Overlanding – The good old days!

I recently found some old photos of my overland trip across North West Africa and went down memory lane and wondered why it isn’t so popular anymore. Overlanding started in the mid 50’s/early 60’s with the classic London to Kathmandu run. This route was then followed by the Trans Africa route and the phenomenon of overlanding took off in the 70’s/80’s but it still retained the pioneering feel with the key elements – mud, sand matting, potholes, canned food etc. Formal campsites were rare and wild camping was the norm. This freedom was the real joy of overlanding. You knew you had to get from point A to B in a certain period of time and what transpired in between was the adventure. But the world has changed, travelling a few decades ago was more innocent and friendly. There was less corruption, violence and general instability. The abundance of weapons has made overlanding a far less desirable option. And certain routes have lost their charm as with most things what was unique and off the beaten track now has infrastructure and commercialization. Wild camps are no longer the norm.
Overlanding still exists on a few routes so if you have got the time 3, 6 or 12 months it is a trip of a lifetime. One, that changed my life many years ago!