From Arusha to Lake Malawi

Our trip to Ngorongoro was a well timed break for Andy –  he then went into 7 consecutive days of riding; unpaved roads, mountains and for three days, no internet contact. It’s hard to work out exactly the route they took but it must have been through the Ruaha valley…and getting here on a bike must have hurt.

Road conditions didn’t help either with embedded stones and hard rocky bits.

Download iphone 24 March 005

Time out
Time out
another tough day in Africa
another tough day in Africa
with time for shopping
with time for shopping

In a different life I’ve done the drive from Zambia through the Ruaha valley and still remember an unpaved road through beautiful scenery with a lot of heavy truck traffic…the kind of road where a cyclist wouldn’t be looking at the scenery.

The ride ended up in Mbeya and on to the border with Malawi. This comment is from Emily, one of  the TDA staff members who was riding ‘sweep’ at the back of the pack that day

The last day cycling into Mbeya had all the riders working real hard for the cold beer waiting at the end. With a good 2130m to climb, we cycled on the highest road in Tanzania, and were rewarded with spectacular views of the Great Rift Vally, before descending into the city.

not sure where it is but  getting there on a bike must have hurt

Mbeya was busy and the Mount Livingstone offered unremarkable accommodation.

Mount Livingstone Hotel,  Mbeya
Mount Livingstone Hotel, Mbeya

Reward for all the effort came with a rest day at Chitimba Beach camp ground on the shore of Lake Malawi…beach party, spit roast piglet an’ all. More importantly, the campground also offered cold beer and rooms with showers… cold showers, like the beer….

Chitimba Beach
Chitimba Beach

Download iphone 24 March 020

The respite was short.The morning after, started with in Andy’s words, a ‘monstrous’ hill  – 1000 meters of climb in 26 kms – as they headed down the west margin of the lake through Mzuzu and Kasungu.

In Lilongwe on 28 and 29 March, the Burley Guest house offered more luxurious accommodations and dinner at Latitude 13 Hotel on Saturday night was, I’m told, excellent. Latitude 13 is definitely a place to visit.

Burley Guest House Lilongwe
Burley Guest House Lilongwe

Iphone download 29 March 009

Monday morning Day 81 0f the ride, takes them into another country, Zambia. It’s the 7th of the trip, with only Botswana, Namibia and South Africa to go. In Cairo  the TDA people said ‘Enjoy every day. It’s going to go more quickly than you think.’ It feels like it has…although I haven’t cycled every hill…

7 thoughts on “From Arusha to Lake Malawi

  1. To get 1000m in 26km into perspective I climbed 800m in 80km today and my ride included every hill i could find in Bedfordview, Linksfield and Edenvale. Andy I’m with you every yard of the way. you sounded very chipper on the phone the other night so keep on trucking and you’re still my hero! You biscuit! Cheers Bernie

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  2. I must add my sentiments to Bernie’s comment, I battled to get 980 meters into 50 km….
    you’re setting new benchmarks for us.
    “Bulldog Brookstein” !!

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  3. Nice one Andy! Ros and I were thrilled to hear the news of your engagement to Maureen and we are both looking forward to meeting her. I guess that the ride will be over sooner than it might seem when you are in the dust and heat of Botswana, so keep on keeping on and we’ll see you soon!

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  4. Great achievement Andy. I guess the scenery begins to become more familiar now and it will at least appear easier. But I would imagine that the legs are really strong now. An inspiring journey. Hope it continues to go well.

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  5. Hi Andy
    How is the cycling blister? You are truly an inspiration to many. Keep pedaling and hopefully we can catch up after the TDA with Shona and Miguel as the TDA is definitely on my bucket list. Next trip could be Tour Ya Botswana?

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