500 km. Firts snake, sandstorm and unfulfilled dream of bath

5

fot. Daniel Grodziński. The photo was taken before the expedition, during preparations in the Błędowska Desert.

On Tuesday, I covered 40 km. A lot, but wind blew in my back. I entered the green steppe. I could not find a place to pitch a tent, because everywhere there are plants with spikes.

In the last days I had several failures. Seven times I patched the tube, six times the air came down from it. Now it’s good. On Wednesday, around 18, it stopped blowing. I’ve made some glue and I’ve fixed the trolley, because three welds were broken. I hope the glue will hold.

I arrive to Bayantorooi. It’s a village with no running water. There is a well used by all residents. They pump and bring water to their houses. I hoped that I would be able to rest here, wash, take care of hygiene. Nothing, so I go further.

I met the first snake. It was not comfortable because I saw him at the last minute. He lay two meters from me. He was a meter long, thin body, he had a lizard in his mouth. I know little about snakes, I do not know if he was poisonous, but it’s good that I did not step on him. I will have to be more attentive, and it’s difficult – I walked 500 km, which is less than 1/3 of the route. I feel the first signs of fatigue.

The next stage will be a bit complicated due to navigation. There is no point in showing people the maps, because the places I have marked are known by many names. There is no point in asking about distance. What the GPS says is 50 km away, for the locals is twice as far away.

I have 360 ​​km to the next town. My pace is probably good. I take 30 liters of water for the next days.

Behind me, one real sandstorm. I saw the two on the horizon, but it blew hard, just in the direction I was walking, so the wind pushed me. If he was in the face, I would not be able to go. I spent a sandstorm in a tent. I did not sleep all night, I sat in a mask and goggles and kept my tent so it would not fly away. After this storm I sew the windows.

It’s getting colder. I feel at the back of my neck that autumn is approaching, that I have to hurry, because when winter comes, it will become unbearable.

Mentally I feel good. I feel that the years I have put into preparation are paying off. The information collected before the trip works as well. I have a lot of support from Agnieszka, my wife.

500 km behind me. 1300 ahead of me. I have to go.

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   Mateusz Waligóra jest specjalistą od wyczynowych wypraw w najbardziej odludne miejsca planety. Szczególnym upodobaniem darzy pustynie, od Australii po Boliwię. Na koncie ma rowerowy trawers najdłuższego pasma górskiego świata — Andów, samotny rowerowy przejazd przez najtrudniejsza drogę wytyczoną na ziemi — Canning Stock Route w Australii Zachodniej oraz samotny pieszy trawers największej solnej pustyni świata — Salar de Uyuni w Boliwii.

Na co dzień pracuje jako stały współpracownik National Geographic Traveler oraz przewodnik wypraw trekkingowych na kilku kontynentach. Jego fotografie publikowały media na całym świecie, między innymi: The Guardian, Daily Mail, National Geographic, Globetrotter Magazin, 4-Seasons Magazin oraz Adventure Travel Magazine.

Autor książki ‘TREK’ nagrodzonej tytułem “Książka Górska Roku”, w kategorii “Przewodniki i poradniki górskie” na Festiwalu Górskim w Lądku Zdroju. Ambasador marek Fjällräven i Primus.

www.mateuszwaligora.com

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2017

Druga wyprawa projektu ‘Before It Is Gone’: Victorinox Qhapaq Ñan, w góry Cordillera Vilcabamba w Perú

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2016

Samotna zimowa wyprawa przez największy górski płaskowyż w Europie —  Hardangervidda w Norwegii

2015

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2014

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2011-2013

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2009

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