Thursday, 30 June 2011

Ron's 1970 VW Campervan

Ron's 1971 Campervan
I sent out email yesterday to the rally organiser Roger's email list and got back several responses.
Below from Ron Bellerive.  Have asked him for photo (now above). Mentioned that Gordon's yachting somewhere in Scandinavia, I think, and leave to Gordon to get back to him in due course.
We had a VW Campervan in the sixties with that famous Jimi Hendrix black & white ("tone drop-out") image stencilled  on the front (hey, it was the sixties...).
And I also a series of VW sedans.  Great student transport, in those days. There's a story about "the blue one", which is for telling somewhere, sometime, over some campfire....

Hi Peter,  Hi Gordon, Thanks for the link.  Wendy and I look forward to meeting you. I see your car has been shipped.  Do you have an agent in Cape Town to receive it and clear customs?  Our VW is now in the container and on its way but we have not confirmed an agent in SA.  Will you shipping back out of Cairo or Alexandria?  We are still undecided on continuing to London.  It's cold there that time of year besides after two months we'll probably be hitting the wall, and wanting to return home.

cheers,  Ron

Tor's Peugeot 404 Fuel injection

I sent out email yesterday to the rally organiser Roger's email list and got back several responses.
From Tor Allen, re his Peugeot 404.  He's going to send a piccie:
Update: here's the picture of the rebuild two years ago:

Morning Peter,

Very many thanks for you note below, …………I read with great interest your entry with  a Ford Mustang……I have always liked the look of the car and always remember when I first saw one in the USA many years ago,… it had such a long bonnet and also had the unmistakable three parallel rear lights on each side……

Just thought I might pass on to you a bit of  interesting history about my Peugeot 404 Fuel Injection that I will entering in to this crazy race to the Pyramids…you might want to add it to the blog ….I say this because I am most probably the slowest driver in  town and enjoy the scenery and the people along the roads in Africa. So some of the distances we are covering will be a bit long for me but will enjoy it all the same,  I have by the way  lived in East Africa all of my life…

The 404 is a 1966 model that I bought  from  a good friend of mine living  in London by the name of Guy Bromley in 2007 for about Sterling 4,000……. It had only done 27.000 miles and in fact, not much more even to this day, the spare wheel is the original one from the showroom, the paint work was also original … I have the original receipt that the Scottish owner paid for the was purchased for Sterling 1,568,…on the 4 th August 1966.

By the way, Guy found the vehicle sitting on a Persian carpet inside a heated garage in a Scottish Castle where the original owner had kind of put it away I guess….. Anyway I had it sent by container to Dar Es Salaam here in Tanzania about  4 years ago and drove it to Arusha to where we live..about an 8 hour drive, and on the slopes of Mount Kilimanjaro, and then on to Nairobi in Kenya for a complete re-built to get rid of some rust and so on under the vehicle, it was there for almost a year till I bought it back here.

I took it back up to Kenya again last week to have things done to it ready for the Cape To Cairo with spares from Germany and all was fine till after the border when the car just stopped, luckily I found  the Contact Breaker  had broken, so with all my spares that I was carrying to Kenya in the back of the car I was back on the road again in an hour.

That’s it and will send you a picture later of the re-build,… I believe Roger has picture of the car  on the web.

Have fun and look forward to being together in September.

Best wishes to you.

Tor and Sarah.

Tor Allan

Dave's 1970 Mercedes 280SE

I sent out email yesterday to the rally organiser Roger's email list and got back several responses.
Here's one from Dave Pineo, with some photos of the Namibian contingent and his email below:

Dave Pineo's 1970 Mercedes Benz 1970 280SE

Ian Gallagher's 1968 MGB GT

Steffen Goetz's 1970 Mercedes Benz 280S

Kobus van Wyngaarden's 1970 Mercedes 280SE

Hi Peter
Thanks for the email – I had a look at your blog and look forward to seeing you soon. I attach photos of the four Namibian cars.
We will leave Windhoek around the 1st few days of August (if all goes well with visas, cars and work) – since my daughters are currently in possession of my flat in Newlands (enjoying rent-free status as students at UCT) I have told them to evict any squatting friends between 30th Aug – 5th Sept when we will join you all at the hotel in Bloubergstrand the night before we head north (back to Windhoek !!).
The cars are progressing well but still things to complete after a year of preparation – they are on exhibition at the Standard Bank Auto Show in Windhoek this weekend.
See you in Cape Town  -  also maybe in Hong Kong one day! It is on my list of things to do but the list is long and the time short. When we left Uganda in the mid-60s (where I was born) after Idi Amin started to stir things up my godfather went to Hong Kong for many years (and was awarded an OBE for services rendered to the UK Goverment!). He always wanted me to visit but I never had the opportunity in my younger days – every year he writes me what he calls his “valedictory letter” but he is still going and I last saw him in Oxford, UK last year aged 92 !!!
Dave Pineo
Windhoek, Namibia

Wednesday, 29 June 2011

South African AA Crossboder information... with Lion....

From Roger the rally organiser.
Click here for pdf detail
Roger adds:
If you go to the VisaRequest website and look at their Sudanese application form it now says that the visa will be “valid for two months from date of issue”. According to my calcs we should be able to obtain the visa before we leave and if this is so it will save a huge amount of hassle in Addis. I wrote to Jaco asking for clarification on this yesterday and as soon as he advises I will let you know....
I have always fitted 50 x 50 triangles front and back.
 Welcome to the world of the Egyptians! You will enjoy Aswan customs. Mind you Wadi Halfa is a mind boggling experience.
Attached is a picture of my, the Magnettes, rear reflectors and something I came across in Namibia last week.

Roger's 1957 MG Magnette
"Something I came across in Namibia last week"

Sunday, 26 June 2011


100 ngwees and you get one of these
Quick! What's the currency in Zambia?  That's right, it's the "Kwacha".  Split up into 100 ngwees.  Don't count on your local currency exchange to have enough Kwacha for your trip..... My trusty currency converter gives 1US = 4,850 kwacha.

More on currencies for the Cape to Cairo Rally, From Roger, the Rally organiser:


The recommended currency through South Africa, Namibia, Botswana and Zimbabwe is the South African Rand which is accepted in all the mentioned countries.

From and including Zambia the recommended currency to carry is the US Dollar. Old US large denomination notes are not accepted due to counterfeit problems. I carry $100 notes younger than 2008.

Visa and MasterCard credit cards are accepted anywhere in South Africa, Namibia and Botswana and at most of the accommodation stops along the rest of the way. Small villages do not generally accept cards but the use of ATMS it becoming prolific across the continent. Diners and Amex cards are not popular. Expect to pay cash for all your fuel unless you have a South African Petro card which is also accepted in Namibia.

Most large villages and all towns and cities have recognised banks with Barclays being well represented.


Friday, 24 June 2011

Crocodile carpaccio, anyone?

In front the "Copper and Lumber Store" Hotel,
Nelson's Dockyard, English Harbour, Antigua May 2006.
"Pit" is in front of me (back, L).  Other Peter (Brit) at back and Kay Hirsch (German)
Thinking about the trip to South Africa, I recalled "Pit" S├╝ssman, with whom I did a trip across the Atlantic in May 2006 -- Antigua to the Azores, on an Ocean Lord 40' "Ocean Wanderer". There were four of us, plus Boogie, the Dutch skipper, who taught me celestial navigation on the way across.
Pit's from South Africa, where he owns a crocodile farm which produces crocodile leather and smoked or carpaccio crocodile meat!
The company is Izintaba.

I'm still trying to get in touch with Pit.  Maybe we can drop by his farm on our Rally, and wrap our laughing gear round some croco-carpaccio...
Update 13 July: thanks to Pit for name of Kay Hirsch above, our fourth crew member.  Also for several other emails and the offer to stay on the 3rd September, the day I arrive in Cape Town...
Update 25 June: got response form Pit.  Seems he lives in Cape Town, where our Rally starts on 6th September:
Let me know when you are in SA (dates & locations) and surely I will make time available.
Presently I am travelling in Germany and will be back to Cape Town on the 3rd July.
Best regards

New Route Schedule

Revised route: click to enlarge.  
From Rally organiser, Roger Pearce, this morning:

There has been a change to the accommodation venues in Windhoek and Khartoum.
Please note the changes on the revised route schedule.

Thursday, 23 June 2011

Visas, sitrep

Putting down here for ease of my reference; what I've found out about visas, so far (for holder of an Australian passport):

South Africa 4-6 Sep No Visa needed
Namibia 7-8 Sep No Visa needed
Botswana 9-10 Sep No Visa needed
Zimbabwe 11-13 Sep Visa at port of entry
Zambia 14-15 Sep Visa at port of entry
Tanzania 16-22 Sep Visa in HK
PP, air ticket, letter,
Yellow fever cert [Done 10/8]
Kenya 23-28 Sep Visa in HK or border
As per Tanzania, 3 mth validity [Done: 1 Aug]
Ethiopia 29 Sep - 5 Oct Yes, 15 minutes
As per Tanzania [Done: 4 Aug]
Sudan 6-11 Oct Visa in Addis Abbaba
Egypt 12-21 Oct Yes, apply in August
2-month validity

Wednesday, 22 June 2011

Gordon Galavants

Our tent is the size of ONE of these....
Got a call from Gordon yesterday. He was in the Maldives on his way to Sweden to do some yacht racing and then (I think) deliver the boat to Denmark.
He doesn't muck about our Gordon: either sailing boats between countries or driving classic cars across continents...
[Note for newbies to the site: we met Gordon when he crewed on Baby Tonga in the '10 King's Cup, where we on Xena and Tonga had a good tussle, ending up equal first on points, with the Tonga taking it on countback. Gordon then came with us on Xena in the April '11 Hong Kong to San Fernando race.  As we sat on the rail together, Gordon mentioned that apart from sailing he liked to drive classic cars around the place.  I said that if he was ever short of a co-driver, I'd be interested.  And here we are...]
He asked me how I was doing with visas, which is that I've found out which countries need a visa and which not.  Basically the theme is this: the further north you go the more hassle it is.
They all seem to need a letter  -- huh? -- from your "employer" (so I'll have do invent one), an itinerary and e-ticket showing that you're going to leave.  As if any of these places is a target for illigal immigration.... but, oh well, just do the paperwork, bud.
He also asked me about a tent, as we've a few days when we have to provide our own accommodation: I told him I had a brand new tent, never been put up, which I'd bought in Oz at Christmas '09 and never used.
Arlene and I then put it up in the back yard.  It's about the size of a large handkerchief.  Big enough for our Weimaraner Marcus, maybe Basil the Lab too.... it's got to take two, not-so-small blokes...  Still, Gordon reckons that's ok, keep it small, there's very little room in the car -- any extra is taken up with fuel tanks, back seat 'n all...
Update (4 July): piccie of tent.  Views on the size?
Peter dwarfs the tent.  Wife says: "two-man, are you sure??"

Back yard with tent....

Sunday, 12 June 2011


This is the only neutral image I can get for Sudan.
If you google images, they are of starving people
or army guys with AK-47's in flatbed trucks....
Roger's email gives a rather more phlegmatic picture...
Message from Rally organiser, Roger, yesterday 11 June:


A bit of news on the Sudan. I have managed to track down a guide who I have used before and he will take us off the beaten track to Kerma and Karima. There is a strong possibility that he can arrange a Nubian house to use in Karima and Kerma. I have done this before and it is very pleasant sleeping on an earthen veranda as against a tent in the sand. He is also tracking down a cook we used once who will prepare local dishes under the stars. Absolutely magical.

For those who haven’t scanned their passports, please do as we need them to pre-register in the Sudan.

I will sending out accommodation lists for Ethiopia ,the Sudan and Egypt to assist with visas. Please try to apply for the Ethiopian visa which is valid for an arrival date of the 27th September and not the 28th so that if we can get through Marsabit/Moyale a day earlier it will take off the pressure with the Sudanese Embassy in Addis. An extra day in Addis is better than a day in Moyale on a scale of about 1000 to 1. Also, you MUST have the Egyptian visa in your passport before we leave Capetown.

Have a good weekend.

PF: My discussion with Sudan honorary consul (HC) here in Hong Kong below the fold...