Notes on the Geography of Sudan: Nile Corridor
The Nile dominates Northern Sudan as much as it does Egypt: it's the only substantial body of water, and it's fringed by land that's otherwise next to useless.
The combined White and Blue Niles near Sabaluka, at the 6th Cataract of the Nile.
The flight from Cairo to Khartoum takes two hours. When Britain ruled both Egypt and Sudan, travel was mostly by rail and ferry. Along this section, around Sabaluka, it was by rail.
The banks of the river are often irrigated. Here, we're looking upstream on the White Nile, where long narrow fields are irrigated by water electrically pumped from the river.
Farther from water, the country north of Khartoum is intensely arid. Everything is built of stone or, more likely, mud, and the occasional tree is an event.
Public meetings are typically held in a tree's shade.
The surrounding plains stretch out forever.
Mosques are important enough to be built in stone.
So is the occasional tomb. This one commemorated a man who had made the pilgrimage to Mecca. No big deal today: the flight from Khartoum to Jedda is an easy one, with Boeing 747's operating daily in the 1980s.
The Blue Nile at Khartoum, flowing front to back, south to north and splitting around Tuti Island. Khartoum proper is on the left; Khartoum North is on the right. The bridge in the foreground carries cars; the one behind it also carries a railroad.
A ferry crosses the broad reservoir formed on the White Nile by the Jebel Aulia Dam, well upstream from Khartoum but built by and for Egypt. The reservoir creates a very welcome cool breeze.
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