behind the falls at Boali is the Boali Hydroelectric station. Built under the French colonial administration, it's (amazingly) still functional. The generational power is 18.65 megawatts and helps keeps the lights on in Bangui (and a few small towns nearby).

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Xenobian

Active member
Arriving on the outskirts of Berberati
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A simpler life, along the road from Carnot to Berberati
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A nicely decorated church in Berberati (one of several)
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Xenobian

Active member
The old cathedral in Berberati
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And here ends the story of the unknowns of Central Africa - Chad and the Central African Republic. The journey from Berberati continues to Bayanga, and then eventually to Douala in Cameroon to ship out. Next time I'll organize things better into a proper report and account of things, car details etc. I hope you've enjoyed the photos.
 

Xenobian

Active member
Love the pictures and report as is. It was very enjoyable. Aerial pictures give prospective of the country and were enjoyed.

Dan.
Thank you for the kind words, I'm glad it was enjoyable as is. Aerial photos always lend a nice perspective especially through terrain which can start to feel a bit monotonous at times (jungle, that is - I found that the Chadian Sahara was endlessly changing on a daily basis, so much variety).
 

Foy

Explorer
Splendid report of your travels in an area I've only read about: First in William Kennedy Shaw's history of the LRDG raid on Murzuk in 1941, which included a planned rendezvous with the Free French from Ft. Lamy in Chad, and passing through to Zouar following the raid, then online in various trip reports from the early 2000s by the Hungarian FJ Expeditions. The latter's work also drove some elementary research on the geology of the Tibesti, leading to a fascination with the calderas including the Trou au Natron.

Great material! Please keep it coming!

Foy
 

Xenobian

Active member
Splendid report of your travels in an area I've only read about: First in William Kennedy Shaw's history of the LRDG raid on Murzuk in 1941, which included a planned rendezvous with the Free French from Ft. Lamy in Chad, and passing through to Zouar following the raid, then online in various trip reports from the early 2000s by the Hungarian FJ Expeditions. The latter's work also drove some elementary research on the geology of the Tibesti, leading to a fascination with the calderas including the Trou au Natron.

Great material! Please keep it coming!

Foy
Bill Kennedy Shaw was a first class act without any doubt. The Hungarian 'FJ Expeditions' by Andras Zboray are always interesting reads, as are the Sahara travels of Austrian Reinhard Mazur - http://www.tlc-exped.net/ReiselisteSahara.html
 

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