What is Expedition Africa Kouga?
Many in the greater St Francis are already caught up in the hype and building excitement of Expedition Africa Kouga due to start this weekend. No doubt some readers, particularly those who don’t spend a large proportion of their day on social media, are possibly not too sure of what Expedition Africa Kouga is all about and what a fantastic event is about to take place in our part of the world. And so for the thus far uninitiated here is a synopsis of what Expedition Africa is all about.
Expedition Africa Kouga is….
- A 500km non-stop (no sleep) race where teams navigate themselves from Control Point to Control Point.
- They only receive a map and compass, and that’s it. The route is not marked, and is kept secret until race day.
- Teams are 4 strong, of which one must be female.
- They trek (hike), cycle and kayak, and mountaineer their way over the course.
- TheExpedition Africa Kouga route will include the greater St Francis area, Jeffreys, the entire Gamtoos Valley, a portion of the Baviaanskloof Wilderness Area, and the Tsitsikamma.
- AND MOST OF ALL – a test of both physical and mental fortitude.
Who are the competitors?
39 teams of four represent some 13 countries with the biggest compliment obviously coming from South Africa. Other countries represented in the race include
- New Zealand
- United Kingdom
- United States
The race starts on Sunday morning14 May at 7:00am (the start venue is yet to be announced but SFT will let you know as soon as venue is revealed). Once the teams cross the start line it is a race to the finish with sleep apparently not on the ‘things to do” list of the competitors. A small change to the normal expedition racing rules is that owing to the dangers traversing a section of the Baviaans, there will be a “Dark Zone” where if teams do not reach this zone in time to cross the “dark zone”, they will have to stop and wait for sunrise before continuing. An important tactic must surely be to pass through this zone before dark, easier said than done considering the teams won’t know where it is until they reach that point in the race.
The teams are given seven days to complete the 500 kilometre course using nothing more than the provided maps and a compass. According to race organiser Stephan Muller of Kinetic Energy, the leading teams are expected to complete the race in around three days. THREE DAYS for 500 kilometres on foot, cycle and kayak!
Must be crazy!!
Tomorrow and the days following, St Francis Today will keep you informed as to where and when you will be able to meet the competitors, spectate some of the planned events including a flag ceremony planned for Saturday and the Sunday start. We will also give you links to where you can keep track of the competitors, especially our “home” team, ‘Team Cape St Francis Resort’ and how they are progressing as the race evolves.
The event is being hosted by Cape St Francis Resort – See more