Cape Town - Wayne Bolton, the SANParks Honorary Ranger cycling 6 000kms over 80 days to raise awareness and funds for conservation, has entered the final stage of his journey.
On Monday, 8 February, Bolton cycled into the Camdeboo National Park alongside park manager, Nick de Goede, and one of the park's rangers, Lungile Kulu, who decided to ride into the park along with the overland activist of the One Land Love It Expedition.
Just 4 days earlier, Bolton rode into the Karoo National Park outside Beaufort West in the sweltering midday sun on Thursday, 4 February 2016.
Here Bolton was joined on the last stretch of his Western Cape journey by friends Andrew Stewart and Dave Pattle, in Karoo National Park.
Wayne, a 49-year-old businessman from Port Elizabeth is cycling 6 000kms between all 19 national parks over 80 days to raise awareness and funds for conservation.
Camdeboo was the 17th Park along his journey after leaving Karoo on 6 February and overnighting in Aberdeen.
Bolton began his cycle at Kruger National Park’s Pafuri Gate on 28 November 2015 and is scheduled to finish at Addo Elephant National Park on Saturday 13 February.
SEE: SANParks Honorary Ranger reaches 1 000km on 6 000km cycle journey in aid of rhinos
Addo Elephant NP suffered its hottest day recorded on record last week, when temperatures rose to a staggering 46.6°C.
SEE: Addo Elephant National Park records hottest day on record
All funds raised by Bolton's One Land Love It Expedition will go to caring for orphaned rhino calves at Care for Wild, a rhino sanctuary near Nelspruit, and the SANParks Honorary Rangers towards their counter-poaching initiatives.
A black-tie dinner hosted in Port Elizabeth just before the group set off raised R124 000, and half of the proceeds have each already been handed over to the beneficiaries.
The OLLI support crew is headed up by Wayne’s wife Nikki, their son Daniel (22), daughter Laura (19) and friend Melissa Farquhar. Wayne’s parents and Nikki’s father are also a part of the support team.
Bolton posted a tribute to his wife, Nikki, on the One Land Love It Expedition Facebook page saying, "As we near the last days of our epic OLLI adventure I would like to pay tribute to my incredible wife Nikki Bolton. Anyone who has had anything to do with OLLI will know that she has been the "rain-maker", making the impossible happen, managing the expedition... Nikki has managed our family, support team, and our small business for close on 2.5 months - often in a pressure situation where we haven't had a place to sleep for the night or haven't had sufficient money to cover expedition expenses. It is an understatement to say she has been fantastic. She has worked hard tirelessly..."
Botlon is carrying with him a “Scroll of Unity in Conservation”, which he requests a senior representative from each of the parks he visits to sign. In this way he links all of the parks and staff who carry the responsibility of maintaining the integrity of our natural heritage.
After an early start from Camdeboo NP on Tuesday, 9 February, Bolton reached Mountain Zebra outside Cradock. He and his team will spend most of the week there, doing outreach programmes in communities and at schools, before departing for Addo Elephant National Park on Friday, where he’ll arrive at about midday on Saturday 13 February.