Go just for the experience
I am never going to climb a sand dune again. I say that vehemently (many times) as I climb Dune 45. After 50 long, sand-filled minutes taken to trudge up, here are the lessons learned: Take slow steps. Barefoot works best. One step forward will indeed feel like two steps backward. Don’t stop. Don’t get disheartened if a sprightly guide whizzes past you in an attempt to beat his own 10 minute record. When you have reached the peak and admired the view, scream a joyful “whee-eee” and slide down the side of the dune, marveling at the roaring sound of the minor avalanche that you will create. Ok, can we do that again? Nearby is Dead Vlei / Sossusvlei. It’s a kaleidoscope of yellow and orange sands and the white of the stunning vlei. Meanwhile, the oryx are vying with each other to position themselves strategically into my shots. They seem to have no issues with climbing dunes. Then again, I don’t see them doing any joyful slides down.