Recon Mission To Sierra Leone 2020
There will be two recon missions to Africa ahead of this year’s rally. Recon is when we log GPS coordinates, set up campsites and mark interesting attractions. Setting up the route is always a tricky mission. This year’s Senegal to Sierra Leone touring route and official camp sites have been discovered.
We’ve experienced the hardship and difficulties of driving in Senegal, Guinea and Sierra Leone. Unlike previous Budapest-Bamakos the roads are in much worse shape. The officials in Guinea were painfully aggressive and unfriendly. It took a great deal of bribes, red tape and time to travel through Senegal.
Andrew G. Szabo, founder of the rally and head of Recon team #1 was fined several times for driving in flip flops, not having a proper medical kit or a fire extinguisher. He also got held up at customs for 16 hours in Guinea. It included 14 hours of wait for the customs office to open from 6PM to 8AM, plus an additional 2 hours to process his papers. Penalties also included erroneously processed customs papers and not having a yellow fever vaccination.
Bribes and legal fines were about 230 Euros within 72 hours. At one point when he tried to bribe an officer 15 minute lecture was delivered about the ill effects of corruption and how it is the cancer of society.
ADVICE FOR RALLY PARTICIPANTS:
• Do not drive in flip-flops
• Have two emergency reflective triangles
• Have your yellow fever cards
• Have a proper medical kit
• Have a fire extinguisher
• Hope no one screws up your customs papers
• Have your West Africa car insurance.