Counting Down – 14 & 13 Days to the Start of the Last Desert Race in Antarctica

Final Days in South Africa

Saturday, 18 October 2014 & Sunday, 19 October 2014

Greetings from San Francisco

I have just arrived in San Francisco after a 30 hour trip from Johannesburg.

The past few days have been a hectic period of final preparations for the Last Desert Race in Antarctica. I’m spending the next ten days in San Francisco and will travel from here to Ushuaia in Argentina from where we will depart for Antarctica on 1 November 2014. As result, I had to finalise everything for the race two weeks earlier than under “normal circumstances”.

Packing for a desert race is a challenging exercise under the best of circumstances, and doing it for the Last Desert Race was no different. Given the gear and equipment requirements of the race, plus everything else which I need for a four-week trip, much planning and many checklists were required to get the job done. Thankfully, Dalene has become an “experienced desert race packing coordinator”, while South African Airways was very lenient with my 40kg+ luggage at check-in on Saturday morning.

I also had a number of final media commitment about the race and my fundraising campaign with Greenpeace Africa for a solar street lighting project in Diepsloot. SABC TV did a two-part recording with me on Thursday and Friday – about the race and the solar project, with the second part recorded at the project site in Diepsloot. I also did interviews with Radio RSG, YFM, SABC News Channel and SABC Digital News.

I really hope that all this coverage will contribute to increased awareness about the solar project in Diepsloot and our fundraising campaign in this regard. I remain confident that we can reach our target of R250 000 and want to appeal to the public in general to support this worthy cause.

Finally, it was time to say good-bye, and I want to thank everyone at Greenpeace Africa for the special send-off at OR Tambo on Saturday morning. I have been working closely with a number of people of Greenpeace Africa in recent months and developed a deep appreciation for the work of the organisation. Many thanks for all your support and encouragement.

Last, but not least, I had my first 10km run in San Francisco on Sunday afternoon. With the Currie Cup season coming to an end in South Africa (well done WP for beating the Bulls in the semi-finals!!!), the baseball World Series finals start on Tuesday afternoon and the San Francisco Giants will play the Kansas City Royals in a seven-match series. Everyone is wearing their Giants shirts and flags, and the next few days will therefore be an interesting time in San Francisco.

The countdown to Antarctica continues…


I’m excited about the race in Antarctica and the challenge of raising R250 000 for a Greenpeace Africa solar energy project, and encourage you to support my efforts and the work of Greenpeace Africa!

Please make a donation and encourage others to do the same.

“Together we can make a difference!”

Follow updates about my preparations for The Last Desert Race, and work with Greenpeace Africa, on Facebook and Twitter, my daily blog, and via Greenpeace Africa’s  various online platforms.

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