Equatoria Update: Mozambique Crossing Finished!

475px Gurue Mount Murresse

Remember the Equatoria expedition that I’ve mentioned a few times in recent months? It is the attempt by American explorer and scientist Julian Monroe Fisher to cross Africa on foot, beginning with Mozambique and heading west across the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Zambia, and Malawi, before eventually finishing in Angola. According to an update I received a few days ago, the first leg of that journey is now complete, with Julian having completed the crossing of Mozambique, although for safety reasons, he was forced to use a motorcycle for a portion of the trip.

Apparently the journey hasn’t been an easy one thus far. In the press release he is quoted as saying: “The crossing of Mozambique was much more challenging than I had ever anticipated. There were vast areas for several hundred kilometers along what appeared on my maps to be a road which in actuality was a single trail along which there were no recognizable villages. For the most part I lived off cassava root, maize, boiled noodles and bananas. Because of the unpredictable movement of wildlife to include elephants officials with the Mozambique government advised me that it was unsafe to walk so for sections I had to ride alone a motorcycle which I bought and then sold along the trail. At times the trail was submerged in water and I had to hire locals to help me carry the motorcycle above the waterline. It was quite unnerving in areas known for land mines, especially since landmines tend to shift location during the rain season that had just ended.”

With this first major hurdle out of the way, Fisher has now crossed Lake Malawi by hired boat, and has begun the next stage of the expedition, an overland trek across the country of Malawi itself. Ultimately he hopes to eventually end up in Lobito, along the Atlantic coast of Angola.

While this is quite an adventure in and of itself, and is meant to be an exploratory expedition as well, Monroe Fisher is also hoping to raise awareness of a problem that plagues the area that he is crossing through, namely land mines. One of his primary goals is to spread the word about the work that the Mines Advisory Group is doing to help remove these dangerous explosives, as well as other weapons and munitions, from old battlefields to help keep people living in those areas safe.

The journey is expected to take many more months to complete, so expect more updates from the field in the near future.

Kraig Becker