'Never ever!', shouted Mike into the dark as with his mountain bike over his shoulder, he jumped off the boat into the shallows and onto the baobab-ringed beach. 'Never ever!', he repeated continuing with his comical Sir Winston Churchill impersonation. 'Never ever, in the history of this vast inland sea, have so many seasick passengers, been pushed by so few horsepower, across such dangerous waters!'
Mike off-course was referring to our dangerous 14 hour crossing of Lake Malawi, from the mainland to the islands of Chizumulu and now Likoma. It had been a nightmare of bailing and puking as Enoch Unandi, the captain of our hopelessly overloaded wooden dhow had struggled, with only a small 15Hp Yamaha outboard, to keep our nose into the wind and massive waves that threatened to capsize us. Wet, sunburnt and somewhat exhausted, reaching Likoma Island is an important yardstick for the expedition. Dotted with baobabs, sandy beaches and fishing villages drying small silver 'usipa' fish - it's enchantingly friendly. Travelling from Likoma Island the skipper got lost in the dark. This time the dhow was so overloaded with bales of dried fish that the captain had no forward view and had to rely on us to shout directions from the bow.
We stumbled up the beach with our kit pleased as punch to be on terra-firma and to be reunited with the expedition Land Rovers. We follow the Great Rift Valley track south, Mozambique here we come - it's the countdown to the end!