Maun Self Drive 4x4

4x4 Hire For Camping, Game Viewing and Offroad Travel

                                   Road and Track Conditions - August 2012

 Shorobe to South Gate:

Is still in a terrible state, it still has to be graded, plenty corrugations and huge potholes, between Shorobe

and Mawana Vet Fence be very careful when cresting some of the little rises as on two of them there

are major potholes on top, you cant see them until you are bouncing out of them, one is the width of the

road and about 50 cm deep. From the vet fence to South Gate it is still bumpy and corrugated, but a little better.

Mawana Vet Fence to Mababe Village:

Is also in a terrible state, Bad corrugations, big potholes and some washouts across the road from the

last rainy season, the excuse for not grading the road is that the grader is broken down.

South Gate to 3rd Bridge:

Is fine, the usual sandy patches here and there, 1st bridge has been rebuilt but you can still drive around it

as the water hasn’t risen that high this year, 2nd bridge they have half rebuilt and again you can drive around

it as there is no water there. 3rd bridge has been repaired as it was broken last month and un-usable for

about 2 weeks. It has been fixed and you can cross  it.

3rd bridge to Xakanaxa:

Is fine, no water crossings, 4th bridge has also been rebuilt as the new bridge was sinking on the one side,

better to use the old bridge, three weeks ago the Game scouts were stripping the new bridge to try and repair

it. After 4th bridge the road is fine and one still has to go via the airstrip to Xakanaxa

South Gate to Xakanaxa:

 The road is the normal sandy and dusty track.

South Gate to Khwai(North Gate):

Same as the Xakanaxa road, fine and dusty, just watch out for the community vehicles flying up  and down

the road.

Xakanaxa to Khwai:

The route is sandy in patches and dry. The river crossing is still there but there is also the dry route road

which detours around the river crossing and joins the road at the Dombo turn off.

Khwai to Mababe Gate:

After Khwai bridge the road is dry through the village, when the road does its 90 degree bend to the left and

then onto the big crossing, enter the crossing and keep to the extreme far right all the way around, at the deepest

it is up to my land cruiser head lights. After the crossing head back to the gravel road and on to the White

concrete bridge. After the bridge it is a little corrugated in places but mostly ok until Mababe Gate.

Mababe Gate to Savuti:

After Mababe Gate most people are going right at the fork along the Mababe Depression. After about 20 km the

road forks again and most people are going left along the sand ridge route. Some people are going right at this

fork, but I have heard it is very bumpy as the Elephants walked through here last rainy season, so many Potholes.

Savuti to Kachikau:

Is all ok, a little sandy here and there but nothing to worry about, From Kachikau of course is all tar, watch out

for stray animals between Kachikau and Ngoma Gate.

 

      Kurt McKenzie 

                                                Track Conditions  June 2012

 Maun to South Gate

From Shorobe to South Gate Via Mawana Vet Fence Is Very Bumpy and Corrugated. The  Grader is still

broken. Also from Mawana Vet Fence to Mababe is also Very Bumpy and Corrugated.

South Gate to Xakanaxa

Is not bad, A little Bumpy and Dusty.

South Gate to 3rd Bridge

Is the usual bumpy with sandy patches, 1st and 2nd Bridges have been repaired for when the flood arrives.

3rd Bridge to Xakanaxa

Is the usual sandy road, 4th Bridge has been repaired( the old bridge) and the new one is still usable

although leaning a little to the left.

Xakanaxa to Khwai

Is dusty. At the river crossing there is a new road detouring around and is completely dry, this new road

comes out almost directly opposite the entrance to Dombo Hippo Pools. The rest of the way from Dombo

to Khwai is fine. You can also drive on the Flood Plains but be careful as the flood is arriving now and

some roads could be under water.

Khwai to Savuti

From Khwai (North Gate) through the village the road is dry at the moment, but again be careful of the

flood waters.  Head over the Concrete (White) Bridge and proceed to Mababe Gate. Once through Mababe

Gate most people are going right at the fork, the old Depression road, the “New Road” which is left at the

fork is getting sandy and very bumpy. Once at the sand ridge it is getting quite sandy with many

vehicles getting stuck already, mostly driver error, wrong gearing. After the sand ridge the road is fine all

the way to Savuti.

Savuti to Kasane

Around Savuti the Marsh is getting quite wet so be careful when driving along some of the old roads. From

Savuti the road is fine, there are the usual sandy patches, but all is good. From Kachikau the road is tarred

of course and is smooth driving; just keep an eye out for both wild and domestic animals running across the

road to the river. Once at Ngoma Gate there is a new Game Scout (Very Strict) and he is checking all

paper work before letting you through, even if you are taking the transit road he is still checking your

camping and entrance vouchers from where you have been. From Ngoma Gate down along the river to

Ihaha is a little bumpy and stoney but ok.

Sedudu Gate to Ihaha

I have avoided this section this year due to the ‘Congestion Charges’, most people have!! But now for the

last month or so the river route has been under water so no-one can use it anyway!!!!! Any one camping

at Ihaha and coming from Kasane has to take the NANTANGA turn off which is 20km on the tar road from

Sedudu Gate or at Ngoma Gate.

Safe Driving

Kurt McKenzie 

                                           Track Conditions May 2012

 Maun to South Gate

From Shorobe to South Gate Via Mawana Vet Fence Is Very Bumpy and Corrugated. Apparently the Grader is

broken down and no one knows when it will be fixed. Also from Mawana Vet Fence to Mababe is also Very

Bumpy and Corrugated.

South Gate to Xakanaxa

Is not bad, A little Bumpy and Dusty.

South Gate to 3rd Bridge

Is the usual bumpy with sandy patches, 1st and 2nd Bridges have been repaired for when the flood arrives.

3rd Bridge to Xakanaxa

Is the usual sandy road, 4th Bridge has been repaired( the old bridge) and the new one is still usable

although leaning a little to the left.

Xakanaxa to Khwai

Is dusty and there are some big holes from the rainy season. At the river crossing there is a new road

detouring around and is completely dry, this new road comes out almost directly opposite the entrance to

Dombo Hippo Pools. The rest of the way from Dombo to Khwai is fine. You can also drive on the Flood Plains

as the flood has receded, but be careful as the waters will start rising soon again.

Khwai to Savuti

From Khwai (North Gate) through the village the road is dry at the moment, continue through the big dip

with the concrete slab at the base and continue on the gravel road, after several hundred meters the Gravel

Road does a 90 degree turn to the left, this goes to a big, deep crossing. Continue straight through the

90 degree bend on the old 2 track road. This gradually turns to the right, keep on this past the first left turning,

take the second left and this will bring you to a small crossing, Walk It, Low Range and take the crossing by

going far right. It is bumper depth in the cruiser with a dip in the middle that is headlight depth. The dip

is only about half a metre wide. Be cautious in the next months as the flood arrives, this crossing will get to

bonnet depth again. After the crossing you enter a big open area, you want to keep left and drive straight

across it, if you get to the Khwai air strip then you have gone to the right. Once through the open are you

enter the Mophane forest again, at the fork turn left, keep along this road for several Kilometres. You will arrive

again on the gravel road. Head over the Concrete (White) Bridge and proceed to Mababe Gate. Once through

Mababe Gate most people are going right at the fork, the old Depression road, the “New Road” which is left

at the fork is getting sandy and very bumpy. Once at the sand ridge it is getting quite sandy with many

vehicles getting stuck already, mostly driver error, wrong gearing. After the sand ridge the road is fine all the

way to Savuti.

Savuti to Kasane

From Savuti the road is fine, there are the usual sandy patches, but all is good. From Kachikau the road is

tarred of course and is smooth driving; just keep an eye out for both wild and domestic animals running

across the road to the river.

Once at Ngoma Gate there is a new Game Scout (Very Strict) and he is checking all paper work before letting

you through, even if you are taking the transit road he is still checking your camping and entrance vouchers

from where you have been. From Ngoma Gate down along the river to Ihaha is a little bumpy and stoney but ok.

Sedudu Gate to Ihaha

I have avoided this section this year due to the ‘Congestion Charges’, most people have!! But now for the last

month or so the river route has been under water so no-one can use it anyway!!!!! Any one camping at Ihaha

and coming from Kasane has to take the NANTANGA turn off which is 20km on the tar road from Sedudu Gate

or at Ngoma Gate.

 

Safe Driving 

Kurt Mckenzie

                                             April Track Conditions 2012

 From Shorobe to Mawana vet fence and onto South Gate is very bumpy and corrugated. 

 

South Gate to Xakanaxa is mostly ok with a few puddles here and there. 

 

In the Xakanaxa area the water is rising so be careful when driving around on the back roads. 

 

Xakanaxa to Khwai, North Gate is bumpy with some of the bigger holes filled with mud or water

making some interesting driving. The new detour road around the water crossing is all dry and

ok. It is sign posted so one can't miss it.

 

Khwai to Savuti. The crossing in the village is dry. The big crossing is big and deep. Not

recommended if you have a Computor on board. I used a different crossing and the water

still came over my bull bar and nearly onto the bonnet on my Defender. It's maybe safer to

head via South Gate. After the crossing the gravel road is fine to Mababe Gate. After Mababe

Gate it is npu and dusty in sections, but still doable in 2 hrs.

 

Savuti to Kachikau is all fine. It's the normal bumpy sections with sandy patches. All good.

 

Safe driving 

Kurt McKenzie

                                            Nxai Pan - CKGR    Jan 31- Feb-8

 31 jan '12 Nxai Pan

The road from Nxai Pan Gate was dry all the way into camp st South Camp. Driving around the pan was pretty dry with

isolated puddles or mud dotted about here and there. On the evening of the 1 Feb there were storms going on around

us but nothing fell on us.

2 Feb '12 Baines and onto Meno a Kwena


On the way to Baines Baobab's we took the top road which was pretty dry. Once at Baines the pan itself is under a shallow

layer of water. Just as we were finishing our coffee the heavens opened up and all the way to the Gate it poured with the

water sitting on the road about 50 cm deep in places. At Nxai Pan we had good game sightings, 5 cheetah on the way

in. 3 lions on day two and the Cheetah again. Also plenty Springbok, Gemsbok, Hartebeest and Elephants. 

3 Feb '12 Meno to Sunday Pan via Rakops


After an early breakfast we headed for Rakops to refuel and resupply before heading to Sunday Pan. From Rakops to

Matswire Gate the road was bone dry and dusty. Matswire Gate to Deception Valley was also dry with only a few mud

puddles here and there. From Deception Valley to Sunday Pan was mostly dry with some slippery mud along the last

several kilometers to Sunday water hole. Then the heavens opened up in the late afternoon. 

4 Feb '12


Sunday pan was slippery and sticky to the main Deception/ Tau Pan road. Deception Valley was sticky and slippery in

patches from the previous nights rain. It was like this all the way down to Deception pan and springbok pan. You can't

loop around springbok pan as it too wet and muddy. One of the vehicles tried and only got 3 meters before sitting on

it's diffs. We then had to pull him out. After springbok pan the road was dry for the next 7 km where we turned around

to go back to camp. The afternoon saw thunderstorms threatening all around us in the distance but left us alone. We saw

plenty Gemsbok, Springbok, ostrich and Wildebeests. 

5 Feb '12 Sunday Pan to Piper Pan

It rained again in the night at Deception Valley so there was a bit of skidding and side ways driving again, but nothing

too bad. After Springbok Pan all the way down to Leatihau waterhole was dry. After the waterhole to piper pan with

a little detour to Phokoje pan the road was dry and corrugated in places. It was hot, bordering on 39C. We saw plenty

antelopes again and a big male and female lion before Leatihau waterhole. One of the vehicles spotted three cheetah

after the waterhole. Once at Piper Pan the weather threatened with two thunder storms threatening in the distance. 

6 feb '12 Piper Pan to Grasslands Safari lodge via Ghanzi


Piper pan to Xade had rain during the night so the few pans we passed were wet and slippery. The sand was nice. From

Xade to new Xade the sand was horrible. It was bumpy and corrugated. Slow going. From new Xade to ghanzi was fine

on the gravel. After restocking with food and fuel we headed off to Grasslands Safari Lodge. The road was fine all the

way and we got good exercise opening and closing 16 gates.

7 feb Grasslands 


We spent the day with the bushmen learning the bush and playing bushmen games with them. We also learnt about

the Grassland Lodge lion, leopard and wild dog projects. 

8 Feb Grassland Safari Lodge to Guma Lagoon Camp

After opening and closing the 16 gates it was tar road all the way to Etsha 13. We had a quick stop at Sehitea on the way for Mac to come From Maun to change a starter motor on one of the Puma's. From Etsha 13 the flood water has started arriving so there was a little bit of sand and water driving but all is good. Tomorrow we head across to Namibia for 4 nights.

 

Kurt McKenzie  

                                         CKGR Track Conditions - 17/01/2012

 On a recent trip to the Central Kalahari Game Reserve we had lots of rain, it was raining so hard you could hardly

see two vehicle lengths in front of you. The road from Matswire Gate to Deception Valley was mostly ok with

a few big puddles here and there.

Deception Valley to Sunday Pan was fine, just a little corrugated here and there. Sunday pan and Leopard Pan

were wet in places, at leopard pan the water was about 50cm deep on the road in places.

Leopard pan to Deception Valley is fine, no water.

Passarge is wet, A friend tried that route and got stuck for several hours, four wheel drive, diff lock, mats and

wood didn’t help much.

Deception valley to Deception Pan is a little wet, but nothing serious. The loop around Deception Pan is under

water and one needs to be careful when looping around. Sticky mud.

Deception pan to Springbok Pan was wet, water varying from 50 cm – 1 metre in depth on the road.

It is still driveable as the road is ok.  Springbok Pan is wet and sticky, don’t attempt to loop around unless

there is a second vehicle to recover you.