Middleeast

Into the Empty Quarter

Updated 11:19 PM ET, Sun December 22, 2013
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Alastair Humphreys and Leon McCarron tackled the desert or the Arabian peninsula, foresaking camels for a home-made cart.
The cart acted as the pair's lifeboat for the 45-day 1,000-mile adventure. courtesy www.alastairhumpheys.com
The self-proclaimed 'micro-adventurers' from the UK were trying to retrace some of the steps taken by Wilfred Thesiger, who crossed the Empty Quarter in the the 1940s. courtesy www.alastairhumpheys.com
"(The local people) might get around now in air-conditioned SUVs," says Humphreys, "but they haven't been removed from the desert long enough to think that going out into it and having a miserable time is a good idea." courtesy www.alastairhumpheys.com
The duo did not have a visa for Saudi Arabia so their crossing went from Salalah in Oman to Dubai in the United Arab Emirates.
"I think (the trip) was a good demonstration that the main thing is to get out there and make stuff happen," says Humphreys.
"The locals we met were quite possibly the kindest, friendliest and most welcoming people I've ever met in the whole world -- they were just unbelievably generous," says Humphreys courtesy www.alastairhumpheys.com
Humphreys: "Only three generations might separate these people from the ones who accompanied Thesiger."
The pair prepared for their trip by dragging the cart across the wet sands of the English seaside town of Margate. courtesy www.alastairhumpheys.com