Into the Dirt. Namibia
Anthem: "Namibia, Land of the Brave"
Namibia, Africa. Not the most established riding destination in the world. In an ongoing quest to unearth and explore new terrain, Moment Pictures together with Kyle Jameson, continue to scour our small planet, travelling across the length and breadth of the “Land of the Brave”.
From the oasis known as Goanikontes in the Naukluft desert, that drew comparisons to the infamous Utah desert in the USA, to the almost unrideable sand dunes of the skeleton coast, the crew had their work cut out with little in the way of support should anything go wrong.
A touch of sunstroke and a little lost skin later, the crew returned home happy with a mere 1600GB of footage and over 7000 still images in the bag. This is their story.
Captions: Toby Cowley
We had the good fortune to experience Namibia in a way not a lot of people see it, green and wet. Locals told us that they barely ever see it so green. Here we are pinning through some floodwater on the search for trails in the Okonjima Wildcat Reservoir.
On our way out to the reservoir we nearly ran over this little bad boy. One of the coolest animals around and definitely not scared! He changed his colour from green to black and screamed at us when we rescued him.
Okonjima is the home of more than 30 leopards, dozens of cheetahs and other wildcats. In Namibia hunting remains common but the team from Africat are fighting for the survival of these beautiful creatures.
This was our first encounter with Namibian wildlife and we were totally stoked. Later we were to discover that there are billions of these guys crawling around everywhere.
On our way to our first riding location we camped out in the Ganab desert. First day and already blown away! We were surrounded by silence punctuated by animal calls. It was awesome.
This shot was taken on our first scouting day when we reached the Moonlandscape. Kyle J gettin' some air!
Double trouble on our first day shooting. The moonlandscape is a surreal place that has plenty of freeride options.
We definitely should have acclimatised better. With close to 40 degree Celsius we all had a big headache on the first day from not drinking enough water. It’s that hot, your sweat vaporizes before it has a chance to cool you down.
Kyle J ripping up a ridgeline on our second day of shooting.
On our second day we began to understand the terrain and actually found some nice and rowdy descents. Andi dropping into the canyon.
Textbook African light with a textbook African backdrop. That’s Spitzkoppe.
It was a big gamble as to whether we could actually ride dunes. Even the locals who have been there a lot (without bikes) had no clue. At the end it turned out great and due to the small distance to the sea the dunes had a little crust that could be ridden. According to the local crew (Namibian DH camp) we were the first people ever to ride these.
Once you gained speed it was straight up like snowboarding. With a little less than top speed and some softer bits of the sand this became a common sight.
Just when we were about to finish shooting we found this insane looking dune that was glowing in the golden hour. We mobilised our last bit of power and hiked up there. It was worth it.