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  1. #1
    avid wearer of flip-flops lucky53s's Avatar
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    Nouakchott, Mauritania

    Please, please, please someone tell me they have heard of Nouakchott. I am about to move there and would love to talk to someone that has actually been there. I road bike, I MTB, I don't want to have to stop. Unfortunitely it doesn't look like there is much of either considering it is the western part of the Sahara. But if you have anything at all to say, whether it's related or not, feel free to add your 2 cents.
    War: Where foolish men kill other foolish men for foolish reasons.
    Quote Originally Posted by artifice View Post
    does this face make my butt look big?

  2. #2
    The Site Administrator: Currently at home recovering from a couple of strokes,please contact my assistnt admins for forum issues Tom Stormcrowe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lucky53s
    Please, please, please someone tell me they have heard of Nouakchott. I am about to move there and would love to talk to someone that has actually been there. I road bike, I MTB, I don't want to have to stop. Unfortunitely it doesn't look like there is much of either considering it is the western part of the Sahara. But if you have anything at all to say, whether it's related or not, feel free to add your 2 cents.
    Look at a Surly Pugsley! Those 4" wide tires get good flotation on sand!

    and HYDRATE!
    on light duty due to illness; please contact my assistants for forum issues. They are Siu Blue Wind, or CbadRider or the other 3 star folk. I am currently at home recovering from a couple of strokes. I am making good progress, happily.


    . “He who fights with monsters might take care lest he thereby become a monster. And if you gaze for long into an abyss, the abyss gazes also into you.”- Fredrick Nietzsche

    "We can judge the heart of a man by his treatment of animals." - Immanuel Kant

  3. #3
    avid wearer of flip-flops lucky53s's Avatar
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    I'd like to do it without buying a new bike. But that could be the plan. Turn the F80 into a SS for when I move home and commute, keep upgrading the Trance til I can come home and ride trails, and buy a Surly for the year in Africa.... I like where your head's at.
    War: Where foolish men kill other foolish men for foolish reasons.
    Quote Originally Posted by artifice View Post
    does this face make my butt look big?

  4. #4
    J3L 2404 gbcb's Avatar
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    Whoa... WEIRD! I hadn't heard of Nouakchott until May of this year when I went to North Korea. Every single world map had Nouakchott labelled, and I sheepishly had to admit to my guide that I had never heard of it. Apparently Kim Il Sung travelled there, so everyone knows about it. In addition, the ONLY cities labelled in North America on these maps were New York and Ottawa. Go figure...

    Sorry if this doesn't help you much, but I thought I'd share . Tom's idea of a Pugsley is a good one!

  5. #5
    avid wearer of flip-flops lucky53s's Avatar
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    Luckily it's not Communist. Yet. It's an Islamic Republic so I guess it's safe.
    War: Where foolish men kill other foolish men for foolish reasons.
    Quote Originally Posted by artifice View Post
    does this face make my butt look big?

  6. #6
    Blasted Weeds Tude's Avatar
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    I'm sorry. But I need either a translation or someone who can phonetically spell it out for me. And what part of the world?

  7. #7
    Senior Member skiahh's Avatar
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    What the heck are you going to Mauritania for??
    www.teamnavycycling.org
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  8. #8
    The Site Administrator: Currently at home recovering from a couple of strokes,please contact my assistnt admins for forum issues Tom Stormcrowe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tude
    I'm sorry. But I need either a translation or someone who can phonetically spell it out for me. And what part of the world?
    Saharan Africa
    on light duty due to illness; please contact my assistants for forum issues. They are Siu Blue Wind, or CbadRider or the other 3 star folk. I am currently at home recovering from a couple of strokes. I am making good progress, happily.


    . “He who fights with monsters might take care lest he thereby become a monster. And if you gaze for long into an abyss, the abyss gazes also into you.”- Fredrick Nietzsche

    "We can judge the heart of a man by his treatment of animals." - Immanuel Kant

  9. #9
    avid wearer of flip-flops lucky53s's Avatar
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    It's not 100% sure that I'm going yet. I'm in the military and I get moved individually because I work in embassies. Unfortunatly we happen to have one there. It's in Western Africa along the coast as Tom has been so kind to post the map for us. I posted before that there was a chance of me going to Africa and everyone scolded me for not being happy about it. Now that I post that I'm probably going nobody has many words or encouragement. If you research Mauritania much you will discover that it's pretty poor (average income $2800 USD/year) and it's on the edge of the Sahara. To travel 500 km to Nouadbibou north along the coast takes 30-50 hours on "terrible roads" so I'm guessing that being a roadie for the next 14 months is probably just not going to happen.
    War: Where foolish men kill other foolish men for foolish reasons.
    Quote Originally Posted by artifice View Post
    does this face make my butt look big?

  10. #10
    Senior Member Ziemas's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lucky53s
    It's not 100% sure that I'm going yet. I'm in the military and I get moved individually because I work in embassies. Unfortunatly we happen to have one there. It's in Western Africa along the coast as Tom has been so kind to post the map for us. I posted before that there was a chance of me going to Africa and everyone scolded me for not being happy about it. Now that I post that I'm probably going nobody has many words or encouragement. If you research Mauritania much you will discover that it's pretty poor (average income $2800 USD/year) and it's on the edge of the Sahara. To travel 500 km to Nouadbibou north along the coast takes 30-50 hours on "terrible roads" so I'm guessing that being a roadie for the next 14 months is probably just not going to happen.
    Use some of your hardship post pay to pick up a stout mountain bike that you wouldn't cry over if you lost and some bombproof tires. Or ask the GSO guys where you can find a bike when you get there.
    Last edited by Ziemas; 06-30-07 at 06:05 AM.

  11. #11
    Non Tribuo Anus Rodentum and off to the next adventure (RIP) Stacey's Avatar
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    Look on the bright side, you're not far from Saint Louis. Home of the worlds best Barbeque!

  12. #12
    avid wearer of flip-flops lucky53s's Avatar
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    Ziemas, read from the beginning and notice the mention of a Pugsley. Four inch wide tires for the desert sand. Anything less will probably just not cut it since there are mostly unpaved roads and no sidewalks.

    Stacey, Saint Louis? What country?

    I just looked up plane tickets and the cheapest I can get back to the US in the Southeast is $1850. I'm not too stoked about this. For anyone who cares feel free to read up here, stories from people who have been there. To sum it up, bring a 4x4, no fast food and limited restaurants, entertain in your house because there is nothing to do, you can save lots of money because there is nothing to spend it on. On the light side, I can buy beads and silver adorned jewelry boxes.....finally, unique Christmas gifts to ship home.

    Edit: Helps to include the website:
    http://www.talesmag.com/rprweb/the_r...uritania.shtml
    War: Where foolish men kill other foolish men for foolish reasons.
    Quote Originally Posted by artifice View Post
    does this face make my butt look big?

  13. #13
    Non Tribuo Anus Rodentum and off to the next adventure (RIP) Stacey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lucky53s
    Stacey, Saint Louis? What country?
    Sengal, of course!

  14. #14
    avid wearer of flip-flops lucky53s's Avatar
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    Of course. I know a guy in Dakar for a few more months. How much do you know of the area over there? Should i expect to be able to ride a bike at all? Perhaps I'll take up professional kite flying, I hear it's one of the best things to do there.
    War: Where foolish men kill other foolish men for foolish reasons.
    Quote Originally Posted by artifice View Post
    does this face make my butt look big?

  15. #15
    tired donnamb's Avatar
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    If during your time there you are able to attend the Festival in the Desert that is put on in Mali by the Tuareg people, I understand that it is one of those experiences people remember for the rest of their lives. Beautiful music, and that's not even the half of it.

    I understand that the best bikes for use in most of Africa are single speeds because they don't need as much maintenance or costly repairs/parts that are hard to get. You may not be able to be a roadie there, but you may discover a love for a different kind of biking during your stay. There's nothing bad about falling in love with more bikes and other riding styles, IMO. Kona makes bikes to donate to Africa for people in need, so I'm wondering if you contacted them, someone there who works in that program may be able to help make specific recommendations for you. I think other manufacturers do, too, but Kona's the only name I know.

    The only other thing I can think of is to consider a different set of cycling clothes if you're used to tighter fitting spandex. I know that there are actually modesty customs amongst men in some African countries, and spandex shorts and tight fitting jerseys might come across as very offensive to the locals. Maybe there's someone at work who can help you look into that issue?
    "Real wars of words are harder to win. They require thought, insight, precision, articulation, knowledge, and experience. They require the humility to admit when you are wrong. They recognize that the dialectic is not about making us look at you, but about us all looking together for the truth."

  16. #16
    avid wearer of flip-flops lucky53s's Avatar
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    Donna, for clothes they said you should leave your shorts and tank tops at home for the city but since it's a coast (or near coastal) city you should be sure to bring your bathing suit, even girls. I MTB (actually originally MTBer) so I have baggies and loose jerseys that should be okay. As for the bike I will have to wait til I get there but if there is someone in the embassy community that bikes I will go to them first. First hand knowlege is usually the best. If not I probably won't bike because nice new shiny bikes in poor countries are like having a target on your back. In even poorer countries you will get killed for it. In a country like that, I would guess maybe just knocked off and stolen. Either way, I won't bike alone, it's just not safe.
    War: Where foolish men kill other foolish men for foolish reasons.
    Quote Originally Posted by artifice View Post
    does this face make my butt look big?

  17. #17
    Senior Member Ziemas's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lucky53s

    I just looked up plane tickets and the cheapest I can get back to the US in the Southeast is $1850. I'm not too stoked about this. For anyone who cares feel free to read up here, stories from people who have been there. To sum it up, bring a 4x4, no fast food and limited restaurants, entertain in your house because there is nothing to do, you can save lots of money because there is nothing to spend it on. On the light side, I can buy beads and silver adorned jewelry boxes.....finally, unique Christmas gifts to ship home.

    Edit: Helps to include the website:
    http://www.talesmag.com/rprweb/the_r...uritania.shtml
    There is always Peter Justesen for snacks and such.

  18. #18
    avid wearer of flip-flops lucky53s's Avatar
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    Netgrocer delivers to APO boxes so I'm happy enough. I have bags and bags of dried fruits and such. I try to snack healthy.

    I just talked to a girl that was out there with the Peace Corps and she said it's very safe, nice people, great Mediterranean food, beautiful beaches. It is all desert though, no green. Not even near the ocean. Oh well. She said they have beautiful swords and daggers and such. Plus decorative boxes and other items inlaid with silver. I can make the best out of it. But she said she didn't see any biking. Bummer. At least I'm going to be close enough to visit Dakar and Rabat. And I'd like to go to Mali and Egypt from there. Watch, now that I'm not bummed about going there they will probably change it before I leave here. That is how the military works. haha.
    War: Where foolish men kill other foolish men for foolish reasons.
    Quote Originally Posted by artifice View Post
    does this face make my butt look big?

  19. #19
    Banned Bikepacker67's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gbcb
    ...the ONLY cities labelled in North America on these maps were New York and Ottawa.
    "Wha??? No Howeywood?!"

  20. #20
    Studs Terkel Johnny_Monkey's Avatar
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    Mauritania is a bit of a hole apparently. A company I used to work for has operations there and my ex-boss was supposed to transfer there - until he went there on his pre-contract mission. He arrived soon after the attempted coup a few years ago. He said it was dirty and there were military checkpoints everywhere. Huge disparity in wealth as well. I wouldn't expect you'll be doing much riding there.

    Check out Michael Palin's Sahara as in it he travels through Mauritania.

    I assume you speak French.

  21. #21
    avid wearer of flip-flops lucky53s's Avatar
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    I speak no French. I am probably going to have to remedy that but in the military we don't pay attention to that. I know it's a bit of a hole but I have no choice so I'm trying to get myself stoked for it. I guess I'll play a lot of video games and work out and maybe take some college classes.
    War: Where foolish men kill other foolish men for foolish reasons.
    Quote Originally Posted by artifice View Post
    does this face make my butt look big?

  22. #22
    Bossy Bunny mirage1's Avatar
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    I for one am very excited for you! You know, even the suckiest places to be stationed at the very LEAST make for great stories to tell your friends and family. Not to mention "Let me tell you about that time I was living in the desert in Africa..." will be even more exciting for your grandkids than "I had to walk 10 miles to school, uphill both ways, in the snow 12 months out of the year."

    You mentioned the cost of airline tickets back to the states... Is Space-A not an option?
    Margie

    "Assume a virtue, if you have it not." ~ William Shakespeare

    This advice is the reason I'm masquerading as an athletic person.

  23. #23
    Erectible Member pedalMonger's Avatar
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    http://www.comebackalive.com/phpBB2/...c.php?p=101327

    EDIT: If you punch "Mauritania" into that forums search engine, you'll get quite a few hits

  24. #24
    avid wearer of flip-flops lucky53s's Avatar
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    There aren't bases out there so there are no planes that have space A. I work at embassies. And that one is VERY small from what I hear. It's so new there is almost no info in the net about it. Luckily one of the girls I know was in the Peace Corps there so I got all my info from her. At least I know it was first hand. And yeah, it will make for great stories. And if anyone wants to come visit I'd welcome you all with open arms.
    War: Where foolish men kill other foolish men for foolish reasons.
    Quote Originally Posted by artifice View Post
    does this face make my butt look big?

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