This post wanders bit, but it’s a story, which I haven’t done in a while.
The plan was to ride from Helmeringhausen to Maltahohe and down to Sesriem. We didn’t make it, which was the best thing that’s happened in Namibia so far. We stopped at the hotel in Maltahohe (the only decent building in the village) for lunch and to ask about the road conditions through, which we do every time we stop
The lady owner is chatty, is 3rd generation Namibian, from a further 3 generations of Afrikaner in SA. I decide to stay.
The town of Maltahohe has a bad reputation for drinking and associated issues. It has some striking buildings. Like this little house
This public pool
Mostly it’s like this
Maltahohe is here, a couple of hundred miles over the great dunes from the ocean
The next day we go out to her farm, which is here
And looks like this
It’s in the middle of her 10,000 hectares (24,700 acres) holding. This is the break-even minimum size for farming in Namibia. We set off with a load of sand and concrete in her bakkie (in Australia, ute, in North American, pick-up)
About half way there, we pass Willy, her business partner, with a flat
Which is where we saw the viper (previous post). They wanted to kill it but I plead, successfully, for its life
Now to one point of the story, the thing I’m very interested in, how these incredibly remote locations, and farms, generate power and draw water. I have a friend in Pemberton who would be sooo into this
Here’s how they do it. All power is solar. A small farmhouse like this one only needs this small array
Now water. There are three ways to get the water to the surface.
Solar pump. Marika shows it off
Or, if your lucky, sub-aquifer pressure. The well below has been supplying excess water since 1958. This is a very rare find. Here Marika tells me about the wellhead (her father found and bored). She’s awesome
An exploratory hole is expensive. About $30 a meter, the average depth is 100 meters, but may be 200, and the chance of hitting randomly is very low. So how do they find water? They hire a diviner (see previous post). Marika’s grandfather was a diviner. They don’t miss. So as much as the whole thing has been debunked and buried, here it’s the only way to not go bust looking.