Ever found yourself semi-alone with your trusty off-road wheels yearning for the adventure and camaraderie of like-minded people or perhaps you find yourself running into dead ends looking for some solid advice about your vehicle?
You are not alone.
Back in the 60s the first off-road club was formed in South Africa and over the years, as time progressed, more clubs saw the light of day; some were brand-specific or focused on locations in South Africa while others took pride in joining forces across all provinces and all types off 4x4s with a vision to bring people (and families) together who enjoy the outdoors, who are passionate about dirt roads and a few natural obstacles and living life – and driving – on the edge, following the taste of adventure.
The Isuzu Off-Road Club, headed by Johan Terblanche and Robert Hale, was started by proud Isuzu owners and initially started out as just a website forum to facilitate interaction between fellow Isuzu owners and potential owners. But if you fast forward to today it is quite clear that the members, engagement and nature of the original idea of a forum have grown in leaps and bounds and continues to grow as this South African built bakkie (and now the imported Isuzu mu-X) gain more and more popularity in the country.
So what is this club about you ask and can anyone join?
The Isuzu Off-Road Club operates across South Africa as well in neighbouring countries and the heart and soul of the club are divided into four pillars:
- Family: It is a family-orientated club where every member – young and old – is treated with respect.
- Vehicle Care: This club is not about getting yourself in unnecessary sticky situations to see how far you can push your vehicle until the point of breaking or badly damaging it. They pride themselves in not being a “challenge club” and advocate responsible driving techniques; there are guides available with years of experience who lead or assist on off-road trails to ensure that everyone has a good time and comes out the other end.
-Fun: It is all about finding that sweet spot of balance between enjoying the landscapes and nature of South Africa and putting the capabilities of your Isuzu to good work.
-Responsible: Apart from responsible and safe driving techniques, the Isuzu Off-Road Club also believes in respecting nature – whether that is cleaning up after yourself or not damaging the natural environment while going on a track – it is all about “take nothing but pictures, leave nothing but tyre tracks”.
To join the Isuzu Off-Road Club of South Africa you need to fill in a membership application form and there is an annual membership fee as well as a joining fee involved; you can sign up to the website however that does not mean you’re automatically part of the club yet it still gives you access to the club’s online forum where you can interact, share knowledge and gain heaps of information.
What do you get out of joining the Isuzu Off-Road Club?
Shared knowledge and experience
Find out all you ever wanted to know – about your vehicle, off-roading and the great outdoors – from like-minded people who have years of experience and expertise in the matter. Get the right information from the right people.
The Isuzu Off-Road Club says, “As a club, we want to establish a platform where one can obtain/ tap into a world of knowledge without having to reinvent the wheel. A place where all can share and learn from each other. After all, there is no substitute for experience.”
Enjoy Family Fun
The club is not a crack-open-a-beer boys club but rather geared towards family experiences, this is quite evident in the outings and events organised by the club such as braai days, fishing days, movie days and more.
The Isuzu Off-Road Club is involved in community service as well as nature conservation and strive to increase conservation awareness, focus on recycling, help with environmental studies and lend a hand with community projects.
Get your calendar closer and grab a pen because your free time’s weather prediction looks like sunshine, good times and a massive sprinkle of Isuzu adventures. The club organises outings, events and also longer trips; members can also suggest outings and or events and if there is enough interest a trail leader will guide members and ensure that the club rules are enforced on the day.
New members can receive basic off-road training in order to assist them to handle their vehicles on trips. There are also more formal and more intricate training available to club members at good rates.
Environmental issues will be communicated to the club and training and information sessions are held to make sure members are informed about our eco-system, “Informed people are equipped people”.
First Aid Training
You never know when you just might need to help a friend or family member in an emergency situation and therefore it is important that every member has basic first aid training, geared towards the outdoor environment and unforeseen unfortunate scenarios that might take place there. The first aid course is the internationally recognised ASHI course (The American Safety & Health Institute) and the qualification is valid for 3 years.
To make sure you know your Isuzu inside and out, training on specific Isuzu vehicle dynamics will be provided. They say, “knowledge is power, as a club we will strive to gather and share knowledge through training and experience.”
Seems like your kind of club and your kind of people? Visit www.isuzuoffroad.co.za and become part of a group like-minded people where expertise, knowledge, respect, adventure and good times await.