Epupa Falls

A Tale of Two Radiators

After 2 weeks, 2 cities, and 2 national parks, we finally got our holy grail in Tsumeb: a new radiator. At one point I thought the radiator just wasn’t meant to be. The one we initially ordered only fit Prados with petrol engines. A different one had to be shipped from Windhoek.

As with all other stories involving the car, there is more. The delivery truck carrying our long awaited radiator crashed on the outskirts of Tsumeb. Frank, the head mechanic, had to retrieve his order from the truck wreckage. Although the majority of his order was damaged during the crash, our radiator serendipitously survived.

With the new radiator installed and our overheating problem a thing of the past, we decided to make a detour to Epupa Falls in Kaokoland before making our way to through the Caprivi. This is no ordinary detour. Kaokoland is the northwestern corner of Namibia; it is the most sparsely populated part of the sparsely populated Namibia. It is one of the truly unspoiled frontiers of Southern Africa. Epupa Falls is 9 hours from Tsumeb in the opposite direction of the Caprivi. From Epupa we can see Angola across the Kunene River.

Back to the Heart of Africa

From the time we entered Namibia from the Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park all the way through Etosha, Namibia felt like one giant tourist attraction: there was a whole lot of nothing in between lodges, National Parks, and UNESCO heritage sites.

The road from Tsumeb to Epupa Falls brought back memories of the Africa I experienced in the lesser developed Tanzania, Malawi, and Mozambique: Villages and huts scattered along the side of the highway, locals walking to a destination nowhere in sight, and herds of goats and cattle wandering aimlessly on the road.

The last 3 hours of our drive – a 180km stretch of corrugated gravel road from Opuwo north to Epupa – was a surreal experience. The scenery was right out of Jurassic Park: I was half-expecting a T-Rex to walk across the forest in the horizon.

Our campsite at Epupa was meters away from the (undoubtedly crocodile infested) Kunene River and less than 50 meters away from the main Falls.

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View of Epupa Falls from our Campsite.

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Epupa Falls

Although the scenery at Epupa was otherworldly, so was its unbearable heat and humidity. After spending some time at the falls, we decided the amazing scenery and campsite was not worth the discomfort of spending another night at Epupa. With the amazing Opuwo Country Lodge – featuring an infinity pool overlooking Jurassic Park – only 3 hours away, it was an easy decision.

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Campsite at Opuwo Country Lodge

Follow my Odyssey on Twitter @AlpheusChan

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