Oakley is a really cool company. Cool companies do cool things like make team videos. Really cool companies do really cool things like travel to exotic locations around the world to make those videos. A couple weeks ago I was sent off to South Africa with Danny Hampson, Andrew Adkison, Aaron Rathy, and Jack Blodgett as they filmed for the new Oakley team video, “Push Process.” See, I told you Oakley is a really cool company.

Let’s just get this out of the way right now. South Africa is freaking rad, whether you’re a wakeboarder or not. If you are a wakeboarder, though, it’s extra rad. There are a handful of unbelievable locations to ride on and only a handful of boats (in the entire country). So if you’re looking for your next wakeboard vacation, check out South Africa, ‘cause you’ll get some amazing conditions, zero crowds, and one hell of a fun time. Plus, they drive on the left side of the road down there, and that’s always an adventure worth taking.

We started out on the Umtamvuna River, which is home of the Umtamvuna River Lodge, owned by former pro South African wakeboarder Kevin Dry. Kevin’s got this place dialed for us kick-back wake folks. Think Hawaii, but with monkeys running around in the trees behind the lodge and less boats on the water. Kevin’s got a fully loaded Tige, several fully loaded bars at his lodge, and a couple rails in the river (‘cause you can kind of do whatever you want in South Africa). We stayed there for five days, enjoyed paradise, considered never leaving, but then headed out for destination number two: Cape Town.

Cape Town, like the Umtamvuna River, is also freaking rad. This is a big city with a whole lot to do. We met up with local ripper Nick Burton-Moore who took us to his family’s weekend home on the Berg River, about an hour outside of Cape Town. The Cape Town region of South Africa is less tropical than the Durban/Umtamvuna River area, but it’s just as good for wakeboarding. The Berg River has even less boats ‘cause it’s private, and Nick and his mates have also built some rails (again, ‘cause you can kind of do whatever you want in South Africa). We stayed there for five days, enjoyed paradise number two, considered never leaving, but then we had to go back to the States. Well, kind of. Danny had to fly to some wakeskate event somewhere else in the world, Rathy and I had to go back to Orlando, and Jack and Andrew didn’t really have anything to do so they called Oakley, changed their tickets and stuck around for five more days. See, Oakley is really cool.

Look for a full-length feature article chronicling the Oakley team trip to South Africa in an upcoming issue of Alliance.