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Campfire Comfort

A signature 4 Deserts Race Series component is the evening campfire. Each campsite has a handmade fire managed by two locals with wood that has been carefully transported to the desert. Water is boiled and kept hot for cooking meals and making warm drinks. The campfire also serves as a heater in the morning cold, a central meeting point for breakfast and dinner meals, and for simply shooting the breeze after a long day.

Flags For All Nations

The Namib Race is a truly international event with over 40 nationalities represented. To welcome each and every competitor, we make sure that we fly the flag of every competitor’s nation at the start and finish lines of each stage. Our flags are handmade by a traditional sailmaker, Mr. Poon, who lives and works in Hong Kong. Mr. Poon is a master in his trade, having originally been trained to make sails for junks that used to ply the South China Seas.

World Class Volunteers

Volunteers are carefully selected from around the world to ensure a variety of nationalities, language abilities, fitness levels and general experiences working in challenging conditions. Approximately four volunteer applications are received for every available position. View our Namib Race (2019) volunteer team.

Local Expertise

The 4 Deserts employs a team of local Namibian staff including wildlife experts on the ground. Together, the local team provides invaluable local expertise and the manpower necessary for keeping the race moving each day and the camps working without hitches during race week.


Checkpoints are spaced at approximately 10 kilometer intervals, with the final checkpoint of the day being the finish line and campsite. At each checkpoint, competitors are supplied with 1.5 liters of water as well as shade and a place to rest. Once all competitors have passed through the checkpoint, it is dismantled. No trace of the checkpoint is left in the desert.

A Path Of Pink Flags

A course team works around the clock to mark all 250-kilometers of the course using mostly small pink flags to make the route as visible as possible. Other course markings include pink ribbon, chalk spray, reflective tape and glowsticks. Competitors must follow these markers from checkpoint to checkpoint.

The Glowing Path

The 4 Deserts uses up to 3,000 glowsticks to mark the Namib Race course at dusk and throughout the dark hours of night. The glowsticks guide the way for competitors during The Long March, offering maximum light while withstanding the heat and other harsh elements of the desert.

Sweeping And Roving

On each stage two volunteers help sweep the course. This involves walking at the back of the pack and making sure that all competitors have passed through the checkpoints safely.

Volunteers and staff will also be roving the course at each stage. This involves walking or riding in a vehicle between checkpoints and camp.

4x4 Vehicles

The Namib Race uses up to thirty 4x4 vehicles which support the race. The drivers of the 4x4 vehicles are some of the best desert drivers in world, each with decades of experience driving in the Namib Desert. A special characteristic of the Namib Race is the ability to place checkpoints and campsites in remote, soft sand areas.


The Cybertent is the competitors’ lifeline to the outside world. The tent is a unique concept in multi-day stage races as a place for competitors to read emails and blog comments that have been sent to them over the preceding 24 hours. Competitors have the option to send emails and update blogs from the Cybertent at each campsite at the end of the day’s stage. The blogs endure as a permanent archive of their experiences in the desert and are accessible through the race website


There is a fast growing global community interested in 4 Deserts races - not only friends, family, supporters and former competitors, but also a fanbase of people inspired by the dream of one day competing. To keep up with the demands of this expanding community, we are constantly developing our media capabilities.

The 4 Deserts uses a combination of satellite and mobile communications to distribute content from the races to our website and to broadcasters around the world. During each stage of the race we post hourly updates to the website about race leaders and individual competitors. We also post daily video highlights captured by staff, volunteers and competitors on Flip videos.

At least 150 photographs are uploaded daily from the race capturing the locations, highlights and spirit of the event. We also distribute daily features about competitors and the locations as well as stage updates on the race website. Overall positions and timings are logged on the website as soon as possible after the last competitor crosses the finish line of each stage.

African Tribes

Namibia is home to at least 11 major ethnic groups or tribes, each celebrating their past while working together toward the future. The local team for the Namib Race is selected from local tribes that live and around the Skeleton Coast – they love to be involved in the race and you will hear them chanting at dusk around the fire. They are primarily from the Damara Tribe. You will also be able to interact with the Himba people with their families at each camp.

Leave Only Footprints

Catering to the needs of more than 200 people in the Namib Desert and making sure to leave no trace of their presence is an important part of putting on the Namib Race. Fortunately, our competitors are overwhelmingly attentive to this matter and make this task as easy for us as possible. We institute a system of time penalties for any competitor seen littering. Sweepers also follow behind the final competitors removing course markers and remaining litter from the ground.

Finisher Medals

Competitors who successfully complete every stage of the Namib Race 2020 will receive a medal at the finish line. The 4 Deserts specially designs the medals and has them manufactured in Malaysia which is renowned as having the world’s best pewter.

Expedition Foods

Expedition Foods is the official food partner for the Namib Race 2020. Expedition Foods pioneered the concept of expedition foods by providing highly nutritious, flavorsome, easy-to-store and prepared foods and has built areputation on quality, service and choice, boasting arguably the largest range of meals available in Europe. With 22 main meals and four desserts, all the main meals are available in three sizes: 450 kcal, 800 kcal and 1000 kcal. Expedition Foods is the highest calorie to weight food available on the market. Expedition Foods’ objective is to provide a mix of traditional meals with dishes from around the globe. The diverse menu, which appeals to all tastes, is coupled with continual innovation and product development.