the Degree Confluence Project

Botswana : Kgalagadi

76.3 km (47.4 miles) W of Hukuntsi, Kgalagadi, Botswana
Approx. altitude: 1152 m (3779 ft)
([?] maps: Google MapQuest OpenStreeMap ConfluenceNavigator)
Antipode: 24°N 159°W

Accuracy: 12 m (39 ft)
Quality: good

Click on any of the images for the full-sized picture.

#2: South #3: West #4: North #5: East #6: GPS reading Latitude/Longitude #7: We at our camp #8: Cutline to the point #9: Bush fire the day before

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#1: General view

(visited by Manfred Bollner and Beatrix Reith)

17-Mar-2007 -- Location: This confluence point is located in the southwest of Botswana, to the north of the Kgalagadi Transfrontier National Park, one of Africa's great parks. Adjoining the park is a vast uninhabited area. Here, in the middle of nowhere, is the confluence point. The next settlement is more than 50 km away. We had been in the Kgalagadi Park for ten great days and afterwards took the opportunity to try to visit the confluence point.

This is still wild country, unchanged since time immemorial. As there are no fences to the National Park, the game is the same as in the park, and we saw various kind of antelope including gnus and oryx. Larger predators are jackals and hyenas, but there is also a possibility for lions. On a former journey we had encountered lions not far from here.

Access: We exited the park through the Kaa Gate and followed a cutline (firebreak) for ca. 50 km. From there we continued for eight km on a seldom used bush track which was quite overgrown but still drivable. The access is only possible with a 4x4 vehicle due to the deep Kalahari sand.

Camp: On this track we camped where it reaches its minimum distance to the point. It was an evening after a hot dry day with 38°C maximum. After dark there were impressive distant thunderstorms around the horizon, together with the glow of a bush fire, through which we drove this day. A memorable view of the weather at the end of the rainy season.

Walk to the point: On the next morning we rose before sunrise to start our walk at 7 a.m. The distance was two km through typical Kalahari bushveld with low scrub and some trees, mostly acacia, interspersed with occasional small grassy pans – a beautiful scenery. There were many birds around and lovely birdsong accompanied us.

The going was easy except for the countless holes in the sand made by rodents in which we would sink regularly. We enjoyed the walk very much, although we were a bit nervous in case lions would be around.

After 45 minutes we reached the confluence point. It was unusual that the weather was overcast, but fortunately for us this reduced the sweat. However, the clouds degraded the brilliance of the light and thus the photos.

Ending: The needed recordings duly taken, we started the return walk. Due to the flat terrain and the uniform landscape it would have been very easy to get lost without navigation aids. We developed a high regard for the early explorers. After two hours we were safely back at the car, where a small swarm of thirsty bees awaited us, who had detected the few drops of water spoilt by our solar shower.

Since leaving the National Park we had not seen one soul the whole time. Afterwards we continued our journey via the villages of Zutshwa and Hukuntsi.

This was our 20th journey to Southern Africa and we can hardly wait to be back again. Re rata Botswana thata.

 All pictures
#1: General view
#2: South
#3: West
#4: North
#5: East
#6: GPS reading Latitude/Longitude
#7: We at our camp
#8: Cutline to the point
#9: Bush fire the day before
ALL: All pictures on one page