After returning from Libya during our Winter Break (2006), we spent a couple days in Cairo for Christmas, and then set out for the Western Desert — twice! We broke down on our first attempt, spent an additional 3 days in Cairo getting the car fixed and then set out again.

We did a loop of the Oases in Egypt, logging 1,800 kms in the process. Our friends, Mike, Maryann and baby Jacob, traveled with us through the first two Oases, Bahiraya and Farafa. We continued on to Dakhla, Kharga and back to Cairo through Asyut.

A door in the village of Al Qasr in Dakhla Oasis. The stones above the door frame have hieroglyphics on them they are reused stones from an ancient Egyptian temple.
Getting the car towed out of the sand near Crystal Mountain in front of 50 tourists and a dozen Bedouin guides, totally humiliating!
Co-pilot Zoë and I discuss the next leg of our trip.
Another view of Ain Umm Dabadib. Notice that Robyn is sitting on a pile of pottery thousands of years old, the pottery was everywhere and was impossible to avoid!
The most amazing feature of Ain Umm Dabadib are four underground aqueducts coming out of the mountains to supply water to the castle.
We were effectively confined to our hotel when we passed through Asyut, a supposed center of fundamentalism. Our confinement was somewhat mitigated by views of the Nile and room service that delivered the cheapest beers I have found in Egypt: $1.25!
January 5, 2007

Our first attempt ends in failure at KM 135 of the Cairo to Bahiraya road!
View of Al Qasr from the our hotel, the 'Desert Lodge', which was a fantastic eco-resort.
Qasr Labeka near Kharga, one of the most picturesque castles. This is one of a series of Roman forts, built to protect the trade routes coming up from the Sudan.
Ain Umm Dabadib, another fortress around Kharga.
Camping at Ain Umm Dabadib in a beautiful grove, a rarity in Egypt!
Zoë gets a diaper change on the hood of 'Blue Lightening' (our car).