Of course such a long journey will have ups and downs, some safe and some dangerous parts, some nice and some challenging experience.
With some preparation you can calculate the facilities and situation of the chosen area a little bit better and not being surprised too much at place. Surely there is no preparation for every single situation and moment, but probably you will manage situations better if you have thought of some facts before the journey. This is why I am very thankful to my family and friends to share their thoughts with me.
A white girl on her own with a bike
→ I already did travel on my own a couple of times, including southern Africa. If the worst case happens and I will loose my bike for any reason, robbery, breakdown or anything else, I try to get a hitchhike or if possible take a public transportation to the next town and try to get things fixed from there.
Foreign and without knowledge of the places
→ For some weeks I collect map material from RSA and NAM and study Google maps and different route possibilities. Including where to fill up water, food and a safe place to sleep via warmshowers, couchsurfing, B&B or campsites. As well I printed some closer views of Google maps for accommodation facilities. Good option for free maps is the AA of South Africa and the Namibia Tourism Board.
→ The traffic especially on main roads could of course be ruthless, but prevention is the best option. So better step by side of the road if a car comes to overtake with high pace. Or take a side-road and a detour instead of the main road. In addition you cannot compare the motorway of Europe and national roads in RSA or NAM.I traveled in RSA before and there was not that much traffic as in Europe, nevertheless the traffic was more rude and local drivers drive fast, because they are used to the route.
Your condition and fitness is not adequate for such a journey
→ I am training 4 times a week Judo and do all local activities by bike, in addition I do cardiotraining weekends. Anyway the final shape will come during the trip. I used to cycle in Slovenia when it was about 35°C in the shade and I know I can bear it and my fitness does not lack at these temperature.
I am not in a rush, so there is no worry if one day I cycle only a view km and I can take a day off if I feel like relaxing. By the way I love photography so the breaks will come by themselves 😀
What’s up with accidents, breakdown or puncture?
→ Last year I had about 12 punctures, twisted spokes and oiled break-pads ( I used to cycle daily to work crossing an area with a lots of broken glass) and now I know how to fix a puncture, promised! Of course I will take some repair kits and tools to fix small breakdowns, for bigger ones I hope to catch a lift by a car or if I am near a town try to get repair parts. I will take some zip ties, tension belts and other little helpers to cover some km in case. Emergency numbers will be in the phonbook of my cellphone and just to be sure written down in my oldstyle calender. I will carry phonenumbers of local friends in RSA and NAM with me to get help in case. As well I will text my family everyday a message that all is good and tell them my position.
Emergency Number of RSA and NAM is: 10111
An upset stomach, little injury can put you and your journey in jeopardise
→ For an upset stomach and some little injuries I will ask my pharmacist of trust to compile me a first aid kit
Last but not least I do not want to show me or someone else proof or anything, I think I grew out of this age by now. I do not plan to push the envelope, this may happen but not as a plan. Rather I will take a rest than go further and risk my shape and health. I want to enjoy the journey and meet people, have a chat, take photos and not hunt kilometres. I want to enjoy the nature, being outside, breath the salty air of the ocean before I am in duty of my future job.