When we tend to think of deserts, we conjure up images of sand dunes, barren, arid regions of great heat, and no where will you find a higher temperature than that recorded at Al 'Aziziyah in the Libyan Desert which reached a record 57.8c or 136.0f in 1922; the highest naturally occurring temperature ever recorded although the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) state that it was actually registered on 10 July 1913 in Furnace Creek Ranch, California at 56.7c (134.1f) and the Libyan Desert reading was erroneous. Although the Sahara desert is considered one of the least inhospitable places on earth, the Libyan desert which covers most of eastern Libya and forms part of it's north-eastern section, is the most inhospitable of the inhospitable with rainfall that only falls in some areas every five to to years.
Thew Libyan Desert went largely uncharted until 1924 when the explorer Ahmed Hassanein, the grandson of the last Admiral of the Egyptian fleet, undertook a 2200 mile expedition deep into the heart of the desert, discovering the Jebel Uweinat mountain ~ Mountain of Sourcelets ~ on the Egyptian, Libyan and Sudanese border, named after the spring 'Ain Dua' found at the foot of the mountain on its Libyan side. He also encountered the hostile Senussi, a grouping pledged to fight colonial expansion in the region particularly Italy after their Libyan forays that started in 1911. The Grand Senussi's grandson was later to become King Idris I of Libya in 1951 until he was overthrown in a military coup in 1969 by Colonel Gaddafi. Hassanein adventures were published in 1924 in the National Geographic Magazine and a year later in his book 'The Lost Oasis'.
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