Solo Vehicle Dependent Exploration, Travel & Adventure

Archive for February, 2014


Photo of the Week: Highland Cattle – Lake District, England 2012


Highland Cattle – Lake District, England


We had just driven a tight technical climb with washed out gullies deep in the Lake District when we came across this sedate beast just over the crest. It must have been as funny for him as it was us. Six Land Rovers stopping and taking photos for five minutes then driving off again. ‘The Lakes’ offers superb views and vistas for photographers, usually with foreboding skies which can help with subjects like this.

A great place to visit for a long weekend greenlaning, just don’t go in the summer holidays, the place gets packed out.

Overlanders Tips: Tread Lightly Please…

Most people that travel have a healthy respect for the environment they live in and that of the country they travel to. Im not going to preach to the converted but this is especially important when your living our of your vehicle and this presents  its own challenges. In developed countries waste disposal of day to day items along with old engine oils etc is not much of a problem, these can be responsibly recycled. However, when you are faced with 10-15L of waste oils in a developing country what do you do?



Photo of the Week: Monaco Dreamin’ 2009

Lisa out and about in Monaco

Lisa out and about in Monaco

During our 2009 trip to the French/Italian Alps we thought it would be rude not to hang around Monaco for a few days. We spent some time following the F1 track, drinking coffee in the harbour and generally a lot of ‘window shopping’.

As I went to set this shot up of Lisa crossing the street this Ferrari popped out. Framed nicely with the La Poste sign this is one of my favourites from the trip.

S.O. Proud to Present…

A new year and a new start for

Sirocco Overland


A huge thank you to our very first sponsor


for joining us in our adventures. 

Thanks to Brad and Tracey at Maxtrax HQ for making this happen.


Maxtrax Logo


Photo of the Week: Valentines Day, Arctic Finland 2013


Out Sledding with the dogs in Arctic Finland

Whilst not the best photo in our collection it is probably the most memorable. Our visit to Hetta Huskies ( just happened to land on 14th February 2013, so it was the perfect day out for us. I never thought I would enjoy it as much as I did either. If you get the chance to do this, do it! You wont regret it. Happy Valentine’s Day everyone!

Don’t Date an Overlander…

A good friend of mine recently shared a short blog post on Facebook titled ‘Don’t date a girl who travels’. Some of the points raised resonated with me but a lot of it, I felt, was idealised generalisations taken from the travel industry. Its gone a bit viral online with spin offs for those who don’t get the irony or satire of the original. Overlanding on the whole is travelling but generally overlanders are travelling in placed where backpackers fear to tread, away from comforts, public transport, latte’s, cafe’s, facebook and instagram. So here is my take on that original article, titled ‘Don’t Date an Overlander’.




Photo of the Week: Bush Camping, Mali – West Africa 2011

Southern Mali Bush Camp

Southern Mali Bush Camp

One of the most memorable photos from my time in West Africa was this camp spot in the far southwest of Mali.

We were hundreds of kilometres off the bitumen trying to map routes through the Bafing National Park. We followed tracks to the Bafing Chimpanzee Santuary which turned out to be completely shut down, it had been closed many years previously but we were in the area so had to check it out. We followed some feint tracks south from there which petered out from village to village. Each one we passed through we were greater warmly by the people. After 150km we were pretty deep and we knew our fuel supplies would be pushed to the limit (with 2 leaking tanks and running the 6cyl petrol). To top it off the clunk from the driveline got worse (turned out to be a front prop UJ) so we decided that night to turn tail and head back to refuel. We had mapped what little we could.

That night we heard some rustling around camp which turned out to be a stray cow. We could however hear in the distance a lot of chanting, singing and wailing. Maybe witch doctors are alive and well near the Guinean border after all.


To read more about the MAPA Project and our adventures there, take a look here:

West Africa, MAPA Project 2011

Mongolia – Part II: The Gobi Desert and the route north to Ulaan Baatar

How we escaped flash floods and spent the following two weeks bashing through the Gobi Desert following old soviet maps in the vague direction of Khongoryn Els.

We left Altai with the Frenchies, fully stocked with fuel, water and food. It was raining hard in Altai. The streets were flooded as we left in a south easterly direction heading for some smaller settlements where we could get fuel before heading off road into the South Gobi Aimag later on. En-route we were heading for ‘The Secret Canyon’ which we had been shown the co-ordinates to by another French group. We called it a day about 50km from what we believed to be the canyon entrance a couple of kms from a small gathering of mud brick homes. This didn’t deter local trucks full of men offering vodka or men on motorbikes with their families sat behind (babies included!) popping by to see who we were. None of us could speak Mongolian, and they didn’t speak Russian, so we were limited to hand gestures, toasts and shots of vodka to communicate greetings!

Wild Camping in Mongolia... Usually the only way!

Wild Camping in Mongolia… Usually the only way!