Monday, October 28, 2013

The Comradery of Overland Travel

Overland travel in Africa has a number of 'merge' points along the myriad of roads.
Richard, Sophie, Wynand & Talia
At these meeting points, the grapevine is abuzz with travel news, route planning, reports of other overlanders and the usual hearty fireside conversations. The excitement of sharing stories with other overlanders and the serendipitous meeting along a rural road, campsite or website has a unique effect of keeping the travel passion alive.

I was reminded of this after reading four current blogs written in October 2013, all with a common theme of Tanzania. Each blog referenced meeting up with the other overlanders...
It started with Arno & Elize mentioning time spent at 'The Farmhouse' in Iringa, Tanzania.

Thursday, October 10, 2013

1956: Pretoria to London by Karrier Gamecock Bus

Bessie Rutherford - 1956 Africa by Bus route
"Retief carefully set the compass at a point where the Niger River made an obvious bend – the compass was now our only way to navigate. We drove and drove. After days of endless yellow sand, we began to wonder if we’d ever see our families or our country again. One day we came across a heap of bones. We had been told about this landmark – the skeleton of a camel – and it meant we were still on course." 

In 1956, Retief and his wife Bessie, led a group of South African's from Pretoria to London. Driving two Karrier Gamecock buses with Rootes engines, the groups of travelers headed North...

Graces Guides describes the Rootes engine as a two stroke diesel marketed with two horizontally opposed piston in each of the three cylinders. More on the engine here

You can read all about the trip, written by Bessie Rutherford, via the Go! website: Across Africa by bus.