Riding into a sandstorm by motorbike in Mocha, Yemen.

Photo Favorite – Riding into a Sandstorm in Yemen

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This is a throw WAY back photo, well before ever starting Desk to Dirtbag.

Riding into a sandstorm by motorbike in Mocha, Yemen.

I was living in Sana’a, Yemen, the capital, studying the Arabic language, me and my buddy Matt headed out along the Red Sea to get away for the weekend.

We hired a few mototaxis to drive us two hours down the beach, through the sand, with waves lapping at the tires, to go to the world’s original coffee port, Mocha (also where the name of the beverage comes from).

Only to arrive in the midst of a huge sandstorm… Our drivers dutifully kept on going, just pulling the bottoms of their shirts up over the tops of their heads to keep the sand at bay.

Sand got absolutely everywhere. My camera never quite worked again the same after that, either, it would randomly switch modes and the lens would go in and out.

After a quick lunch of fresh fish we quickly hightailed it out of there and headed back inland.

Still, one of the most amazing memories from an amazing six months in Yemen.

I made the below video 7+ years ago (so don’t judge–the song is meant to be a parody!) to tell the tale of our mototaxi journey along the Red Sea.

Yemen and the Middle East in general is a deeply misunderstood region. If you would like to learn more about this country, culture, and amazing people, I highly recommend you check out the following books and movies:

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Photo Favorite – Riding into a Sandstorm in Yemen


Author, Writer, and Head Honcho at Desk to Dirtbag
Ryan is an author, adventurer, perpetual wanderer, and self-proclaimed dirtbag (but that might not mean what you think). Originally from Seattle, he headed to Washington D.C. where he spent five years working for Congress before heeding the call of the wild. He set out truck camping to road trip across the American West. Since then he set out traveling to Colombia, drove across all of Central America, and also wrote a best selling book: Big Travel, Small Budget. He just finished driving his old truck across all of South America. Follow the adventures on social media or read more about me.

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