Overlander Car Issues With ‚Tina Tortuga‘

A bright lamp enlightened all the issues of my newly named landrover Tortuga, #tinatortuga. I was standing under the lifted car with a mechanic to check the state of it. There’s an oil leaking and some unsolved problems with the prop shaft, what brought me to this mechanic. The source of leaking was founded quickly, but as I requested we went trough the entire vehicle, more or less.

Beside the leaking from transfer box there’s also leaking from oil filter housing, Even the tank is leaking and had to be repaired as some bushes and hoses has to be fixed and replaced too. Despite there isn’t much electronics in that vehicle it turned out difficult to find the bug which is blowing my indicators and hazard lights continually. In short, quite an overhaul.

I need a stay for the time of repairs. The estimated period of four to five days was doubled, as the costs of repairs was too, due some difficulties, mainly with the transfer box. All bearings of that part must be replaced. I didn’t care so much about the time, since there was heavy rain predicted. All i needed was a quit and dry spot to be.

Luckily I found a beautiful place outside town of Mbombela/Nelspruit. Friendly hosts welcomed me and showed me around the self catering house where I got a nice room with a glass door towards pool side and amazing view to the valley. That’s the place to stay for a few quit days. Reading, writing journal and sorting photos next to the pool. Having a beer or a glass of red wine in the evenings, after cooking myself a tasty meal, and chatting with the owners, while waiting my car got fixed. That’s all part of traveling too and must try to use the time as good as possible. 

Just the day before I could pick up ‚Tina Tortuga‘, another Landrover Defender arrived at the Lodge. Same model as mine and even the same color. A couple got off the car and settled in the accommodation. It turned out they are from Brazil and already four years on the road. So there was lots to chat about and share travel stories and experiences. And of course, as a Landy driver there’s also about workshop stories. That lovely couple gave me a lift to the landy-workshop and get a oil/filter change for their ‚Pandora‘ too. Who wants to see more of the journey from Eduardo and Rafaela visit their website: www.pandoraontheroad.com.br

Ten lazy days later I checked out of ‚Highland Creeks‘ and got ‚Tina Tortuga‘ back from the workshop. Since it was late of the day and weather forecast predicted another storm with heavy rain, I decided to stay another night at an apartment on my way out of town. Another jewel in the mountains as I found out. After all, the day ended beautifully with a glass of wine and a bath in a tube with a view. 

Murchison Safari Camp

Crossing the Victoria Nile over a bridge with the view of Karuma Falls, i got to the north of Uganda now. I noticed a Camp, just at the northern gate of Murchison Falls Nationalpark, where wildlife seems to cross. At that remote and quite camp is a waterhole. The manager, a young, smart lady, confirmed sometimes elephants, giraffes and more wildlife are to observe here. Despite my patience to watch out for them, the recently rain didn’t gave them the urge to come to the waterhole. Instead big animals i found big spiders, cats, chicken …and then yes, some antelopes came shyly closer. However, some relaxed days in peaceful nature.

Hike Around Lushoto

The Usambara mountains offers stunning views from their cliffs. Definitely a must for a hike or two. But also the small villages along the edges are worth a visit. Here some photo impressions…

Lushoto – Arriving At Irente Farm

Something different after those weeks at the coast. A nice, cool place with fresh air and green, lush forests. A quite, peaceful spot with great view over landscape. The Irente Farm just out of Lushoto has the perfect reputation for that. After a friendly welcome, i parked my Land Rover at the grassy campsite, took a fresh breath and got already a taste of the famous dishes with garden fresh vegetables. Back to my car, it was surrounded by big group of teenagers, playing and screaming. Oh Lord, why have these school class from Germany to be here on this week? They visited a partner school here for a project. However, it turned out pretty fun when they started with drum lessons and dance schooling. If i needed some breaks, i headed for a walk and chased bugs or chameleons with my Nikon.