Those avid followers of the 2001-2002 expedition may have noticed that
the trans-sahara crossing from east-west failed to materialise. Our
vehicle was old; our tempers frayed and time short. To our credit we
crossed the Sahara but from the South to the North. In June 2002 Sam
Raf and Piers Gladstone tried to continue the journey. The weasel,
however, had other ideas. She systematically rattled, fell apart and
refused to go backwards. Eventually she passed on into new friendly
hands, who promised to bring her to her former glory.
We fled the heat of Khartoum, Sam and Piers in a Toyota and I
on an Emirates Airways Airbus. (I explained to my companions that this
mode of transport was chosen, "purely because it was air-conditioned".)
Both of these expeditions were very enjoyable experiences for
all members of the team. There were however some slight glitches. For
example: we would rather have spent more time on the road and less time
This new expedition is the product of much grumbling by
campfires, discussion on dive boats and planning in cafes and bars
across the world. It takes into account the opinions of all the
expedition team members, past and present.
The result is an expedition that comprises two vehicles, four
permanent crew and a number of others "on detachment". We also honed
our aims, and our kit…. But to learn more, dear reader, you must turn
the page and enter, once again, the realm of the mad. The people that
keep going back to the desert.