A friend invited me to join him and 5 others on a overland trip to Botswana and Namibia and I reluctantly agreed to join the trip. I hestitated because of my experience during my mandatory army training year of camping and sleeping in tents and I then promise myself that I would never sleep in a tent again. I bought myself a 4×4 double cab vehicle, sleeping bag, rooftop tent, cooler and plenty of plastic boxes to store cutlery, clothes, food and drinks in.
I absolutely enjoyed the 3 week trip driving on off the beaten track locations, experiencing the fabulous unspoiled nature witch city dwellers are not even aware of and enjoyed the fellowship of the rest of the group, BUT I hated the unorganised setup. At about the 3rd day I would find my teaspoon, GPS, underpants and tooth brush all mixed up in the same box. On that moment the AHA dream was born.
The AHA dream then was to have an accommodation unit on the back of my double cab pickup with all the relevant luxury of my house, without converting my pickup permanently to a camper.
Was it an impossible dream?
I did a lot of research and was amazed to see how many quality outdoor products are availble in South Africa, but not one could offer me what I wanted in one affordable package. So I designed my own.
During 2002 I took my first camper to Sodwana where we went scuba diving and when I opened the unit on the beach I drew a lot of attention from people around me. I had to open and close it approximately 50 times as the people came and went that day. Every so often when I open the unit people would utter “AHA” in amazement.
That day I decided to start a business building campers, as I had so many requests to do so. On 1-3-2003 we registered a company called AHA Outdoor Systems.
The first product would be called AHA-45 as it took 45 seconds to set the unit up for sleeping/camping. Our first models went thru some teething trouble like dust and water leaks, but luckily outdoor people are in general patient and outright nice people and we thankfully experienced support and cooperation from them to resolve all problems.
We have manufactured 987 AHA-45 campers until the new AHA-15 was born.
There are now well over a thousand AHA campers on South African roads.
We now also manufacture the AHA-Mobile-Cabin, an off road/on road caravan with a difference. As well as a range of accessories.
Being in the bush doesn’t need to be rough. Get the amazing feeling of exploring your world while being comfortable while you do it.