Tuesday, 25 May 2010

Trekking across Togo...

Would you want to walk right across a country, from an international border on the one side to the international border on the other side? This would be quite an achievement, although rather rare due to the size of most countries and distance involved between borders.

Well, this past Sunday a very select group of friends walked across the country of Togo. 56 kilometres of walking from the Ghanaian border with Togo on the west, to the Beninoise border with Togo to the east.

We left the ship at 04h45 in the morning and drove to the Ghanaian border (a mere ten kilometres distance from the ship) from where they started the trek. I drove the support vehicle for the expedition and stopped every one to two kilometres to offer support and water if needed. Initially the pace was good, but it did slow up as the legs got more tired the further they went.

We passed out of Lome and headed out into the countryside, the views alternating between long grass and palm trees to the blue Atlantic off the coast of Togo. After nearly ten hours of walking the remaining trio (Ben Calvert, Haley Nichols and Kelly Dahl) had made it to the toll gate just outside of Aneho, the last town before the border with Benin. Aneho is a very picturesque seaside town, with a lovely bridge stretching over a large river - before the final stretch of three kilometres this side of Benin.

Finally, after 12 and a half hours on the road, the brave trio made it to the Togo-Benin border post at 17h45 in the late afternoon. We were back onboard an hour later with many memories and stories from our trip across Togo. It was quite a feat for my friends and I was very proud of them - and happy that I could play a small role in their achievement.

Here are some more photos from this day.

Approaching the halfway mark, heading along the coastal road.

Kelly, Haley and Ben at +/- halfway.

Tampicos are the best!

At the marathon mark of 42 kms!

Overlooking a lovely railway bridge.

And while we were there a little diesel engine approached...

... And motored across the bridge.

Togo monument in Aneho.

Kelly, Haley and Ben cross the bridge a mere three kilometres from Benin!

Back at the ship after 14 hours driving - we were all pretty beat!

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