03-Apr-2010 -- A Day under the Ghanaian Sun
Just before 16:00 hrs on Saturday, 3 April 2010, The Boys of Borneo accompanied by the Usual Suspects reached confluence point 10°00.000'N 2°00.000'W, in the Upper West Region of Ghana, West Africa.
Of the Boys of Borneo, present were:
- Kel Bendeich – Emergency Response Consultant (NSW, Australia)
- Raymond Rutherford – Supply Chain Specialist (Bali, Indonesia)
- Dan Michaelsen – Mining Environmental Specialist (no fixed address)
- Joseph Dadzie – Fire Chief (Tarkwa, Ghana)
Of the Boys of Borneo, Patrick O'Brien - Mechanical Engineering Specialist (Queensland, Australia) was missing and missed, on a business trip to Peru, South America.
The Usual Suspects contingent was represented by:
- Chuck Burns – Safety Specialist (Nevada, USA)
- Ami Burns – Photographer & Adventurer (as above)
- Anita Tarab – Environmental Specialist (New York, USA)
- Frank Dompreh – Fire Fighter (Brong-Ahafo, Ghana)
The team left Kenyasi in the Brong-Ahafo at 06:30 hrs on Saturday, 3 April 2010, setting a course of 6 degrees true north and a range of 355 km to the target confluence point.
The journey north by north-west took us through the towns of Sunyani (7°20.496'N 2°19.581'W), Wenchi (7°44.316'N 2°6.456'W), New Longoro (8°8.507'N 2°1.770'W), Bole (9°2.306'N 2°29.300'W), Tuna (9°29.455'N 2°25.180'W), and Wa (10°3.692'N 2°30.503'W), the capital of Upper West Province.
A general observation of the journey was how the religious trappings of Ghana changed from predominantly Christian in the south, to increasingly Muslim in the north. The terrain, while generally flat, became drier as we neared the Ghana-Burkina Faso border.
Arriving in Wa, we acquired accommodation in one of that provincial capital's many fine hotels, and, after a refreshing beverage, re-boarded our vehicles heading out of town along a dusty road on a general bearing of 101 degrees true north, range 55 km.
We drove to the closest point of vehicle access, some 60.4 km, passing smiling villagers engaged in a host of traditional activities such as pumping water, preparing food over wood fires, gathering wood, and gold mining.
The terrain undulated, dotted with granite outcrops. The savannah-like shrub had been recently burnt, making walking the 3.44 km on a bearing of 11 degrees true north relatively easy. This assumption was proved false by the preponderance of cloth and flesh-tearing thorny vines.
Upon reaching our target shortly before 16:00 hrs, we took the requisite digital images as included with this submission. A quick calculation showed that the actual route to the confluence point was 448 km, not 355 as per our original calculations.
And, finally, Kel Bendeich, as a humanitarian parting gesture, left a small plastic koala bear clipped to a bush at the confluence point in the hope that it might be found by a child before the toy's inevitable destruction in the next bush fire raging through this location.
We then walked out, drove back to Kenyasi, and all lived happily ever after.