From Palmwag, the next stop was the Skeleton Coast, or rather it was en route to the Spitzkoppe. AS the Encouragement made here way out of the Damaraland hills, the landscape got drier and drier with less and less vegetation.
Once into the Skeleton Coast Park, the initial excitement of being in this fabled place sort of wore off. For most of the 100km drive, there was nothing but gray dunes and the road was off the coast so as to not offer a view of the ocean. It was an amazingly desolate place. The light sand was covered with a "crust" of tiny chips of shale, making eveything look cold and gray. It was like there was an explosion somewhere and the whole expanse of coast had been blasted with these small chips of rock.
After about an hour, the road paralleled the ocean and there were a few bays to stop in at for a look around. The fog was just lifting inthe early afternoon, but my first view of the ocean was with a cold wind blowing and a misty fog shrouding the beach. A lone seal perched on a dune and rolled around in the sand as the sun broke through. Nearer to the south entrance/exit of the park, there was a shipwreck just off the main road - oine of the "Skeletons" for which the park is named. Just a few wooden ribs and the iron engine block remained. If any one had survived the ship going down, they sure weren't going to survive the desert once the got to shore!