Browsing: Adventures

Most tourists follow the eastern reaches of the Orange River’s border with Namibia, yet for surreal calm, its relatively untouched western bank has no equal. On a balmy, moonless night in late spring, a tiny stretch of the rugged 560km-long river border between South Africa and Namibia was turned into a paradigm of sublimity. It was a symphony of light; a perfectly silent, natural phenomenon that called to the senses to form words like “surreal” or “magic”. Actually, this was simply one of nature’s most beautiful gifts to man. The last time my eyes listened to insects performing their own…

Expect a huge variety of 4×4 terrain and a few rich lessons in history, fauna and flora on this nine-day tour of the Soutpansberg and Waterberg. We were standing around the braai fire waiting for the rugby to start. I was talking about a new addition to our Rugby Manne group. He’d just moved into our dorp.  He was a big oke, forceful and opinionated. He also owned a top-of-the-range 4×4. “Alastair… he’s a sales rep, isn’t he?” I asked my mate, somewhat puzzled. “Ja, but he’s also an Eye Specialist,’ replied Al. “How the hell can he be an…

SA4x4 and a few friends explore the new four-day Berg-to-Bush guided 4×4 tour over the last ridge of the Drakensberg and into the dusty plains of the Lowveld Not everyone can find the time necessary for a three-week overland trip, yet we all share the same lust for adventure. The new four-day Berg-to-Bush Transfrontier Wilderness Trail, billed as a 4×4 eco-trail by its organisers (the Transfrontier Parks Destinations or TFPD), may just be the perfect escape for Joburgers needing a long weekend break. By Andrew Middleton The route takes us along old Voortrekker tracks previously used by ox carts, to…

You know you’re on the road less travelled when the sign directing you to the Namibian border says “Suid-Wes Afrika”. The gravel road to the Onseepkans border felt a bit like a journey in time travel, back to 1990, just before Namibia became independent. The border post is small and friendly. We were the only car there and the staff were sitting outside soaking up the morning sun when we arrived. By Des Featherstone Long roads, open landscape and many surprises. Southern Namibia never fails as an accessible overlanding destination After crossing the narrow bridge across the Orange River and…

SA4x4 staffer Anton Willemse and his son ticked one of their bucket-list events earlier this year. Thousands of kays in a 4×4, many days’ fishing… The result? We’re not saying a word. Words & pictures Anton Willemse Senior & Junior When Darrell van Zeil from Opposite Lock invited me to join the team at the annual Okavango Bream Classic, I was over the moon. This annual fishing competition in the Okavango Panhandle had been on my bucket list for ages. It combines one of my favourite places (Botswana and the Delta) with one of my favourite hobbies (fishing). However, just…

A log crumbles. Sparks fly, drifting up in the breeze and disappearing into the sunset. The sun continues its descent into darkness, gently sliding behind the horizon; its colours reflect off the river, with the burnt-oranges merging with the campfire. A pearl-spotted owlet has already started to call, a ‘Tu-tu-tu-tutu. Tu-tu-tseeutseeu- tseeu-tseeu.’ My mate Greg pauses from his fire-stoking. “What’s that? I know it.” He repeats the call and the owl responds. Pretty soon it’s closer, calling frenetically. “It’s a pearl-spotted owl,” he says. Then he tells me a story about why he remembers that particular call. And that strikes…

This was a journey of hope and expectation. I had the privilege of tagging onto an elephantand- lion research team on its inaugural expedition, which was ostensibly to discover how many elephants and lions exist in Banhine National Park. Th is is one of three national parks in Mozambique that make up the Mozambican side of the Great Limpopo Transfrontier Conservation Area (TFCA). Th e team also wanted to find out whether the animals migrated within the greater TFCA zone, and specifi cally between the Limpopo National Park and Gonarezhou in neighbouring Zimbabwe. A scientific field trip to Mozambique’s Banhine…

The recipe was simple: bring together a bunch of SA’s topperforming bakkies and put them head to head in an epic adventure. From the urban sprawl of Johannesburg to deep within the Okavango Delta, these five vehicles would be tested to their limits and beyond. We had a real mix-and-match of vehicles, too, ranging from the ubiquitous Hilux 2.8 to the allpowerful V6 Amarok, and including the handsome 3.2 Ranger, surprising Triton and, of course, the Mazda – which showed up on the back foot, as rear-drive only. Th is would be an interesting trip with more than a few…

We join Richtersveld Tours’ new MTB route in this arid heartland for an unforgettable chance to explore the stillness that comes with so much space… By Richard van Ryneveld I was staring at the brand-new ‘longloan’ Mazda BT-50 parked in front of our offices. I was daydreaming. The RTI canopy with the side-hatch kitchen had just been fitted. On top was an aerodynamic Alu-Cab rooftop tent, and on the side, a 270-degree Shadow Awning, also from Alu- Cab. How the hell was I going to get my claws on this lovely beast? The ringing of my phone shatters this line of…

By Patrick Cruywagen Land Rover may have ended Defender production at the beginning of 2016, but their popularity and prices have continued to soar. Th e 2017 Defender Trophy held in the Limpopo province provided ample proof of this. Twenty competitors and five support Defenders of varying configurations (and with every accessory imaginable) lined up at the Copacopa Lodge start, which is only a few kms from the Punda Maria Gate of the Kruger National Park. Here, the vehicles were stickered up to the max. While most of the competitors hailed from South Africa, Richard Bennett and wife Jacqueline had…

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