By Micky Wiswedel
For the week leading up to Rockstock 2012, Cody, Justin, Thys and I were checking weather reports almost hourly, comparing forecasts, and trying decide whether the event should go ahead or if we should postpone.
The posters were already up and info was online however, so two days before Rockstock Thys convinced us that we should go ahead, and no matter what happened we would do it farmer style and make a plan.
As with all Rockstock events so far, organization was loose to say the least, yet the gods of good fortune and killer parties seemed to like us and everything kinda just fell into place. I had organized a much bigger sound and light rig than Rockstock had ever seen before which Justin, Ed and I spent quite a bit of time trying to figure out how to transport to Clanwilliam. Justin coincidentally had a trailer for his portable jacuzzi, luckily we managed to pack all the gear into it using imaginative Tetris style packing manoeuvres.
Thys phoned us the day before to let us know he had somehow come across a person in Clanwilliam who would rent us a huge shade tent which was 90% waterproof. Although we weren’t exactly sure what 90% waterproof meant!? Anyway, it was better than nothing and it seemed like everything else was looking up despite the weather.
Oh yeah, the weather, it was raining hard…
Setting everything up at the camp site was rough. I remember thinking that we were doomed as we unpacked all the boxes, cables, décor, and lights whilst huge storm clouds loomed in the distance. The heavy rains hit us mid way through setting up in the afternoon and with the help of some of the climbers we scrambled to tie down tarps, dig trenches and do whatever else was possible to divert water to keep the gear dry.
Cody and Lance did an amazing job figuring out how to get all the lights set up and wired, Ed turned a drab looking stage and tent into a colourful wonderland, I managed to figure out the sound rig and Justin made sure that we were continuously fuelled with beers.
By early evening and against all odds everything was set up and in such a way that it was mostly storm proof. We were set to go regardless of the weather.
As it got dark, the rain continued people started arriving, all looking a little gloomy and not too hopeful of the evening ahead. There was talk of the weather clearing by 8pm from the Norwegian weather site which for some reason is almost always accurate, this gave us a little hope which is sometimes all you need. At 8.03pm as miraculous as it sounds the skies cleared, and not like it was cloudy with less rain, but clear! As in stars and no clouds at all!
Rockstock was on!!
The bonfire was cranked up, meat hit the braai’s and the bar started getting rowdy. At around 9.30 we began the Annual International Airstar Competition with guest appearances by Madiba and ex French president Nicolas Sakozy. With the stage lit up the teams rocked the crowd with their Airstar acts… there were naked French men, zombies, rappers, rockers, strippers and an awesome performance by the Swiss Rocklands Crew who composed a song specifically for the event.
The Rocklands Crew took the title with huge points being awarded for originality followed closely by the Zombies and their Michael Jackson tribute. After the prize giving DJ’s took to the decks, cranked up the volume and kicked the party into overdrive for what was probably the best Rockstock event so far.
For those of you who chickened out because of the weather, I hate to say this you lost out. It was a killer party and the next day was perfect too, some of us even managed to get some decent climbing in despite the hangovers. There is always next year however and plans are to go bigger and better, rock on!