The Details - Poles of Inconvenience: Europe Edition

This a whole new form of overland adventuring stupidity.

Everything you need to know can be transmitted direct to your peepers right here in this 90 second in depth guide.

But you might have some other questions, like when things happen and where. All that stuff is below in this here nifty guide.

If you’ve arrived here first check out the main website.

1. What are the Poles of Inconvenience?

The Adventurists was founded on the principle of driving tiny shit vehicles to totally ludicrous places. In 2022, we couldn’t do the Mongol Rally proper, instead we launched the Poles of Inconvenience so our teams could get lost and stuck in even more stupid places. It turned out to be a beast of an adventure, and now it’s growing hairs in all its grown-up places and becoming the behemoth we always knew it would be.

The un-route is up to you and stretches from the top of Norway, to the bottom of Western Sahara and across to Turkey. You can launch from anywhere after joining the live launch broadcast online with all your fellow teams. The festival style finish line and closing party is at a former missile silo just outside Prague.

But it's the Poles of Inconvenience that really bring the stupid. Think of it as a curated network of chaos.

Instead of driving straight to the finish line you can join like-minded fools in seeking out totally ridiculous POIs along the way. Each carefully selected locational nonsensical nugget will force adventure upon you and your tiny steed.
Poles of Inconvenience 2022 Rally- On the Road

Some of the Poles may be inconvenient in the classic sense of being nestled in remote corners of wilderness areas. Others might be topographically inconvenient, like the top of a mountain, or in the middle of a sea of sand dunes in the Sahara. Some will be logistically inconvenient, and all of them will be comically unsuitable for your tiny vehicles.

It's totally up to you which POIs you tackle but your chances of winning the overall Champion of the Poles trophy will vastly increase if you bag at least a few along the way.

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2. Where are the Poles of Inconvenience?

Poles of Inconvenience Rally 2023 Map
The image is just a sketch showing the range of possibilities for your adventuring inconvenience. Now that the 2023 edition has had its wicked way with the teams we'll be working on the new and improved network of POIs for 2024 over the next few weeks. In the meantime check out the 2023 POIs in detail on this google map:

Clusters of Inconvenience

Unless you’re a spaniel, you should have noticed that the Poles on the map are split up into four different colours. These represent the different clusters. We’ve split them up as it might make it clearer and easier for you if you decide to focus on a certain cluster. You might want to only go for a Scandinavian Nipple Twist for example, or focus your energies on the North African Face Slap. It'll make it easier to meet up with your fellow ralliers too.

British Bone Bruiser

Fancy popping to Britain to laugh at our teeth and political decisions? Then you’re in luck, there’s a huge amount of Poles to be had in a small space here. You can marvel at the weather, and discuss it at length with the locals whilst sipping on badly made tea.

Scandinavian Nipple Twist

Feel like whipping up to the northernmost point of mainland Europe, drinking copious amounts of vodka from a reindeer's horn and dining on the smelliest fish on the planet? Then this might be the cluster that demands your attention.

Eastern Eyeball Gritter

The largest group out there. There’s a whole gaggle of diverse Poles to be found in this marvellous cluster of inconvenience. Can anyone get them all within the time limit? We don’t know. We hope so. Sort of. We also sort of hope you all fail massively, in the nicest possible way.

North African Face Slap

Probably the toughest cluster. Some of the Poles in here are downright ridiculous. You probably just shouldn’t even try, and you probably won't make it to all of them. But what if you do? Well, then the nectar of the Adventure Gods themselves shall likely rain down on you. In other words, we might buy you a pint.

... or go with Pick & Mix POIs

You don’t have to focus on only one cluster. You’re completely free to go as and wherever you bloody well please. Indeed, managing to grab a few from each cluster would also be exceedingly cool. Or all of them. If you bag every POI you'll probably be crowned Champion and win the trophy.

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3. How it works: bagging POIs

The navigational gears to this wondrous chaos engine will be provided by the what3words app. They’ve basically turned finding places anywhere on the planet into poetry. If you’ve not come across them before, stick your face in their website for a bit, it’s bloody fascinating… The whole of the earth has been split up into three metre squares, and each one has a three word name, such as POI 17 in Turkey, which is: ///bidders.shrivels.rainbow The other great thing is that the app will not give you detailed directions to the location of each Pole, therefore preserving the joy of getting completely lost along the way.
To nail a Pole to your personal wall of achievement you will need to use what3words' marvellous app. Once you’ve reached a POI you have to take a photo inside the w3w app, tag it with (roughly) the correct location, and then share it through our tracking app. That means even if you don’t have a connection the tracking app will automatically locate your pic when it next comes online. Pole bagged. Details of all this will be in the teams' handbook.
what3words mapping example
what3words example map image

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4. How to win the POI Champions Trophy

It’s not necessarily the team that bags the most POIs that will will be crowned 2024 Champions and claim the winners trophy, though of course, grabbing a clutch will definitely help.

Rather, the judging committee take a holistic approach to the entries. This doesn’t mean they’ll light some incense, and smother you in ylang-ylang oil whilst banging the gong of truth, but that they’ll take the whole picture of your adventuring search for inconvenience into account.

Teams who have incredibly unsuitable vehicles, make that little extra effort (serve high tea to some locals each day at 5pm for example), or just somehow add a touch of panache and style, will all get boosted in the rankings.

What are the prizes?

The Champions of Inconvenience

The legends of the adventure, and the team that found inconvenience with the most style. This team will win the overall trophy. An actual fancy trophy too. Plus a discount off their next adventure.
2022 Champions. Classy fellas Tim and Jordan.
Team Going Nowhere getting stuck

Runner Up

The nearly team. They will be legends, but second placed legends. A smaller but still splendid trophy will be their prize.
Team De Sloekertjes - 2022 Runner Up
At POI 21 - Pointy Rock Thingy, Spain

Best Adventure Vehicle

The finest machine employed in the search for inconvenience. The admiration of inconvenience seeking ralliers for generations shall be theirs.
2022 Best Vehicle winners Team Gear Knobs
The mighty 1958 Oxford Morris on the POI 2022

Charity Champions

The team who raises the most for charity. To win this prize the team must have raised the minimum £500 for the official charity Cool Earth, even if the bulk of their world saving cash is donated to a different charity.

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5. The Dates

14th July

Launch ceremony - join in live online with Mr. Tom, founder of The Adventurists, then thunder off in search of adventuring inconvenience.

3rd August

Finish line open for glorious arrivals plus official finish party.

7th August

Announcement of all the winners, and also the deadline for raising your minimum £500 for the official charity Cool Earth.

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6. The Rules

Team Subarians Poles of Inconvenience 2022
Team Subarians enjoying a breakdown in Georgia on the 2022 Poles of Inconvenience

Rule 1: Small, shit and unsuitable

You can take any car, as long as it’s crap and unsuitable. And as small as you can muster. For motorbikes they should also be small and unsuitable. Ideally it would be a monkey bike, but a slightly broken scooter would work too.

You need to drive a small, shit vehicle to have a proper adventure. It's no fun if it's too easy. If you want easy go for a spa weekend.

Rule 2: No set route

Bag as many Poles of Inconvenience as you can in any order you like, in any direction you want. Go backwards if you want. Or completely in the wrong direction, that always ends up with something funny. Or crying. One of the two. There’s no minimum or maximum number of Poles you need to reach. Where you go is entirely up to you (but the winner of the Champions Trophy will likely have a respectable POI count).

Rule 3: You're on your own

You're on your own. If it's not dangerous and you aren't lost, you're not on an adventure. That means no backup or support. If you get stuck or in trouble, you need to solve the problem yourself. Any ‘Help! We’re broken down in Algeria,’ type phone calls to Adventurists HQ will be met with a snort of derision and a click of the receiver.

Rule 4: Raise £500 for charity

It only seems fair that if you’re having the mother of all adventures you should give a little back, so we ask teams on the Poles of Inconvenience to raise a minimum of £500 for the official charity Cool Earth.

If you'd prefer to raise money for other registered charities too that's all good. Anything over the £500 minimum for the official charity can be donated to your own causes.

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7. Entry fee and what you get

2022 Poles of Inconvenience at Juntown, Czechia
The entry fee is £695 per car - you can have up to 4 people squashed into your tiny steed.

A motorbike entry is £325 per bike. You can travel as teams but each rider pays the entry fee and registers online separately.

Here's what you get for your dosh...

Launch broadcast hosted by Mr. Tom

  • Join in from anywhere with all the teams and Mr. Tom, founder of The Adventurists

  • The Poles of Inconvenience network of chaos will officially open during the live broadcast

Live tracking map and rolling online coverage

  • Tracking on the live Poles of Inconvenience map using the handy tracking app supplied by Wayward Travel (iOs & Android). Live from the start of the UK convoy on.

  • A rolling newsfeed of coverage including your teams updates and photos posted for the world to be jealous.

Epic Finish Line

  • A finish line to mark the end of your adventure and a free beer on arrival from the crew.

Official Finish Party

  • A suitably enormous and chaotic party to finish an adventure.

  • Overnight camping on the 3rd August included.

  • On site catering for survivors breakfast (pay cash on site).

Adventure Swag

  • POI decals for your car or bike.

  • Poles of Inconvenience patch for each team member.

  • Team t-shirt for every inconvenience seeker on your team.

The Poles of Inconvenience

  • The sprawling network of carefully crafted and curated Poles of Inconvenience - or POIs

  • Listed in your handbook, on a google map and inside your tracking app.

Adventure Handbook and Team Chat Group

  • A team handbook full of info.

  • Teams only chat groups to meet your fellow inconvenience seekers.
Poles of Inconvenience 2022 at Junktown, Czechia

Saving the world

Not only is the Poles of Inconvenience an industrial dose of adventure, it’s also about Saving the World. We ask every team to raise a minimum of £500 for the official charity Cool Earth, who work alongside indigenous villages to halt rainforest destruction.

Anything above this can be raised for any other registered charity of your choice.

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8. Contact us

Give us a shout if you have any questions.

Email: [email protected]

Phone: +44(0)1174223400

Whatsapp: +441174223400

Follow the POI Rally

Follow The Adventurists

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9. The Warning

The Poles of Inconvenience is a genuinely dangerous things to do. The website is written in a light-hearted fashion but you cannot overestimate the risks involved in taking part in this adventure.

Your chances of being seriously injured or dying as a result of taking part are high. Individuals who have taken part in past Adventurists' adventures have been permanently disfigured, seriously disabled and even lost their life.

This is not a glorified holiday, it's an unsupported adventure and so by its very nature extremely risky. You really are on your own and you really are putting both your health and life at risk. This is what makes them adventures.

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