Rollers, Slabs and Grinders, Namaqua National Park, Northern Cape

Any Noord-Kaap surf mission is bound to come with a ‘moment’ or two. And if I’m honest, I probably had at least a dozen major emotional spikes on our recent Isuzu South Africa mini-expedition up the Northern Cape Tourism Region’s #diamondcoast. This coastline is properly gnarly, with snarling rocks and lurking reefs which have ripped apart dozens of ships over the ages. Wrecks like the #Piratiny litter the tempestuous shores, and up here you can too easily imagine you are centre-stage in a post-apocalyptic movie scene from a Mad Max film.

Desolate inland plains – often wracked by the epic strafe of momentous sand storms – abut a dramatic coast where untested point breaks and kelp-strewn ledges lie in wait. The lips are thick and heavy and the breaks unpredictable, mimicking the fear factor of legendary shape-shifters such as #ShiptonsBluff. Anyone caught inside will invariably be viciously mauled before being unceremoniously ejaculated upon a roiling wall of white water. You get good days, though – even if they are few and far between – where mere mortals such as myself can roll the dice and score a few glassy bombs.

In the end, the Beyond Expeditions Team plugged into five consecutive days of non- stop, off-shore bliss, apparently a pretty rare spell on this fickle coast bombarded by robust, deep-ocean swell. And I got to work on the rather complicated relationship I have with my latest retro stick (one part lanky ramp model, and two parts psychopath), all while basking in the minimalist perfection of this intoxicating desert land. Except that last session, when a rather sizeable and swift-looking, long-finned shark buzzed my board a couple of times, and I proned a rambunctious foamy right onto the rocks in a stage of Level #8 panic.

As always, our #BeyondLockdown expeditions was about boosting the #localtravel industry in an effort to rectify some of the damage done by the 2020 Lockdown. The idea is to do this through (1) creating awareness of off-the-grid, rural destinations; (2) generating free-use content for these grass-roots operators and (3) then promoting them through our various print and #SM media channels. So far, it has been hugely successful, but we need the South African public to go out and support #satourism 🙏

As always, massive thanks must go to our incredible #IsuzuSA sponsor team and Dunlop Tyres SA. Their support made road-tripping the dramatic Diamond Coast possible, enabling us to document all the insane tourism opportunities abounding in #southafrica. So next time you need a #holiday fix, make a real difference: #StayLocal and #PlayLocal 🙌😊

PS: Shot for the photos of #DieOom getting a few waves, Densen Magaisa and Dudley Bruce Wessels

Click here to view the pics