Summary

We enjoyed this tour immensely, and can not wait for the next one. Driving 6500km in 19 days is a big ask, and can be very tiring, especially with kids, or even in a group, but we were lucky we were alone, and could adjust our plans as and when required in an instant. Cash is still king in the smaller places and make sure to carry small denominations as well, as change is not always avaialble. The weather was perfect with warm days and cool nights. Even the rain we experienced in the southern part of Namibia was welcome. Although route planning is important, it is also important to have a flexible itenary. We were stuck with a destination and a return-by date, and we didnt have much space for manouevering around our itenary, but we managed. There are some places that we would have loved to enjoy for longer, but that only gives us an excuse to go back again later. I also need to find a way of managing my batteries and power better. At Epupa Falls in the heat, the fridge killed both spare batteries in less than 36 hours. Granted, these were normal cranking batteries, and they are not new either. I really need to investigate and invest in some solar/water/treadmill/wind chargers to keep the fridge going during hot days like that. We are very strict with our fridge-etiquette, and we only opened it once a day to change the ice-packs, but even that was enough to drain the power. No worries, the meat we had stayed frozen all the time, so we didnt suffer any damage. Luckily we have a year to worry about that.

 

Vehicle and equipment used

Toyota Hilux 3.0 D4D D/C 4x4 fitted with GOMAD Aluminium Canopy and roof rack Rooftop tent on the cab Spare wheel and tool box on top of the canopy Rear seat removed and 40l Engel fridge and 45l Coleman cooler mounted in the place there-of. Dual-dual battery system. Yes 2 spare batteries.

 

Maps/Navigation

Garmin Nuvi 500 T4A latest version Map Studio Southern Africa Touring Atlas (19voetsek version) Old but still useful Sahara Notebook with Mapsource

 

Communications

We set our Vodacom cell phones to International SMS roaming. We got cell phone reception at every place we got to, even in the remotest areas. Bought a NTC sim card with air time for emergency phone calls.

 

Observations, realisations, revelations

We realised that on a tour such as this where we break up camp vitually every day, some sort of drawer system will have its benefits. We also had a great opportunity to evaluate our "kit" list, and there are some items that enjoyed their last tour with us as they never get used. We also identified the need for a few things we didnt have before, either because we thought they werent necessary, or because we never knew we needed it. Because die Broodblik is a relatively new vehicle only bought about 3 months prior to this tour, it wasnt possible to fit everything. Some of the modifications are non negotiable (NN), and some are nice-to-haves (N2H).

1) Hi lift jack points (NN)

2) Roofrack tie-down points (NN)

3) Insulating cover for the fridge and cooler box (N2H)

4) Window tinting (NN)

5) Some sort of drawer system and loading deck (N2H)

6) Airbag Suspension Helpers (N2H)

7) Solar power (N2H)

8) Up to date paper maps (N2H)

9) MORE TIME!! (NN)