The Botswana Roadtrip That Nearly Wasn't





Results 1 to 16 of 16
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2015
    Location
    Gaborone
    Age
    37
    Posts
    100
    Thanked: 44

    Default The Botswana Roadtrip That Nearly Wasn't

    A road trip around Botswana over the Christmas holidays seemed like a perfect way for SWAMBO and I to see the country we live and work in and to quench our desire to be out in the bush, mixing up some camping with some lodge accommodation and seeing what Botswana has to offer along the way. Little did we know how unprepared we’d be for a seemingly simple but exciting trip!

    Attached is a PDF with the trip report and some photos, as taken from our online blog, "Road Beneath Our Feet" where you can see more photos and even a few video clips from our trip. Hope it's an enjoyable read and perhaps some beginner campers/overlanders will learn from our mistakes!

    Cheers and safe travels,
    Jovan.
    Attached Images Attached Images

    1999 Toyota Prado TZ, 3.4L, V6, petrol, auto

  2. The Following 8 Users Say Thank You to Jovan Djokic For This Useful Post:


  3. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    East London
    Age
    66
    Posts
    4,445
    Thanked: 2714

    Default Re: The Botswana Roadtrip That Nearly Wasn't

    Thanks for posting Jovan.

    One seldom sees trip reports on trips that are less than a complete success. I think forum members are often just too embarrassed to share the tough times. It seems that you tried hard and in fact succeeded in making the best of a bad thing. I also do not do rain very well!
    Landcruiser 76SW.

    “Great journeys are memorable not so much for what you saw, but for where you camped”.

    At least "Once a year go someplace you have never been before" Delai Lama.

    Trans East Africa 2015/2016 Trip report http://www.4x4community.co.za/forum/...e16?highlight= from post 315.

  4. The Following User Says Thank You to Stan Weakley For This Useful Post:


  5. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2014
    Location
    Somerset West
    Age
    76
    Posts
    448
    Thanked: 358

    Default Re: The Botswana Roadtrip That Nearly Wasn't

    Thanks Jovan. An entertaining read, and it is very nice to see things through the fresh eyes of a first-timer.

  6. The Following User Says Thank You to RodS For This Useful Post:


  7. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    NL
    Age
    64
    Posts
    670
    Thanked: 143

    Default Re: The Botswana Roadtrip That Nearly Wasn't

    Thanks Jovan, I am not very successful with rooftoptents and rain. Nice trip you had!

  8. The Following User Says Thank You to Rik For This Useful Post:


  9. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    Gaborone
    Age
    69
    Posts
    6,751
    Thanked: 959

    Default Re: The Botswana Roadtrip That Nearly Wasn't

    Thanks Jovan,

    What an interesting (camping) trip this turned out the be. Glad you were recovering form the mishaps and going on despite circumspect conditions.

    Okay then, Botswana is still waiting
    Kalahari Safari
    ORRA Call: WB58 | ICASA ZRF430
    Nissan Patrol GU TB45
    | Nissan Safari GU TD42 | B'rakah 4x4 Trailer
    E34 - 535i for a bit of nostalgia
    E39 - 540i for the open roads

  10. The Following User Says Thank You to Kalahari Safari For This Useful Post:


  11. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Pretoria
    Age
    50
    Posts
    8,325
    Thanked: 3274

    Default Re: The Botswana Roadtrip That Nearly Wasn't

    Thanks for a candid but positive report, you adapted really well.

    Look, I think most campers might look the part in rain, but at some point we all get miserable. We camped at that same Chobe Safari lodge and Ihaha one December and the rain nearly got the better of us. I did get some nice photos of storms moving over the flats on the Namibia side from Ihaha though.
    2018 Toyota Fortuner 2.8 GD-6 4x4 AT
    BushLapa 78 Now a Boskruier but with the same Zambia and CKGR bush stripes


  12. The Following User Says Thank You to lekhubu943 For This Useful Post:


  13. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    Gold Coast
    Age
    55
    Posts
    209
    Thanked: 10

    Default Re: The Botswana Roadtrip That Nearly Wasn't

    What a refreshing and honest trip report, thanks Jovan. Even the best laid plans can fail when mother nature raises her head. As lekhubu mentioned, you adapted really well,especially the part where you tossed the tent into the bin ( I had a good chuckle), best move you could ever make. Been down that road

  14. The Following User Says Thank You to kirkfort For This Useful Post:


  15. #8
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Maun Botswana
    Age
    46
    Posts
    1,757
    Thanked: 439

    Default Re: The Botswana Roadtrip That Nearly Wasn't

    Sigh...Gabz people!

    Only Joking! Thanks Jovan for a refreshingly honest and very entertaining trip report. PM me when your travels find you in Maun, I'd like to buy you a beer!

  16. #9
    Join Date
    Feb 2017
    Location
    Ramsey
    Posts
    153
    Thanked: 81

    Default Re: The Botswana Roadtrip That Nearly Wasn't

    Thanks for posting the other side of the camping coin. It is not always sunshine and cold drinks for days and nights on end.
    We were actually in Kasane the same time as you (left for Namibia on 1st Jan) Went to Victoria Falls on 30th and game driving on 31st and know all about the rain that came.
    Thanks again.
    Albert

    Progress might have been alright once, but it has gone on too long.

  17. The Following User Says Thank You to Albert Ross For This Useful Post:


  18. #10
    Join Date
    Aug 2015
    Location
    Gaborone
    Age
    37
    Posts
    100
    Thanked: 44

    Default Re: The Botswana Roadtrip That Nearly Wasn't

    Quote Originally Posted by RraBots View Post
    Sigh...Gabz people!

    Only Joking! Thanks Jovan for a refreshingly honest and very entertaining trip report. PM me when your travels find you in Maun, I'd like to buy you a beer!
    Sounds like a plan!

    1999 Toyota Prado TZ, 3.4L, V6, petrol, auto

  19. The Following User Says Thank You to Jovan Djokic For This Useful Post:


  20. #11
    Join Date
    Aug 2015
    Location
    Gaborone
    Age
    37
    Posts
    100
    Thanked: 44

    Default Re: The Botswana Roadtrip That Nearly Wasn't

    Thanks everyone for the comments on my trip review! You live, you learn!
    SWAMBO hasn't been put off camping (thankfully), buuuut, she swore she'd kill me if I ever buy another CampMaster tent again!

    So our next trip will probably have to wait until we treat ourselves to a decent canvas tent. I'll probably head down to SA to get one as the choice in Botswana is very limited and as such the prices are steep.

    Ideally a RTT would be preferred, but seeing as we don't (as yet) have the vehicle for it, a canvas ground tent will probably be the way forward for now. (Frontrunner sell a durable and quite light RTT... "Manufactured with a special Oxford tent fabric (400D)") but it's pricey and I'm not sure how much better than a nylon tent it is.

    What do you guys recommend as a good starting point? I'm admiring the Tentco range, particularly the Junior Safari canvas dome tent (2.1x2.1x1.8m), but there's also the Howling Moon range, the Campmor range, the OzTrail range etc etc... But Tentco seem to have the best prices.

    Any advice, suggestions, recommendations are welcome!

    Thanks again and I look forward to posting a sequel trip review, of a more positive nature next time!

    Cheers.

    1999 Toyota Prado TZ, 3.4L, V6, petrol, auto

  21. #12
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Pretoria
    Age
    35
    Posts
    2,246
    Thanked: 124

    Default Re: The Botswana Roadtrip That Nearly Wasn't

    Thanks for the entertaining and honest report. The brands of canvas dome tents you mention above are all good. The popular ones are Howling Moon, Bushtec, Tentco and Campmor. The material and construction is more important than the brand of tent, so try and get cotton ripstop canvas thicker than 320 grams per square meter. My Bushtec Gemsbok 450gsm 3x3 has gone through tropical downpours on a massive scale, but the weight of the heavier canvas keeps me dry and the thicker canvas offers a cooler interior, plus it holds its own in the wind.

    Good luck with your next adventure and please continue posting trip reports.
    Suzuki Grand Vitara 3.2 V6 Auto
    Ironman Suspension kit
    Suzuki Snorkel
    WECA off road bumper
    Frontrunner roof rack

    Venter custom 4x4 trailer

  22. The Following User Says Thank You to Kierie For This Useful Post:


  23. #13
    Join Date
    Jan 2017
    Location
    Nelspruit
    Posts
    369
    Thanked: 129

    Default The Botswana Roadtrip That Nearly Wasn't

    I have two 2.4x2.4 dome tents by Canvas & Tent that I've used extensively since 1992! They plus a larger Chobe frame tent (Meru style) have undergone lengthy periods set up as permanent base camps for my work as a wildlife photographer. The two dome tents stood for an entire year in Savuti while the Chobe plus one of the domes stood for another entire year in Kruger, albeit always in some shade. I have never experienced any problems with leaks etc. Yes, they are heavy and bulky but if you want a tent to work in extreme conditions over extended periods, proper heavy ripstop canvas is the only way to go.
    Last edited by DarylB; 2017/03/13 at 05:35 PM.
    Series 80 'Cruiser GX Diesel 1996
    Previously: '98 Defender 110 HT TDi, Landy SIII S/W, Hilux D/C 4x4,
    Isuzu 2,3 4x4, Isuzu 2,0 4x4, Isuzu 1600 4x4, Chev Nomad, Cheetah beach buggy!

  24. The Following User Says Thank You to DarylB For This Useful Post:


  25. #14
    Join Date
    Aug 2015
    Location
    Gaborone
    Age
    37
    Posts
    100
    Thanked: 44

    Default Re: The Botswana Roadtrip That Nearly Wasn't

    Thanks Kierie.
    Will make sure to look at the grams/sqm (as well as the price) and try find the best combo!

    1999 Toyota Prado TZ, 3.4L, V6, petrol, auto

  26. #15
    Join Date
    Aug 2015
    Location
    Gaborone
    Age
    37
    Posts
    100
    Thanked: 44

    Default Re: The Botswana Roadtrip That Nearly Wasn't

    Quote Originally Posted by DarylB View Post
    I have two 2.4x2.4 done tents by Canvas & Tent that I've used extensively since 1992! They plus a larger Chobe frame tent (Meru style) have undergone lengthy periods set up as permanent base camps for my work as a wildlife photographer. The two done tents stood for an entire year in Savuti while the Chobe plus one of the domes stood for another entire year in Kruger. I have never experienced any problems with leaks etc. yes, they are heavy and bulky but if you want a tent to work in extreme conditions over extended periods, proper heavy ripstop canvas is the only way to go.
    Thanks for the info Daryl!

    My only "issue", if I can call it that, is the weight, as my RAV4 isnt that capable of carrying too much weight.

    Having said that, i suppose it makes sense to get a good (read heavy) tent and then compromise on all the other stuff that gets taken with.

    1999 Toyota Prado TZ, 3.4L, V6, petrol, auto

  27. #16
    Join Date
    Jan 2017
    Location
    Nelspruit
    Posts
    369
    Thanked: 129

    Default The Botswana Roadtrip That Nearly Wasn't

    Quote Originally Posted by Jovan Djokic View Post
    Thanks for the info Daryl!

    My only "issue", if I can call it that, is the weight, as my RAV4 isnt that capable of carrying too much weight.

    Having said that, i suppose it makes sense to get a good (read heavy) tent and then compromise on all the other stuff that gets taken with.
    Well I suppose it also depends on when and where you plan to use it. If you are likely to be camping in areas where there's a good chance of rain, and lots of it, canvas is the way to go. However if you are likely to only experience the occasional shower...well, things dry out once the sun comes out again!

    In my case I camp for months at a time and can't avoid being in places through the rainy season. I can assure you that camping in Kenya during the "long rains" between April and June is no fun if your tent is not 100% waterproof!

    On the other hand camping at the beach in Mozambique and getting a bit damp during an overnight downpour...well, the sun is likely to shine the next day anyway!
    Last edited by DarylB; 2017/03/13 at 05:41 PM.
    Series 80 'Cruiser GX Diesel 1996
    Previously: '98 Defender 110 HT TDi, Landy SIII S/W, Hilux D/C 4x4,
    Isuzu 2,3 4x4, Isuzu 2,0 4x4, Isuzu 1600 4x4, Chev Nomad, Cheetah beach buggy!

  28. The Following User Says Thank You to DarylB For This Useful Post:


Tags for this Thread

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •