“Life in us is like the water in a river.” Henry David Thoreau
The Okavango is the beating heart of Africa, home to an estimated 50% of the world’s elephants, most of the world’s hippo, and crucial populations of many other keystone species. There is no wilder place on earth: this is the Africa of a hundred thousand years ago. If its catchment is not protected this wilderness as we know it could disappear.
The 21st May marks the start of Expedition #Okavango15. This National Geographic exploration is the first of its kind ever attempted. A 10 week, 2, River, 1000 mile, 3 country traverse of the Okavango River system on mekoros (traditional dugout canoes) from its source in the Angolan Highlands to the sands of the Kalahari Desert. Our team of scientists, conservationists and artists will be focusing on understanding one of the most unknown catchments in the world, and trying to secure it World Heritage Status.
This is a request to help us in our endeavour.
Solar powered satellite transmitters will be sharing the experience as live as possible. You can see what we are seeing, ask us questions on Twitter, follow our paths through the networks of papyrus, monitor our heartbeats as we pass pods of hippos, celebrate with us if we discover new species, and listen to our Radio Okavango podcasts from the campfire. Every single time you interact with us or share our posts and messages you will be widening the Okavango’s audience and increasing the chances of this place getting the political support and protection it so badly needs.
Join us: intotheokavango.org
[For a detailed list of links to follow Expedition #Okavango15 see the bottom of this post]
[Submit your photographs for possible inclusion in our next “Top 25 Photographs from the Wilderness” post here]
“Look at the sky. We are not alone. The whole universe is friendly to us and conspires only to give the best to those who dream and work.” Abdul Kalam.
Within each of us there is a silence, a silence as vast as the universe. And when we experience that silence, we remember who we are.” Gunilla Norris
“One who will not accept solitude, stillness and quiet recurring moments…is caught up in the wilderness of addictions; far removed from an original state of being and awareness. This is ‘dis-ease.” T.F. Hodge
“The desert, when the sun comes up…I couldn’t tell where heaven stopped and the Earth began.” Tom Hanks.
“… what you learn today, for no reason at all, will help you discover all the wonderful secrets of tomorrow.” Norton Juster.
“You know you are truly alive when you’re living among lions.” Karen Blixen
“The power of nature can make fun of the power of man at any time!” Mehmet Murat Ildan.
“I hear and I forget. I see and I remember. I do and I understand.” Confucius.
“When the well’s dry, we know the worth of water.” Benjamin Franklin.
“If I know a song of Africa, of the giraffe and the African new moon lying on her back, of the plows in the fields and the sweaty faces of the coffee pickers, does Africa know a song of me? Will the air over the plain quiver with a color that I have had on, or the children invent a game in which my name is, or the full moon throw a shadow over the gravel of the drive that was like me, or will the eagles of the Ngong Hills look out for me?” Karen Blixen
“All problems, though appearing outside of you, must be resolved within YOU.” Vivian Amis.
“Plans to protect air and water, wilderness and wildlife, are in fact plans to protect man.” Stewart Udall.
“Empty yourself of everything. Let the mind become still. The ten thousand things rise and fall while the Self watches their return. They grow and flourish and then return to the source. Returning to the source is stillness, which is the way of nature.” Lao Tzu
“When you do something noble and beautiful and nobody noticed, do not be sad. For the sun every morning is a beautiful spectacle and yet most of the audience still sleeps.” John Lennon.
“Being deeply loved by someone gives you strength, while loving someone deeply gives you courage.” Lao Tzu.
“Water is the driving force in nature.” Leonardo da Vinci
“Youth is happy because it has the capacity to see beauty. Anyone who keeps the ability to see beauty never grows old.” Franz Kafka.
“They both listened silently to the water, which to them was not just water, but the voice of life, the voice of Being, the voice of perpetual Becoming.” Hermann Hesse
“…I keep looking for one more teacher, only to find that fish learn from the water and birds learn from the sky.” Mark Nepo
“Wonderful how completely everything in wild nature fits into us, as if truly part and parent of us. The sun shines not on us, but in us. The rivers flow not past, but through us, thrilling, tingling, vibrating every fiber and cell of the substance of our bodies, making them glide and sing”. John Muir
“If we are willing to be still and open enough to listen, wilderness itself will teach us.” Steven Harper
“Beautiful things don’t ask for attention.” James Thurber.
“One is loved because one is loved. No reason is needed for loving.” Paul Coelho.
“In one drop of water are found all the secrets of all the oceans; in one aspect of You are found all the aspects of existence.” Kahlil Gibran
If you would like to follow the story of #Okavango 15 here are a handful of platforms we will be sharing it on:
Live expedition: intotheokavango.org
Blog posts: medium.com/tag/okavango15
Radio Okavango: itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/into-the-okavango/id994847647
For updates on these posts, sign up for our newsletter: eepurl.com/bisryX
See Jer Thorp’s Nat Geo Live talk on #Okavango15: youtube.com/watch?v=BZz8fUoAu_k