TRAVEL: Notes from the Put Foot Rally Day 1

Published On June 17, 2015 | Travel South Africa

Darren Ball’s notes from the road to Namibia.

DARREN BALLThe Band of Beards set off to a sketchy start at 3:30 this morning. All on a bit of a high after receiving some recognition for the team uniforms, branding the car and all growing beards for the last few months to live up to the name Band of Beards.

Waking up early, quick splash showers to awaken the tired bodies after a loud gig from Crimson at the Brass Bell last night.

Nathan met up with the crew, Paul, Johan and me ready and dressed to go.

We all decided to do the first leg to Namibia in full team outfits. having to pack light due to going 8000kms in a Ford Fiesta – that’s right, 4 guys, 4 countries, 8000kms in a tiny white Ford Fiesta 1.4 – we don’t have much choice in outfit changes. Luckily they gave us some fresh socks.

With guitars and banjos strapped to the roof we’re not exactly economic when it comes to fuel either.

The start took place along Table Mountain in cold wet weather. Getting up to the start line was where the first challenge took place. The little fiesta couldn’t make it up the steep wet roads of Cape Town. With tires spinning and us going nowhere slowly we decided to all bail out and turn around to head back down the hill and find an easier route.

Once we made it to the top, we turned around and we where on our way.

First stretch is a long one, Cape Town to Fishriver Canyon – 900kms of tar stretched out before us made fun by the passing of other teams, hooting and cheering each other on.

We seem to be the underdogs in this, all adding to the team wanting to really prove you can have fun driving across Africa in a tiny little car and not some huge 4×4 with all the luxuries.

As we head up into the Northern Cape the skies opened up from the clouds and the temperature increased, or maybe that’s just because there’s four tired sweaty guys crammed in the car. Music blaring… we’re making progress.

Taking it in shifts to drive and ride shotgun, co-pilot playing dj and keeping the driver awake while the guys in the back get some rest.

We reached the checkpoint after some delays and a long gravel road. Canyon Roadhouse is the first stop and what an amazing venue out in the middle of the Namibian veld.

Defiantly a highlight for me is the roadhouse with all the old hot rods and vintage cars. After a nice hot, delicious lasagne it was off to bed. Early start and off to the next checkpoint. Another long 8 hour drive and I’m sure another awesome adventure awaits.

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