Wild Dog Adventure Riding

Riding: Plan, Report and Racing => Ride Reports => Topic started by: TechnomadicJim on October 27, 2013, 08:39:49 pm

Title: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: TechnomadicJim on October 27, 2013, 08:39:49 pm
Trip Conclusion : 29,000 KM's, 9 Countries in 9 months.

(http://i.imgur.com/0TTkUfel.png) (http://imgur.com/0TTkUfe)

---

Hi TechnomadicJim here. I've been getting some help for my trip from you guys and I have agreed to do a ride report so here we go.

Time : I have 3-9 months. (I arrived a month ago on the 25th September.)
Where : Southern Africa. Maybe up to Kenya but definitely South Africa, Namibia, Botswana, Swaziland and Lesotho.
What : Honda CTX 200 (AG Bushlander)

Here's my "Planning a ride" thread I started : http://www.wilddog.za.net/forum/index.php?topic=134555.20 (http://www.wilddog.za.net/forum/index.php?topic=134555.20)
Here's my Big vs Small bike discussion in "General Bike Related Banter" : http://www.wilddog.za.net/forum/index.php?topic=135182.20 (http://www.wilddog.za.net/forum/index.php?topic=135182.20)

I bought the Honda CTX 200 for 35,000 Rand (~£2150, ~€2500). Read the big vs small bike thread  (http://www.wilddog.za.net/forum/index.php?topic=135182.20) for more info on why I decided to go for the CTX. I'm keeping the bike mostly stock but I did visit PistonPete at Outriders and had some 50/50 enduro Mitas tyres put on the bike. I may tweak the back rack slightly to allow my luggage to sit lower.

I'm taking the bike on a short 2-3000km round trip of the garden route and route 62 as a test to make sure I'm prepared. This is where I shall begin my ride report :

(http://i.imgur.com/p2RqV20.jpg) (http://imgur.com/p2RqV20)
Cape Point on my first day heading out with all my gear.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: TechnomadicJim on October 27, 2013, 09:05:17 pm
I started out from Cape Town and headed to Cape Point (see above pic) where I had 3 ostrich's running just in front of me. They can run! Next if followed the coast on to Onrus camp site. Spent a couple of nights there quite bored to be honest. Saw some whales. meh...

Onwards to Cape Agulhas to visit the obligatory most southern point of Africa. Was tempted to take the bike right up to the sign but there were a lot of tourists around so I just walked up.

(http://i.imgur.com/exGPxsh.jpg) (http://imgur.com/exGPxsh)

I ended up in Swellendam where I spent 4 nights because it rained and I didn't fancy riding in it so I just holed up and got on with some work. Stayed at http://www.swellendambackpackers.co.za/ (http://www.swellendambackpackers.co.za/) Nice place and you can camp or dorm bed it and have your bike parked safely round the back of the house next to your tent/dorm.

Next I headed to Mossel Bay for another obligatory tourist thing of shark cage diving. The sea was rough and I was very sea sick and ended up spewing over the side and feeding the little fish. I still managed to get some photo's and did get a suit on to go in the cage while they dragged a fish head in front of the sharks as they bashed into the cage. I'm not sure how humane it is really as I'm sure I saw some lacerations on the shark's noses possibly from the cage :/

(http://i.imgur.com/gKMcK7d.jpg) (http://imgur.com/gKMcK7d)

After 3 nights I headed up to Oudtshoorn and sat on an Ostrich. Bit weird.

(http://i.imgur.com/UDdzbAM.jpg) (http://imgur.com/UDdzbAM)

Today I drove the Swartberg pass.

(http://i.imgur.com/tBWRiXV.jpg) (http://imgur.com/tBWRiXV)

And then descended into "The Hell" and what a great ride! Really awesome twisty roads and small river crossings. I truly christened the bike and cut my teeth on some good off road terrain. The little CTX really performed well.

(http://i.imgur.com/9x07PBO.jpg) (http://imgur.com/9x07PBO)

(http://i.imgur.com/WI9fDOr.jpg) (http://imgur.com/WI9fDOr)
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: Knucklhead on October 27, 2013, 09:08:06 pm
welcome china, hope u have a jol ::)
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: zebra - Flying Brick on October 27, 2013, 09:23:14 pm
Subscribe; keep it coming Gentleman Jim!
Cheers
Chris
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: Mr Zog on October 27, 2013, 09:28:32 pm
Subscribed!  :thumleft:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: Dwerg on October 27, 2013, 09:35:35 pm
 :sip:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: african dust on October 28, 2013, 04:46:56 am
good stuff so far, keep it coming !
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: MegaPix on October 28, 2013, 06:22:29 am
 :sip:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: Vintage_Mania on October 28, 2013, 06:31:35 am
*ingeskryf*
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: Casting from Turd on October 28, 2013, 06:45:19 am
Yes yes. Welcome. You coming Addo way??
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: Veldbrand on October 28, 2013, 06:56:23 am
Good stuff Jim!
Please come visit if you're passing anywhere near Ladismith!!!
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: goblin on October 28, 2013, 07:29:35 am
sub
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: Dwerg on October 28, 2013, 07:33:43 am
Good stuff Jim!
Please come visit if you're passing anywhere near Ladismith!!!


Yes yes. Welcome. You coming Addo way??

Two must stops on any trip through the cape  :thumleft:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: Gat Slag on October 28, 2013, 07:47:42 am
Welcome!  :thumleft:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: the_BOBNOB on October 28, 2013, 07:49:52 am
looking good  :thumleft:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: Gérrard on October 28, 2013, 07:54:03 am
I like your style Jim. Enjoy the ride  :thumleft:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: Pistonpete on October 28, 2013, 07:57:22 am
Looking good Jim  :thumleft:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: Trailrider on October 28, 2013, 08:11:30 am
Looking good! Was good meeting you. :thumleft:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: COLES on October 28, 2013, 08:28:18 am

ALWAYS WONDERED HOW YOU GOT ONTO AN OSTRICH TRUST YOU WILL HAVE A GREAT RIDE
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: Lem on October 28, 2013, 09:03:24 am
this looks very lekker!  :thumleft:

can't wait for the rest.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: Dutchman81 on October 28, 2013, 09:15:50 am
Well Done Jim  :thumleft:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: TechnomadicJim on October 28, 2013, 10:01:32 am
Thanks for all the subs and messages :) I will do my best to make a good ride report. I was checking some of my GoPro / camera footage from the hell and I got some great stuff so when I eventually get round to making a video it should be pretty cool too.

I'm still in Oudtshoorn with a bit of a dilemma. I'm still waiting for my "Application and Notice in respect of Traffic Register Number (ANR)" form to be processed as my temporary permit expires in 2 days time on the 30th. I finally got through to the office today and they are apparently going to call me back with the status of my TRN. Basically I need it so the bike can be registered in my name. I'm due a phone call back (if it happens!) soon. The dilemma is whether to ignore the fact my temporary permit expires and stay on the garden route or race back to cape town and hole up until my TRN is ready. I haven't been stopped once in the last 3 weeks despite not having a number plate but I would rather not risk getting pulled over and having an expired permit and get the bike impounded and the hassle that goes with that. If anyone has and contacts or advice I'm all ears :)

Subscribe; keep it coming Gentleman Jim!
Cheers
Chris

Hey Chris! Will do sir!

Yes yes. Welcome. You coming Addo way??

Hello :) Yes but it will be towards the end of the trip. I will be travelling clockwise so will hit it when I come back down into South Africa on my way back to Cape Town to sell the bike. Will try and remember to get in contact :)

Good stuff Jim!
Please come visit if you're passing anywhere near Ladismith!!!

Yes I will try to for sure :) It all depends on the above TRN fiasco whether its at the beginning or end of the trip :)

Looking good! Was good meeting you. :thumleft:

Likewise. Thanks for your advise on routes and such. All the best mate!
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: Dorsland on October 28, 2013, 10:23:37 am
I don't see any ATGATT while riding that ostrich  :imaposer:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: HB 9 on October 28, 2013, 10:48:49 am
 :sip:  Best wishes and safe riding!
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: Flouw on October 28, 2013, 11:34:30 am
awesome. my thinking aswell to tour on small bike.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: TechnomadicJim on October 28, 2013, 01:21:17 pm
I finally got through to the Cape Town office about my ANR and it should apparently be ready by Thursday (fingers crossed). I'm going to head back that way over the next few days to collect it.

I don't see any ATGATT while riding that ostrich  :imaposer:

hahaha. That would have been awesome. Wish I had have thought of that  ;D
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: Casting from Turd on October 28, 2013, 09:28:37 pm
Thanks for all the subs and messages :) I will do my best to make a good ride report. I was checking some of my GoPro / camera footage from the hell and I got some great stuff so when I eventually get round to making a video it should be pretty cool too.

I'm still in Oudtshoorn with a bit of a dilemma. I'm still waiting for my "Application and Notice in respect of Traffic Register Number (ANR)" form to be processed as my temporary permit expires in 2 days time on the 30th. I finally got through to the office today and they are apparently going to call me back with the status of my TRN. Basically I need it so the bike can be registered in my name. I'm due a phone call back (if it happens!) soon. The dilemma is whether to ignore the fact my temporary permit expires and stay on the garden route or race back to cape town and hole up until my TRN is ready. I haven't been stopped once in the last 3 weeks despite not having a number plate but I would rather not risk getting pulled over and having an expired permit and get the bike impounded and the hassle that goes with that. If anyone has and contacts or advice I'm all ears :)

Subscribe; keep it coming Gentleman Jim!
Cheers
Chris

Hey Chris! Will do sir!

Yes yes. Welcome. You coming Addo way??

Hello :) Yes but it will be towards the end of the trip. I will be travelling clockwise so will hit it when I come back down into South Africa on my way back to Cape Town to sell the bike. Will try and remember to get in contact :)[/b]

Good stuff Jim!
Please come visit if you're passing anywhere near Ladismith!!!

Yes I will try to for sure :) It all depends on the above TRN fiasco whether its at the beginning or end of the trip :)

Looking good! Was good meeting you. :thumleft:

Likewise. Thanks for your advise on routes and such. All the best mate!

Best you do remember  :imaposer: :imaposer:  :thumleft:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: Malibu on October 29, 2013, 08:48:52 am
I am soooo looking forward to reading more... :thumleft:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: jaybiker on October 29, 2013, 08:55:43 am
While we sit at our keyboards and argue at length about the features of all the overweight , over priced, over equipped machinery that we consider so necessary for our activity, one has to wonder about the down to earth virtues of a rugged, unpretentious, low budget little bike like that little Honda. One that a rider with just average skill can take just about anywhere it's possible to go, knowing that he'll get there and back, and without worrying about breaking anything too expensive.
Way to go, from one Jim to another, best of luck and happy times, for the rest of your African travels.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: MegaPix on October 29, 2013, 01:50:36 pm
While we sit at our keyboards and argue at length about the features of all the overweight , over priced, over equipped machinery that we consider so necessary for our activity, one has to wonder about the down to earth virtues of a rugged, unpretentious, low budget little bike like that little Honda. One that a rider with just average skill can take just about anywhere it's possible to go, knowing that he'll get there and back, and without worrying about breaking anything too expensive.
Way to go, from one Jim to another, best of luck and happy times, for the rest of your African travels.

I agree.  After reading Jim's post about Big vs Small bikes I realised that i can do it with my Big Boy XTG200 as well.  There is a dealer in almost every small town that is selling this product.  So it will also give me an indication if this is what i want to do.
what an inspiration you are Jim.  Thanx for sharing
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: Flouw on October 29, 2013, 02:51:45 pm
While we sit at our keyboards and argue at length about the features of all the overweight , over priced, over equipped machinery that we consider so necessary for our activity, one has to wonder about the down to earth virtues of a rugged, unpretentious, low budget little bike like that little Honda. One that a rider with just average skill can take just about anywhere it's possible to go, knowing that he'll get there and back, and without worrying about breaking anything too expensive.
Way to go, from one Jim to another, best of luck and happy times, for the rest of your African travels.

I agree.  After reading Jim's post about Big vs Small bikes I realised that i can do it with my Big Boy XTG200 as well.  There is a dealer in almost every small town that is selling this product.  So it will also give me an indication if this is what i want to do.
what an inspiration you are Jim.  Thanx for sharing

the motor will last, but doubt the frame will. (no personal experience).
i was very tempted at buying 2 of these cheapies. doing a few long trips untill they start giving problems. and just dump them, or donate to the closest school kid.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: Veldbrand on October 29, 2013, 07:08:30 pm
Glad you stopped by for a chat TechnomadicJim.
Good to meet you young man and please take care on your travels.
Hope to see you on your way back to CT one day.
Break a leg mate! :thumleft:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: spoedvark on October 29, 2013, 08:13:11 pm
Looking great! Enjoy!

Subscribed!
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: TechnomadicJim on October 29, 2013, 10:05:24 pm
While we sit at our keyboards and argue at length about the features of all the overweight , over priced, over equipped machinery that we consider so necessary for our activity, one has to wonder about the down to earth virtues of a rugged, unpretentious, low budget little bike like that little Honda. One that a rider with just average skill can take just about anywhere it's possible to go, knowing that he'll get there and back, and without worrying about breaking anything too expensive.
Way to go, from one Jim to another, best of luck and happy times, for the rest of your African travels.

Thanks man. Really nice to read your post before my ride this morning. Made me extra happy for the rest of the day.  ;D

I agree.  After reading Jim's post about Big vs Small bikes I realised that i can do it with my Big Boy XTG200 as well.  There is a dealer in almost every small town that is selling this product.  So it will also give me an indication if this is what i want to do.
what an inspiration you are Jim.  Thanx for sharing

Go for it :) The first step is the hardest as they say. Thanks for your kind words :)  

the motor will last, but doubt the frame will. (no personal experience).
i was very tempted at buying 2 of these cheapies. doing a few long trips untill they start giving problems. and just dump them, or donate to the closest school kid.

Lets see what this little machine can do. The more I ride the CTX 200 the more confidence it gives me.

Glad you stopped by for a chat TechnomadicJim.
Good to meet you young man and please take care on your travels.
Hope to see you on your way back to CT one day.
Break a leg mate! :thumleft:

Was great to meet you too. Thanks for the coke and being so welcoming despite me just turning up un-announced :) Was cool to have a chat and get your advice. Much appreciated. I will certainly pop by again on my way round.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: TechnomadicJim on October 29, 2013, 10:28:36 pm
So I left Oudtshorn for http://www.warmwaterbergspa.co.za/ (http://www.warmwaterbergspa.co.za/) after having it recommended by two separate people. Its really good value for money. I'm paying 200 Rand for a room with a kitchen and I get my own private massive bath with a huge tap for the hot mineral water. So good I decided to stay two nights.

The power was out so I headed the notorious "Ronnies Sex Shop" for my morning tea.

(http://i.imgur.com/AuwMOAj.jpg) (http://imgur.com/AuwMOAj)

I then backtracked to Ladismith today so that I could ride some of the back (off) roads near the Swartberg mountains. There's a really nice road near Zoar that cuts through. Here's a couple of still's from the video (GoPro2 720p/30fps) I took today :

(http://i.imgur.com/RbXjkx1.jpg) (http://imgur.com/RbXjkx1)

(http://i.imgur.com/TgaqnST.jpg) (http://imgur.com/TgaqnST)

I didn't have time to follow the road all the way round so at this point I turned round and headed for Veldbrand's place. He kindly gave me some new directions and I took a mostly off road way back to warmwaterberg spa. Thanks mate!

(http://i.imgur.com/La7n278.jpg) (http://imgur.com/La7n278)

Really fun day zipping about without luggage.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: adv on October 30, 2013, 12:07:58 am
Subscribed.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: Wild Hearted Son on October 30, 2013, 07:22:28 am
enjoy your trip.
totally brilliant pics.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: DirtCopper on October 30, 2013, 08:18:20 am
Subscribed. :)
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: mox on October 31, 2013, 11:23:18 am
This is going to be an epic journey! Love your not so planned style. Ride safe TechnomadicJim  and enjoy.  :thumleft:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: The Badger on October 31, 2013, 05:24:40 pm
Keep it up Jim and pls give me a shout when you are near Durban on your way down. :thumleft:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: TechnomadicJim on October 31, 2013, 10:30:38 pm
I'm back in Cape Town until Tuesday to hopefully pick up my TRN so I can get my number plates. Then I'm heading up north to explore the Western Cape and then Namibia.  :biggrin:

I've been going through my video's and pulled out a few more from "The Hell" :

(http://i.imgur.com/xCGrBXX.png) (http://imgur.com/xCGrBXX)

This little fellow was frozen as soon as I drove round the corner. There was a second or so when we both just stared at each other. Really cool experience.

(http://i.imgur.com/KDCy9hU.png) (http://imgur.com/KDCy9hU)

Crossing through this stream was great fun. I imagine its pretty intense after heavy rains.

(http://i.imgur.com/XKcisJH.png) (http://imgur.com/XKcisJH)

(http://i.imgur.com/JAVQJvX.png) (http://imgur.com/JAVQJvX)

Taken at Seweweekspoort pass near Zoar and also my new profile picture at full size and uncropped :

(http://i.imgur.com/ijYfq5L.png) (http://imgur.com/ijYfq5L)
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: Pistonpete on November 01, 2013, 07:46:07 am
Pop into the shop later if you can....beers are cold! :thumleft:
Title: Re: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: adv on November 01, 2013, 07:59:32 am
Ahahha thanks pete.
 Ill relieve you of those beers ;D
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: Lem on November 01, 2013, 09:43:23 am
this is turning into a really good one...

that plaasbike is looking quite at home in Wild Africa (said in a Henry Cole pommie accent)
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: Jacobsroodt on November 01, 2013, 10:07:23 am
You travel light☺
That road to die Hel is such a delight. They recommend 2 hours one way for a car. We did it in 1 hour 10 min :lol8:
A screen and ATG saddle bags will do the trick for a long trip methinks.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: Gérrard on November 01, 2013, 10:21:29 am
Man I like this. Small bike is the way to go. That road that "cuts through the mountain at Zoar" is Seweweekspoort. Just for your records  :thumleft:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: Flouw on November 01, 2013, 10:47:17 am
at what speed are you traveling?

im thinking of doing the same thing. have a TW200 in mind. and know they arent the fastest.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: oldmannorman on November 01, 2013, 04:57:31 pm
 :sip:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: TechnomadicJim on November 02, 2013, 08:07:49 pm
I got my TRN at last! Had to hang around in the civic centre for a couple of hours while they processed it. Why it took 4 weeks I have no idea. I hassled them by phone, email and in person over the last week which is why I think they eventually sorted it. Honda now have a copy so I can get my number plate processed which in turn means I can head north up the western cape next week! If anyone has any must ride trails let me know ;)

I do still have a few things I want to get sorted on the bike. I have a 5 litre plastic container and some bike rubber inner tube for attaching it to the bike. I also want to try and get my luggage down a bit lower and mount my soft Kriega US20 + US30 bags on the sides as saddle bags. I was in a hardware store today and noticed a plastic crate for 70 rand. I reckon I can cut it up a bit and mount it upside down on the back rack to allow extra support and protection from the exhaust. Seems like a nice cheap/light option that should work unless anyone else has any good ideas ?

I also need to buy the following : Tool kit, Tyre levers, Puncture repair patches, Mini Pump, Extra Bungee's (already lost one and broke one),  Rox Straps... Probably more... still thinking :)

I'm not sure but I think I might leave my waterproof and insulating layers for my RST Adventure Pro jacket / trousers. I reckon its going to get hot and I will just end up lugging them around. Not that they are heavy just a little bulky. The only problem is that if it does get cold or wet on my journey I'm not going to be very well protected if I ride in it. Any thoughts ?

Pop into the shop later if you can....beers are cold! :thumleft:

Hey :) Sorry I couldn't make it Friday but I will pop by and see you on Tuesday. I forgot my spare inner tubes last time. Could probably do with some other odd's and sod's too.

this is turning into a really good one...

that plaasbike is looking quite at home in Wild Africa (said in a Henry Cole pommie accent)

haha i sure hope so :)

You travel light☺
That road to die Hel is such a delight. They recommend 2 hours one way for a car. We did it in 1 hour 10 min :lol8:
A screen and ATG saddle bags will do the trick for a long trip methinks.

Nice :) I took it slower on the way in but opened it up on the way out as i knew what to expect. Great fun!

I weighed my gear yesterday and it comes in at 19 kgs (not including fuel + water). The bike can "officially" carry 3 + 20 kg's (front + back). I'm not too heavy so I reckon it will take more especially if I can get it down lower.

Man I like this. Small bike is the way to go. That road that "cuts through the mountain at Zoar" is Seweweekspoort. Just for your records  :thumleft:

Nice one, thanks! I've modified my post.

at what speed are you traveling?

im thinking of doing the same thing. have a TW200 in mind. and know they arent the fastest.

Provided its not too windy/hilly the bike is comfortable between 80 and 90 km/h. It can get up to 110 km/h if I give it full throttle or I'm going down hill or the wind is behind me :). Highways are OK but boring. I'm certainly not the slowest thing on the road even when the bike's fully loaded.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: adv on November 02, 2013, 08:37:35 pm
I got my TRN at last! Had to hang around in the civic centre for a couple of hours while they processed it. Why it took 4 weeks I have no idea. I hassled them by phone, email and in person over the last week which is why I think they eventually sorted it. Honda now have a copy so I can get my number plate processed which in turn means I can head north up the western cape next week! If anyone has any must ride trails let me know ;)

I do still have a few things I want to get sorted on the bike. I have a 5 litre plastic container and some bike rubber inner tube for attaching it to the bike. I also want to try and get my luggage down a bit lower and mount my soft Kriega US20 + US30 bags on the sides as saddle bags. I was in a hardware store today and noticed a plastic crate for 70 rand. I reckon I can cut it up a bit and mount it upside down on the back rack to allow extra support and protection from the exhaust. Seems like a nice cheap/light option that should work unless anyone else has any good ideas ?

I also need to buy the following : Tool kit, Tyre levers, Puncture repair patches, Mini Pump, Extra Bungee's (already lost one and broke one),  Rox Straps... Probably more... still thinking :)

I'm not sure but I think I might leave my waterproof and insulating layers for my RST Adventure Pro jacket / trousers. I reckon its going to get hot and I will just end up lugging them around. Not that they are heavy just a little bulky. The only problem is that if it does get cold or wet on my journey I'm not going to be very well protected if I ride in it. Any thoughts ?

Pop into the shop later if you can....beers are cold! :thumleft:

Hey :) Sorry I couldn't make it Friday but I will pop by and see you on Tuesday. I forgot my spare inner tubes last time. Could probably do with some other odd's and sod's too.

this is turning into a really good one...

that plaasbike is looking quite at home in Wild Africa (said in a Henry Cole pommie accent)

haha i sure hope so :)

You travel light☺
That road to die Hel is such a delight. They recommend 2 hours one way for a car. We did it in 1 hour 10 min :lol8:
A screen and ATG saddle bags will do the trick for a long trip methinks.

Nice :) I took it slower on the way in but opened it up on the way out as i knew what to expect. Great fun!

I weighed my gear yesterday and it comes in at 19 kgs (not including fuel + water). The bike can "officially" carry 3 + 20 kg's (front + back). I'm not too heavy so I reckon it will take more especially if I can get it down lower.

Man I like this. Small bike is the way to go. That road that "cuts through the mountain at Zoar" is Seweweekspoort. Just for your records  :thumleft:

Nice one, thanks! I've modified my post.

at what speed are you traveling?

im thinking of doing the same thing. have a TW200 in mind. and know they arent the fastest.

Provided its not too windy/hilly the bike is comfortable between 80 and 90 km/h. It can get up to 110 km/h if I give it full throttle or I'm going down hill or the wind is behind me :). Highways are OK but boring. I'm certainly not the slowest thing on the road even when the bike's fully loaded.


Call Trevor @ adventure rider - 021 511 1007 He has everything you need.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: ChrisL - DUSTRIDERS on November 02, 2013, 10:29:15 pm
You might get a light rainsuit.
The rainy season starts now in Namibia(we all hope so) and normally is afternoon showers.
It will not be cold but it can be very heavy downpours sometimes.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: TechnomadicJim on November 04, 2013, 05:19:14 pm


Still waiting for Honda to sort my number plate out. "Africa Time" again... I also met RadioMan this morning for coffee. He's been riding around the world for a while now. You can follow his ride report on advrider here (http://advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=689134). Here's a pic we took at the waterfront by the giant globe :

(http://i.imgur.com/EigQBI8.jpg) (http://imgur.com/EigQBI8)

Call Trevor @ adventure rider - 021 511 1007 He has everything you need.

Thanks. I visited his shop today and he wasn't in tried to call but no answer so left my number with his neighbour. Will try again tomorrow too.

You might get a light rainsuit.
The rainy season starts now in Namibia(we all hope so) and normally is afternoon showers.
It will not be cold but it can be very heavy downpours sometimes.

Thanks for the tip. I've decided I'm going to leave the padding layer but take the waterproof one for my RST adventure pro. Its a nice compromise.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: whitedelight on November 04, 2013, 05:42:40 pm
Jim I see on AdvRider you are gonna do the trip up to Oasis this weekend. It will be great to meet you and see Mark again. You guys are in for a big party.   :thumleft:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: TechnomadicJim on November 04, 2013, 11:01:33 pm
Jim I see on AdvRider you are gonna do the trip up to Oasis this weekend. It will be great to meet you and see Mark again. You guys are in for a big party.   :thumleft:

Yes :) I hope to make it. Just made a post in the thread. Hopefully if everything goes to plan I will see you and Mark there :)
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: W1P30UT on November 05, 2013, 09:31:48 am
Good luck!!!  :thumleft:

:sip:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: MissM on November 10, 2013, 08:34:26 pm
So awesome to meet you this weekend. I'm looking forward to hearing the stories over the next few months!
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: katana on November 10, 2013, 09:28:38 pm
Nice meeting you Jim.  Enjoy your trip  :thumleft:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: TechnomadicJim on November 10, 2013, 10:06:37 pm
Nice meeting you Jim.  Enjoy your trip  :thumleft:

You too man :) Drive safe!

So awesome to meet you this weekend. I'm looking forward to hearing the stories over the next few months!

Great to see you guys too. Thanks for taking me out on a drive. Was an awesome weekend!

Entering Cerderberg :

(http://i.imgur.com/pNVE4F2.jpg) (http://imgur.com/pNVE4F2)

(http://i.imgur.com/AOr5Zqk.jpg) (http://imgur.com/AOr5Zqk)

(http://i.imgur.com/d9s0Rgp.jpg) (http://imgur.com/d9s0Rgp)

Went for a really cool ride with MissM + Monkeyboy and saw some impressive bushman paintings :

(http://i.imgur.com/2JwiYwE.jpg) (http://imgur.com/2JwiYwE)

(http://i.imgur.com/NlHd893.jpg) (http://imgur.com/NlHd893)

(http://i.imgur.com/XXDozDz.jpg) (http://imgur.com/XXDozDz)

(http://i.imgur.com/fYrI5FG.jpg) (http://imgur.com/fYrI5FG)

Messing around with MissM :) :

(http://i.imgur.com/KOllhsK.jpg) (http://imgur.com/KOllhsK)

Spit Braai! Mmmmmm....

(http://i.imgur.com/WX0Tubd.jpg) (http://imgur.com/WX0Tubd)

My lonesome camp after you lot all left!

(http://i.imgur.com/cI9yxd6.jpg) (http://imgur.com/cI9yxd6)

Went exploring round Gerrit's back yard with MissM and found this old bath. Had to get in it of course :

(http://i.imgur.com/dG4DiLk.jpg) (http://imgur.com/dG4DiLk)

The ride out towards Clanwilliam. Nice winding road :

(http://i.imgur.com/2R7wjHq.jpg) (http://imgur.com/2R7wjHq)

Just on the out skirts of Clanwilliam where I am staying now :

(http://i.imgur.com/SNtnO5n.jpg) (http://imgur.com/SNtnO5n)
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: Probie on November 10, 2013, 10:25:30 pm
Sub  :happy1:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: N[]vA on November 11, 2013, 06:30:53 am
Nice to meet ya mate, ride safe and enjoy!
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: gwild on November 11, 2013, 08:18:54 pm
Nice thx for sharing :thumleft: keep it coming
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: TechnomadicJim on November 13, 2013, 08:17:26 pm
Just an update. No pics. I'm not finding too much interesting stuff to see or do the last couple of days.

From Clanwilliam I decided to head to Elands Bay to get away from the heat. I passed "The Dunes" and thought I would have a gander but dropped the bike on the sand on the way so decided it wasn't such a good idea! I only stayed one night in Elands bay as it seemed like a pretty boring place. I get the impression it is busy at weekends and around holidays. I hit the road the next morning and decided to just drive north until I felt like I had enough which happened to be Garies on the N7. Its a tiny agricultural town. Seems quite friendly here.

The driving today was 50% road 50% gravel / sand and a good learning curve. My off road riding skills do seem to be improving although I have to admit I nearly lost it a few times when I went from gravel thick sand.

Before I head into Namibia I'm going to head to Upington to get my 4k service done as its the only Honda dealership between Cape Town and Windhoek. I'm liking the look of Augrabies Falls national park and may drive here tomorrow : http://augrabies.wozaonline.co.za/ (http://augrabies.wozaonline.co.za/) Its 415 km's so it would be my longest drive yet. Will see what happens.

Please do chime in if there is anything in particular I should see on the way.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: Gérrard on November 13, 2013, 08:29:10 pm
On your way back, get to Calvinia and then Middelpos. Get directions and make your way down Ganagga pass, through the Tankwa Karoo National Park and then up Ouberg Pass to Upington.

You wont regret it. Enjoy and be safe.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: TechnomadicJim on November 13, 2013, 08:36:07 pm
On your way back, get to Calvinia and then Middelpos. Get directions and make your way down Ganagga pass, through the Tankwa Karoo National Park and then up Ouberg Pass to Upington.

You wont regret it. Enjoy and be safe.

I should have headed that way out of Cederberg. Oh well. I guess I will have to do it another time. Thanks for the tip anyway. :)
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: Gérrard on November 13, 2013, 08:52:26 pm
On your way back, get to Calvinia and then Middelpos. Get directions and make your way down Ganagga pass, through the Tankwa Karoo National Park and then up Ouberg Pass to Upington.

You wont regret it. Enjoy and be safe.

I should have headed that way out of Cederberg. Oh well. I guess I will have to do it another time. Thanks for the tip anyway. :)

Or depending, try and get to Verneukpan and spend a night there, especially this weekend when it will be full moon. You will be awed.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: TechnomadicJim on November 13, 2013, 09:03:40 pm
Or depending, try and get to Verneukpan and spend a night there, especially this weekend when it will be full moon. You will be awed.

Awesome! I like the look of that. Added to the GPS. Thanks!
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: zacapa on November 13, 2013, 09:04:35 pm
Cool Trip TJ! If you need a place to stay over in Upington you can give Freddie a shout at Aardwolf Backpackers.
http://www.aardwolfbackpackers.wozaonline.co.za/ (http://www.aardwolfbackpackers.wozaonline.co.za/)
http://www.roomsforafrica.com/establishment.do?id=12558 (http://www.roomsforafrica.com/establishment.do?id=12558)

Namibia is going to blow your mind when you get there. Chameleon Backpackers & Lodge is a great place to stay when in Windhoek.
Awesome single track can be found just about anywhere in Nam, my favorite being the northern loop between White Lady Lodge near Uis
and via moon landscape on tracks around the Brandberg Mountains via Divorce Pass to Rhino Camp at Brandberg West.
If you need local knowledge check out these guys in Windhoek: http://www.enduro-namibia.com/ (http://www.enduro-namibia.com/)

On both counts mention that Thorsten from Durban recommended this so they know whats happening. Dieter at BMW dealership in Windhoek
is probably the best motorcycle mechanic in the country so if Honda comes short give Dieter a call.

Happy travels, what is your range on the 200? on some of the offroady loops in Namibia it's good to have a range of about 400km+. Generally
250km will get you from gas to gas stop.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: TechnomadicJim on November 13, 2013, 09:30:40 pm
Cool Trip TJ! If you need a place to stay over in Upington you can give Freddie a shout at Aardwolf Backpackers.
http://www.aardwolfbackpackers.wozaonline.co.za/ (http://www.aardwolfbackpackers.wozaonline.co.za/)
http://www.roomsforafrica.com/establishment.do?id=12558 (http://www.roomsforafrica.com/establishment.do?id=12558)

Namibia is going to blow your mind when you get there. Chameleon Backpackers & Lodge is a great place to stay when in Windhoek.
Awesome single track can be found just about anywhere in Nam, my favorite being the northern loop between White Lady Lodge near Uis
and via moon landscape on tracks around the Brandberg Mountains via Divorce Pass to Rhino Camp at Brandberg West.
If you need local knowledge check out these guys in Windhoek: http://www.enduro-namibia.com/ (http://www.enduro-namibia.com/)

On both counts mention that Thorsten from Durban recommended this so they know whats happening. Dieter at BMW dealership in Windhoek
is probably the best motorcycle mechanic in the country so if Honda comes short give Dieter a call.

Happy travels, what is your range on the 200? on some of the offroady loops in Namibia it's good to have a range of about 400km+. Generally
250km will get you from gas to gas stop.


Nice one thanks! I've added those recommendations to my GPS. Will name drop you too :)

I also found some of enduro nambia's itinerary's here : http://www.enduro-namibia.com/toffer.html (http://www.enduro-namibia.com/toffer.html) will come in useful as a rough guide.

The CTX 200 only has an 8.5 litre tank and I'm getting up to about 25 km's per litre so just over 200 km's per tank. I'm carrying an extra 5 litres giving me ~340 km range. I could carry an extra 2 litre coke bottle if fuel if needed I guess :)
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: DRAZIL on November 13, 2013, 09:33:16 pm
keep the pages rolling,enjoying this report,thanks :thumleft: :thumleft:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: TechnomadicJim on November 13, 2013, 10:18:53 pm
keep the pages rolling,enjoying this report,thanks :thumleft: :thumleft:

Cooool :)

---

I just created a new thread about the app I use for navigation. Its posted here if anyone fancied a read :

Open Street Maps for Android (OSMAnd)

(https://lh3.ggpht.com/9GNqETQt-OimAS89nOriF0q2Edw-itEr-K7uSFynCehrYvrs53qT48n7b6AGOSJiUok=h900-rw) (http://www.wilddog.za.net/forum/index.php?topic=138603.0)

I've been contributing back to the open street map project as I find useful things like petrol stations not listed or off road routes that need adding or updating.

Here's my openstreetmap.org (http://www.openstreetmap.org/) profile : http://www.openstreetmap.org/user/TechnomadicJim (http://www.openstreetmap.org/user/TechnomadicJim)

I'm pretty sure that the knowledge of awesome routes and tracks on this forum could really benefit the project. Get involved! Ask me any questions in the GPS thread (http://www.wilddog.za.net/forum/index.php?topic=138603.0) if you need help setting anything up.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: boland on November 14, 2013, 08:53:18 am
I saw you yesterday at the wimpy in Vredendal. I couldn't say hi, was with clients!

Enjoy your trip
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: TechnomadicJim on November 14, 2013, 08:57:00 am
I saw you yesterday at the wimpy in Vredendal. I couldn't say hi, was with clients!

Enjoy your trip

hahah wow. Its a small world!
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: Flouw on November 14, 2013, 09:43:33 am
you are doing some speed there...... :imaposer: and they said you need a bigger bike
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: oldmannorman on November 14, 2013, 07:24:20 pm
  :sip:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: TechnomadicJim on November 15, 2013, 03:24:29 pm
From Elands bay I just headed north to see where I would end. Garies was where I decided I had done enough km's for the day. I stayed in a nice cheap self catering apartment for 280 rand. The next morning I decided to do the same and drove through Springbok which seemed like a nice place. I would have considered staying there but it was only lunchtime so pushed on. I read about some cathedral at Pella on someone's itinerary and decided to have a look. Pretty cool place. Pella is a very quiet town which some quite spectacular mountains in the background.

(http://i.imgur.com/82Ce4Sj.jpg) (http://imgur.com/82Ce4Sj)

A local guy told me to just keep driving through to end up at Klein Pella where I knew I could find some accommodation. So I headed off where he pointed and ended up in some spectacular but challenging terrain. Managed to drop the bike in some deep sand. Wasn't going fast so no matter. It quite tough with when you hit that deep sand especially with all my luggage. Fortunately the small bike is  nice and easy to pick up again. I ended up doing a bit of a loop for an hour or so and got back on the N14 and headed for Pofadder to try and find a room for the night.

(http://i.imgur.com/dyxnKse.png) (http://imgur.com/dyxnKse)

Turns out they are building some massive solar farm near Pofadder so lots of contractor's have taken all the rooms. I was advised to carry on to Kakamas. The sun was setting so full throttle and I managed to find a room but ended up paying 400 rand for the night! Ohh well shit happens.

(http://i.imgur.com/LkTlXo3.jpg) (http://imgur.com/LkTlXo3)

So now I'm staying at Augrabies Backpackers (http://augrabies.wozaonline.co.za/) which will be my base while I explore the area for a few days.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: gwild on November 15, 2013, 07:39:15 pm
 :thumleft: keep it coming  :thumleft:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: TechnomadicJim on November 18, 2013, 09:24:26 pm
Been hanging out in Augrabies the last few days. The backpackers (http://augrabies.wozaonline.co.za/) is a nice chilled out biker friendly place to use as a base camp. I have been exploring the local grape farms and getting a few things sorted.

Yesterday I  drove a big loop to Riemvasmaak. There's some great 4x4 off roading to be done in the area.

(http://i.imgur.com/I5QPbdw.jpg) (http://imgur.com/I5QPbdw)

(http://i.imgur.com/ylejZL2.jpg) (http://imgur.com/ylejZL2)

I stopped off at the hot springs (50 rand) and chilled in the water by myself for an hour or so. Its really beautiful down there with two pools to choose from.

(http://i.imgur.com/E0RqcKp.jpg) (http://imgur.com/E0RqcKp)

(http://i.imgur.com/ZvYKoV0.jpg) (http://imgur.com/ZvYKoV0)

(http://i.imgur.com/3fGKQje.jpg) (http://imgur.com/3fGKQje)

I got the bike serviced today in Upington. Its been 4000 kms so far. I also picked up a 10 litre fuel can which gives me a total range of around 450km's. Should be enough for Namibia ;) I also got the tracks4africa Namibian paper map as a backup to my GPS (http://www.wilddog.za.net/forum/index.php?topic=138603.0).

I'm hoping to head to the Augrabies falls tomorrow.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: Pistonpete on November 18, 2013, 09:45:28 pm
Jim,
Some of us old bullets did some of our national service training on that terrain in Riemies.....enjoy the scorpions, snakes & spiders with jaws.... :thumleft:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: MegaPix on November 18, 2013, 09:58:26 pm
As a photographer I like the way you do your shots with yourself in it.  Epecially the riding ones.  Timer or video frames?
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: Pietcoke on November 18, 2013, 10:23:15 pm
 :sip:

Love your RR.

You are traveling in the area at the moment where i was born. Kakamas to be exact.

Enjoy our beautiful country and save travels.  :thumleft:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: TechnomadicJim on November 18, 2013, 10:46:33 pm
Jim,
Some of us old bullets did some of our national service training on that terrain in Riemies.....enjoy the scorpions, snakes & spiders with jaws.... :thumleft:

Cool 8) Been learning about a few of the nasties up here from the locals.

As a photographer I like the way you do your shots with yourself in it.  Epecially the riding ones.  Timer or video frames?

Thanks! Video frames from a GoPro 2 shot at 720p 30fps. They arn't the best quality but fine for the web. I hope to edit together a video at the end of the trip. I just picked up a couple of new GoPro mounts today. I could share a bit more of info about my camera / film setup if you or anyone else is interested ?

:sip:

Love your RR.

You are traveling in the area at the moment where i was born. Kakamas to be exact.

Enjoy our beautiful country and save travels.  :thumleft:

I will thanks :) Its really cool up here. Such nice people too. I've been though Kakamas a few times now and even had lunch at Die Pink Padstal :

(http://i.imgur.com/lqnyPkf.jpg) (http://imgur.com/lqnyPkf)

(http://i.imgur.com/dqAKJCq.jpg) (http://imgur.com/dqAKJCq)

(http://i.imgur.com/v0HVfjz.jpg) (http://imgur.com/v0HVfjz)
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: landieman on November 20, 2013, 01:17:54 pm
Fantastic!!!!!!!!!keep it coming and ride safe
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX 200
Post by: woody1 on November 20, 2013, 01:32:23 pm
Nice one... thanks for sharing. :ricky:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: Topie on November 20, 2013, 01:43:59 pm
 :happy1:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: dw1 on November 20, 2013, 07:06:27 pm
Thanks! Video frames from a GoPro 2 shot at 720p 30fps. They arn't the best quality but fine for the web. I hope to edit together a video at the end of the trip. I just picked up a couple of new GoPro mounts today. I could share a bit more of info about my camera / film setup if you or anyone else is interested ?


Hey T Jim - I woul dlike somemore info on your camera setup etc. Am quite interested in the GO - PRO stuff and mounts etc. I am getting one of the new Hero 3 + cameras in the next couple of days.

Enjoy your ride report so far. I love the small bike idea also. I just bought a small bike and am in the process of buying another. Want to also do some small bike rides. Makes you want to enjoy the surroundings more. I find on the big bike one ends up sometimes going faster when you hit somemore boring stretches and then you lose out on some good scenery etc.

Keep up the report. Lots of people are really enjoying it.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: Tiger8 on November 20, 2013, 07:14:47 pm
Really enjoying your RR TJim  :thumleft: It seems that the small bike idea is catching on, especially as the cost of big bikes and their maintenance costs climb, besides more fun throwing a small bike around than picking up a beast (not that I would think of getting rid of my 950Adv  :biggrin:)

I use OSM on my gps too, but find quite big gaps in the info at times, not so much the Roads, as I add them as tracks to my unit, but the Info like Fuel/Food/Accom. I am going to read your thread on OSM and getting involved in expanding the map/knowledge base. Thanks Bud and ride Safe.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: TechnomadicJim on November 24, 2013, 11:31:33 am
Thanks for your comments and message so far  :biggrin:

Hey T Jim - I woul dlike somemore info on your camera setup etc. Am quite interested in the GO - PRO stuff and mounts etc. I am getting one of the new Hero 3 + cameras in the next couple of days.

Enjoy your ride report so far. I love the small bike idea also. I just bought a small bike and am in the process of buying another. Want to also do some small bike rides. Makes you want to enjoy the surroundings more. I find on the big bike one ends up sometimes going faster when you hit somemore boring stretches and then you lose out on some good scenery etc.

Keep up the report. Lots of people are really enjoying it.

Cool. I will work on this when I next get some downtime. I would also like to document how I pack the bike and my general luggage setup too.

I'm really enjoying my little CTX. Apart from the odd highway I haven't found myself yearning for any more power and I try and avoid them anyway. There are other advantages too like being able to pretty much ride it anywhere as its so nimble and light.

Its really nice that my trip is also being enjoyed by so many others :)

Really enjoying your RR TJim  :thumleft: It seems that the small bike idea is catching on, especially as the cost of big bikes and their maintenance costs climb, besides more fun throwing a small bike around than picking up a beast (not that I would think of getting rid of my 950Adv  :biggrin:)

I use OSM on my gps too, but find quite big gaps in the info at times, not so much the Roads, as I add them as tracks to my unit, but the Info like Fuel/Food/Accom. I am going to read your thread on OSM and getting involved in expanding the map/knowledge base. Thanks Bud and ride Safe.

Good stuff! I've met a lot of people who are loving the little bike. I've had 7 offers to buy it when I come back already! I think its because I essentially sell it to them so well by explaining why I like it so much for my trip  and then they want to buy it. heh.

I'm getting about 24 km's per litre so the fuel economy makes for a good saving too. The service is about 500 rand for parts and labour which is cheap too. I have dropped it a few times in deep sand and even with all my luggage on it I can still if it without problem.

Glad to hear you're helping out with the OSM project. I'm a big open source proponent and use open source software almost exclusively. My laptop is running Ubuntu 13.10 which is run by a company called Canonical which is owned by a South African (you may already have known this):  Mark Shuttleworth.

If anyone else is reading this and wants to get involved here's the basic's :

1. Sign up for an account here : http://openstreetmap.org/ (http://openstreetmap.org/)
2. Navigate to an area of the world you are familiar with.
3. Click "Edit" and begin filling it in by tracing.

Its really as easy as that. I find it fun as maps are pretty cool. Also there's the knowledge you are helping create something great that's free and worthwhile.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: TechnomadicJim on November 24, 2013, 12:34:18 pm
Augrabies Falls Gorge walk. Was a crazy hot day to go hiking but the views were very impressive :

(http://i.imgur.com/QXoyhPS.jpg) (http://imgur.com/QXoyhPS)

Two balloons took off at 5:30am from the backpackers. Pretty cool to watch. The wind was up and it was touch and go whether they would make it.

(http://i.imgur.com/YZCn5VQ.jpg) (http://imgur.com/YZCn5VQ)

Just south of the Namibian border crossing at Onseepkans. You leave the N14 by Pofadder and travel 50 km 's on gravel / sand to get there.

(http://i.imgur.com/HogERIt.jpg) (http://imgur.com/HogERIt)

I made it across the border. The guys on the South African side were really sound. I was chatting them for about half an hour. I crossed at 2pm and I was their second crossing that day. Somehow I managed to loose my little disc along the way as it was attached to the swing arm. Fortunately the cape town municipality issued me two by mistake :)

Goodbye for now South Africa!  :biggrin:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: TechnomadicJim on November 24, 2013, 12:36:02 pm
After crossing the orange river the Namibian's weren't so friendly and berated me for not quite filling out their form's. I was also asked if I was a spy and asked to explain why I wanted a 2 month visa. The small bike was also criticised as the only bikes I think they see are BMW's or KTM's. After stamping me through and reluctantly giving me change for the bike 140 Nab$ fee the guy came out for a cigarette and completely changed his tune. He was interested in my trip and even wanted to buy the bike from me when I was finished! Random...

(http://i.imgur.com/mTD2lcp.jpg) (http://imgur.com/mTD2lcp)

There hasn't been much tar in Namibia. Its all pretty much like this. I drove to Warmbad and tried to get some accomodation but was told there's nothing as the hot springs has shut down. Pretty much a ghost town! I drove up the C21 to Karasburg and stayed in the Zebra B&B for 250 NAB. It's run by a nice old man who was more than happy to point out places of interest on my map.

(http://i.imgur.com/ctrL2Pz.jpg) (http://imgur.com/ctrL2Pz)

After Karasberg I drove to the fish river canyon via Grünau where I stopped for a coke and got told a joke about the English leaving Namibia and promising to come back and then they did with land rovers of something. I didn't get it...

This is my hammock camping setup where I have been for the last 3 nights.

(http://i.imgur.com/NKAoyBS.jpg) (http://imgur.com/NKAoyBS)

Yesterday I went to visit Fish River Canyon via Hobas and parked by the edge of the furthest viewpoint. Very easy to bypass all the barrier's and road blocks with the smaller CTX.

(http://i.imgur.com/8yGg2rx.jpg) (http://imgur.com/8yGg2rx)

Parked on the edge of Fish River Canyon :

(http://i.imgur.com/6YgaNhZ.jpg) (http://imgur.com/6YgaNhZ)

Namibia is still waiting for it's rains so the river is running almost dry at the moment. This was taken with my Canon from the main viewpoint.

(http://i.imgur.com/fa9Kz50.jpg) (http://imgur.com/fa9Kz50)

Same shot but with the GoPro2 :

(http://i.imgur.com/373S05q.jpg) (http://imgur.com/373S05q)

After the canyon I headed down to Ai Ais camp site / resort for the afternoon and chilled by the pool as a day visitor (20 NAB$). Came across this old bullet ridden truck so had to stop for a photo or two.

(http://i.imgur.com/hIPffWS.jpg) (http://imgur.com/hIPffWS)

(http://i.imgur.com/GfHJRpT.jpg) (http://imgur.com/GfHJRpT)

Pretty cool!
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: MegaPix on November 24, 2013, 01:40:18 pm
The more I read about these little bikes and see what you guys are doing the more I think this is what I must buy.
I am not a speed freak, so just perhaps the bike to get :thumleft:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: Dorsland on November 24, 2013, 01:52:56 pm
What sort of daytime temps are you having Jim?  Maybe around 33ºC - 36ºC?  Might be difficult to gauge without any temp gauge but does it feel as if the small motor is running near a dangerously hotter temperature?
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: 4 Kays on November 24, 2013, 01:55:40 pm
Enjoying your RR Jim, the Namibia section is definitely in my bucket list. Safe riding and keep the RR rolling :sip:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: Ginger Bread Man on November 24, 2013, 03:06:16 pm
Sub
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: oldmannorman on November 24, 2013, 04:02:36 pm
Thanx. Keep it coming.  :sip:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: TechnomadicJim on November 24, 2013, 06:36:40 pm
The more I read about these little bikes and see what you guys are doing the more I think this is what I must buy.
I am not a speed freak, so just perhaps the bike to get :thumleft:

Its great fun at a great price. I hope to go far with this little bike. Lets see what its capable of! I do ride a Honda (Hornet) 600FA7 back in the UK but for off road a small bike like this is great.

Here's my bike back in the UK :

(http://i.imgur.com/u5ukywf.jpg) (http://imgur.com/u5ukywf)

This was taken in the black forest in south western Germany.

What sort of daytime temps are you having Jim?  Maybe around 33ºC - 36ºC?  Might be difficult to gauge without any temp gauge but does it feel as if the small motor is running near a dangerously hotter temperature?

It has been over 40 here so VERY hot. I am slightly worried. I'm not stopping and starting all the time which means there is good consistent air flow and I do most of my driving in the morning or late afternoon. I also take regular breaks for both me and the bike. I may get the oil changed early just in case. The bike is performing exactly as it always has so no difference there. As far as I understand its very difficult to know when your engine is overheating until its too late. If anyone has any tips I'm all ears :)

Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: Flouw on November 25, 2013, 11:00:58 am
these bikes normally go up and down on farms, with apple trees etc. not going allot faster than 20-30km/h. at times it stops and idles for minutes at end.
i wouldnt be too concerned. but a oil change is VERY cheap. personally i change oil on my smaller bikes every 1000km. sometimes drain and use the same oil again, but its a good indication of anything going wrong inside. metal flaking etc.

how far north will you be going?
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: Flouw on November 25, 2013, 11:02:27 am
you could get the mechanic at the next service to "richen" the mixture a little. the consumption will go up a little. but she will be running a little cooler.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: Laban on November 25, 2013, 11:24:09 am


Shot Jim... :thumleft:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: TechnomadicJim on November 26, 2013, 05:16:01 pm
Some extra photo's from fish river canyon :

My Wild Dog sticker PistonPete put on the bike :

(http://i.imgur.com/C0BG2vX.jpg) (http://imgur.com/C0BG2vX)

Inside the Canyon Roadhouse bar :

(http://i.imgur.com/qhULDtB.jpg) (http://imgur.com/qhULDtB)

Some of the old trucks outside :

(http://i.imgur.com/IH9kqFO.jpg) (http://imgur.com/IH9kqFO)

(http://i.imgur.com/f4KD7aZ.jpg) (http://imgur.com/f4KD7aZ)

An old Honda :

(http://i.imgur.com/gybO3qc.jpg) (http://imgur.com/gybO3qc)

This is Derek (http://nohangingaround.com/). He's cycling the same route I'm doing :

(http://i.imgur.com/Xm73bc2.jpg) (http://imgur.com/Xm73bc2)

Gotta do my laundry! :

(http://i.imgur.com/dSnclUJ.jpg) (http://imgur.com/dSnclUJ)
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: pietas on November 26, 2013, 06:25:19 pm
Enjoying the read. Thanks for sharing
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: Gérrard on November 26, 2013, 06:32:49 pm
Excellent so far. Are you now on your ride North or still just riding around ?
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: gwild on November 26, 2013, 06:37:41 pm
Nice  :thumleft: keep it coming
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: Boersoeknbike on November 26, 2013, 07:16:47 pm
You've got guts Jim, nice reading though. Change your oil every 1000km, and b carefull of trying to keep at full throttle in summer heat for long periods. good luck!
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: TechnomadicJim on November 26, 2013, 10:56:57 pm
I drove 388 km's from Fish River Canyon to Ludertiz yesterday and the bike was a bit sluggish and not giving me a very good fuel economy like I was getting before . I think the air filter needed a good clean. I had been doing mostly gravel since the last service when it was last cleaned so makes sense. Because of this I also managed to nearly run out of fuel on the way to Aus. I kept my speed at 80 km's an hour and my head down and fortunately made it.

these bikes normally go up and down on farms, with apple trees etc. not going allot faster than 20-30km/h. at times it stops and idles for minutes at end.
i wouldnt be too concerned. but a oil change is VERY cheap. personally i change oil on my smaller bikes every 1000km. sometimes drain and use the same oil again, but its a good indication of anything going wrong inside. metal flaking etc.

how far north will you be going?

I took your advice and changed the oil. It was black so certainly looked like it needed to be changed. The local mechanic here helped me and only charged me the 40 NAB$ for the oil. What a nice guy! I will be leaving 100 NAB$ behind his local bar (where I met him yesterday) for his beers. I also took a look at the air filter and blew it through with an air compressor. Not much dust came out but I didn't have the solvents required to clean it properly. I have heard petrol could be used... Not sure on this though and would like to see it done by a professional before I attempt it myself. I'm very much learning as I go here and the last few days have been great for bettering my understanding.

Nothing is 100% certain but I think I will be exploring the far north of Namibia before heading east into Botswana.

The bike is performing great again after the new oil and air filter cleaning so I went to visit Kolmanscop today.

(http://i.imgur.com/kYCbxC8.jpg) (http://imgur.com/kYCbxC8)

(http://i.imgur.com/NxgI3bm.jpg) (http://imgur.com/NxgI3bm)

(http://i.imgur.com/D2E2yfL.jpg) (http://imgur.com/D2E2yfL)

Sitting in another bath of course! Couldn't help myself ;)

(http://i.imgur.com/2G3fRBY.jpg) (http://imgur.com/2G3fRBY)

This place is so photogenic!

(http://i.imgur.com/IzZgJsQ.jpg) (http://imgur.com/IzZgJsQ)

(http://i.imgur.com/nMTYs97.jpg) (http://imgur.com/nMTYs97)

(http://i.imgur.com/PoSPxvU.jpg) (http://imgur.com/PoSPxvU)

(http://i.imgur.com/ydH4Gx8.jpg) (http://imgur.com/ydH4Gx8)

Hello ? Hello ? Yes Jim here. I would like to order some more sand...

(http://i.imgur.com/D8PijhM.jpg) (http://imgur.com/D8PijhM)

Excellent so far. Are you now on your ride North or still just riding around ?

Thanks :) Yes I'm heading north at the moment but also riding around as I go. I'm a very slow traveller and like to explore as much as I feel like before moving on.

You've got guts Jim, nice reading though. Change your oil every 1000km, and b carefull of trying to keep at full throttle in summer heat for long periods. good luck!

Thanks man! I'm going to do the next oil change myself after 1000 more km's and see how it goes. Thanks for the advice :) I've been avoiding driving too much in the mid day heat and I stay off the throttle when I do.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: Mzee on November 27, 2013, 04:48:33 am
Seems to me you are having a lot of fun.  That is the spirit.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: Flouw on November 27, 2013, 08:28:39 am
thats great news that the bike is running well again.

if you plan on changing oil yourself, take care on the sump plug, it will wear out after a few changes. so let them put a new one in on the next major service. it a cheap price for peace of mind

dont clean the filter with petrol (assuming its a sponge filter) it swells up the filter completely, and will never look the same. also, perhaps on your next Honda dealership, buy a extra one, and let them coat it etc. put it in a plastic bag in your luggage. when the time comes, just swop it. at the service after that let them treat both filters again. i DO hope you have a spare spark plug with you aswell. as these can fail whenever its running very rich (filter blocks up, it runs rich, plug fails)

Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: TechnomadicJim on November 27, 2013, 08:37:35 am
thats great news that the bike is running well again.

if you plan on changing oil yourself, take care on the sump plug, it will wear out after a few changes. so let them put a new one in on the next major service. it a cheap price for peace of mind

dont clean the filter with petrol (assuming its a sponge filter) it swells up the filter completely, and will never look the same. also, perhaps on your next Honda dealership, buy a extra one, and let them coat it etc. put it in a plastic bag in your luggage. when the time comes, just swop it. at the service after that let them treat both filters again. i DO hope you have a spare spark plug with you aswell. as these can fail whenever its running very rich (filter blocks up, it runs rich, plug fails)

Thanks! That's some good advice about the sump plug and air filter (yes it is a sponge one). I will do that for sure. I do carry an extra spark plug yes and I changed it when we did the oil but the old looked fine so I kept it just in case. Will pick up another new one in Windhoek.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: Gérrard on November 27, 2013, 01:26:00 pm
Thanks for all the effort in keeping us posted. I know how much work a good RR takes and this one is right up there  :thumleft:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: TechnomadicJim on November 28, 2013, 03:33:13 pm
Thanks for all the effort in keeping us posted. I know how much work a good RR takes and this one is right up there  :thumleft:

Thanks :) I enjoy doing it.

---

On the way into Ludertiz I came across a road block just outside Kolmanscop. It turns out that a veichle transporting a boat had bought down the 22,000 volt power lines that were now just lying in the road. I saw a Honda Transalp 700 so pulled up along side and met Stefan (http://endurotrip.de/) who had also bought his bike in South Africa. We drove round a few poles down in sand to get by. I dread to think how long the non 4x4 cars were waiting.

(http://i.imgur.com/LfWZisk.jpg) (http://imgur.com/LfWZisk)

Stefan follwed me to the hostel and the day after Kolmanscop we drove a loop round to Diaz point :

(http://i.imgur.com/aDW8zVg.jpg) (http://imgur.com/aDW8zVg)

This place is so desolate. The wind was also incredible.

(http://i.imgur.com/bJ02qxD.jpg) (http://imgur.com/bJ02qxD)
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: evansv on November 28, 2013, 04:09:58 pm
Sub :thumleft:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: mox on November 28, 2013, 05:58:25 pm
Wow
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: Trailrider on November 29, 2013, 07:54:05 am
Excellent!

Good guy in Aus. We used to have a farm there just 40km South on the Rosh Pinah road.

BTW - I'm in Walvis Bay and Swakopmund next Monday - Wednesday.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: SlowMo on December 01, 2013, 08:48:03 pm
Looks like a pretty special trip... should have drank less, and travelled more when I was younger...

I also have amongst others a CTX  which I love and have toured on rather extensively. I'm sure you are used to its "feel" by now but I did a sprocket change on mine with great success. I can now do 100 - 110 odd km/h all day without stressing the motor yet there is very little effect on the torque (or lack thereof) on the bike.

I'm sure all advise is meant well, but by the way, I have  around 28000km on mine and never needed to change the sump plug. Since the bike works in the upper range of its capabilities, I change oil every 3000km or so. Very easy to do since there is no oil filter and it doesn't take much oil...

Anyway, mine has literally rolled down hills/mountains and I have ridden it from Cape Town to Gauteng basically at full taps al the way, yet it has never missed a beat and it has never failed me in any way whatsoever.

An amazing machine.

Wish you all the best on your trip and enjoy!

P.S.
When/ If you eventually get closer to Gauteng please feel free to contact me for (at least) a night of free bed, beer and breakfeast....
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: oldmannorman on December 04, 2013, 06:56:36 pm
Awesome RR. Nice foto's of Kolmanskop. Looking forward to more.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: Crossed-up on December 04, 2013, 09:33:38 pm
I'm enjoying your report very much. I like the lack of deadlines.  Thanks and safe travels!
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: TechnomadicJim on December 06, 2013, 09:02:36 pm
Excellent!

Good guy in Aus. We used to have a farm there just 40km South on the Rosh Pinah road.

BTW - I'm in Walvis Bay and Swakopmund next Monday - Wednesday.

Hey man! Sorry I haven't quite made it to Swakopmund yet. I'm planning to spend Christmas and the new year there if you happen to be about then ?

Looks like a pretty special trip... should have drank less, and travelled more when I was younger...

I also have amongst others a CTX  which I love and have toured on rather extensively. I'm sure you are used to its "feel" by now but I did a sprocket change on mine with great success. I can now do 100 - 110 odd km/h all day without stressing the motor yet there is very little effect on the torque (or lack thereof) on the bike.

I'm sure all advise is meant well, but by the way, I have  around 28000km on mine and never needed to change the sump plug. Since the bike works in the upper range of its capabilities, I change oil every 3000km or so. Very easy to do since there is no oil filter and it doesn't take much oil...

Anyway, mine has literally rolled down hills/mountains and I have ridden it from Cape Town to Gauteng basically at full taps al the way, yet it has never missed a beat and it has never failed me in any way whatsoever.

An amazing machine.

Wish you all the best on your trip and enjoy!

P.S.
When/ If you eventually get closer to Gauteng please feel free to contact me for (at least) a night of free bed, beer and breakfeast....

It's never too late ;) Its always nice to hear from a fellow CTX rider! It really is an amazing machine. I'm seriously considering the sprocket change. You're the second person who's mentioned it now. When I get to Swakopmund or Windhoek I will see what I can find. What should I be looking for exactly ?

I'm changing my oil more regularly now too, about every 1-3000 km's depending on the temperatures I'm riding in and my regular oil checks. Its cheap (40 rand) and easy for me to do now I'm more clued up about it all. I'm currently running on SAE 40.

I also have to regularly clean out the air filter as this Namibian dust is relentless. I'm going to buy some spares to swap in and have them all cleaned at the next service.

Thanks very much for your message and I hope to take you up on that offer :) Very kind indeed. Probably won't be until May time though, heh!
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: TechnomadicJim on December 06, 2013, 09:58:40 pm
I spent a few more days in Lüderitz‎ staying at Element Riders (http://www.element-riders.com/) hostel. Its run by an all round sound guy called Rainer. Its actually the premises of the old Lüderitz‎ Backpackers.

I took a drive down to Agate beach and tried to find some Agate's. I didn't find any, probably because I have no idea what to do apart from picking up random stones. I later found out you should hunt at sunset / rise and low tide. The low tide exposes fresh Agate's and the sunset / rise makes them appear reddish and more easy to spot.

There's loads of flamingo's in the area too so I snapped a couple of nice pics :

(http://i.imgur.com/T6Hva2C.jpg) (http://imgur.com/T6Hva2C)

(http://i.imgur.com/K0qibNP.jpg) (http://imgur.com/K0qibNP)

I also came across this dead shark on the beach. He doesn't look too happy :

(http://i.imgur.com/lqK9fI4.jpg) (http://imgur.com/lqK9fI4)

Next I drove to Betta (http://www.bettacamp.net/) and stayed at the camp site there. Its really good value at only 250 Nab$ per person for a chalet. I met Werner who is managing the farm and had a few beers with him in the evening. Nice chap! Hopefully will meet him in Swakopmund for Christmas.

I stayed 3 nights in Betta and did some day trips. On the first day I went to Duswib castle which to be honest was a bit crap. It isn't that well looked after and unfortunately they saw me as I was about to leave without paying so I had to pony up 65 N$ (i think). Not worth it really.

(http://i.imgur.com/E68B6nJ.jpg) (http://imgur.com/E68B6nJ)

Fortunately on my way back round I drove through the Zarishoogte Pass which was awesome and made even more spectacular when it started raining!

(http://i.imgur.com/TM6Kfj0.jpg) (http://imgur.com/TM6Kfj0)

(http://i.imgur.com/uS9XZ7R.jpg) (http://imgur.com/uS9XZ7R)

On the second day I backtracked down the D707 until I hit some sand and got a bit stuck. My sand skills are still a bit rough so I headed back after about 85 km's down the road. I got to see the dunes on the side which was the main thing. Werner said that the sand only lasted a couple of km's so I would have been fine to push on through.

(http://i.imgur.com/8TIqFKH.jpg) (http://imgur.com/8TIqFKH)

After Betta I headed the 150 or so km's to Sesriem. Came across this burned out car on the way. Had to grab a picture. Hope nobody was hurt!

(http://i.imgur.com/yoF8ZY4.jpg) (http://imgur.com/yoF8ZY4)

In Sesreim I camped at the national park camp site which is cheaper than the other two and you can get entrance to the dunes 1 hour before everyone else (5am instead of 6am). It costs 140 N$ per person to camp plus 80 N$ dune permit.

Unfortunately no bikes allowed :(. Fortunately my neighbours were a friendly South African family from Knysna who offered to let me join them. We had a great morning hanging out and visiting the dunes.

Here's the famous dune right next to Sossusvlei. (vlei = Swamp)

(http://i.imgur.com/VEpGYuG.jpg) (http://imgur.com/VEpGYuG)

Here's a picture from the top taken with the GoPro's wide angle lens. I was pretty knackered after I got to the top. The two boys must have run up and down it at least 4 times!

(http://i.imgur.com/D7Ciwmo.jpg) (http://imgur.com/D7Ciwmo)

Next we walked over to Dead Vlei which was my favourite :

(http://i.imgur.com/l8RvUDv.jpg) (http://imgur.com/l8RvUDv)

(http://i.imgur.com/YesVrCP.jpg) (http://imgur.com/YesVrCP)

Had to get in the picture for one at least. (photo taken by Brian, 8 years old) :

(http://i.imgur.com/u5ASJIL.jpg) (http://imgur.com/u5ASJIL)

On the way back some oryx took shelter under one of the few still ive tree's :

(http://i.imgur.com/YIfxHN0.jpg) (http://imgur.com/YIfxHN0)

At about 11 it was too hot to do any more so we drove back and chilled by the pool. At about 6 pm I went to check out the Sesriem canyon which was pretty cool as you can walk down in to it. Worth an hours exploring.

(http://i.imgur.com/GBsHAiG.jpg) (http://imgur.com/GBsHAiG)

(http://i.imgur.com/I53D86Z.jpg) (http://imgur.com/I53D86Z)

This morning I packed up and drove to Solitaire where I'm currently camped for 2 or 3 nights. Going to explore the local area tomorrow and if it's worth it stay a 3rd night and do some more.

Currently KM's : 6269.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: ChrisL - DUSTRIDERS on December 06, 2013, 10:03:22 pm
Jim the joke about the Land Rovers goes like this.

When the last prisoners of the Boer war were rowing accross Cape Town harbour back
to their ship one of them stood up in the little dingy and shouted " your shit will come"!!!!!

Fourty years later they offloaded the first Land Rovers in that same harbour.

They were not known to be very reliable.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: ChrisL - DUSTRIDERS on December 06, 2013, 10:15:11 pm
Jim while in Solitaire go towards Maltahohe for 13 kms and turn left to Remhoogtepass
and go to Nauchas. Couple of houses and not really a town.
Turn west there down Spreedtshoogtepass and then back to Solitaire.
Total I think is 162 kms. Stunning route.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: TechnomadicJim on December 06, 2013, 10:16:52 pm
Jim the joke about the Land Rovers goes like this.

When the last prisoners of the Boer war were rowing accross Cape Town harbour back
to their ship one of them stood up in the little dingy and shouted " your shit will come"!!!!!

Fourty years later they offloaded the first Land Rovers in that same harbour.

They were not known to be very reliable.

Thats it! hehe.

Jim while in Solitaire go towards Maltahohe for 13 kms and turn left to Remhoogtepass
and go to Nauchas. Couple of houses and not really a town.
Turn west there down Spreedtshoogtepass and then back to Solitaire.
Total I think is 162 kms. Stunning route.

Nice one! That's my day trip for tomorrow sorted :) Thanks.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: katana on December 06, 2013, 10:55:53 pm
Hi Jim

I am glad you are well.  I have started to get the GS ready for Nam in December and your trip is great inspiration   :thumleft:

Enjoy man!
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: TechnomadicJim on December 07, 2013, 10:18:10 pm
Hi Jim

I am glad you are well.  I have started to get the GS ready for Nam in December and your trip is great inspiration   :thumleft:

Enjoy man!

Cool man! I will still be here so let me know if you happen to be going near Swakopmund :)

---

So I took chrisL's advice and drove Remhoogte and Streetshoogte passes. Spectacular. One of the bends caught me off guard and I nearly came off which was quite a sobering experience. I calmed my riding down a bit after that. heh. I also hit a few small rivers unexpectedly. Those signs that indicate a river I had been ignoring as they never have water. I also spotted a Jackal on whilst taking a rest. The first I've seen in the wild.

On the way back I popped into camp Gecko (http://www.campgecko.net/) for some lunch and had a nice chat with the farm manager.

(http://i.imgur.com/1YZhKGH.jpg) (http://imgur.com/1YZhKGH)

(http://i.imgur.com/PhdCa2I.jpg) (http://imgur.com/PhdCa2I)

(http://i.imgur.com/n2rMV8e.jpg) (http://imgur.com/n2rMV8e)

(http://i.imgur.com/7o2xx3A.jpg) (http://imgur.com/7o2xx3A)

Coming over the top and seeing the panorama of Streetshoogte pass was amazing. The descent was surprisingly steep too!

(http://i.imgur.com/na9y4Xs.jpg) (http://imgur.com/na9y4Xs)

I'm probably going to drive to Swakopmund tomorrow and use it as a base until after Christmas and the new year. I'm due my 8k service soon so will be popping in to Windhoek at some point for a day or two.

I'm pretty excited to drive Keiseb pass on the C14 as I'm reading The Sheltering Desert  (https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/506097.The_Sheltering_Desert) and thats the area where they were hiding out. Pretty cool!
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: ChrisL - DUSTRIDERS on December 08, 2013, 09:56:54 am
Jim have you left yet?
Just thinking you might go to Windhoek today via Gamsbergpass and then to
Swakopmund via Bossua Pass.(C28) Have the bike serviced tomorrow or Tuesday.
I guess I should have posted that last night. :eek7:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: Pistonpete on December 08, 2013, 10:14:51 am
Jim the joke about the Land Rovers goes like this.

When the last prisoners of the Boer war were rowing accross Cape Town harbour back
to their ship one of them stood up in the little dingy and shouted " your shit will come"!!!!!

Fourty years later they offloaded the first Land Rovers in that same harbour.

They were not known to be very reliable.
Revenge of the Rooinekke!  :laughing4:

Go well Jim me Lad!  :thumleft:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: TechnomadicJim on December 08, 2013, 09:51:45 pm
Jim have you left yet?
Just thinking you might go to Windhoek today via Gamsbergpass and then to
Swakopmund via Bossua Pass.(C28) Have the bike serviced tomorrow or Tuesday.
I guess I should have posted that last night. :eek7:

Made it to Swakopmund this afternoon. I did consider Windhoek first but I'm probably going to hang around in the Swakop area for Christmas / New Year (I've heard its the place to be!). I want to get the proper Honda service done at just over 8k so I wouldn't have been close enough if I went to Windhoek early. Thank's for the advice though. I will definitely be taking the C28 when I do go. Looks awesome!

---

50 km's on the C14 after leaving Solitaire I came to the Tropic of Capricorn for the obligatory photo :

(http://i.imgur.com/SJHsQ6o.jpg) (http://imgur.com/SJHsQ6o)

I spotted a cave (called "The Grotto") and decided to go investigate. It was pretty steep and with all my luggage and yet to be acquired off road skills I came off. I chose the wrong line and started using the brakes which wasn't a good combination. heh.

Bike was fine. I am fine. Lesson learned!

(http://i.imgur.com/qqChL71.jpg) (http://imgur.com/qqChL71)

The Kuiseb Pass was break taking. It was made even more spectacular for me as I'm most of the way through "The Sheltering Desert" by Henno Martin (https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/506097.The_Sheltering_Desert) which took place in this same area.

(http://i.imgur.com/dXliMzf.jpg) (http://imgur.com/dXliMzf)

(http://i.imgur.com/OhLVUsF.jpg) (http://imgur.com/OhLVUsF)

Solitaire to Swakupmond was around 270 km's which was out of range for the meagre 8.5 litre tank on the CTX. This is only the second time I have had to use my 10L. I never have it full but fill it with an 5-8L's depending on what I think I will need. There's no point in lugging 10L's around all the time if it's not needed.

Its nice the amount of people who enquired whether I was OK when I stop for photo's or refuelling etc.. Gives me confidence that if I did have a problem someone would be there to help. I met an Italian guy (who lives in Nairobi)  on holiday with his family at this stop. He had a blow out and rolled his 4x4 a couple weeks earlier. He even showed me his scars! Nice guy... He rides a Honda XR125 back at home.

(http://i.imgur.com/qUrCWkJ.jpg) (http://imgur.com/qUrCWkJ)

After the Kuiseb Pass there's over 100 km's of plains before you get to the coast.

(http://i.imgur.com/4R54mei.jpg) (http://imgur.com/4R54mei)

I'm currently staying at Villa Wiese Backpackers (http://www.villawiese.com/). It looked pretty nice from the website but now I'm here you can tell its been neglected for a while. The kitchen is filthy. I'm going to try a different backpackers the day after tomorrow. Find somewhere cool to hole up.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: gwild on December 08, 2013, 09:57:39 pm
Keep them coming  :thumleft: thx for sharing
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: jimjim on December 08, 2013, 11:23:33 pm
Excellent!

Only once one has taken a smaller-engined motorcycle on an proper adv ride will one understand the attraction. Or, as Mark of bigdogadventures says, "it takes 12 horsepower to ride around the world and the rest is wheelspin."

Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: TechnomadicJim on December 18, 2013, 06:02:58 pm
Excellent!

Only once one has taken a smaller-engined motorcycle on an proper adv ride will one understand the attraction. Or, as Mark of bigdogadventures says, "it takes 12 horsepower to ride around the world and the rest is wheelspin."

For sure! hah Excellent. I love this quote. I shall be using it whenever I'm questioned about my choice of engine size. Cheers!

Keep them coming  :thumleft: thx for sharing

You're welcome! Here's my next instalment :

I moved hostels to Desert Sky Backpackers (http://"http://www.desertskylodging.com/") which is much nicer. I plan on spending Christmas and the New Year in Swakopmund as I have heard its the place to be with plenty of parties and people. I booked a bed from the 23rd to 3rd so will have 10 nights of a proper bed and a break from the bike which is a good idea on this sort of long trip. I also met some cool people there including someone I met in Cape Town and Mat and Jaap on two KTM 990's (http://"https://www.facebook.com/edi2ct") :

(http://i.imgur.com/BQV9a7t.jpg) (http://imgur.com/BQV9a7t)

I haven't been feeling too well since Luderitz. I suspect that the fresh oysters I ate at the Oyster bar there were bad. I was getting stomach cramps and a pain down my right side especially when I took a deep breath. I thought it was getting better slowly but it had been nearly 2 weeks so I decided to go to the doctors to be sure. I got prescribed some anti-biotics which sorted it out straight away. The doctor reckoned it was some kind of colon infection.

I was looking for a 10 day mini trip before Christmas and decided to head up to the Brandberg (burnt) mountains. A Malaysian guy I met at the hostel called Yien was planning on a few days up there too. He was also a biker and decided to hire a Yamaha XT 250 from the local dealership. They have a pretty funny "wall of shame" in there :

(http://i.imgur.com/daxU5rA.jpg) (http://imgur.com/daxU5rA)

So we both set off around 10:30 and drove through Henties Bay and soon came across one of the ship wrecks that the Skeleton coast is famous for :

(http://i.imgur.com/CtDaqQ3.jpg) (http://imgur.com/CtDaqQ3)

Wanna buy some salt ?

(http://i.imgur.com/S6Qp4Zr.jpg) (http://imgur.com/S6Qp4Zr)

We carried on as far as Cape Cross which has a massive seal colony. There must have been 10,000's there and loads of seal pups.

(http://i.imgur.com/0xeTUX6.jpg) (http://imgur.com/0xeTUX6)

One of them wanted to use my bike as shade :)

(http://i.imgur.com/2Iwkn9N.jpg) (http://imgur.com/2Iwkn9N) 

After Cape Cross we headed inland taking a 4x4 dirt track towards Messum crater. It was quite easy going at first with fairly solid rocky ground and we make it to the crater without seeing any vehicles. We didn't see anyone else for the rest of the day.

(http://i.imgur.com/vjfExsM.jpg) (http://imgur.com/vjfExsM)

After a while though we hit some increaing longer stretches of sand and both Yien and I fell off but fortunately only at low speeds without injury.

(http://i.imgur.com/vbTLmPr.jpg) (http://imgur.com/vbTLmPr)

(http://i.imgur.com/EuzGQyX.jpg) (http://imgur.com/EuzGQyX)

We didn't quite know where we were going and the lack of any other vehicles did have me slightly worried at times but we eventually made it to a not much better "D" road where we came across this burned out bakkie. Pretty mad max!

(http://i.imgur.com/lW60byw.jpg) (http://imgur.com/lW60byw)

I also spotted my first wild Zebra. They were running quite near us beside the road :

(http://i.imgur.com/3r1xltq.jpg) (http://imgur.com/3r1xltq)

With the Brandberg mountain on our left side we made our way into Uis where we set up camp at the Brandberg rest camp (http://"http://www.brandbergrestcamp.com/").
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: DeepBass9 on December 18, 2013, 06:20:47 pm
Awesome trip! Enjoying the RR!
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: oldmannorman on December 18, 2013, 06:45:23 pm
Awesome read. Keep it coming. Enjoy the festive season in Nam
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: TechnomadicJim on December 18, 2013, 06:49:28 pm
Here's our camp :

(http://i.imgur.com/8T7Xi5k.jpg) (http://imgur.com/8T7Xi5k)

The next day Yien and I headed up to Twyfelfontein to see some of the bushman art. Before heading in we stopped for lunch at the lodge (http://www.twyfelfonteinlodge.com/). This little fellow was scrambling about on the rocks :

(http://i.imgur.com/5kP80Sq.jpg) (http://imgur.com/5kP80Sq)

For 50 NAB$ each we got a guide called Dion who showed us around the bushman art for an hour.

(http://i.imgur.com/oAjSnOb.jpg) (http://imgur.com/oAjSnOb)

(http://i.imgur.com/dtBurt9.jpg) (http://imgur.com/dtBurt9)

The circles represent water holes and their location relative to each other.

(http://i.imgur.com/MuYVuP9.jpg) (http://imgur.com/MuYVuP9)

After our tour we visited the "Organ Pipes" :

(http://i.imgur.com/e5jjOMR.jpg) (http://imgur.com/e5jjOMR)

Next the not so impressive "Burn't Mountain" :

(http://i.imgur.com/tzRphOw.jpg) (http://imgur.com/tzRphOw)

We were relying on filling up to get back to Uis but unfortunately the new owner of the pumps decided he didn't want to operate them any more. It looked like we had enough fuel to get to Khorixas but it would mean a 70 km detour :(
 
(http://i.imgur.com/BRKm98W.jpg) (http://imgur.com/BRKm98W)

Fortunately after hanging around for 10 minutes debating what to do and trying to gauge how much fuel we actually had a worked there took pity on us and offered to sell us 5 litres each. Result!

(http://i.imgur.com/1yJw2oi.jpg) (http://imgur.com/1yJw2oi)

We didn't see any but I do love this sign. Beats road works!

(http://i.imgur.com/VftiHSy.jpg) (http://imgur.com/VftiHSy)

A bump in the road provided a nice opportunity for some air :)

(http://i.imgur.com/DO1jBWC.jpg) (http://imgur.com/DO1jBWC)
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: 4 Kays on December 18, 2013, 07:05:58 pm
Really enjoying your RR. Can't wait to read some more :thumleft: :thumleft:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: westfrogger on December 18, 2013, 07:52:30 pm
Awesome.  :thumleft:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: YamaV on December 20, 2013, 06:02:55 pm
Nice meeting you at Brandberg rest camp and the 360 around the mountain, that was awesome riding! Looking fw to your RR of that! I went south past spitzkoppe, then usakos,karib, then south from there to gamsberg pas where i camped at Hakos. Yesterday down spreetshoogte,solitaire,maltahohe,mariental and to a farm outside Koës which is on the edge of the Kalahari. Safe travels  :thumleft:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: YamaV on December 20, 2013, 06:04:16 pm
sub
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: ChrisL - DUSTRIDERS on December 20, 2013, 06:08:22 pm
Nice meeting you at Brandberg rest camp and the 360 around the mountain, that was awesome riding! Looking fw to your RR of that! I went south past spitzkoppe, then usakos,karib, then south from there to gamsberg pas where i camped at Hakos. Yesterday down spreetshoogte,solitaire,maltahohe,mariental and to a farm outside Koës which is on the edge of the Kalahari. Safe travels  :thumleft:
@YamaV go and say hi to Rickus and his brother in Koës. They are the two WDs there. :deal:
Just ask at the fuelpumps where Rickus is.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: YamaV on December 21, 2013, 09:43:32 pm
Nice meeting you at Brandberg rest camp and the 360 around the mountain, that was awesome riding! Looking fw to your RR of that! I went south past spitzkoppe, then usakos,karib, then south from there to gamsberg pas where i camped at Hakos. Yesterday down spreetshoogte,solitaire,maltahohe,mariental and to a farm outside Koës which is on the edge of the Kalahari. Safe travels  :thumleft:
@YamaV go and say hi to Rickus and his brother in Koës. They are the two WDs there. :deal:
Just ask at the fuelpumps where Rickus is.
Thanks for the suggestion Chris. Stopped there this morning and had a quick chat with Rickus (Dankie vir die geselsie, koeldrank en geld ruil Rickus!). The Koës pan has a good amount of water after a bit of rain Thursday and 2 weeks before. Wil post a photo or 2 later.

Sorry for the hi-jack TechnomadicJim!
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: ChrisL - DUSTRIDERS on December 21, 2013, 10:25:08 pm
Nice meeting you at Brandberg rest camp and the 360 around the mountain, that was awesome riding! Looking fw to your RR of that! I went south past spitzkoppe, then usakos,karib, then south from there to gamsberg pas where i camped at Hakos. Yesterday down spreetshoogte,solitaire,maltahohe,mariental and to a farm outside Koës which is on the edge of the Kalahari. Safe travels  :thumleft:
@YamaV go and say hi to Rickus and his brother in Koës. They are the two WDs there. :deal:
Just ask at the fuelpumps where Rickus is.
Thanks for the suggestion Chris. Stopped there this morning and had a quick chat with Rickus (Dankie vir die geselsie, koeldrank en geld ruil Rickus!). The Koës pan has a good amount of water after a bit of rain Thursday and 2 weeks before. Wil post a photo or 2 later.

Sorry for the hi-jack TechnomadicJim!
Good to hear they had some rain. :thumleft:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: TechnomadicJim on December 22, 2013, 05:57:52 pm
Nice meeting you at Brandberg rest camp and the 360 around the mountain, that was awesome riding! Looking fw to your RR of that! I went south past spitzkoppe, then usakos,karib, then south from there to gamsberg pas where i camped at Hakos. Yesterday down spreetshoogte,solitaire,maltahohe,mariental and to a farm outside Koës which is on the edge of the Kalahari. Safe travels  :thumleft:

You too man! Was a great day's riding with you and Basil. I also made it down to Spitzkoppe on my way back to Swakopmund, Cool place! Safe Travels too. On with the ride report :

I met Basil the owner of Brandberg Rest Camp (http://www.brandbergrestcamp.com) who rides a Honda Africa Twin and also gives discounts to bikers who stay at his place (50 N$ for camping). He had just returned from a trip down to Langebaan and introduced himself as soon as he clocked my bike. Next thing I know he announces another biker has arrived so we went to introduce ourselves to YamaV who also recognised me from my planning a ride post on here and even remembered my name. I'm famous now apparently! hehe

Later that evening we were having dinner and Basil kindly offered to take us on a loop around the Brandberg so naturally YamaV and I jumped at the chance. The next morning we set out. I found it quite a technical ride with lots of varying terrain from loose rocks to sand. Probably one of the most challenging days of my trip. I'm definitely getting better!

Quick rest stop :
(http://i.imgur.com/my1t38N.jpg) (http://imgur.com/my1t38N)

I'm getting better at sand riding and this stretch of sand was quite tough. Keep the power on and let the bike do its thing. Turning was tough whilst trying to maintain your speed.

(http://i.imgur.com/tdKiVD7.jpg) (http://imgur.com/tdKiVD7)

We all made it through without stopping which was great :

(http://i.imgur.com/2s2lABQ.jpg) (http://imgur.com/2s2lABQ)

We stopped for a spot of lunch :

(http://i.imgur.com/zzCnaKm.jpg) (http://imgur.com/zzCnaKm)

Onwards!

(http://i.imgur.com/cXCIoOb.jpg) (http://imgur.com/cXCIoOb)

Basil pointed out this rock which is used my the Rhino's as a kind of rubbing stone :

(http://i.imgur.com/5agPMM4.jpg) (http://imgur.com/5agPMM4)

Another rest before we went fo visit the waterfall which was unfortunately not flowing.

(http://i.imgur.com/cdgvBIV.jpg) (http://imgur.com/cdgvBIV)

We were running low on water so we stopped at this small farm and topped up.
(http://i.imgur.com/xH5hwgU.jpg) (http://imgur.com/xH5hwgU)

We came across the native Namibian meat tree. No wonder they eat so much meat here!

(http://i.imgur.com/qeWMvuB.jpg) (http://imgur.com/qeWMvuB)

You can download the GPS Trace of the trip (in GPX format) here :
(http://www.openstreetmap.org/user/TechnomadicJim/traces/1623912/picture) (http://www.openstreetmap.org/user/TechnomadicJim/traces/1623912)

Thanks again to Basil for an awesome day out. I really recommend you stay with him if you are in the area.

Here's a short video I edited too : https://vimeo.com/82489136 (https://vimeo.com/82489136)
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: gwild on December 22, 2013, 06:09:13 pm
 :thumleft: awesome keep it coming  :thumleft:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: Optimusprime on December 22, 2013, 06:47:26 pm
Amazing ride report an beautiful pictures dude. Do you make use of cellphone gps, if so, what make phone and navigation software?

Cheers
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: TechnomadicJim on December 24, 2013, 10:39:18 am
Amazing ride report an beautiful pictures dude. Do you make use of cellphone gps, if so, what make phone and navigation software?

Cheers

Thanks man! I use a program called OSMAnd (http://www.wilddog.za.net/forum/index.php?topic=138603.0) on a Google Nexus 4 phone (https://play.google.com/store/devices/details/Nexus_4_8GB?id=nexus_4_8gb&hl=en).
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: 4 Kays on December 30, 2013, 09:17:01 pm
Why so quiet Jim? :sip:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: TechnomadicJim on December 31, 2013, 09:51:06 am
Why so quiet Jim? :sip:

heh :) I'm just chilling in Swakopmund for Christmas and the new year. I'm heading into Windhoek on the 3rd for a service on the 6th then north to Outjo and then Etosha. Afterwards I reckon I will head head to Ondangwa and then east on the C45 to the Caprivi. My visa expires on the 21st January so I need to be in Botswana by then. I need to get a move on! :)
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: katana on December 31, 2013, 10:33:10 pm
Meanwhile in Kolmannskoppe.......
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: katana on December 31, 2013, 10:34:19 pm
What do you mean someone ordered more sand?!?  ....  Who the hell is Jim???

Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: gwild on January 01, 2014, 09:29:22 am
What do you mean someone ordered more sand?!?  ....  Who the hell is Jim???



Ha ha :imaposer: good one :thumleft:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: Mountain Goat on January 01, 2014, 10:11:38 pm
Awesome RR,  :biggrin: keep it coming. Enjoy
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: TechnomadicJim on January 02, 2014, 11:22:08 am
What do you mean someone ordered more sand?!?  ....  Who the hell is Jim???

hahahaha... that hilarious! nice one :)

Awesome RR,  :biggrin: keep it coming. Enjoy

Thanks man :) I'm driving 350 km's to Windhoek tomorrow via the C28. Looks like some real nice mountain passes. Should be a great drive. Looking forward to getting on the road again.

As a side note I gave another lesson to a fellow traveller yesterday. Its the second lesson I've given on this trip. Hopefully two new converts into the world of motorbiking and the CTX 200 is the perfect bike to learn on.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: ChrisL - DUSTRIDERS on January 02, 2014, 11:35:24 am
Jim 40kms before Windhoek on the righthandside is an old German house/fort.
Do yourself a favour and go walk through it.
The German soldiers of war that drank too much at their outposts were sent there to dry
out so to speak. :eek7:
Beautiful building. :thumleft:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: Brandt on January 02, 2014, 01:16:12 pm
Very nice RR. Thanks for sharing  :thumleft:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: Leo on January 02, 2014, 01:53:52 pm
Jim 40kms before Windhoek on the righthandside is an old German house/fort.
Do yourself a favour and go walk through it.

Just be cautious of the wasps.  :thumleft:

Great RR, thanks for sharing  :3some:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: ChrisL - DUSTRIDERS on January 05, 2014, 10:18:32 pm
Jim you OK?
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: Mountain Goat on January 06, 2014, 05:49:44 pm
Lets hope No News is Good News.    ???
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: ChrisL - DUSTRIDERS on January 06, 2014, 06:03:35 pm
Lets hope No News is Good News.    ???

I nearly phoned Honda in Windhoek this afternoon.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: Mountain Goat on January 06, 2014, 08:59:16 pm
Let's hope we hear something soon from Jim.

Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: mox on January 06, 2014, 10:07:28 pm
No news is good news. Hope he is having a jol  :thumleft:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: TechnomadicJim on January 09, 2014, 07:18:16 pm
I'm alive  :biggrin: Sorry for the delay. Its been a busy week and my laptop's been playing up (now fine though). Combine that with too much socialising and terrible internet and I just haven't been able to get the ride report updated.

Rest assured I am working on it now  :thumleft:

Thanks for all your concern though :) It is appreciated!
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: woody1 on January 09, 2014, 07:44:15 pm
 :thumleft: :ricky:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: Mountain Goat on January 09, 2014, 07:47:00 pm
What a relief that all is okay.  :)  We were getting concerned that suddenly there were no updates.
Presumably the further you travel into dark Africa we will have to be patient with the regular updates.

Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: Flouw on January 10, 2014, 09:16:15 am
have you concidered using WAZE?

that way you can share your location, and we will know if you are still moving or stuck in a ditch

there is another GPS app, ill get info and pass it on. we used it in fact to track a stolen phone till 6 meter from the bastad
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: TechnomadicJim on January 10, 2014, 12:06:28 pm
have you concidered using WAZE?

that way you can share your location, and we will know if you are still moving or stuck in a ditch

there is another GPS app, ill get info and pass it on. we used it in fact to track a stolen phone till 6 meter from the bastad

I have yes and I do use it when I'm in Europe. Its great for routing around traffic. I wanted an offline mapping solution for here in Africa so I went with OSMAnd (http://www.wilddog.za.net/forum/index.php?topic=138603.0). It actually has a built in plugin for syndicating out your location and some other stats so I wrote some code that plugs it into my little website here :

http://www.whereisjames.com (http://www.whereisjames.com/#gps)

At the bottom you will see an embedded Google Map with my location and below that some extra stats like when it was last updated, my current speed, altitude etc... When I'm using OSMAnd (http://www.wilddog.za.net/forum/index.php?topic=138603.0) to navigate it updates the website every 5 minutes.

I've attached a screenshot of my website (http://www.whereisjames.com/#gps).
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: YamaV on January 10, 2014, 12:31:34 pm
have you concidered using WAZE?

that way you can share your location, and we will know if you are still moving or stuck in a ditch

there is another GPS app, ill get info and pass it on. we used it in fact to track a stolen phone till 6 meter from the bastad

I have yes and I do use it when I'm in Europe. Its great for routing around traffic. I wanted an offline mapping solution for here in Africa so I went with OSMAnd (http://www.wilddog.za.net/forum/index.php?topic=138603.0). It actually has a built in plugin for syndicating out your location and some other stats so I wrote some code that plugs it into my little website here :

http://www.whereisjames.com (http://www.whereisjames.com/#gps)

At the bottom you will see an embedded Google Map with my location and below that some extra stats like when it was last updated, my current speed, altitude etc... When I'm using OSMAnd (http://www.wilddog.za.net/forum/index.php?topic=138603.0) to navigate it updates the website every 5 minutes.

I've attached a screenshot of my website (http://www.whereisjames.com/#gps).

Nice work  :thumleft:

I see you're in Tsumeb now  :deal:
What route did you take from Windhoek and where are you heading now?
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: 1Up4Adv on January 11, 2014, 02:57:36 pm
Hi Jim

Glad to see you are on the move again.  If you recall we met at Desert Sky at Christmas.  I was rising the LT and heading off back to Jo'burg  :( while you were planning on heading north  :).

How did the trip up north go?  Did you head via Outjo as we had discussed or take another route?  Look forward to more of your RR.

Take care and don't forget to keep the shiny side up

Cheers
Chris
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: TechnomadicJim on January 11, 2014, 06:50:05 pm
Nice work  :thumleft:

I see you're in Tsumeb now  :deal:
What route did you take from Windhoek and where are you heading now?

Hey Vian! Thanks :) Yes I'm in Tsumeb trying to get a tour into Etosha. Not sure if I'm going to make it tomorrow.

Hi Jim

Glad to see you are on the move again.  If you recall we met at Desert Sky at Christmas.  I was rising the LT and heading off back to Jo'burg  :( while you were planning on heading north  :).

How did the trip up north go?  Did you head via Outjo as we had discussed or take another route?  Look forward to more of your RR.

Take care and don't forget to keep the shiny side up

Cheers
Chris

Hey Chris!

Of course I recall :) It was great hanging out with you over the new year. I actually chose to go to Waterberg instead as it was a bit closer and has a nice NWR camp site. The shiny side is still up although I did have a few issues I will mention in my update below.

James

---

KM's so far ~8000.

So after an awesome time riding around Brandberg (http://www.wilddog.za.net/forum/index.php?topic=137240.msg2707309#msg2707309) I wasn't quite ready to head to Swakopmund for Christmas so I took the D1930 past Spitzkoppe to Usakos where I stayed at the Namib Oasis Farm Stall campsite (http://www.mydestination.com/namibia/restaurants/172466/namib-oasis-farmstall--deli). The food here is quite good but the camp site is right next to the main B2 road and bearing in mind all the people travelling from Windhoek to Swakpopmund I didn't get too much sleep :/ I decided to just head back to Swakop early (on the gravel D1918 of course!) via Henties Bay and pop in to Spitzkoppe.

I should have just camped at Spitzkoppe. Pretty neat place

(http://i.imgur.com/0XEi2nt.jpg) (http://imgur.com/0XEi2nt)

I think it was only about 20 NAD for a day pass. They let the bike in for free which was nice. I think it was perhaps because I was English and the guy on the gate was a BIG (Chelsea) football fan.

(http://i.imgur.com/VcQvaUz.jpg) (http://imgur.com/VcQvaUz)

(http://i.imgur.com/1somjdl.jpg) (http://imgur.com/1somjdl)

Surprising to find a rock pool in all this heat.

(http://i.imgur.com/xhcKdmu.jpg) (http://imgur.com/xhcKdmu)

I took the gravel road (D1918) as usual instead of the boring (B2) tar into Henties Bay and then south to Swakopmond. I tried to book into the Desert Sky Backpackers (http://www.desertskylodging.com/) early but they were full and my Christmas booking didn't start until a couple of days later. I stayed at Skeleton Beach Backpackers for a few days and then came back.

I perhaps shouldn't have taken a long break for Christmas in Swakopmund as my Visa expires on the 21st although I imagine a lot of places close up shop so perhaps it was for the best. Some of the Christmas "highlights" include spending Christmas eve trying to sleep in a dorm that someone has puked all over, learning of a fellow dorm occupant doing a runner without paying their bill and getting arrested by the cops (with an expired visa) and generally avoiding very wasted annoying people. heh.

I ate a lot of fish while there and my favourite resturant was the Fish Deli (http://www.swakopmund.org/the-fish-deli/). I must have eaten there over a dozen times! Also worthy of a mention is the Brauhaus (http://www.swakopmundbrauhaus.com/) where I had an obligatory Stiefel :)

(http://i.imgur.com/NYfq1Q2.jpg) (http://imgur.com/NYfq1Q2)

So on the 3rd I set off for Windhoek along the C28. It really is a cracking road and you can really appreciate the slow change from parched desert to lush greenery. You see the plants slowly appear and get bigger the further you drive. Awesome. It really felt great to be on the road again!

(http://i.imgur.com/fLMAyGV.jpg) (http://imgur.com/fLMAyGV)

(http://i.imgur.com/WmFLSxy.jpg) (http://imgur.com/WmFLSxy)

(http://i.imgur.com/fL6l7ZP.jpg) (http://imgur.com/fL6l7ZP)

I did have some problems though. I hit a particularly large pot hole at speed and bottomed out the bike which in turn ripped some of the plastic from under the mud guard. It wasn't helped by the fact my extra 10L fuel can was full. There's no petrol stations on the C28 and the CTX only has a 8.6 litre tank. I cable tied the plastic back into place and emptied 7 litres into my tank which helped but the tyre was not scuffing against the exhaust when the suspension was compressed. I took it pretty easy on the bumps for the rest of the journey. The problem was figured out when I got the service later...

(http://i.imgur.com/9gWWcWP.jpg) (http://imgur.com/9gWWcWP)

chrisL mentioned a visit to the old German building :

Jim 40kms before Windhoek on the righthandside is an old German house/fort.
Do yourself a favour and go walk through it.
The German soldiers of war that drank too much at their outposts were sent there to dry
out so to speak. :eek7:
Beautiful building. :thumleft:

I would probably have just driven past if he hadn't mentioned it. I do like wandering around old buildings. Thanks Chris!

(http://i.imgur.com/kW9Y2FN.jpg) (http://imgur.com/kW9Y2FN)

I also took some video which I will hopefully get the time to edit together soon.

(http://i.imgur.com/bg9GHE0.jpg) (http://imgur.com/bg9GHE0)

I arrived same and sound in Windhoek and stayed at the Chameleon Backpackers (http://www.chameleonsafaris.com/) over the weekend ready for my 8k service on Monday 6th.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: TechnomadicJim on January 11, 2014, 10:01:36 pm
So I took the bike into Honda Windhoek and explained a few of the issues I wanted looking at and was told no problem come back at 2pm. Its quite exciting knowing the bike was going for some TLC. It deserves it after all the abuse I've been giving it in Namibia. The mechanics there seemed very helpful and knowledgeable so I was happy to leave it in their capable hands.

Apparently the spark plug was a bit loose! Can't say I checked it but it did get replaced in Luderitz by the mechanic there. Perhaps he didn't tighten it enough or it vibrated loose. Also the oil was in a bad way apparently but I had it replaced 3k's ago in Luderitz too. Guess I should change it even more often then! I'm now carrying 1.5 litres of castrol 10/40 which they supplied me with and I will change after 2k's.

The main issue with the bike that was causing the back tyre to scuff the exhaust was the fact that one of my back plates was missing. I noticed it was missing after the service in Honda Upington 4.5k's ago! It may have vibrated off but they did adjust the chain then and I wonder if it was perhaps forgotten to be put back on !?! Anyway this combined with hitting the pothole combined with the fact I have a fat E07 on the back cased the scuffing of the exhaust. They bodged a plate together for me and even put a spacer where the exhaust attaches to the frame giving some more room. Good stuff! I wasn't sure that the plate was important when I noticed it was missing and presumed not. I now know!

They also said my air filter was dry implying it wasn't soaked in oiled properly at the last service. I'm not sure myself but on the other hand oil doesn't evaporate as far as I know! Thinking back on it I remember not being that impressed with the mechanics at Honda Upington. I kinda got a bad feeling. Then again I can't be sure these issues were definitely their fault. I bought a spare air filter like we mentioned before and another spark plug. All good.

I forgot to mention before that while on my way to Twyfelfontein I lost my tool kit off the back of the bike :( So I replaced my tool kit in Cymot Windhoek.

Next I headed up to Waterberg National Park on the C/D roads and guess what ? I lost my toolkit AGAIN! FFS! So annoying.

Anyway I arrived in Waterberg and immediately saw lots of wild life. These little fellows popped out of their hole to have a look at their new neighbour. Not sure what they are. Meerkats ?

(http://i.imgur.com/XeRq16q.jpg) (http://imgur.com/XeRq16q)

Camp all setup. I decided to go for the simple hammock without tarp setup today. Only takes about 5 minutes.

(http://i.imgur.com/lWvG1Lx.jpg) (http://imgur.com/lWvG1Lx)

Next I took a dip in the pool. Nice!

(http://i.imgur.com/1N5hI1I.jpg) (http://imgur.com/1N5hI1I)

The next day I hiked to the top. Nice view :

(http://i.imgur.com/SeePizi.jpg) (http://imgur.com/SeePizi)

(http://i.imgur.com/3Ws50e4.jpg) (http://imgur.com/3Ws50e4)

Then some of the shorter trails around the camp.

(http://i.imgur.com/TFQyJmY.jpg) (http://imgur.com/TFQyJmY)

I got to within about 5 metres of this female klipspringer i think ?
(http://i.imgur.com/ybAtgj7.jpg) (http://imgur.com/ybAtgj7)

Very cool.

(http://i.imgur.com/KEAEK57.jpg) (http://imgur.com/KEAEK57)

In the afternoon I went on a 4 hour game drive and saw my first Giraffe along with plenty of other game.

(http://i.imgur.com/8UbSJ2t.jpg) (http://imgur.com/8UbSJ2t)

The next day I headed down the D2512 towards Tsumeb. Its a really nice quiet gravel road with lush greenery with lots of farms and gates to pass through.

(http://i.imgur.com/LGGvtFl.jpg) (http://imgur.com/LGGvtFl)

Just outside Grootfontein is the worlds largest meteorite. Just watch your head!

(http://i.imgur.com/dRjoHgz.jpg) (http://imgur.com/dRjoHgz)

I had to pop by and see it. Very cool!

(http://i.imgur.com/sXGcURs.jpg) (http://imgur.com/sXGcURs)

(http://i.imgur.com/98MXTNP.jpg) (http://imgur.com/98MXTNP)

Now I'm up to date and staying in Mousebird Backpackers (https://plus.google.com/116091152648840955373/about?gl=na&hl=en).  I like Tsumeb. Its a really nice chilled out town with a couple of good cafe's and lots of greenery. I was hoping to meet up with some other travellers and hitch a lift into Etosha but I'm the only one here! An Austrian turned up earlier and talked about getting a taxi in for a day trip but I will probably just hit the road tomorrow morning. Not sure exactly where I will head but probably towards Oshakati and camp somewhere for a day and start making my way East towards the Caprivi. I could go direct to Rundu but its a long boring road apparently. Any thoughts ?
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: troos on January 12, 2014, 03:04:02 pm
Howdee Jim

Saw your thread starting up on HU  :hello2:

I've now read your report on the WD forum, and I'll be following you with eargerness

Drive save!

Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: thruxton88 on January 13, 2014, 06:55:07 am
Great report Jim! Extremely helpful and inspiring!

I will be following a similiar path in April. I am dreading the TRN process, but can you let me know what address and evidence did you provide for your proof of residence? I am going to be staying at hostels. I am an American citizen if that makes a difference.

Thanks,
Zo
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: TechnomadicJim on January 13, 2014, 09:27:36 pm
Howdee Jim

Saw your thread starting up on HU  :hello2:

I've now read your report on the WD forum, and I'll be following you with eargerness

Drive save!

Great :) I decided to share there too. May as well as I'm putting all this effort into documenting the trip. Might be of use and interesting to others. Speaking of driving safe I left the B2 highway yesterday and 2 seconds later a car pulled into the B2 and straight into an oncoming car. I prefer riding the minor gravel and dirt roads. Much safer!

Great report Jim! Extremely helpful and inspiring!

I will be following a similiar path in April. I am dreading the TRN process, but can you let me know what address and evidence did you provide for your proof of residence? I am going to be staying at hostels. I am an American citizen if that makes a difference.

Thanks,
Zo

Great :) Welcome! I have since learned the application for a TRN can be much easier. Essentially you shouldn't apply for it in Joberg or Cape Town as they are too big. Do it in a smaller traffic office somewhere other than a big city and chances are you will have it done there and then! As for proof or residence I just asked a friend (thanks Lynda!) to write down that I was staying with them and sign it with their SA ID number. I don't actually have residence just the normal tourist visa but this didn't seem to matter. if you have any problems just try a different traffic office until you are successful. Once you have the TRN your good to own a vehicle in SA for the rest of your life AFAIK. Any more advice you need just say the word :)

---

KM's so far 9400

Leaving Tsumeb I drove north and after about 20 km's I came across Otjikoto Lake. Its estimates to be over 142 meters deep!

(http://i.imgur.com/kjtCh1t.jpg) (http://imgur.com/kjtCh1t)

The retreating Germans chucked their guns and a "mysterious safe" into the lake.

(http://i.imgur.com/11KAyKx.jpg) (http://imgur.com/11KAyKx)

A very boring drive for about 230 km's up the B2 highway took me to Ondangwa where I setup my hammock camp at Ondangwa Rest Camp (http://www.iwayosh.iway.na/restcamp/).

(http://i.imgur.com/55s2Vl3.jpg) (http://imgur.com/55s2Vl3)

I was snoozing in my hammock when 3 noisy bikes drove in next to my camp. Meet Thomas (Germany), Florian (Austria) and the famous "deaf biker" Istvan (Romania (https://www.facebook.com/istvan.marko.167)). Very cool guys to hang out with for the evening!

(http://i.imgur.com/JVt3Dap.jpg) (http://imgur.com/JVt3Dap)

By coincidence these guys met Mat and Jaap on the KTM 990's in northern Africa but decided to come down the west coast (Mat and Jaap took the easy coast).

(http://i.imgur.com/vN0Nmqw.jpg) (http://imgur.com/vN0Nmqw)

The next day I said farewell to the guys and headed on a day trip exploring the local area off away from the B2. Lots of small villages and people just staring as I rode past on my bike. I don't think they see many bikers up here.

Where am I ?

(http://i.imgur.com/1F5IdsU.jpg) (http://imgur.com/1F5IdsU)

Tomorrow I'm going to head east towards Rundu along the Angolan border. I'm not sure if I will camp on the way and make it in 2 days or just go for the whole 460 km's in one go. Even with my 10 litre jerry can on the side I think I'm going to need to take a few more litres just in case. AFAIK there's no petrol on this road. Should be an interesting day!

---

Side note regarding my new GPS tracking (http://www.whereisjames.com/#gps) I mentioned where you can track my exact position and speed / altitude etc... There was a bug causing it not to update. Now fixed it shows my location properly. Updates every 5 minutes. Im interested to know if anyone uses it :

http://www.whereisjames.com/#gps
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: Man from Nam on January 13, 2014, 09:38:24 pm
Nice trip report TechnomadicJim.
Sorry we missed you when you passed through Windhoek.
Enjoy the Caprivi, it is very nice. When in Divundu stay at Nunda Lodge and make sure you do a sundown cruise on the Okavango.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: oldmannorman on January 14, 2014, 05:13:07 pm
You living a dream for some of us. Enjoy and keep it rolling.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: thruxton88 on January 15, 2014, 07:58:13 am
I think I may be able to manage to find a letter *fingers crossed*. If not, I guess I can try to see if someone at the hostel would be willing too. If you know of anyone who would be willing to help out or has heard of a hostel doing this, please let me know!

Have you heard of any locations in particular that have processed them quickly?

Also, depending if our plans sync, I would be interested in buying the bike from you when you are done. I will be climbing Kilimanjaro/possibly zanzibar with some friends first week of April. I may fly into the SA first just to get the paper started. Lets stay in touch.

Keep it real,
Zo
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: pietas on January 15, 2014, 08:28:43 am
Looking good. See you in Rundu now (according to your gps position)
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: Keirider on January 15, 2014, 10:08:39 am
Hi there TechnomadicJim,
Great RR. I was in he army around Oshivello also did a stint at a a place called Wenela close to Katima Mulilo  in the Caprivi on the Zambezi river. Very pretty.

I noticed you have not mentioned tyres in your RR are still on the same set you started on. If so that is pretty amazing
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: 1Up4Adv on January 16, 2014, 06:26:50 pm
Hi Jim

You seem to be making good progress and it is a pity you could not cadge a lift into Etosha.  Anyway these things happen and it is possibly a good reason to return to Namibia :)

The first photograph is not meerkats but Banded Mongoose(Mungos mungo) and the other is a of a Damara Dik-dik sometimes aka Kirk's Dik-dik Madoqua kirkii) It appears to be female as only the male has very short horns - 7.5cm long.  I hope this helps with your animal ID.

Before you actually enter the Caprivi proper there is / was a magic campsite on the Kavango River close to the rapids called Popa Falls (close to the village Bagani).  If it is still there well worth a call in and a few days R & R.

Enjoy :thumleft:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: wolfandzebra on January 18, 2014, 03:25:11 am
Great trip report. Thanks for sharing. We're starting a trip in just over a month, and will use some of the tips and tricks you mention - esp the GPS plugin to update a website.
We looked into spot and delorme insight as solutions to let people know where we are, but there were too many instances of devices failing. And once the expectation is set for an update every 3 days (or whatever you decide) and then it just stops if the device dies... well, that will cause far more panic amongst the family and friends than a manually updated solution, with the expectation that we will update when we can.

Anyway, happy riding, we'll be following the adventure, and returning to the trip report for details when we arrive in South Africa late in 2014.  :thumleft:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: TechnomadicJim on January 18, 2014, 05:55:16 pm
So I have had my first major problem of the trip :(

I'm in Katima Mulilo right in the north east of Namibia on the Caprivi strip. I changed my oil today and tightened the sump plug too much and snapped off the outer collar that holds the rubber ring in. Its now dripping a drop of oil every 2 seconds. Damn it! So annoyed with myself.

Here's the collar that snapped off :

(http://i.imgur.com/qwVbPos.jpg) (http://imgur.com/qwVbPos)

Here's what is should look like only snapped :

(http://i.imgur.com/VzMg4Uy.jpg) (http://imgur.com/VzMg4Uy)

Here's the rubber ring exposed dripping oil :

(http://i.imgur.com/C9XXZCh.jpg) (http://imgur.com/C9XXZCh)

(http://i.imgur.com/NF0zHnq.jpg) (http://imgur.com/NF0zHnq)

The sump plug was really tight when I undone it so when I noticed what seemed like a spot of oil after having run the engine for a few minutes I presumed I hadn't tightened it enough then SNAP!

Its a Saturday evening here so nothing will be open until Monday and my visa expires on Tuesday. So I have to act quickly. I have several options as I see it :

Ideally I need a replacement so I will try and find one here in Katima. There is at least one decent mechanics here. Failing that I will see if it can be repaired and perhaps have one shipped somewhere from Windhoek Honda which is AFAIK the closest honda dealership to me. I can't get there because of my visa expiring on Tuesday.

Visa-wise I'm close to the border so I can cross even with a broken bike. Perhaps go to Livingstone which I think is the biggest city closest to me and therefore most likely to have a part or possibly be my shipping address for a shipment from Windhoek. Its not ideal as I wanted to go to Botswana first.

Perhaps I should just cross into Botswana and try and get to Maun and hole up there until I can get the part sent... It would allow me to then continue on my original planned route at least.

Any ideas or suggestions welcome!
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: woody1 on January 18, 2014, 05:58:20 pm
Sometimes some PRATLEY STEEL GLUE will work until you get  a replacement.  Wash it good with degreaser and try the glue.
Find a farmer.. they should have some pratley steel glue  :imaposer:

Hope you come right.
Title: Re:
Post by: Flouw on January 18, 2014, 09:02:38 pm
Find a nice big washer. Looks like there is somewhat of a collar left. Fit washer. The broken piece. And then O-ring. Get some gasket maker. Glue everything up. And get to the next service station for next oil change. And buy a extra sump plug as i advised in the begining of the trip. A broken or lost plug can mean you srfander in middle of nowhere. Last but not least.
My dad use to have a champaign cork in his cubbyhole. He used it as a gearbox plug one day. Im sure a wine bottle cork will work aswell.

Sent from my GT-I9195 using Tapatalk
Title: Re:
Post by: TechnomadicJim on January 19, 2014, 02:45:32 pm
Thank you both for the advice. :) I'm going to go to the local mechanics / spares shop tomorrow and hopefully pick up a replacement. One of the many reasons I chose the CTX was because its such a common and standard (GY6) engine. I'm hoping I shouldn't have too much difficulty replacing it.

Sometimes some PRATLEY STEEL GLUE will work until you get  a replacement.  Wash it good with degreaser and try the glue.
Find a farmer.. they should have some pratley steel glue  :imaposer:

Hope you come right.

I did manage to pick some of this up but I held off using it yet because as it stands I do have a bit of a seal and its not leaking too much at the moment. If I keep the oil topped up I think I might be able to make it to somewhere I can get a replacement plug or at least get one sent.

It seems to depend on the oil temperature but its dripping anything from every 3 - 15 seconds. Even in the last 20 hours or so my oil level is about 50% between min and max level's (it was at max before) and I've been driving around town a bit to test how much it leaks.

I spoke to my dad this morning and he raised a very good point. By undoing the sump plug and trying to repair it I may well make the problem worse. Its better to add to the seal as it stands. I can only lesson the amount of oil dripping out.

Find a nice big washer. Looks like there is somewhat of a collar left. Fit washer. The broken piece. And then O-ring. Get some gasket maker. Glue everything up. And get to the next service station for next oil change. And buy a extra sump plug as i advised in the begining of the trip. A broken or lost plug can mean you srfander in middle of nowhere. Last but not least.
My dad use to have a champaign cork in his cubbyhole. He used it as a gearbox plug one day. Im sure a wine bottle cork will work aswell.

The washer idea might be another idea too if the putty didn't hold. I'm going to pick up some gasket maker tomorrow and try and improve the seal I have. Now I wish I had bought a spare but to be fair if I had taken everything everyone had advised I would have most of a spare bike. I'm still learning and your previous advice is well appreciated now :)

My plan (after seeing what I can at the local mechanics / spares shop in Katima) is to still head to Divundu (Popa falls) tomorrow and try and cross the border there. I will load up with an extra litre of oil and cross my finger's I don't leak a litre and a half of oil during the 320 km's.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: katana on January 19, 2014, 03:32:50 pm
I hope you come right Jim   :thumleft:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: Vaalseun on January 22, 2014, 08:57:04 pm
Hey Jim, it's been a few days. Are you OK?
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: Goggakop on January 22, 2014, 09:04:28 pm
I see James is in Maun. So the Honda must be sorted. He probably needs some Wi-Fi  or the beer is just to cold!
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: TechnomadicJim on January 23, 2014, 03:06:43 pm
Nice trip report TechnomadicJim.
Sorry we missed you when you passed through Windhoek.
Enjoy the Caprivi, it is very nice. When in Divundu stay at Nunda Lodge and make sure you do a sundown cruise on the Okavango.


No worries :) Thanks for tuning in.  I had dinner at Nunda and a nice chat with the owners. Cool place. Its where Charlie Boorman and his trips stay too.

You living a dream for some of us. Enjoy and keep it rolling.

Yes sir! :) Thanks for the message.

I think I may be able to manage to find a letter *fingers crossed*. If not, I guess I can try to see if someone at the hostel would be willing too. If you know of anyone who would be willing to help out or has heard of a hostel doing this, please let me know!

Have you heard of any locations in particular that have processed them quickly?

Also, depending if our plans sync, I would be interested in buying the bike from you when you are done. I will be climbing Kilimanjaro/possibly zanzibar with some friends first week of April. I may fly into the SA first just to get the paper started. Lets stay in touch.

Keep it real,
Zo

South African's are a very friendly bunch. You will find someone to do this for you don't sweat it :) Anywhere apart from Cape Town or Joburg should process it quickly. I'm likely to want to sell the bike around mid June if thats any use to you or anyone else. The bike should be famous by then :)

Hi there TechnomadicJim,
Great RR. I was in he army around Oshivello also did a stint at a a place called Wenela close to Katima Mulilo  in the Caprivi on the Zambezi river. Very pretty.

I noticed you have not mentioned tyres in your RR are still on the same set you started on. If so that is pretty amazing

Thanks! It is a nice area indeed. I'm going to post a pic of the current state of my tyres and sprockets for inspection etc...

Hi Jim

You seem to be making good progress and it is a pity you could not cadge a lift into Etosha.  Anyway these things happen and it is possibly a good reason to return to Namibia :)

The first photograph is not meerkats but Banded Mongoose(Mungos mungo) and the other is a of a Damara Dik-dik sometimes aka Kirk's Dik-dik Madoqua kirkii) It appears to be female as only the male has very short horns - 7.5cm long.  I hope this helps with your animal ID.

Before you actually enter the Caprivi proper there is / was a magic campsite on the Kavango River close to the rapids called Popa Falls (close to the village Bagani).  If it is still there well worth a call in and a few days R & R.

Enjoy :thumleft:

Hey Chris! Yeah I did try but Etosha just wasn't happening for many reason's. There should be plenty of other opportunities for game drives. Thanks very much for the Animal ID's. I was hoping someone would chime in and help me out :) I stayed in a very nice camp site by popa falls mentioned below. Nice chilled area for sure.

Great trip report. Thanks for sharing. We're starting a trip in just over a month, and will use some of the tips and tricks you mention - esp the GPS plugin to update a website.
We looked into spot and delorme insight as solutions to let people know where we are, but there were too many instances of devices failing. And once the expectation is set for an update every 3 days (or whatever you decide) and then it just stops if the device dies... well, that will cause far more panic amongst the family and friends than a manually updated solution, with the expectation that we will update when we can.

Anyway, happy riding, we'll be following the adventure, and returning to the trip report for details when we arrive in South Africa late in 2014.  :thumleft:

You're Welcome :) Thanks for tuning in. I've seen the spot thing before but like my solution as I have more control over the data. It did require some custom coding to get it working but I really do rate OSMAnd (http://www.wilddog.za.net/forum/index.php?topic=138603.0) as an app. I've tried a lot of them and it has the best functionality IMHO.

I hope you come right Jim   :thumleft:

Thanks man. I'm working through it. :)

Hey Jim, it's been a few days. Are you OK?

I'm cool, thanks for your concern :) Just been tough getting the bike sorted and crossing the border.

I see James is in Maun. So the Honda must be sorted. He probably needs some Wi-Fi  or the beer is just to cold!

Yes :) Staying at the Old Bridge Backpackers (http://www.maun-backpackers.com/). Nice place.

-----

I'm going to get my ride report up to date as it's out of sync with my recent sump plug issue.

So I left Ondangwa on the B10. It was a LONG 467 km stretch. The road has lots of villages along it and I came across this old rusted VW shell and stopped for a photo :

(http://i.imgur.com/x7VCNUf.jpg) (http://imgur.com/x7VCNUf)

After about 300km's I was feeling pretty tired and noticed these looming clouds that I was headed to. I had a small down poor to drive through which wasn't too bad but enough to soak me. The sun then came out and I dried myself out only to come into a BIG storm which lasted about 30 minutes and after that I was completely wet through. It started out with some small wind and then it was a real storm and I had to slow down to 40 km's and was nearly blown over. I could barely see anything.

(http://i.imgur.com/OAhD1rV.jpg) (http://imgur.com/OAhD1rV)

I arrived in Divindu and checked into The Okavango River Lodge (http://www.okavango-river-lodge.com/). Being soaked through and tired I paid 420 NAD for a single room rather than trying to find somewhere cheaper.

I was going to stay two nights but at the last minute I decided to head to Divundu. The D3402 road which runs parallel to the B8 is a must. Lots of villages next to the river and much more fun than the tar road.

(http://i.imgur.com/iuUMN8i.jpg) (http://imgur.com/iuUMN8i)

(http://i.imgur.com/iS1FN4Y.jpg) (http://imgur.com/iS1FN4Y)

As with yesterday clouds started to appear and I was ready to be drowned again.

(http://i.imgur.com/CvIAtQP.jpg) (http://imgur.com/CvIAtQP)

Fortunately I made it to Divundu before it really bucketed it down and took shelter outside one of the two supermarkets in town.

(http://i.imgur.com/R0iUCP0.jpg) (http://imgur.com/R0iUCP0)

I checked out most of the camp sites but decided to camp at Shametu River Lodge (http://shameturiverlodge.wordpress.com/). Its run by a South African couple called Cheryl and Mel. They even offered for me to join them for dinner so I didn't have to have my standard pilchards and beans. :) Very nice people!

I just strung my hammock up in the kitchenette area. The ablution facilities were really nice too and all for 120 NAD per person.

(http://i.imgur.com/eYupr0s.jpg) (http://imgur.com/eYupr0s)

The view towards popa falls from Shametu. I wasn't going to pay NWR 150 NAD just to go and look from their resort!

(http://i.imgur.com/8ezkVDv.jpg) (http://imgur.com/8ezkVDv)

(http://i.imgur.com/Wribjq9.jpg) (http://imgur.com/Wribjq9)

I spent a couple of nights there and then headed off the Caprivi strip to Katima where I was going to meet some red cross volunteers I met in Swakopmund. I decided to take the C49 instead of the B8 tar road. Unfortunately (or fortunately depends on how you look at it) they are working on tarring the road.

(http://i.imgur.com/OK8ZpXV.jpg) (http://imgur.com/OK8ZpXV)

Came across this big fellow crossing just behind me. My first wild elephant!

(http://i.imgur.com/WbVWmw0.jpg) (http://imgur.com/WbVWmw0)

I arrived in Katima after driving 400 km's and camped in my friends garden. Seeing bikes is rare in Namibia but whilst wandering around town I came across this Honda Trail 11 :

(http://i.imgur.com/mbSFbKi.jpg) (http://imgur.com/mbSFbKi)

The next day (Saturday) I washed the bike, cleaned the chain and decided to change the oil. This is when I broke the sump plug as mentioned in the previous post (http://www.wilddog.za.net/forum/index.php?topic=137240.msg2737804#msg2737804). :(

I had to wait until Monday as everything was obviously closed on Sunday. I trawled round all the local mechanics and even outboard motor shops trying to find a replacement sump plug and ended up meeting a mechanic called Eddie who was happy to jump in and help me out. First he tried the Partleys steel glue and it looked promising but as soon as he tightened it up even a little its just broke again. So next he used some tape on the thread and then sealed it with some sealant :

(http://i.imgur.com/iVGJVdi.jpg) (http://imgur.com/iVGJVdi)

(http://i.imgur.com/k7X52e5.jpg) (http://imgur.com/k7X52e5)

Eddie then replaced the oil and only charged me 150 NAD for the emergency work. Thanks man! I immediately left for Divundu checking the seal regularly of course and thankfully it held and got me to there.

The next morning on the last day of my Visa I exited Namibia after spending two whole months there.

(http://i.imgur.com/UCkA39Q.jpg) (http://imgur.com/UCkA39Q)

I entered Botswana via the Mohembo border crossing. Both posts were very friendly and quick so no problems and no accusations of spying! I paid 150 Pula for the Botswana fee's for the bike. They accepted namibian dollars too.

(http://i.imgur.com/shbFQyH.jpg) (http://imgur.com/shbFQyH)

I followed the A35 south on a very boring road full of pot holes and strewn with cattle and donkeys. I stopped for lunch at Dijo Deli (https://www.facebook.com/pages/Dijo-Deli-Shakawe/529684657083803) where they recommended I visit a crocodile farm on my way down. I arrived in Sepopa where I stayed at Sepopa Swamp Stop (http://www.swampstop.com/). I was the only guest there and the dinner was very good. The place was a bit run down though and could do with an overhaul to be honest especially the ablution facilities.

After a nice breakfast I headed south again towards Maun and stopped off at Krokovango Farm (http://www.ratho.co.za/krokovango1.htm) as recommended by the Dijo Deli (https://www.facebook.com/pages/Dijo-Deli-Shakawe/529684657083803). It cost 25 Pula and was quite interesting. I recommend it. You can spot it by the giant painted crocodile by the side of the road :

(http://i.imgur.com/KLFNVxb.jpg) (http://imgur.com/KLFNVxb)

(http://i.imgur.com/zVmXmQU.jpg) (http://imgur.com/zVmXmQU)

(http://i.imgur.com/uSkhjkf.jpg) (http://imgur.com/uSkhjkf)

(http://i.imgur.com/Yjn9UhF.jpg) (http://imgur.com/Yjn9UhF)

At the end of the A35 where it joins the A3 is Lake Ngami which I thought I may as well try and cross. Not going to happen but the scenery is quite unique with all the dead tress.

(http://i.imgur.com/5EdHxP3.jpg) (http://imgur.com/5EdHxP3)

(http://i.imgur.com/h7VImEO.jpg) (http://imgur.com/h7VImEO)

The A3 is just as boring as the A35 and after riding about 350 km's I eventually end up in Maun where I'm currently staying at the  Old Bridge Backpackers (http://www.maun-backpackers.com/).

I just got back from trawling all the local bike / spares shops and although everyone was helpful it appears I can't get a replacement plug here. Getting one shipped will probably take a long time too as it will have to go via Gabarone for customs. I think I might just head down to Francistown and try my luck there.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: Gérrard on January 23, 2014, 03:17:35 pm
Nice going Jim. Seeing that creepy crawly in the pic under the bike's wheel brought back memories from my army days. Those things(and other goggs) get really BIG there.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: MegaPix on January 23, 2014, 03:29:28 pm
This 2nd last photo is awesome

Well done Jim.  I like those clouds you captured  :thumleft:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: TechnomadicJim on January 23, 2014, 04:12:37 pm
Nice going Jim. Seeing that creepy crawly in the pic under the bike's wheel brought back memories from my army days. Those things(and other goggs) get really BIG there.

heh. Yeah they are very creepy. There are a lot around too!. Glad I'm mostly in my hammock at night!

This 2nd last photo is awesome

Well done Jim.  I like those clouds you captured  :thumleft:

Thanks :) I got some nice GoPro video driving down there too.

---

Here's the current status of my sprockets and tyres at 11,600 km's.

Front :
(http://i.imgur.com/08rEHr7.jpg) (http://imgur.com/08rEHr7)

Back :
(http://i.imgur.com/yVrxC2r.jpg) (http://imgur.com/yVrxC2r)

Front (Headenau K60) :
(http://i.imgur.com/ixeuv7V.jpg) (http://imgur.com/ixeuv7V)

Back (Mitas E07) :
(http://i.imgur.com/92wjJAf.jpg) (http://imgur.com/92wjJAf)

I've got a bit of a seal that's leaking too but not enough to really worry too much about I think :

(http://i.imgur.com/Of3XfN8.jpg) (http://imgur.com/Of3XfN8)
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: katana on January 23, 2014, 08:05:29 pm
Looking good.  That tire will be good for another 10k kms.   :thumleft:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: YamaV on January 24, 2014, 10:39:32 am
Nice going Jim! Where to next?
Drive safe!  :thumleft:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: Man from Nam on January 24, 2014, 11:11:17 am
Nice RR and photo's!
Travel safe
 :sip:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: mox on January 24, 2014, 11:19:21 am
Loving this RR, I hope you get that sump plug sorted soon.  :thumleft:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: CoolBreeze on January 25, 2014, 12:03:44 pm
I love these reports and trips with small bikes! It's the way to go if you really want to get in touch with the areas you are passing through IMO  :3some:
I just bought a XR250 Tornado for my fiance and we are following your report.

Good luck and all the best man! :thumleft: :thumleft:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: oldmannorman on January 25, 2014, 03:29:39 pm
 :sip: Wow, is this RR lasting till June ?















//






















































































Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: TechnomadicJim on January 26, 2014, 04:28:05 pm
Looking good.  That tire will be good for another 10k kms.   :thumleft:

Cool :) That extra ridge in the middle will really extend the life I think. I expect a lot of tar from now on so they might not wear so quick as they have since I've been off road in Namibia.

Nice going Jim! Where to next?
Drive safe!  :thumleft:

Hey Vian :) I'm probably going to Nata where I hope to drive Makgadikgadi Pan (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Makgadikgadi_Pan) like they did in the Top Gear Botswana Special (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Top_Gear:_Botswana_Special). I hope to camp the night and drive out the next day. Should be cool and make for some epic scenery.

Nice RR and photo's!
Travel safe
 :sip:

Thanks Man (from Nam). Will Do!

Loving this RR, I hope you get that sump plug sorted soon.  :thumleft:

Cool, thanks for tuning in! Me too. I'm just going to make my way south until I find out.... Francistown, Gabarone and if I still haven't then I will go to JoBerg. When I get one (will probably buy two!) I can head north into Zim then Zambia etc...

I love these reports and trips with small bikes! It's the way to go if you really want to get in touch with the areas you are passing through IMO  :3some:
I just bought a XR250 Tornado for my fiance and we are following your report.

Good luck and all the best man! :thumleft: :thumleft:

Excellent! I totally agree :) Thanks to you and your fiancée for tuning in!

:sip: Wow, is this RR lasting till June ?

Yes :) Its going to a be at least a 9 month trip! My flight back to the UK leaves 30th June from Cape Town. Get comfortable its going to a long one.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: TechnomadicJim on January 27, 2014, 09:16:56 am
I have been chatting to the locals here and its doubtful I'm going to get the sump plug here in Botswana which means I have to drive down to Johannesburg. The quickest and easiest way to get the part up here is to have it shipped via Air Botswana Freight from Johannesburg to Maun where I pick it up at the local airport.

So here's the BIG ask :

Are there any willing Wild Dog's in Johannesburg who can go to one of the local Honda dealers and pick up TWO (one spare) of these sump/oil drain plugs (WITH O ring) for me :

(http://i.ebayimg.com/t/81-02-HONDA-XR200R-XR-200R-XR200-NOS-OIL-STRAINER-DRAIN-PLUG-COVER-CAP-GASKET-/00/s/MTIwMFgxNjAw/$(KGrHqV,!o8E-)PfOQ27BP9yKBfgDQ~~60_35.JPG)

Then take them to Tambo airport's Air Botswana desk and have them freighted to Maun where I can pick them up.

I will then organise payment either immediately by bank wire (or Bitcoin) or alternatively pay cash on my return at the end of May / beginning of June. I will obviously be VERY grateful too.

What do people think of this idea ?
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: TechnomadicJim on January 27, 2014, 10:24:02 am
OK Scrap the above idea.

Got hold of Honda Gabarone who are going to order one in for me and service the bike as well. Should take 4-5 days provided there's no problems. The Honda website didn't mention any Honda service shops in Botswana. Turns out there is!
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: CoolBreeze on January 27, 2014, 10:33:42 am
 :thumleft: :thumleft: :thumleft:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: Vaalseun on January 27, 2014, 09:33:19 pm
Jim, I often wondered what I would do in such a situation. Surely the easiest would be for say a Honda dealer in your home country (or maybe Johannesburg in this particular case) to quote you over the phone for the part plus courier cost, and upon receiving your EFT, to courier it to say a particular spot, say a particular dealership where you are, or even a hotel or filling station. I would think that's more do-able than asking someone to drive a part to an airport and hand it over to a dubious airline clerk. Please don't get me wrong, Wilddogs are always willing to help wherever they can, but I still think my idea is more practical. Maybe some of the older and experienced guys could enlighten me.
Title: Re: Re: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: TechnomadicJim on January 28, 2014, 07:50:26 am
You're right, that is probably the first port of call. If you read my following post it is indeed what I did next. The reason I put out a call was on the advice of a local that it would be the easiest way for me to get the part quickly. There was also always the chance that a fellow wild dog might be heading this way too which would have been great.

I wanted to attack the problem from as many angles as possible and see which one worked. Hopefully the guys in Gaberone will get the correct plugs ordered and delivered in 3-4 days like they say. Fingers crossed :)

Jim, I often wondered what I would do in such a situation. Surely the easiest would be for say a Honda dealer in your home country (or maybe Johannesburg in this particular case) to quote you over the phone for the part plus courier cost, and upon receiving your EFT, to courier it to say a particular spot, say a particular dealership where you are, or even a hotel or filling station. I would think that's more do-able than asking someone to drive a part to an airport and hand it over to a dubious airline clerk. Please don't get me wrong, Wilddogs are always willing to help wherever they can, but I still think my idea is more practical. Maybe some of the older and experienced guys could enlighten me.

Sent from my Nexus 4 using Tapatalk
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: Boersoeknbike on January 29, 2014, 09:13:54 am
Jim, PM me if you don't come right, I'm not that much on your post. I'm willing to help and know people with family in Gab
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: Goggakop on February 03, 2014, 09:05:09 pm
Hi James

I see you have moved from Maun - been waiting for a update,  please.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: TechnomadicJim on February 05, 2014, 12:34:49 am
Quote
Jim, PM me if you don't come right, I'm not that much on your post. I'm willing to help and know people with family in Gab

Thanks man. I think I'm good but I really appreciate the offer :). The bikes at the Honda dealership here in Gaborone and I'm optimistic they have it all in hand.

Quote
Hi James

I see you have moved from Maun - been waiting for a update,  please.


Yes :) Currently in Gaborone getting supplies. Here's my latest ride report :

----

Soon after checking in at the Old Bridge Backpackers (http://www.maun-backpackers.com/) in Maun I met Dave and Marly (http://travelin.tk/) who are riding two Honda Dominator (250cc) bikes. They come from Amsterdam and spent the last 3 years (with 1 years break in between) travelling down the east coast of Africa. It was really cool to hang out with them.

(http://i.imgur.com/QlfKvJt.jpg) (http://imgur.com/QlfKvJt)

The 3 of us decided to hire a 4x4 (Toyota Prado) and head into Moremi national park for a couple of days. Dave and Marly took turns at driving as I actually don't have a car license only a full bike license :) As you can imagine at this time of year there was a lot if water so we took it way and weaved our way through towards the third bridge camp. After a while the Prado started to overheat and we could hear the coolant boiling so we let it cool down for a while and proceeded but after a little while the engine began to have a knocking sound which did not sound good at all. Dave checked the radiator and it was pretty much empty! We filled it up with almost 10 liters of water and some coolant which they had with them from the bikes. After that the Prado was fine. They hired us a car empty of coolant!!!

Moremi is full of game and definitely my best national park to date. We didn't see any lions but other groups did. We did see a Serval though which was pretty cool. Here's some of the photo highlights :

(http://i.imgur.com/xNrixNO.jpg) (http://imgur.com/xNrixNO)

(http://i.imgur.com/4tno0G3.jpg) (http://imgur.com/4tno0G3)

(http://i.imgur.com/bwE6NFd.jpg) (http://imgur.com/bwE6NFd)

(http://i.imgur.com/7F7Lsrd.jpg) (http://imgur.com/7F7Lsrd)

(http://i.imgur.com/mIHgLaS.jpg) (http://imgur.com/mIHgLaS)

We camped at third bridge for 234 pula which is pretty expensive but ok for one night. During the night the hippos were so close I could hear them breathing. Obviously I didn't leave my tent all night after hearing of how dangerous they can be!

The next day we took a different route out of the park which was very difficult driving (top work Dave!) with the main tracks being completely flooded. We had to blaze a fresh trail many times just to make it through. There was the added concern that we were running out of fuel and couldn't afford to back track the way we came. Fortunately we lucked out on our diversions with a little help from our GPS's and the low fuel light came on 10k's outside of Maun. Nice!

To cap off the Moremi experience we found 4 more backpackers and organised a 1 hour scenic flight for 640 pula each which I thought was a great price (Top work Dave + Marly again!). There really was some spectacular views including a giant herd of about 60 elephants! Awesome :)

(http://i.imgur.com/gBo5j4S.jpg) (http://imgur.com/gBo5j4S)

(http://i.imgur.com/sCFEI5p.jpg) (http://imgur.com/sCFEI5p)

(http://i.imgur.com/Fxd1p2I.jpg) (http://imgur.com/Fxd1p2I)

(http://i.imgur.com/gLwh2NL.jpg) (http://imgur.com/gLwh2NL)

(http://i.imgur.com/y6cAvDw.jpg) (http://imgur.com/y6cAvDw)

It really was cool hanging out at the Old Bridge Backpackers with Dave and Marly but I had to get moving as I needed to get my oil drain plugs from Gaborone. They did mention that they drove across the Makgadikgadi Pan and camped on Kubu island on their way to Maun so I decided to do the same on my way. The Makgadikgadi Pan and Kubu island appeared on the Top Gear Botswana Special (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Top_Gear:_Botswana_Special) episode where they have to cross over in non 4wd vehicles of their choosing. Pretty funny episode.

Anyway... I packed up and said my goodbyes to all the cool people I met and headed for Gweta where I had some lunch at Planet Baobab (http://www.planetbaobabbotswana.com/) and had a chat with one of local guides. He told me no... its not possible to cross this time of year. I mentioned that Dave and Marly made it through and one of the managers said it would probably be OK so I thought I would give it a go anyway. I drove through south through Gweta and out the other side where it was very sandy tracks through lots homesteads. The road became firmer but soon I arrived at this :

(http://i.imgur.com/NF2xI9r.jpg) (http://imgur.com/NF2xI9r)

I started to make my way around and nearly got past until I broke through into the mud and just wheel spun digging myself in deeper :\

(http://i.imgur.com/0mAmMPY.jpg) (http://imgur.com/0mAmMPY)

Fortunately a nice farmer was passing on his donkey and helped push me through the last part. It wasn't long before I got stuck again and had to drag the bike sideways to get out of this :

(http://i.imgur.com/fcIB88F.jpg) (http://imgur.com/fcIB88F)

Fortunately the CTX is so light that even with my luggage I can haul it out of situations like this by myself without unpacking my luggage. I spent about an hour and a half making very slow progress through heavy mud and only managed to make about 30 km's of the 130 to kubu island via this route so I decided to turn back at 4pm as it was obvious I wasn't going to make it this way. I retraced my track and headed back to the main road defeated by the mud.

(http://i.imgur.com/w6IAo4B.jpg) (http://imgur.com/w6IAo4B)

I camped back at Planet Baobab (http://www.planetbaobabbotswana.com/) where I had lunch. It happens to have a giant concrete Aardvark just next to the entrance off the main road. :)

(http://i.imgur.com/ohReUDM.jpg) (http://imgur.com/ohReUDM)

(http://i.imgur.com/KzP0GTP.jpg) (http://imgur.com/KzP0GTP)

The next day I headed to Nata where Dave and Marly mentioned there was another (main) way in to Kubu Island which I hoped would be easier going. Surely enough it started out good and I made progress across the plains with the odd startled ostrich running away from me every now and again.

(http://i.imgur.com/LLky06e.png) (http://imgur.com/LLky06e)

I passed some hore homesteads and started to come across the mighty Baobab tree's. They are very cool.

(http://i.imgur.com/RQTILd6.jpg) (http://imgur.com/RQTILd6)

As I neared Kubu island the road started to get more waterlogged and I began to worry that I might not make but I pressed on as it wasn't so muddy like before and the ground was quite firm underneath the water which wasn't so bad. I reached Makgadikgadi adventure camp with about 20 km's to Kubu island and stopped off to have a coke and chat to the manager about the road conditions. Again he told me no I would't make it. He said two Kiwi's in a 4x4 tried and turned back the day before and stayed at his place. He told me the water level was above knee height in a lot of places but I suspected he might be exaggerating a bit in order to get me to stay at his place rather than Kubu island so I set off anyway. I was so close!

The water was deeper the closer I got but it had firm ground underneath and wasn't so slippery which was the main problem that stopped me before. Finally I could see Kubu island but I had to cross about 200 metres of mud to get there. It had also just began to rain. I took it slow and made it across to the staff house where I managed to get under their porch just as the rain came down. Nice! The manager there was quite surprised to see me and impressed I had made it this time of year. I picked a camp site by some baobab's and as soon as I put my tarp up the rain came down even heavier and I had to scramble to keep everything dry and ensure the tarp was tight and secure. It lasted about an hour so I made some video and prepared my standard standard cold beans and pilchards in a mug for dinner. I watched an episode of Bear Grylls on my phone in my hammock and fell asleep happy I had made it.

(http://i.imgur.com/MIyodQj.jpg) (http://imgur.com/MIyodQj)

(http://i.imgur.com/eATYehG.png) (http://imgur.com/eATYehG)

I got up just after sunrise and it began to rain so I got back in the hammock and began to fall asleep again until I noticed that water was soaking down the webbing and into my hammock. I remembered a little trick where you tie a piece of string to each end before the hammock and it wicks the water to the ground before it gets to the hammock. It works too :)

I packed up and went on a short drive around the island and took some photos. Its a very cool place! It would have been nicer to have been able to drive on the pans but it was way too wet. Very different from the pictures i saw of a week previous when Dave and Marly had crossed it.

(http://i.imgur.com/hYcUU7w.jpg) (http://imgur.com/hYcUU7w)

(http://i.imgur.com/UbdMQiL.jpg) (http://imgur.com/UbdMQiL)

(http://i.imgur.com/VMPoMJR.jpg) (http://imgur.com/VMPoMJR)

As I left two of the staff members mentioned that if I did have any trouble there would be a 4x4 coming from the south on the same path I was taking in order to relieve them. They also said I should back track 20 km's and go round rather than taking the direct route south. As I left I got confused about where the path I came in on was and ended up heading down the short cut. Realizing my mistake I just decided to plough a path through the mud and water which was a bit touch and go when the bike ended up in water so deep it was nearly over the exhaust! Fortunately I made it back to the correct track and made my way. It was definitely deeper than the day before after all the extra rain.

(http://i.imgur.com/flnHZLs.jpg) (http://imgur.com/flnHZLs)

There was long stretches of water where you couldn't see any sort of dry exit so you just had to go for it and hope there was no unexpected trenches under the water.

(http://i.imgur.com/NMI8QtD.png) (http://imgur.com/NMI8QtD)

(http://i.imgur.com/xFScZTs.png) (http://imgur.com/xFScZTs)

(http://i.imgur.com/u2Bpp7X.jpg) (http://imgur.com/u2Bpp7X)

(http://i.imgur.com/gJnCDn0.jpg) (http://imgur.com/gJnCDn0)

After a while the dreaded mud appeared. I skirted the edge the best I could and tried not to make any turns on area's I had to cross. It was slow going but being by myself I had to be careful not to mess up as I didn't know how long help would be or if there would be any at all!

(http://i.imgur.com/Cp3LkyJ.jpg) (http://imgur.com/Cp3LkyJ)

I was getting tired and I still had a long way to go. I really didn't know what to expect next. I did come across a pan that was mostly dry and decided to have some fun for a bit and took some cool video speeding past the camera.

(http://i.imgur.com/2Qgg0vo.png) (http://imgur.com/2Qgg0vo)

(http://i.imgur.com/yt4SVJX.png) (http://imgur.com/yt4SVJX)

(http://i.imgur.com/pjTBh5z.jpg) (http://imgur.com/pjTBh5z)

After the semi-dry pan was more water and mud for a few kilometers where I had one of my more artistic slides :

(http://i.imgur.com/Wts7aFI.jpg) (http://imgur.com/Wts7aFI)

(http://i.imgur.com/PRUFSHy.jpg) (http://imgur.com/PRUFSHy)

(http://i.imgur.com/qJTtxhc.jpg) (http://imgur.com/qJTtxhc)

Eventually there was less extended areas of water. It was soon just large puddles. I wasn't wearing my helmet as i was sweating so much working to keep the bike upright. The inevitable happened and it fell off the back and into a puddle :( doh!

(http://i.imgur.com/CwMAYdY.jpg) (http://imgur.com/CwMAYdY)

Very tired at this point I only had about 30 km's until I was sure I was going to reach some much anticipated tar. Unfortunately this last stretch was a maze of deep rutted muddy puddles surrounded by thorny bushes. I was shattered when I eventually made it to Serowe so I checked into the first decent B&B I could find and slept in until late the next morning.

The A1 road from Serowe to Gabarone was mostly uneventful apart from crossing the Tropic of Capricorn again :

(http://i.imgur.com/PkqgCbs.jpg) (http://imgur.com/PkqgCbs)

I'm currently staying at Mokolodi Backpackers (http://www.backpackers.co.bw/) and have the whole dorm to myself and some half decent Internet at last. Sweet! I've been buying some supplies from the "Game City" shopping mall including a new Buff neck scarf, two new K-Way shirts (They have a Cape Union Mart here!) and a new 1.5 meter mono-pod for the cameras.

I dropped the bike into the local Honda dealership this morning for a service and clocked the brand new clean CTX in the window. I call this photo "Beauty and the Beast".

(http://i.imgur.com/0l2X6Fu.jpg) (http://imgur.com/0l2X6Fu)

Will report on how the service goes next.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: katana on February 05, 2014, 05:50:19 am
Nice   :thumleft:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: MegaPix on February 05, 2014, 07:52:25 am
Epic James

I have been looking at these photos on Facebook as well, and hell any other bigger bike would have caused a lot of shit for you.

Well done ! :thumleft:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: pietas on February 05, 2014, 08:41:54 am
Once again, stunning photos and great read. At least you are having loads of fun
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: Lem on February 05, 2014, 09:09:56 am
this is my favourite part of your report, jim

all the best for the next leg of your journey
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: YamaV on February 05, 2014, 09:17:07 am
 :thumleft:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: Mountain Goat on February 05, 2014, 10:08:18 am
Wonderful adventure!   :thumleft:   Safe Travels Jim
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: DRAZIL on February 05, 2014, 10:15:01 am
great going  :thumleft: tired and still making time for fun +1000 :thumleft:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: oldmannorman on February 05, 2014, 05:39:09 pm
 :sip: Cool. keep it coming.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: Mr Zog on February 06, 2014, 02:32:14 pm
Fantastic on making it through the pans and all the way past Kubu  :thumleft:

As mentioned, anything bigger than your 200 Bushlander and you would have been in a lot of trouble!
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: www_travelin_tk on February 06, 2014, 05:00:43 pm
Hi James,

Great to hear (and see now by the pics) that you made it through! Because if you didnt survive this trip to Kubu Island, for sure we would get the blame for sending yiy that direction! :pot:

What a big big difference since 1 week before that we were there, we were sooooooo lucky. (See our dry pictures) But it looks like you had a lot of fun anyway! ;) And even you fel down, ok Marly did 4 x in the deep deep dry sand (Or you as well???? )

And So great to see all your pics like this, awesome! Almost as much as water which we had in the Moremi Park when we hired the 4x4  :3some:

Greetings from Marly and Dave (already in Namanjab, Namibia (we're going fast now!))
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: 4 Kays on February 06, 2014, 06:29:29 pm
 :sip:really enjoying the rr Jim
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: gwild on February 06, 2014, 08:51:42 pm
Awesome as usual  :thumleft: keep it coming
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: TechnomadicJim on February 06, 2014, 09:44:12 pm
Epic James

I have been looking at these photos on Facebook as well, and hell any other bigger bike would have caused a lot of shit for you.

Well done ! :thumleft:

Cool man, Thanks :) I agree, I can pick up the bike all the luggage without too much difficulty. Also I would have sunk much deeper with a bigger bike.

Once again, stunning photos and great read. At least you are having loads of fun

Thanks very much! I am having lots of fun for sure :)

this is my favourite part of your report, jim

all the best for the next leg of your journey

Me too. Was a proper little adventure in my bigger adventure.

Wonderful adventure!   :thumleft:   Safe Travels Jim

Thanks Mountain Goat!

great going  :thumleft: tired and still making time for fun +1000 :thumleft:

I was a but disappointed about not being able to speed around some wide open pan so when I came across the one in the photos I was very happy :) Got some good video too.

:sip: Cool. keep it coming.

Yes sir!  :biggrin:

Fantastic on making it through the pans and all the way past Kubu  :thumleft:

As mentioned, anything bigger than your 200 Bushlander and you would have been in a lot of trouble!

Very happy to be on the lightweight CTX with this sort of riding. Thanks :)

Hi James,

Great to hear (and see now by the pics) that you made it through! Because if you didnt survive this trip to Kubu Island, for sure we would get the blame for sending yiy that direction! :pot:

What a big big difference since 1 week before that we were there, we were sooooooo lucky. (See our dry pictures) But it looks like you had a lot of fun anyway! ;) And even you fel down, ok Marly did 4 x in the deep deep dry sand (Or you as well???? )

And So great to see all your pics like this, awesome! Almost as much as water which we had in the Moremi Park when we hired the 4x4  :3some:

Greetings from Marly and Dave (already in Namanjab, Namibia (we're going fast now!))
"
Hey :) Good to see you both on here! I can see the headlines now : "Two dutchies send brit to his watery demise." hehe... naah I was really glad I did it even with all the water. I would have just driven straight past to Francistown had I not known. When I tried to enter via Gweta I kept thinking I must be taking the wrong path despite what my GPS was telling me.

I got sent some pictures just now from the nice South African couple who I got a lift into Sossusvlei with and it's so dry when they entered.I haven't hurt myself when falling yet which is good. Its always off road on sand or mud. Makes me shudder remembering your story of the collision with the cart!

I guess you went in over the north of Etosha ? Didn't get the chance to get further than Ondangwa. Looks cool. Hope the map and sim card are working for ya!

Take Care, Enjoy!

:sip:really enjoying the rr Jim

Excellent :) Its really nice to get messages from people who are tuned in. I imagine there's at least one more silent reader for every person that comments.

Awesome as usual  :thumleft: keep it coming

Thanks man, will do!

---

Just a little update  :

I put the bike in for its 12k (actually 13k) service at Honda Gabarone. They were really good and even organised me a lift back to the hostel and picked me up the next day. The driver even took me to some other bike shops so I could get some replacement gloves as I lost mine on the pans. Nice!

When I arrived the bike was ready and looked brand new again :). Here's what was done :

Spark plug replaced.
Engine flushed and cleaned, Oil changed.
Sump plug changed and spare (with O ring) supplied.
Rear swing arm cap bodge replaced with original cap.
Chain replaced as mine was very stretched (some wear some my fault for now lubing enough).

As I was next heading to Zimbabwe, Zambia, Malawi and Mozambique I also bought replacement brake pads and shoes as they would probably go soon within the next 10k's. As far as I know this will be the last official Honda dealership before i get back into SA in a few months time.

Here's Allan the service manager (also an MX rider). He was impressed with my journey and the fact I made it across the pan's. So impressed he didn't charge me any labor for the service and gave me a 20% discount on all the parts! Wow!

(http://i.imgur.com/fxYDFYd.jpg) (http://imgur.com/fxYDFYd)

Thanks Allan, very much appreciated mate!

I also bought myself a mono pod (pictured at the bottom) for using with my GoPro and camera. Should make for some different / cool shots. Will have a play when I hit the road again. I also bought some CO2 inflation canisters and the valve as I really don't fancy using my bicycle pump to inflate after a flat! Incidentally I checked my spare tubes and one had a hole in it from being attached to the bike for the last 13km's. I fixed that up with my kit. Here's my new stuff. Its like Christmas! :D

(http://i.imgur.com/EHjHTfm.jpg) (http://imgur.com/EHjHTfm)

So the plan next is to head up to Francistown and cross over into Zimbabwe. I'm interested to see what its like as I hear VERY different views from people. Depending on the weather I may leave Gaborone tomorrow or perhaps the next day. I'm interested on any recommendations for Zim apart from Vic falls. Im tempted by Greater Zimbabwe Ruins and Lake Kariba.

Feeling good I have everything sorted and new supplies.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: ChrisL - DUSTRIDERS on February 06, 2014, 09:48:05 pm
Jim when in Bulawayo ride out to see Matopos. Stay over if one still can.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: evansv on February 07, 2014, 06:30:46 am
If you're into fishing, there used to be great Tiger fishing at Deka.

I love Botswana, particularly the Okavango. I've worked there a couple of times & had a few holidays there too. Great RR :thumleft: Thanks for sharing!
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: Tiger8 on February 07, 2014, 11:29:46 am
Awesome Jim, I have been following your trip from the start and wait each day to read the next episode of "Technomadic Jim and the Bushlander, Rides Again"  :thumleft:

Ride carefree but carefully and be safe, thanks for sharing and allowing us the priviledge of "riding" with.  :3some:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: DASKOP on February 08, 2014, 10:52:55 am
Hi James,

Great to hear (and see now by the pics) that you made it through! Because if you didnt survive this trip to Kubu Island, for sure we would get the blame for sending yiy that direction! :pot:

What a big big difference since 1 week before that we were there, we were sooooooo lucky. (See our dry pictures) But it looks like you had a lot of fun anyway! ;) And even you fel down, ok Marly did 4 x in the deep deep dry sand (Or you as well???? )

And So great to see all your pics like this, awesome! Almost as much as water which we had in the Moremi Park when we hired the 4x4  :3some:

Greetings from Marly and Dave (already in Namanjab, Namibia (we're going fast now!))

Amazing stuff. Real way to do Africa. Maybe I must downsize the GSA. Pity I can not upgrade the body.

I met the Dutch Adventurers at Makuzi Beach Lodge in Malawi, where they were stuck because Dave was nursing an infection in the foot or ankle back to health.

Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: Ratt on February 09, 2014, 11:28:54 am
Great stuff  :thumleft:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: TechnomadicJim on February 13, 2014, 09:30:44 am
Jim when in Bulawayo ride out to see Matopos. Stay over if one still can.

Thanks Chris. I did just that for my first night in Zim. See below.

If you're into fishing, there used to be great Tiger fishing at Deka.

I love Botswana, particularly the Okavango. I've worked there a couple of times & had a few holidays there too. Great RR :thumleft: Thanks for sharing!

I haven't done much fishing in the past but thanks for the advice :) Moremi is my favorite national park so far. There's just so much game there! Thanks for tuning in evansv!

Awesome Jim, I have been following your trip from the start and wait each day to read the next episode of "Technomadic Jim and the Bushlander, Rides Again"  :thumleft:

Ride carefree but carefully and be safe, thanks for sharing and allowing us the priviledge of "riding" with.  :3some:

haha :) Excellent! Its great to be able to share it with you. I'm having an awesome time and its made even better knowing people like yourself are along (virtually) for the ride :)

I met the Dutch Adventurers at Makuzi Beach Lodge in Malawi, where they were stuck because Dave was nursing an infection in the foot or ankle back to health.

Small world! I still chat to them on Facebook and hope to meet them again when I'm back in Europe. Dave's had a few scrapes for sure!

Great stuff  :thumleft:

Thanks Ratt! Another 4 months worth still to come. Stay tuned!

---

I spent a few more days at the backpackers before heading to Francistown as there was a lot of rain. I needed time to setup my new laptop anyway as my old one had broken. A new one (Lenovo G500) cost me 3500 Pula which wasn't bad and I needed it for my work. I'm still lugging the old one around and need to ditch it somewhere.

While at the backpackers I met Alex from Russia on a Namibian registered TransAlp :

(http://i.imgur.com/XzOieJK.jpg) (http://imgur.com/XzOieJK)

After the weather cleared I set off on the long boring drive to Francistown. The only thing of interest that happened was when a lorry tire went straight over a cow pat and splatted me all over with cow dung. Cheers! Arriving late in the afternoon I found some accommodation at a random "Luxury" guest house that actually wasn't so luxury and cost 350 Pula per night. I went out and ate a burger a Spurs for dinner. Nice! my first time in one of those joints.

The next morning I packed up and headed the 100 km's to the border post. Leaving Botswana was straight forward and I also changed my last Pula into Rand (they didn't have any small USD left). Then I headed towards the Zimbabwe Plumtree crossing. You are fist greeted by this not so welcoming welcome sign :

(http://i.imgur.com/rPXZAPU.jpg) (http://imgur.com/rPXZAPU)

I have to admit that I was unsure how the border would be. Half the people I spoke to told me how dangerous Zim was and they always had a story to tell of a friend of a friend who ended up in jail and had to pay big bribes etc... The other half told me what a beautiful country it was. My gut told me that all would be fine. I usually find countries that are the poorest or have had some issues in the past (Colombia for example) are the friendliest.

The visa and fee's process was very efficient and fast. I paid $55 for a 30 day single entry visa and about $36 for the bike stuff. I got given receipts for all payments and even had a laugh with the guys and girls who worked behind the counters. The whole process took 30 minutes. I was relieved and happy everything was fine and I made it into Zim!. I stopped off at Plumtree town to buy a EcoNet sim card for my phone. It cost $1 and the guy also enabled the 3G and put a 500mb data bundle on there for $20. Internet sorted. Next I stopped for lunch. Chicken, rice and cabbage for $3.20 and very good too.

As recommended my chrisL I headed to Matabos National Park for my first night which is 30 km's south of Bulawayo. Here's the map at the main gate :

(http://i.imgur.com/mtFVqkI.jpg) (http://imgur.com/mtFVqkI)

All the rangers seemed to have guns here which was a bit odd considering how little game there is. A few leopards and Rhino and some eagles. The ranger told me most people came here for the scenery. She also said motorbikes were not allowed. Very disappointing :( I think she took pity on me or got sick of my questions because she made a phone call and the manager was prepared to make an exception and let me stay for one night provided I didn't tour the place and just went straight to the camp site via the Rhodes grave. Result! It cost $15 for me $10 for the bike and $8 to camp.

I rode up to the world view point where Cecil John Rhodes grave was and had to pay a further $10 to see it and $1 for the guide... hmm... To be fair the guide Eddy was very good and well worth the $1. I just resented a fee within a place I had already paid a fee to get into... Anyway... the Grave :

(http://i.imgur.com/8uuF8eR.jpg) (http://imgur.com/8uuF8eR)

Here's the memorial to the Shangani patrol :

(http://i.imgur.com/VqhiiR7.jpg) (http://imgur.com/VqhiiR7)

(http://i.imgur.com/YHSUX3z.jpg) (http://imgur.com/YHSUX3z)

The view up here was amazing! Awesome colours :

(http://i.imgur.com/vViQCZs.jpg) (http://imgur.com/vViQCZs)

(http://i.imgur.com/REj5rSm.jpg) (http://imgur.com/REj5rSm)

(http://i.imgur.com/OiTsk7e.jpg) (http://imgur.com/OiTsk7e)

The sun was starting to go down so I drove down to the Maleme dam rest camp and set up. There were some horses around and later that night one of them woke me up rifling through my food bag!

(http://i.imgur.com/rnAARW9.jpg) (http://imgur.com/rnAARW9)

Three Austrians (Charlie, Bruno and Fritz) were also at the camp site in a 4x4 and they kindly offered me a beer and we had a nice chat and a good laugh in the evening.

The next morning I hung around after the Austrians left and took my time packing and riding out of the park.  Here's the lake :

(http://i.imgur.com/g1URDn7.jpg) (http://imgur.com/g1URDn7)

Also the Dam :

(http://i.imgur.com/6KpwBI0.jpg) (http://imgur.com/6KpwBI0)

Nice scenery :

(http://i.imgur.com/gRJ8DTp.jpg) (http://imgur.com/gRJ8DTp)

Cool Rocks :

(http://i.imgur.com/GIfq2SB.jpg) (http://imgur.com/GIfq2SB)

After leaving the park I headed back into Bulawayo. I really had no idea what I would do next. I was in that travelers state of limbo where you have nowhere to go nowhere to stay and no idea. I bought some lunch and decided it was too late to head to Vic falls or Greater Zimbabwe ruins so I was going to have to stay in Bulawayo. I started to drive around first trying to find a Youth Hostel from my GPS that didn't exist then I checked out the local camp ground / caravan park in town which looked good. Only $9 too. I tried the Holiday Inn next. They wanted $150! My last try as the "Hilltop Motel" which is about 8-9km's out of town. I pulled in and it seemed more like a school than a Motel. It was now a school. The "Theological College of Zimbabwe" no less! Anyway... I got chatting to John who works there told him how impressed I was with Zimbabwe and he introduced me to the receptionist and insisted they find me a bed at a good price. So here I am sitting in my own big apartment with kitchen bathroom and 5 beds all to myself and only $20 a night. Result! I just hope they don't expect me to attend classes today! If they do I'm already late writing this ride report...

So I'm staying a couple of nights and my plans are to go to the museums in Bulawayo today and then head to Masvingo tomorrow to visit Greater Zimbabwe for a couple of nights. After that I shall probably head up to Harare then to Lake Kariba. I hope to get the 24 hour ferry down the lake and then visit Vic Falls. I feel that's a pretty good tour of Zim and much better than just going to Vic falls like most other visitors. I'm interested to know anyone's thoughts or suggestions ?
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: 1Up4Adv on February 13, 2014, 05:59:13 pm
Hi Jim

You seem to have most things sorted.  My suggestion is that when you leave Masvinga continue heading east towards Mutare via Birchenough Bridge. Mutare is on the edge of the escarpment which looks down onto Mozambique, and you will be in some great biking country.  Leaving Mutare head towards Nyanga and where is a great old colonial place, TheTrout Beck Inn to stay at.  Somewhat reminiscent of areas in Scotland / Ireland.

This route is longer and more interesting than taking the direct route from Masvinga to Harare but is well worth it more so as you are not pressed for time.

If you can get on the ferry, especially the Sea Lion, it is a great experience and takes about 23 hours from Kariba to Mlibizi. From here the road brings you out almost opposite one of the entrance to Hwange National Park.  Well worth a visit if you can cadge a lift in.

From there it is an easy ride towards Vic Falls.

PS. your wet ride through the pans etc. was great and another reason why, when we met in Swakopmund why I supported your decision i.r.o. smaller bikes.

Continue to live the dream.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: Libertine on February 14, 2014, 11:03:41 am
Hi Jim

Great Pics and great story :thumleft:
Already excited to hear more about Zimbabwe and your traveling process ...

when you're at Vic-Falls and search for accomodation, try "Shoestrings backpackers" or "Victoria Falls backpackers" - think it's affordable and nice ... Will also be at Vic-Falls in March, maybe we can meet there if you have time? Would be cool  :)   

Enjoy your trip!!

Greetings from Lennart, Tutta and Patricia :-)

Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: Libertine on February 21, 2014, 02:38:49 pm
Hi James,
just found an interesting link and read something about Lake Kariba and the Kariba Ferry Service - sounds interesting. Don't know if you already know that page  ???
Maybe you can just check: http://www.afrizim.com/Houseboats/Kariba-Ferry.asp (http://www.afrizim.com/Houseboats/Kariba-Ferry.asp) - might be interesting for you as well  :)

Bon Voyage and take care  ;D
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: Man from Nam on February 21, 2014, 04:17:25 pm
Hi Jim
If you are at Vic Falls and you want to stay at the Zambian side, please go to Maramba Lodge. All the bikers stay there and the management couple Ruth and Brad will give you an excellent deal.
I can really recommend it and it is only about 1 km from the falls on the banks of the Maramba River.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: TechnomadicJim on February 22, 2014, 10:09:27 am
Hi Jim

You seem to have most things sorted.  My suggestion is that when you leave Masvinga continue heading east towards Mutare via Birchenough Bridge. Mutare is on the edge of the escarpment which looks down onto Mozambique, and you will be in some great biking country.  Leaving Mutare head towards Nyanga and where is a great old colonial place, TheTrout Beck Inn to stay at.  Somewhat reminiscent of areas in Scotland / Ireland.

This route is longer and more interesting than taking the direct route from Masvinga to Harare but is well worth it more so as you are not pressed for time.

If you can get on the ferry, especially the Sea Lion, it is a great experience and takes about 23 hours from Kariba to Mlibizi. From here the road brings you out almost opposite one of the entrance to Hwange National Park.  Well worth a visit if you can cadge a lift in.

From there it is an easy ride towards Vic Falls.

PS. your wet ride through the pans etc. was great and another reason why, when we met in Swakopmund why I supported your decision i.r.o. smaller bikes.

Continue to live the dream.

Hi Chris :) Hope you are well!

I was hoping you would chime in. Thanks! I just emailed the ferry company and unfortunately they are shut until the 31st March as its too quiet to run at the moment. Damn shame! Was looking forward to it since you mentioned it in Swakopmund!

Hi Jim

Great Pics and great story :thumleft:
Already excited to hear more about Zimbabwe and your traveling process ...

when you're at Vic-Falls and search for accomodation, try "Shoestrings backpackers" or "Victoria Falls backpackers" - think it's affordable and nice ... Will also be at Vic-Falls in March, maybe we can meet there if you have time? Would be cool  :)   

Enjoy your trip!!

Greetings from Lennart, Tutta and Patricia :-)

Hey :)Thanks for the tip! I should be there at the same time if everything goes to plan. Shoestrings looks nice. I heard from Anica said that you're all going to be there. WIll be cool to see you all again :)

Hi James,
just found an interesting link and read something about Lake Kariba and the Kariba Ferry Service - sounds interesting. Don't know if you already know that page  ???
Maybe you can just check: http://www.afrizim.com/Houseboats/Kariba-Ferry.asp (http://www.afrizim.com/Houseboats/Kariba-Ferry.asp) - might be interesting for you as well  :)

Bon Voyage and take care  ;D

Yes, Thanks. Chris mentioned this a while ago. See above :)

Hi Jim
If you are at Vic Falls and you want to stay at the Zambian side, please go to Maramba Lodge. All the bikers stay there and the management couple Ruth and Brad will give you an excellent deal.
I can really recommend it and it is only about 1 km from the falls on the banks of the Maramba River.


Thanks :) Will check it out.

---

Kilometers so far 14,000.

I visited the Natural History Museum in Bulawayo (http://www.naturalhistorymuseumzimbabwe.com/). Entrance was $5 and well worth spending an hour or two. Next I visited the National Art Gallery and got chatting to some local artists for a few hours.  Very interesting conversation and we went for a couple of beers at the roof top Horizon bar in town. Nice place with a pool overlooking Bulawayo. Beers were $1.50. Not bad at all!

I also got chatting to the girl who worked at the art gallery cafe and mentioned how I was interested in obtaining some Zim dollars as a souvenir and she kindly brought some in the next day including a 10 trillion dollar note. After having some coffee and early lunch I headed off to Masvingo. After about 33 km's I was checking my speedo and it suddenly zeroed out my speed. Something to fix when I got some time.

300 km's or so later I arrived in Masvingo where I checked into the Backpackers rest. It's not even really a backpackers but more of a crappy hotel. Its a dirty nasty place so stay at the ruins themselves as it's cheaper and better in almost every way. Anyway I paid $25 for a poor excuse of a room and couldn't wait to check out.

About 30 km's south of Masvingo are the Great Zimbabwe (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Great_Zimbabwe) ruins. On the way I came across yet another burned out car. There seems to be a lot of these littering the sides of the roads.

(http://i.imgur.com/cvpQKG3.jpg) (http://imgur.com/cvpQKG3)

I paid $10 to get into the park and started to make my way up towards the Hill Complex.

(http://i.imgur.com/NsBeTmC.jpg) (http://imgur.com/NsBeTmC)

I kept coming across these weird creatures. No idea what they are ?

(http://i.imgur.com/vzoclYU.jpg) (http://imgur.com/vzoclYU)

Some of the entrances to the Hill Complex

(http://i.imgur.com/SFK0zHj.jpg) (http://imgur.com/SFK0zHj)

(http://i.imgur.com/uXMmewE.jpg) (http://imgur.com/uXMmewE)

Here's whats on the top.

(http://i.imgur.com/nQbPk8h.jpg) (http://imgur.com/nQbPk8h)

The walls were up to 5 meters tall and have used no mortar.

(http://i.imgur.com/25kXxaP.jpg) (http://imgur.com/25kXxaP)

The view from the top is impressive :

(http://i.imgur.com/7GEvL17.jpg) (http://imgur.com/7GEvL17)

(http://i.imgur.com/B0a4r94.jpg) (http://imgur.com/B0a4r94)

(http://i.imgur.com/jiZAqf3.jpg) (http://imgur.com/jiZAqf3)

Here's one taken with my GoPro looking out in the other direction.

(http://i.imgur.com/1BxtsxV.jpg) (http://imgur.com/1BxtsxV)

Also the lake in the distance.

(http://i.imgur.com/xZ0KOL7.jpg) (http://imgur.com/xZ0KOL7)

I took a walk down to the great enclosure and the Shona village.

(http://i.imgur.com/4aiYQ5A.jpg) (http://imgur.com/4aiYQ5A)

I spent roughly two hours exploring the ruins and wish I had stayed there rather than in the crappy Backpackers Rest in Masvingo. I think I remember the price of accommodation being about $20 for a single chalet at the ruins.

After leaving the ruins I headed towards Mutare after the recommendation from Chris (1up4adv). At about the halfway point I crossed the old Birchenough bridge. They have banned heavy vehicles as I think the bridge is a bit worse for wear.

(http://i.imgur.com/1ljQtAL.jpg)

Zimbabwe's eastern highlands have some awesome scenery. A real nice change from the flat lands of Namibia and Botswana. Lots of nice twisty roads and peaks with awesome views. Perfect biking country. The photo's and video I took doesn't really do it justice.

(http://i.imgur.com/3JtfDa6.jpg) (http://imgur.com/3JtfDa6)

When I arrived in Mutare I went straight to Ann Bruce Backpackers (http://www.lonelyplanet.com/zimbabwe/mutare/hotels/ann-bruce-backpackers). I was welcomed by Ann who has been running the place forever it seems. Its her residential house right in town with 4-5 rooms converted into doubles triples and dorms from $15 per night. A very comfortable and chilled out place to be. Ann is very sociable and full of stories and advice. A great place to get some down time. In fact I spent the last 6 nights there!

Now I had some time I started to look at the speedo problem and soon figured out I had snapped my speedo cable. It had rusted. Probably from the Makadikadi pans crossing. I headed off into town and found two! bike shops. I managed to pick up a replacement for $18. Whilst in the bike shop I came across these Chinese GY3 bikes.

This 125cc was $1750.

(http://i.imgur.com/sCoysD5.jpg) (http://imgur.com/sCoysD5)

This 200cc was $2250. I wonder what the quality is like on these bikes... I would be interested to see a long trip done on one of these.

(http://i.imgur.com/BYm1BZL.jpg) (http://imgur.com/BYm1BZL)

The second bike shop offered repairs and services. Its nice to see that bikes are more popular in Zimbabwe than they have been in Botswana and Namibia. I had a chat with the guys and they offer a full service for $80. I'm not in need of one for another couple of thousand km's so I didn't bother.

(http://i.imgur.com/8jILN87.jpg) (http://imgur.com/8jILN87)

They had 3 XL 200's in for work which is essentially what the CTX 200 is but with less protection and racks.

(http://i.imgur.com/msW6CFg.jpg) (http://imgur.com/msW6CFg)

Whilst staying at Ann's I met a really interesting guy called Steve who used to live in Mutare and he was back meeting up with old school friends and generally being nostalgic about the place. He offered to give me and a backpacker called Emily a lift with him up to Bvumba as he was planting a tree on behalf of another ex-Rhodesian. We thought this was a nice idea so Emily and I bought tree's too.

First we visited the Ornamental gardens ($10 entry) which were still open but not the Tea rooms.

(http://i.imgur.com/vQ617Il.jpg) (http://imgur.com/vQ617Il)

After a wrong turn we managed to backtrack and visit Leopards Rock Hotel. According to Steve the semi-circular balcony was built especially for the Queen and mother. We had some tea and lunch on the other balcony for a very reasonable price.

(http://i.imgur.com/xx1EOjR.jpg) (http://imgur.com/xx1EOjR)

This is the residence of the former owners which was up on the hill overlooking the hotel. Apparently it was fire bombed during the fighting.

(http://i.imgur.com/aFrmhse.jpg) (http://imgur.com/aFrmhse)

Finally we got round to planting our tree's. We found a nice place near a school that had a good view and wasn't to enclosed by other plants. I have the exact GPS location so it would be interesting to see if they took hold in 10 years or so.

(http://i.imgur.com/c4FQNSH.jpg) (http://imgur.com/c4FQNSH)

We carried on down a dirt track closer to the school and there was an amazing view point overlooking Mozambique. Steve was asked by a another friend back in the UK  to get a photo as this was the place she got engaged.

(http://i.imgur.com/cyqcVjj.jpg) (http://imgur.com/cyqcVjj)

The lake.

(http://i.imgur.com/ePK2A2n.jpg) (http://imgur.com/ePK2A2n)

I finally got round to installing the new cable. I imagine that had I been near a Honda dealership it should still be under warranty. Hopefully when I get back to SA I will get a proper Honda one installed. The aftermarket one I used is about 15 cms longer and isn't so water tight but I made it so with some duct tape. I did take the speedo apart to see if I could add on the 700 or so Km's that were missing since it broke but its all pretty well locked in which is understandable as it should't be easy to manipulate the mileage. I will see if Honda can do it for me as i liked being able to see and show people my total km's so far without having to add 700 on each time.

(http://i.imgur.com/Qtk2KRv.jpg) (http://imgur.com/Qtk2KRv)

I'm not sure I mentioned it before but my laptop finally gave up in Botswana. I think the motherboard is at fault as even known good hard drive's (my original suspect for the problems) were causing it top just power down randomly until eventually it just didn't switch on. I bought a new one (Lenovo G500) for 3500 pula in Gaborone. Although its a bit bigger its important I have one so I can continue to work and write these ride reports of course! :) I had been lugging round the old one but I finally got some time to get rid of it and sold it to laptop repair shop for $40. Result! I was sorry to see it go mostly because of all the stickers I had accumulated on my travels (including a wild dog one) but I took a photo before I let it go :

(http://i.imgur.com/I1ktCAI.jpg?2)

A couple of days later I decided to take a day trip to Nyanga national park via the Honde valley.

I passed Redwing Mine.

(http://i.imgur.com/LyRjTQP.jpg) (http://imgur.com/LyRjTQP)

Beautiful rock formations on the way.

(http://i.imgur.com/IN0sElW.jpg) (http://imgur.com/IN0sElW)

I took the non tar roads into the Honde Valley and fortunatelt it hadn't been raining too much as this mud was still quite slippery in places.

(http://i.imgur.com/oG5722f.jpg) (http://imgur.com/oG5722f)

I passed lots of home steads as the valley began to come into view.


(http://i.imgur.com/XPHdGln.jpg) (http://imgur.com/XPHdGln)

The Honde Valley. The photo's don't really do the view justice. You can see the road on the right and the two waterfalls on the left. An awesome twisty drive.

(http://i.imgur.com/jcFJa8X.jpg) (http://imgur.com/jcFJa8X)

A zoom in on the waterfalls.

(http://i.imgur.com/t782BTA.jpg) (http://imgur.com/t782BTA)

I stopped off at the Rhodes Hotel and ate some local trout for lunch. $15. not bad :)

I finally made it to Nyanga National Park a bit later than I had hoped and paid my $10 entrance fee. Below is possible one of the worst maps I've come across. Its so vague, and looking at my GPS trace of the trip, not much like the actual shape or distance of the roads.

(http://i.imgur.com/oQxxJmt.jpg) (http://imgur.com/oQxxJmt)

Nyamziwa Falls.

(http://i.imgur.com/rovRjPS.jpg) (http://imgur.com/rovRjPS)

I was on the circular drive around the park and at its farthest point is Mount Nyangani (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mount_Nyangani) which is highest peak in Zimbabwe. A visitor went missing up there last month (http://www.thestandard.co.zw/2014/01/12/mystery-disappearance-tourist-nyanga-deepens/) and still hasn't been found.

(http://i.imgur.com/yKQSN85.jpg) (http://imgur.com/yKQSN85)

The road isn't so great. Wouldn't fancy doing it even in a 4x4. Fine on the bike of course :)

(http://i.imgur.com/uGmV8No.jpg) (http://imgur.com/uGmV8No)

Towards the end of the circular drive is Udu Dam. There's a guy fishing in the middle. Lots of trout I expect.

(http://i.imgur.com/7TIjyKs.jpg) (http://imgur.com/7TIjyKs)

Here's a picture of Emma, her daughter Deborah and an Angolan student also staying at Ann Bruce Backpackers (http://www.lonelyplanet.com/zimbabwe/mutare/hotels/ann-bruce-backpackers).

(http://i.imgur.com/Hm6OKDk.jpg)

Whilst in Mutare I noticed a vinyl graphics shop around the corner of the backpackers. Its the place that all the mini van's get their bizarre graphics done. Things like "2 Bad 2 Fail" or "4WD OVERDRIVE" or whatever put on the side of their buses. I was chatting to Costa the Cypriot owner and he got one of his girls to make a union jack flag and my "whereisjames.com" website address. Only cost $5 and looks pretty cool I thought!

(http://i.imgur.com/7fjjbEZ.jpg)

After being in Mutare for 6 days I decided to head to Chimanemane as I had heard from several people how nice it is. It's an awesome 150 km ride of great twisty roads and impressive vista's over the valleys. Great motorbiking country. I'm currently staying at The Farmhouse (http://www.chimanifarmhouse.com/) for $20 a night. Its one of the oldest buildings still standing in Chimanimani.

Kilometers so far 15,100.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: Libertine on February 23, 2014, 04:08:50 pm
Ooops ... As I see you texted the ferry company, I only scanned the report yesterday and didn't see you already talked about that, he he ... shame ;) which destinations are you aiming next? Are you also going to Harare? 
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: oldmannorman on February 23, 2014, 04:27:46 pm
 :sip: Enjoying the ride. Keep it coming.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: gwild on February 23, 2014, 08:05:05 pm
Very nice keep it coming  :thumleft:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: Vaalseun on February 23, 2014, 09:06:02 pm
Reading religiously. Keep it coming. :sip:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: Boersoeknbike on February 24, 2014, 01:03:13 pm
Xcellent TJ. Just a note to check, I had to remove my CTX's chain, and there was no master link. If your's the same, better get one somewhere and keep incase something happens to your chain
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: 4 Kays on February 26, 2014, 09:59:18 am
Thanks Jim, still enjoying your rr and admire your guts.  :thumleft:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: TechnomadicJim on March 05, 2014, 11:04:12 am
:sip: Enjoying the ride. Keep it coming.

Thanks! Will do :)

Very nice keep it coming  :thumleft:

Yes sir! :)

Reading religiously. Keep it coming. :sip:

Get ready for the next testament below ;)

Xcellent TJ. Just a note to check, I had to remove my CTX's chain, and there was no master link. If your's the same, better get one somewhere and keep incase something happens to your chain

Yes I noticed this too. I had my chain replaced in Gaborone and this one has a master link so I'm good now. Thanks :)

---

I forgot to mention before I left Mutare I knocked up some small flyers to hand out as people are constantly asking about my trip. I had them photocopied for $1 for 20 sheets with 8 to a sheet. I think they look pretty neat :) :

(http://i.imgur.com/ekN19RA.jpg)

Ann Bruce from the back packers recommended I read Mukiwa: A White Boy in Africa (https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/195788.Mukiwa?ac=1). Its a great book with an interesting insight into Zimbabwe. Kindle's are essential for travel in my opinion. 1000 books in your pocket and when you get a recommendation you don't have to hunt round book shops and pay crazy prices. I even have the Honda XL 200 workshop manual on it along with phrase and guide books. Handy!

(https://d202m5krfqbpi5.cloudfront.net/books/1388739267l/195788.jpg)

After staying a night at The Farmhouse (http://www.chimanifarmhouse.com/) they had some guests who booked the whole house so the other guest Stefano (from Italy) and I moved up the hill to a new place that was being managed by Tempe the Farmhouse owner. We had the whole house to ourselves and all for $20 a night! The house seemed like it had been furnished in the 70's and then never lived in since. Apparently the owners moved to South Africa and the house has been used by their children and the occasional guests like us.

(http://i.imgur.com/MzC46qx.jpg)

The kitchen :

(http://i.imgur.com/sjxjYHA.jpg)

The weather was very temperamental this time of year in Chimanimani and so I added my waterproof layer to my jacket and trousers just in case. When I spoke to the national parks guys he told me that normally bikes weren't normally allowed but he didn't seem too bothered so I paid $10 for my permit (no charge for the bike!, cars pay an extra $10), filled up with fuel and set off exploring. My first stop was the Bridal Veil falls which were impressive. There's a nice camp site right next to it where you can stay for about $8 per night.

(http://i.imgur.com/iALfSDm.jpg)

Next I headed to a place called "The Corner" which I think is named because it protrudes towards Mozambique kind of in the shape of a corner. Not sure! You head out of Chimanimani along "Scenic Dr" which soon becomes mud. It began to rain lightly for the first 10 km's but soon the sun came out again.

(http://i.imgur.com/b7PJ9Hs.jpg)

The area around Chimanimani has stunning valley views that are hard to do justice with a photo. This view reminds me of my time hiking around Salento, Colombia  two years ago.

(http://i.imgur.com/eHB9UxT.jpg)

Obligatory bike pics. Its amazing how many pictures you take of the bike when you travel by yourself!

(http://i.imgur.com/2HSlwzD.jpg)

Still liking my new graphics. Very cool :) 

(http://i.imgur.com/WBV9T57.jpg)

Still videoing too. I think I have around 60 GB of footage so far. All filmed at 720p High Def. Its going to take some editing!

(http://i.imgur.com/tD7N8hS.png)

I had quite an odd experience when I got a bit lost after some lady on the side of the road waved me down and told me to go in the wrong direction. If I had carried on the way I was going I would have been fine. Anyway, I ended up in a small village and started asking around for some directions and was sent over to a man carrying a 4-5 year old. At the sight of me the child started screaming and desperately trying to escape. It was very odd and I wonder why he reacted this way. Had he not seen any white people before ? I was off a track off the beaten path so its possible I guess. Or perhaps his parents had threatened him when he was naughty that the Mukiwa (Shona for "white person") would come and take him away if he didn't behave!

I found my way again and followed an increasingly narrower dirt track that rose over the top of the hills. The weather was worsening the higher I got and the path became loose rocks like below. There was a camp site there and i was literately 400 meters from the border with Mozambique.

(http://i.imgur.com/yO29OJF.jpg)

I made my way back and the weather was still sunny. Lots of small homesteads growing maize meal can be seen from the track. I notice that generally the rural Zimbabweans seem like very tidy and self sufficient people.

(http://i.imgur.com/vRbyjAy.jpg)

(http://i.imgur.com/gMgl0eY.jpg)

After getting back into Chimanimani town I headed down to Tessa Pools which are at the end of the main tar road that heads down in to the valley past a saw mill and through the Outward Bound school. Not as impressive as Bridal Veil falls these are Tessa Pools :

(http://i.imgur.com/p99FJxJ.jpg)

I still had some daylight left so I headed to base camp where most of the hiking starts from. There's a nice camp site there and a particularly friendly caretaker. Its below the mountains and you can see the road leading up to it and the camp itself to the right of this photo :

(http://i.imgur.com/ByiEmXl.jpg)

The next day I left Chimanimani for Mutare as my Visa was expiring soon and I wanted to get over to Vic Falls asap. Below is the view up to Chimanimani on the road out. You can see smoke rising from one of the many saw mills in the area. The small winding road you can see is the one you take and its great fun on the bike. 

(http://i.imgur.com/MT84RAM.jpg)

About 5km's outside Mutare I came across this fine eating establishment... I decided to wait until Mutare and had a Nando's instead!

(http://i.imgur.com/qQ63SHH.jpg)

I spent 2 more nights in Mutare and gave my gear a good clean as 4 months in they were beginning to stink! This RST adventure pro gear has been pretty good although I have to wear it without the waterproof layer as its just way too hot otherwise even with all the good venting. This means that every once in a while I get a good soaking but fortunately the Africa sun and the wind dries me out pretty quickly.

(http://i.imgur.com/7sCB4Gj.jpg)

The next morning I drove from Mutare to Harare which was only 250 km's. I arrived mid afternoon and headed straight for the Small World Backpackers (http://smallworldlodge.com/) which is a good backpackers to stay in. I got on the phone and called Honda Harare to see if they had a service center for the bike which they did and they even managed to book me in for the next morning. Perfect timing!

I took the bike in and had a chat with the mechanics. It was the 16000km service so the valves needed adjusting. I could hear as of a couple of thousand km's ago there was a slight tinny sound to the engine. I got a lift in the courtesy car to and from the backpackers which was a nice touch. The service cost $136. The guys did a good job and the bike sounds normal again. I also gave them all some flyers and when they looked up whereisjames.com on the computer they were amazed that my gps location on the web actually showed their service center right now (as it should) :)

(http://i.imgur.com/Kdkq82p.jpg)

Back at the hostel I met some nice people including a fellow British guy called Andrew who is doing some sort of medical volunteer work in Harare. He told me a story of how he spent a night in a cell after being accused of interfering with the presidential motorcade! A big misunderstanding of course but pretty scary stuff I imagine. Especially when you are being told by fellow inmates that endangering the life of the president carries a 20 year sentence! We all played a dice game called Dudo (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dudo) that evening which as good fun.

The next morning I headed towards Vic Falls. Being over 800km's away I knew I would need to take two days to get there and decided to go through the midlands versus the normal highway route via Bulawayo. On the way I stopped at a Chicken Inn for some quick lunch and met some nice locals who asked about the trip. About 2 km's out of town I felt for my passport, check, then my camera's. NO! I had that horrible sinking feeling and immediately thought that I had been pick pocketed in the Chicken Inn as my coat was on the back of my chair and possibly pickpocket-able. I spent a few seconds swearing and contemplating driving back when I remembered I had put them in my waterproof bag as it was raining earlier. Phew!

I drove on and came to Kwekwe where I headed west to take my short cut. The road started out fine then it went to a single track then gravel then sand. I was kind of regretting my decision but the road soon became firmer to my relief. After a while I came to a road closed sign where the bridge had been washed away.

(http://i.imgur.com/jPEwUAE.jpg)

As you can see its not too much of an issue for my bike .

(http://i.imgur.com/f8aJJ3z.jpg)

As I had all my luggage I got off and pushed the bike to lower its weight in this deep sand. I made it across with ease.

(http://i.imgur.com/4lZhXvS.jpg)

According to my GPS there was a town in the middle called Nkayi with a petrol pump and therefore hopefully some accommodation. I filled up with fuel and came across the Panke lodge which was $15 per bed. Sorted! I was unsure whether I would need to bush camp that night. To be fair there were plenty of places you could.

(http://i.imgur.com/5K44vm8.jpg)

Nyaki is a small town with a large green square in the middle. At least a quarter of the establishments were bar's. This seems to be the case in most small towns. I ate my standard beans and pilchards that evening and watched some TV shows on my laptop.

(http://i.imgur.com/rURW3dZ.jpg)

The next morning I headed towards Lupane. Stopping for a water break I noticed my monopod was missing off the back! After loosing my last two tool kits and going back to look with no avail I was tempted just to drive on but decided I would drive 10 km's back and if I didn't find it then it was lost. Fortunately it was 2 km's back. Result!

(http://i.imgur.com/PNt1qN2.jpg)

Past Lupane and back on the main highway I stopped for a salad lunch at a restaurant on the side of the road and noticed on my GPS that there was a broken suspension bridge so I headed down a small dirt track for a look. 

(http://i.imgur.com/f4vBtcY.jpg)

I arrived in Victoria Falls mid-afternoon and checked into Shoestring Backpackers (http://www.shoestringsvicfalls.com/) for two nights. Cost $10 per night. Its a rowdy place with a big party atmosphere but not the best hostel so i moved to VicFalls Backpackers (http://www.victoriafallsbackpackers.com/) where I'm currently staying. Cost $15. Its much nicer here but a little out of town.

I headed to see the Victoria Falls on a cloudy (but not raining) day. I paid the $30 entrance fee and spent a few hours wandering around the view points taking photos.

(http://i.imgur.com/3t0meai.jpg)

(http://i.imgur.com/MIGvx9O.jpg)

(http://i.imgur.com/sYfoXbA.jpg)

(http://i.imgur.com/IY9x0WO.jpg)

(http://i.imgur.com/g2gh2w8.jpg)

At the end is the Victoria Falls bridge which I will be crossing when I head into Zambia soon.

(http://i.imgur.com/3Kq3S67.jpg)

The weather had been really sunny in the mornings here and I'm tempted to visit again (and pay another $30) to see if i can get a better view and some better pictures. I'm also probably going to head for some "high tea" later at the Victoria Falls hotel (http://www.victoriafallshotel.co/).

KM's so far 16,500.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: YamaV on March 05, 2014, 11:21:35 am
15 000 Trouble free km's! Well done! That part of Zim is so green, almost hurts my eyes, haha! Keep going with this awesome trip and this epic ride report!!

Where to next?
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: TechnomadicJim on March 15, 2014, 05:49:15 pm
15 000 Trouble free km's! Well done! That part of Zim is so green, almost hurts my eyes, haha! Keep going with this awesome trip and this epic ride report!!

Where to next?

Hey Vian :) Thanks. Yeah I'm quite impressed. Only a broken sump plug (my fault) and a snapped speedo cable. I also have avoided any punctures yet which is amazing. Zimbabwe is right up there as one of my favorite countries so far. Next is towards Malawi then Mozambique and working my way back down into SA via Swaziland and a visit to Lesotho of course. Bearing in mind my slower pace of travel I don't think I'm going to have the time to do Tanzania properly. Next time!

---

As recommended be several people I headed to the Victoria Falls Hotel (http://www.victoriafallshotel.co/) for high tea with my friend from Katima, Namibia who was also visiting Vic Falls. We bumped into two Canadians from our hostel who were very early for the high tea (3pm to 5pm by the way) and had been working their way through the cocktail menu for the past couple of hours. The high tea was great and it was amusing watching the cheeky monkeys go for the scones on the neighboring table. There was also a slow but steady stream of different animals that would appear from the side of the building and graze on the lawn. I speculated they kept them in cages round the back and periodically let them out for tourists to photograph.

(http://i.imgur.com/gSU6laj.jpg)

The view was excellent with a rainbow appearing about 4pm and slowly rising above the bridge.

(http://i.imgur.com/TZCJ2Z6.jpg)

We visited the falls again a couple of days later as the sun was shining but it wasn't really worth it. The views weren't any better. If anything they were a little worse. I was getting tired of Victoria Falls town and being offered crappy trinkets and billion dollar Zimbabwean notes so I decided it was time to cross over into Zambia. My 5th Country so far.

(http://i.imgur.com/zQGrPQw.jpg)

Exiting Zimbabwe was quick and easy and I got to cross the bridge which was cool. The Zambian border post was pretty hectic and as soon as I pulled up I had a few guys hassling me to park here or there but I largely ignored them and parked by the building. Nobody seems to care where you park a motorbike which is good. The Visa was quickly issued and cost me $50 for 30 days (they wouldn't give me 60) then I headed to customs who told me to visit some examiner. I knocked on his door and behind it was a fat man stuffing a huge lump of nshima (maize meal) into his fat face. He was not impressed about having to deal with me so told me to go back and get the woman who sent me. She wasn't interested either so told me to tell him I needed a temporary import permit for the bike. I did this and the guy just stared at me and told me to come back later as he was eating. Fair enough I guess. After about 25 minutes of constantly checking my bike and trying to avoid the "helpers" he came out and inspected my documents. He seemed friendlier now he had filled his fat belly and asked where my South African residency certificate was. Of course I didn't have one although technically I should have had one to have been given my Traffic Registration Number so I just confidently mentioned my SA visa was in my passport and pointed out ownership document. He didn't seem too bothered and issued me my import permit for free. Next I had to pay $20 road toll and 50 Kwacha ($8.30) carbon tax. As I was about to cross through the last gate I was informed I also needed insurance which was purchased from a small building by the gate for 116 Kwacha ($20). Finally I was through! It took about an hour. Not too bad I guess.

The guys on the bicycles make the crossing several times a day ferrying orange juice and maize meal across the border to sell for a profit. Some of them seriously load up their bikes.

(http://i.imgur.com/Kk6Eo5r.png)
Welcome to Zambia! Except there was no sign to take a picture of the bike next to :( Instead there is a commercial advertisement saying welcome which isn't the same. Come on Zambia sort it out! Every other country so far has had one. I headed to Fawlty Towers Backpackers first but this was full so I moved on to Livingstone Backpackers which was only a couple of streets away.

The next day was good weather so we headed down to the Zambian side of the falls which was only $20 entrance and better in my opinion at this time of year. You will get absolutely soaked though as the viewpoints are much closer to the falls. I rented a double layered rain mac and still got soaked.

(http://i.imgur.com/Up945Uo.jpg)

The bridge from the Zambian side.

(http://i.imgur.com/8WrhrhU.jpg)

I took my GoPro to try and take some photos but it was difficult with the amount of spray.

(http://i.imgur.com/Sbz0RtH.jpg)

After my friend left I moved to JollyBoys Backpackers (http://www.backpackzambia.com/) which has some of the best WiFi I've had since Cape Town. Gives me a good oportunity to backup and pull down some music and videos I've been after. The place is well run and very popular. I stayed for 3 nights in the dorm and met Jacob who has driven all the way from Holland on his Africa Twin without a carnet! Impressive.

(http://i.imgur.com/FyBB2Ji.jpg)

After Jacob left Gill from Belgium turned up on a BMW and we decided to head towards Lusaka together but stopping off on Lake Kariba to break up the ride. The drive was about 280 km's and we set up camp in Sinazongwe at Kariba Lake View for 30 Kwacha a night. The food here is great so we decided to stay for a while and chill.

(http://i.imgur.com/XlCnYY4.jpg)

Fishermen on the lake.

(http://i.imgur.com/GmNeTHH.jpg)

On one of the days we decided to explore some of the area. We ate nshima and beans (10 Kwacha) in a town just outside Sinazongwe and chatted to some locals until the inevitable drunk turns up asking for money because he's hungry. These guys really do my head in. You have a nice chat and a laugh with some friendly locals and then we leave early after the drunk won't stop hassling us for booze money. To be fair the guys we were chatting with did have a word with him.

(http://i.imgur.com/V74mU9J.jpg)

We headed to the lakes edge after following some bad roads but decided not to go any further as the scenery isn't that spectacular and the roads were pretty bad.

(http://i.imgur.com/iIrY28A.jpg)

We came across these fishing vessels.

(http://i.imgur.com/i6zNRTW.jpg)

(http://i.imgur.com/9JzRW8X.jpg)

So tomorrow we head to Lusaka to try and get out Malawian visa's as we have heard its cheaper to do in Lusaka than on the border. Gill will head south into Zimbabwe and I will continue north east and possibly visit South Luangwa national park and try and do a game drive and see some animals. I've heard Zambia has some of the best safaris. I'm not too sure after that. Probably work my way towards Malawi and cross the border in the north somewhere.

As always I'm open to advice an suggestions :)

KM's travelled so far 17,000.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: oldmannorman on March 15, 2014, 06:47:19 pm
Awesome fotos & enjoying the ride. Keep it coming. :sip:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: dw1 on March 15, 2014, 08:22:32 pm
T/Jim - I really enjoy your RR. Great idea to do it with such a light bike I think.

Go to Malawi and spend a bit of time along the lake. It is fantastic place to chill out and relax. Great friendly people etc.
I could easily ride up there and stay for a few months just chill out along the lake.

Keep the RR going and thanks for making the effort. Lots of us are enjoying it and appreciate it.
Are you coming back to SA again after Malawi/Mozambique?
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: 1ougat on March 15, 2014, 08:25:00 pm
Enjoying this a lot ... good luck  :sip:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: Man from Nam on March 15, 2014, 09:14:48 pm
Jim what a nice trip on the little Honda :sip:
Thanks for sharing , nice photos
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: TechnomadicJim on March 24, 2014, 08:54:11 am
Awesome fotos & enjoying the ride. Keep it coming. :sip:

Thanks again :) There;s another report coming right up!

T/Jim - I really enjoy your RR. Great idea to do it with such a light bike I think.

Go to Malawi and spend a bit of time along the lake. It is fantastic place to chill out and relax. Great friendly people etc.
I could easily ride up there and stay for a few months just chill out along the lake.

Keep the RR going and thanks for making the effort. Lots of us are enjoying it and appreciate it.
Are you coming back to SA again after Malawi/Mozambique?

Yeah. Especially travelling solo. Its saved more than a few times when I have got myself into deep mud or dropped the bike fully laden. I'm off to Malawi today and looking forward to it :) Yes I will be heading back into SA and down the coast to Cape Town for the end of June. Glad you are enjoying the report! It takes a fair amount of effort to prepare the photos and write it but its worth it.

Enjoying this a lot ... good luck  :sip:

Cool! Thanks for tuning in! :)

Jim what a nice trip on the little Honda :sip:
Thanks for sharing , nice photos

You're welcome :) Here have another report :

---

The drive to Lusaka was about 320 km's but we were low on Kwatcha as our bill of T Bone steaks and camping had cleaned us both out. The ATM's were also conspiring against us. For some reason only Barclays banks work with my Mastercard and the ones I tried were out of service. I was also low on fuel but I found a petrol attendant who would give me a fair rate in dollars for some fuel and gave me change in Kwatcha. Result! I bought Gill and I some Nishima, vegetables and tea for lunch. We were pretty hungry.

(http://i.imgur.com/HHg27Zq.jpg)

After arriving in Lusaka Gill and I checked in at Paseli 7 Backpackers (http://paselibackpackers.com/) which seemed like the best backpackers in town according to trip adviser. The next morning Gill and I visited both the Malawi and Mozambique embassies to inquire about visa's. Both told us that yes we would need to apply for them but they would take 3-5 days unless you pay a premium so we decided it wasn't worth it and we would get them on the border. I have now learned you don't even need one for Malawi if you are European despite them advising us you did!

Gill left for Harare, Zimbabwe intending to stop for a quick look at the Kariba Dam on the way. I headed towards South Luangwa National Park. As I got ready to leave I noticed this praying mantis on my luggage. I guess he was headed that way too.

(http://i.imgur.com/CceYzCQ.jpg)

I had a long drive ahead (407 km's) and wanted to get away early but I got a text from my local mobile provider MTN informing me they were going to cancel my SIM unless i registered with them so I stopped off at the local shop to sort it out. It took about 45 minutes which I could really have done without but seeing as I was late I also decided to pop into the Game store and replace my 10 Liter fuel can too. It had been leaking slowly for the past month after a thorn somehow penetrated the plastic. I had tried to repair it many times but it always leaked again after a few days. I gave the old one to a random guy on a bicycle who seemed very pleased despite it being broken. I guess he will repair it properly and perhaps get something for it.

(http://i.imgur.com/Q0RRUSR.jpg)

I finally got going and expected to have a fuel stop or two on the way but there was none and I was running low so I stopped and asked a lady called Doris who was waiting for a lift to Lusaka. This family provided me with 5 liters for 75 Kwatcha (normal price 50) and I was on my way again.

(http://i.imgur.com/QAW7gvp.jpg)

I should really have bought 10 liters as I had to pay 85 for another 5 a bit further on. I was still expecting a fuel stop but there wasn't any. This is the first time I've had any difficulty getting any fuel from petrol stations (or lack of). From now on I am keeping my main tank and extra can full. I also ate some Nshima and fish for 12 Kwatcha (2 USD) in a small restaurant by the side of the road much to the curiosity of the locals especially as I was eating local style with just my hand. Heading off again I crossed this bridge and was going to stop and make a little drive by video on the GoPro when I had 7-8 children descend on me demanding pens. Instead I just pointed at my ignition switch on the bike and one of the kids tentatively pressed the button and the bike fired up. They loved it. Kids get a real kick out of it when I let them start the bike.

(http://i.imgur.com/WroLtHz.jpg)

I eventually made it to Petauke which is the half way point between Lusaka and Mfuwe (the entrance to South Luangwa National Park). It had just begun to rain so I headed into the first lodge I found which was Chimwemwe Lodge. It's a very well looked after place. Rooms were 300 Kwatcha and I was tempted but decided to go for camping priced at 50 Kwatcha. I waited for the rain to slow and headed to the campsite and unloaded my stuff into the abolution facilities. Whilst I was waiting for it to stop raining again it started to get dark so I decided I would just sleep on the floor in there. It wasn't the best night's sleep to be honest as I was constantly bothered by mosquitoes but I got some rest.

(http://i.imgur.com/s7Hj2Yg.jpg)

The next morning I ate some bran flakes and used one of my 250 ml long life milk cartons. These things are essential when you are on the road and want milk but don't have refrigeration. I always carry two or three. Great for tea too. The road was pretty good and started become more hilly as I proceeded east.

(http://i.imgur.com/ljnXqk8.jpg)

I passed through some more towns but still no fuel. Fortunately I had topped up in Petauke and had enough to make it to Chapati where there is plenty. I also noticed that
how popular cycling is in Zambia.

(http://i.imgur.com/YswobFR.jpg)

Arriving in Chapati I filled up my tanks again but the pump broke mid way through so I had to wait until they could get it working again so I could pay. Bit of a pain especially as I attracted the attention of a beggar who kept hassling me for 2 Kwatcha which I always refuse politely (I never give to beggars, ever). He became quite angry and kept pointing at my Honda and then mumbled about how angry I was making him and how he was going to get a gun and shoot me. Crazy guy. The petrol attendant had a word and he soon left mumbling to himself. I had lunch at a Steers branch in town and headed north towards Mfuwe. The road was excellent and had recently been tarred except for a few small stretches.

(http://i.imgur.com/nkSrAmN.jpg)

Getting close to the national park entrance where I intended to camp I drove over a hill with a nice view of the land below.

(http://i.imgur.com/qs6TZR1.jpg)

I was driving through some small villages about 10 km's from the park entrance when I came across a road block which seemed quite suspicious. There were no police, just a gang of about 20 young men and boys who flagged me down and immediately surrounded me. There was one guy who was sweating profusely and standing right in front of me with a machete in his hand trying to look mean. One of the boys explained there had recently been an accident and they wanted money. I argued that the accident was nothing to do with me but they insisted I needed to pay something. Next a car just drove straight past the road block and I questioned why they were allowed to pass. They told me they had already paid 5 Kwatcha (less than 1 USD). As it was less than a dollar I decided to just pay them rather than risk getting hit with a machete. They were really happy with their money and let me pass.

I went fo Flatdogs camp first but they don't offer camping anymore so they sent me to Croc Valley Camp (http://www.crocvalley.com/) a couple of kilometers away. This time of year their camping costs 72 Kwatcha after they add VAT and their 10% service charge. I set up my hammock under the rondaval overlooking the hippo and crocodile infested luangwa river. I had a bench for all my stuff, power outlet and even room to park the bike. Perfect!

(http://i.imgur.com/0xsbeok.jpg)

Also staying at Croc Valley were two families. One from France who had been on the road for 4 years (http://www.martinautourdumonde.com/) and another Dutch family who were traveling for 6 months. Here's their impressive trucks :

(http://i.imgur.com/kepfjrk.jpg)

(http://i.imgur.com/l2eFPfp.jpg)

I saved a bit of money by buying a package deal for the next day. For $120 I got camping, 3 meals, 2 game drives and laundry. We left at 6am for our morning game drive along with a group from an overland bus that pulled in late in the evening. I'm so glad I didn't do an overland tour as they seemed mostly miserable as hell. The morning drive was OK but I didn't get to see anything new. Plenty of Elephants, Zebra's and Giraffes etc.. I still hadn't seen any cats...

(http://i.imgur.com/qfT2qBn.jpg)

(http://i.imgur.com/T9oUlRU.jpg)

After some tea and cakes we headed out in a smaller group of 3. Myself and two Swedish backpackers. Withing 30 minutes we spotted a Leopard on the road. He was marking his territory as he progressed towards us. He passed right next to our vehicle.

(http://i.imgur.com/Xq79rt9.jpg)

We followed him to a clearing and watched him survey the open grass lands for about 20 minutes uninterrupted.

(http://i.imgur.com/3Fr0eRP.jpg)

Then he moved on towards a herd of Impalas.

(http://i.imgur.com/yLJa1Uu.jpg)

(http://i.imgur.com/hdPlpOA.jpg)

(http://i.imgur.com/Mu2QY4e.jpg)

Eventually a second vehicle (full of the most deadly predators of them all) turned up to disturb the peace.

(http://i.imgur.com/Up0RU6j.jpg)

Later on during the drive we spotted two hyenas, a pack of wild dogs and this baby Leopard in a tree :

(http://i.imgur.com/7pnM6mJ.jpg)

I decided to use the next day to explore the old petauke road which I was tempted to take instead of coming from Petauke via Chipata on the tar road. I was quite glad I didn't as the 40 or so kilometers I saw was pretty washed out and would have been tough with all my luggage.

(http://i.imgur.com/E7ip61p.png)

As you can see a lot of the bridges were washed away.

(http://i.imgur.com/cg8AZfk.jpg)

The old petauke road follows the river and has some excellent views. I spotted these two elephants on the other side.

(http://i.imgur.com/8JLlmpa.jpg)

(http://i.imgur.com/NW3Nv8O.jpg)

There were plenty of interesting tracks on the way too.

(http://i.imgur.com/aRnyrlb.jpg)

After driving about 40 km's I decided to turn back as I was considering a second night drive. I was also told by some locals that the next 40 or so km's was just boring bush driving with the possibility of angry elephants.

(http://i.imgur.com/sw8ZHIr.jpg)

I managed to fall off into this mud puddle by spending too much time looking out for elephants instead of keeping my eye on the road.

(http://i.imgur.com/EZNIEIo.jpg)

Apart from a few patches the road really isn't too bad and rises up every now and again to give excellent views of the park.

(http://i.imgur.com/NiNmYlq.jpg)

I tried to take a deviation on the way back but had to pull the bike out of this mud. Having a light bike makes it much easier to get myself out of situations like this on my own. 

(http://i.imgur.com/M0gscDk.jpg)

The road was really fun to drive and I imagine being able to travel the whole length in the dry season is awesome.

(http://i.imgur.com/goylegi.png)

The next evening I decided to do one more evening game drive before leaving. 

(http://i.imgur.com/UJbicAo.jpg)

(http://i.imgur.com/TWiEs1E.jpg)

Just before we were about to head back we heard from another truck that there were lions ahead! A herd of about 15 were on the road and finally I got to see a wild lion. This is the best picture I took as inevitably the batteries run out on my camera. hmm! bit annoying but still impressive to see. They were so close to us. I got within meters of this male as we drove past.

(http://i.imgur.com/FUYxoGP.jpg)

Today I cross the border and head to Lilongwe, Malawi.

KM's so far 18,000.

Here's some bonus pictures I got from Gill on the BMW :'

Checking out nature reclaiming this digger near Sinazongwe.

(http://i.imgur.com/1ogwA4v.jpg)

Our camp by Lake Kariba. You can see my foot poking out from the hammock.

(http://i.imgur.com/nkfsyjU.jpg)

Enjoying some "Africa TV" with fellow traveler friends in Lusaka.

(http://i.imgur.com/eEs5pno.jpg)
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: katana on March 24, 2014, 01:38:16 pm
Awesome Jim!
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: oldmannorman on April 06, 2014, 04:47:01 pm
Hey Jim, are you OK, need a fix here.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: TechnomadicJim on April 14, 2014, 10:33:35 pm
Awesome Jim!

Thanks again man :)

Hey Jim, are you OK, need a fix here.

Coming right up! :

---

Here's a picture of my camp at croc valley (http://www.crocvalley.com/) just before packing up. I really like it when there is a thatched area I can just string my hammock under. All the better if it has power, water and a bench like here.

(http://i.imgur.com/VeqTdkC.jpg)

I set off around 10am towards Chipata. Fortunately their were no crazy machete wielding drunks on the road today. I did come across an amusing "shopping center" which I emailed to my brother who's having a baby. He and his wife found it hilarious :

(http://i.imgur.com/jlUGdQV.jpg)

I forgot to mention in my last report but whilst I was on the old petauke road I hit a rock which pinged off one of my side sand springs into the bush. I spotted a workshop in Chipata run by an organisation called riders.org (http://www.riders.org/) so I popped in to see if they could help. One of these two gentlemen sourced me a new one in 20 minutes flat and even installed it all for 15 kwatcha. Very nice guys indeed!

(http://i.imgur.com/EofYers.jpg)

I also forgot to mention that whilst on the old petauke road I met a retired British policeman called Steve who was off to collect his canoe. He said to pop by his place on my way back for a beer which I did. He and his wife Anna run a Wildlife Education Trust called Chipembele (http://www.chipembele.org/) just off old petauke road. Steve showed me round their impressive place which includes a pet Hippo called Douglas, a rescue monkey called Doreen and a few other animals. Steve also showed me his canoe which had a hole in it. He explained he was on a 12 day trip along the upper luangwa river when all of a sudden a crocodile grabbed the back of his canoe and tried to shake him out. Steve then said everything went in slow motion as he lent forward, grabbed his hand gun and turned around to fire two warning shots in to the water. The crocodile then slid back into the river. Pretty scary stuff. He said another canoeist had a similar experience but without a gun and he abandoned his trip soon after. I imagine the constant worry of capsizing it pretty nerve wrecking.

Anyway, after having my spring fixed and grabbing a burger in the Chipata Spurs I headed to the border to cross into Malawi. On the way I passed the usual queue of trucks parked up waiting to cross in.

(http://i.imgur.com/HYorTXE.jpg)

The crossing went pretty smooth and took about an hour. Nobody was in a hurry and I got my first taste of the Malawian's laid back nature. The visa was free and as usual the Temporary permit was free. I did have to pay 5000 MWK (about 11 USD) road fee. I also had to buy insurance for 30 days which was available 100 meters down the road and cost about 8 USD. Pretty cheap crossing all in all! It rained heavily whilst I was sorting everything out but fortunately stopped on my way out. Below is a picture of the river coming down the road.

(http://i.imgur.com/jPTlAu3.jpg)

No welcome sign in Malawi either. Just this sign informing me of the speed limits. It will have to do! Interestingly the maximum speed limit is 80 km/h which is perfect for me with my top speed of around 95 km/h. 

(http://i.imgur.com/SudSCvs.jpg)

I set off for Lilongwe and took a dorm bed at Mabuya Camp (http://www.mabuyacamp.com/) for $10 per night. I bought some supplies from the local supermarkets and filled both my tanks with petrol as I wasn't sure how many stations I would find here in Malawi. I also picked up an extra 1.5 liters of oil from the Game store and changed my oil that night. The next morning I headed to an Indian barbers for a much needed haircut and shave. It was the full works including head message and cut throat razor. In my experience having haircuts and shaves around the world the Indians always do the best job. Later that day two Italian bikers called Andrea (https://www.facebook.com/amvpccs) and Umberto (https://www.facebook.com/umberto.groppi) turned up at Mabuya (http://www.mabuyacamp.com/). They had driven down from Italy. Nice guys!

Not wanting to dwell too long in he capital I headed north to Mzuzu along the hill roads and was very glad I had the extra fuel as the only pump on the way was broken. I spent the night at the MzooZooZoo (https://www.facebook.com/Mzoozoozoo) which to be honest is in dire need of renovation but the people made up for it with interesting conversation that night by the fire. Not wanting to waste time I topped up my fuel and headed north again the next day.

(http://i.imgur.com/WnBKI6c.jpg)

Finally I get my first view of Lake Malawi as I come over a hill :

(http://i.imgur.com/XECeHPg.jpg)

I drove straight past the turning to Livingstonia the first time. Considering it's a fairly famous town I didn't expect the turn off to look like this.

(http://i.imgur.com/bOpU7Fx.jpg)

The ascent is about 15 bends like this which is great fun on the bike. Most of the road is gravel but some of the steeper corners have been sealed.

(http://i.imgur.com/yJI7OGW.jpg)

I made it up to the top and decided to stay at The Mushroom Farm (http://www.tripadvisor.co.uk/Hotel_Review-g1202614-d1575222-Reviews-The_Mushroom_Farm-Livingstonia_Northern_Region.html) which is now owned and run by an american called Cameron. The views from up here are outstanding and I decided the only way to go was with my hammock and tarp setup. Here's my setup and the view I woke up to :

(http://i.imgur.com/6t3bkue.jpg)

A view of some of the small villages below :

(http://i.imgur.com/HJ6yCL8.jpg)

Cameron's new puppy "Chapati" :

(http://i.imgur.com/90yRdZz.jpg)

The next morning I headed up into Livingstonia (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Livingstonia,_Malawi) itself. Its a very strange to see all these old colonial buildings so far from civilisation. I grabbed a tea from the local coffee shop and chatted a bit with the very friendly locals.

(http://i.imgur.com/mFSxoKN.jpg)

Here's the very quiet town center.

(http://i.imgur.com/p9y7tRy.jpg)

Next I headed into the Stonehouse Museum which is probably the smallest museum I have visited on my trip so far. Entry was 500 MWK with a 200 MWK supplement for photos.

(http://i.imgur.com/lqFODqm.jpg)

The museum was pretty crap to be honest but I did come across this gem which made it worth all it :

(http://i.imgur.com/v1ZHvF3.jpg)

Here's the pretty impressive church. I can't imagine how hard it was to build all this in such a remote place.

(http://i.imgur.com/vj8zQLP.jpg)

I ate some samosas for lunch at the Livingstonia Lodge which was surprisingly good. On my way back down I visited the Manchewe falls. I took a guide for 200 MWK on the recommendation of a local who turned out to be drunk on sachets. These sachets sell for about 60 MWK (0.15 USD) for 100 ml of hard liquor :

(http://www.forut.no/robot/bildegalleri/live/250x188/1082-26-poser.jpg)

Here's the view :

(http://i.imgur.com/Yllzv1j.jpg)

Quite a drop too when you stand above it. I didn't want to get too close especially with the drunk kid nearby.

(http://i.imgur.com/aYLIbhO.jpg)

I was a bit disappointed with my young drunk guide but paid him anyway and decided to visit the cave behind the falls with a group of 5 boys who spoke much better English and weren't drunk. We had some interesting conversation about BK (Bible Knowledge). They were quite surprised when I told them of that Christianity wasn't as popular in Europe as it was here in Africa. I then tried to explain why I believed in evolution rather than creationism. To be fair they listened and seemed interested enough. I do find it a bit ironic that after all the missionary work done by Europeans in Africa in the past that we no longer believe so much any more.

(http://i.imgur.com/bniW6lG.jpg)

Here is the cave behind the waterfall. Apparently the locals used to hide here from the slavers when they came to town.

(http://i.imgur.com/kWt5AY9.jpg)

I paid the boys 100 MWK each for their time which worked out at about 1 USD in total for all 5. It had been raining a little and on my return to the bike the local drunk who had recommended the drunk kid had covered my bike in plastic. He was demanding 200 MWK for guarding my bike. I was not impressed as I had told him when I left that my bike didn't need looking after. We had a "debate" for about 15 minutes which attracted a few locals who were curious what the muzungu was up to. I offered him 50 MWK which to be honest was more of an insult than anything. Of course he didn't accept it. I made a few digs that while he's out drinking his sachets all day I was working hard back in the UK to afford this trip and I'm not going to waste my money having my bike guarded by drunks. In the end I just left giving him nothing with most of the locals laughing at the drunk who made an empty threat that we would "meet again". meh, whatever. I don't like confrontations like this but after a while you get tired of it all and decide to stick to your principles and argue it through. In all honesty though its not worth the hassle and headache for 200 MWK (less than half a dollar).

Here's a nice view of a small homestead to lighten the mood :)

(http://i.imgur.com/teF01wd.jpg)

After spending two night at the Mushroom Farm I headed back down the twisty path to the main road. Cameron the owner was looking rough and confessed he had just tested positive for malaria. A sign of things to come :/

Here's a good example of the road from above :

(http://i.imgur.com/j4ysB2f.jpg)

On my way back to Mzuzu I took this panoramic on my phone. It's a beautiful drive with the smell of the tobacco fields as you drive by.

(http://i.imgur.com/6uP78bK.jpg)

I popped into the Mzuzu Zoo again to say hi to Graham, Chad and Jim and had a BLT lunch. I then headed down to Nkhata bay. I checked out the Butterfly Space (http://www.butterflyspacemalawi.com/) but it was a run down and dilapidated place. When looking around I got hassled by a couple of artists to check out their work. Not a place I wanted to stay if I could avoid it. Next I checked Mayoka Village (http://www.mayokavillagebeachlodge.com/) which was much better. This is certainly a place where you could get stuck for a while!

Me, Jimmy (also from the UK) and Haroula from Canada took a local boat out for a spin (quite literally). Despite me looking like i was in control these things take some controlling and tend to spin on the slightest over paddling or wave. Good fun though.

(http://i.imgur.com/7jAnVCs.jpg)

Not the most comfortable either. You end up with a dead leg after not too long.

(http://i.imgur.com/yFavj22.jpg)

Every Tuesday at Mayoka they offer a free boat trip which is a nice touch. First we fed the fish eagles. I got these shots with burst mode on the GoPro.

(http://i.imgur.com/N4U8ieq.jpg)

That's Gill right below the bird. You'll remember he's on the GS1200 and we spent a few days camping on the Kariba in Zambia. I think this shot is pretty cool.

(http://i.imgur.com/thWHlWH.jpg)

Next we did a rock jump where some local boys were hanging out. Really nice to meet some local kids who don't want pens or money and are just happy to have a laugh with you. :)

(http://i.imgur.com/PIcEC3A.jpg)

On my Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/morrison.james) page there was some debate about whether I had the balls to jump. Just so that doesn't happen here's the proof up front ;)

(http://i.imgur.com/PmyddXa.png)

Lastly we landed on the beach of a small fishing village. This is everyone banding together to pull the net in. I was interested to the result of all this effort. Unbelievably there were only 15 or so tiny fish! You can see in the distance what looks like smoke. Its actually a swarm of small flying ants. When they come ashore the locals catch them and make them into burgers (I'm not joking!).

(http://i.imgur.com/SEZg32n.jpg)

Life was very relaxed at Mayoka and time flies easily. I decided though that I needed to get move on so I took the Ilala ferry up to Ruarwe. There's a lodge up there called Zulunkhuni River Lodge (http://lake-paradise.com/) run by Charlie and Rosa who I met at the Muzuzu Zoo. The ferry took about 6 hours. Two of which were spent uploading maize meal to Usisya on the way. 2nd class cost 5200 MWK and was comfortable enough.

(http://i.imgur.com/ASGkxsT.jpg)

Here's Ruware's beach :

(http://i.imgur.com/9ND1Gpl.jpg)

We were met by Charlie on a smaller boat and stopped to collect some luggage before heading to the lodge. This picture really shows the excitement and chaos of the twice a week arrival of the Ilala ferry.

(http://i.imgur.com/oD3eb3N.jpg)

The lodge has a waterfall of ice cold water right next to it and a nice swim and a jump off some of the rocks there was an enjoyable end to the day. The next morning I woke up with a bit of a headache which was not normal for me. I never get headaches. I mentioned this to Charlie and he recommended I take a Malaria test just in case. I haven't taken any anti-malerials on this trip and suspected at some point I may get malaria. That time was now.

(http://i.imgur.com/ui8W1oP.jpg)

Two lines for positive. Unfortunately I had left the treatment I had bought back in Nkhata bay with the rest of my main luggage. Charlie had some treatment at the lodge which was lucky. It was actually a child dosage and it was out of date too. I started the treatment immediately and took it easy for the rest of the day. I started to feel worse as the day went on and after managing to get to sleep that night I woke at about 4am with a bad fever and was vomiting. I felt really rough and was up for a couple of hours. I managed to fall back to sleep and spent the next day taking it easy again. I didn't know what to expect and didn't feel too comfortable being 6 hours by a once a week boat from civilisation. What if I got really bad ? The Ilala came back in the opposite direction the next day so I decided to take it despite feeling a bit rough.

The journey wasn't too bad and the treatment seemed to be working well. I had also stopped taking any paracetamol after I read it can prolong the recovery time. I did have an interesting conversation on the way back with a gentleman named George who shouted everything he said so that everybody in 2nd class could hear. He also occasionally spat in my face as he spoke. He didn't seem to mind too much that I had malaria and had his conversation anyway. I was sweating a lot by this point with the effort of remaining politely interested in the conversation. Fortunately after about 20 minutes he moved on to shout and spit at someone else. He was a nice friendly guy but just difficult to deal with at that time with the malaria.

I had some friends with me throughout which was great. Haroula from Canada looked out for me which was much appreciated. Also Julia and Alex from South Africa were with us at the lodge. I actually met them on the way down from Livingstonia (they were walking up). I spent a few more nights at Mayoka village recovering during which there was some really heavy rain. So heavy it caused a mud slide which took out the bar and part of the seating area :

(http://i.imgur.com/OkdsafD.jpg)

I'm becoming more and more conscious that my trip is going to end. I'm over two thirds through now and really need to get a move on towards cape town. There's so much to see on the way and I only have 10 weeks left and that includes the time I will need to sell the bike.

My front tire was a little flat and there's not one electric air compressor in Nkhata bay. This lad used his bike pump and the promise of 300 MWK to sort it out.

(http://i.imgur.com/fBz9M98.jpg)

I paid my bill said my goodbyes and headed south down the lake side road towards Lilongwe. After about 300 km's I reached Nkhotakota. I rocked up at a place called fish eagle bay (http://www.fisheaglebay.com/). For 4000 MWK i strung my hammock up under some thatching right on the beach. The food there was excellent and I had some perfectly cooked fish and rice and settled in for the night.

(http://i.imgur.com/R8AASve.jpg)

It was incredibly windy that night and I ended up re-orientating the hammock so it faced the wind head on instead of side on. Made for a much more comfortable nights sleep. I then set off for Lilongwe and made it in time for lunch at Chipiku supermarket using my bike as a table I ate outside the supermarket for about 1000 MWK. I then checked into Mabuya Camp like before and took a dorm bed.

This morning I drove to the Mozambican embassy to apply for a visa but was told to come back tomorrow. My plan is to try for the visa tomorrow and if its available the next day I will stay. Otherwise I will head to Monkey Bay and stay for a couple of nights. I only have 9 days left on my visa so I have to be careful. I may try and get the bike serviced in Blantyre. They also have an High Commission there where I can try for the visa again if I need to. I can probably get the visa on the border but I would feel better having it in advance just in case but I'm not waiting around for it. If it takes too long I will just try for it on the border.

I plan on crossing over at Zobue and heading to Tete. Next I'm going to make my was down to Vilanculos via Chimoio. I may only spend two weeks in Mozambique as I know there's a lot to see still in South Africa.

KM's so far : 19,700.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: katana on April 15, 2014, 06:33:43 am
Thanks for the report Jim.  Glad you are OK.  Maybe consider getting the proper malaria meds and make sure you kill the little bugs dead.  I am glad you are enjoying your trip.   :thumleft:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: Malibu on April 15, 2014, 12:26:38 pm
Really enjoying the report... :thumleft:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: Kenzogs on April 15, 2014, 12:44:55 pm
Jim,

If you are here in MaputoMatola before the 30th we have a spot for you to stay.

Ken
+258843034961
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: oldmannorman on April 15, 2014, 04:40:25 pm
Thanks Jim. Enjoying your RR. Strongs with the malaria.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: lj111 on April 15, 2014, 04:43:08 pm
Lekker rr!!

Thanks Jim  :thumleft:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: Cronje Rademan on April 27, 2014, 08:13:45 pm
Hi Jim
Like your ride report a lot keep it coming. Just on a serious note and I hope you get this before you leave Chimoio. There is an issue with rebels on the EN1 between the village of Muxungue and Rio Save. You should get proper advice from the locals before you head down to Vilankulos.
I work as an overland tour guide and I traveled that stretch of road a few times last year. We had to travel with a military convoy for the 100km stretch that is occupied by the rebels. One of our trucks were shot at last year, luckily we had 5 soldiers with AK's and LMG's that were firing back into the bush all while the convoy was moving at 120km/h. Our clients on the overland truck got a massive scare. Luckily the truck weren't hit.
Sorry if it may come across a bit harsh but please don't risk your safety.
Any way I hope you get this before you leave Chimoio. If you are in the area for a while and want to do something you can head to Lake Chicamba which is 40km west of Chimoio on the road heading to the Zim border. There is a fishing camp with a little private game reserve called Casa Msika if you want to check it out.

When you get to Vilankulos there's quite a few nice campsites/backpackers on the beachfront. A place we always use is Beach Bums (the old Smuggler's Inn), nice rooms, good food and always lively. They are next to the old harbor. When you there take a dhow trip to the Bazaruto archipeligo. You can do day trips to go and snorkel on the reefs of the island or an overnight camp trip on the island. Just ask at Beach Bums about that.

Good luck with the rest of your travels.

Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: TechnomadicJim on April 27, 2014, 08:33:57 pm
Thanks for the report Jim.  Glad you are OK.  Maybe consider getting the proper malaria meds and make sure you kill the little bugs dead.  I am glad you are enjoying your trip.   :thumleft:

Cool 8) I'm feeling absolutely fine right now so I'm sure its sorted.

Really enjoying the report... :thumleft:

Excellent, glad your into it!

Jim,

If you are here in MaputoMatola before the 30th we have a spot for you to stay.

Ken
+258843034961

Thanks Ken. That's very kind of you. Unfortunately I'm not going to be in Maputo area for probably another couple of weeks. I'm going to be spending some time in Vilaculous and Tofo first then working my way down. If you are around when I do pass then it would be great to meet up for a coffee or a beer!

Thanks Jim. Enjoying your RR. Strongs with the malaria.

All good now oldmannorman. :) To be honest I think I got off lightly. The dengue fever I had in Thailand was much worse...

Lekker rr!!

Thanks Jim  :thumleft:

Cheers man!!

Hi Jim
Like your ride report a lot keep it coming. Just on a serious note and I hope you get this before you leave Chimoio. There is an issue with rebels on the EN1 between the village of Muxungue and Rio Save. You should get proper advice from the locals before you head down to Vilankulos.
I work as an overland tour guide and I traveled that stretch of road a few times last year. We had to travel with a military convoy for the 100km stretch that is occupied by the rebels. One of our trucks were shot at last year, luckily we had 5 soldiers with AK's and LMG's that were firing back into the bush all while the convoy was moving at 120km/h.
Any way I hope you get this before you leave Chimoio. If you are in the area for a while and want to do something you can head to Lake Chicamba which is 40km west of Chimoio on the road heading to the Zim border. There is a fishing camp with a little private game reserve called Casa Msika if you want to check it out.

Good luck with the rest of your travels.

Thanks for the heads up Cronje Rademan. I have been monitoring the situation for a while now and getting local advice here in Chimoio. The situation is calm right now and there hasn't been an incident in over 3 months which is good. I'm leaving Chimoio tomorrow for the convoy and funnily enough I rode round Lake Chicamba today! Coincidence, heh! Thanks again for chiming in and checking out my ride report :).

There's an update coming soon. Will write it up and post it when I make it to Vilanculos. Stay tuned!
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: 4 Kays on April 28, 2014, 03:17:40 pm
Thanks Jim, enjoying your RR  :thumleft: :sip:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: badballie on April 29, 2014, 03:51:43 pm
Excellent RR - Just finished reading the whole thing up to now. Enjoy your journey further and will keep an eye on your progress.

Let us know if and when you pass Durban, so we can have a beer !
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: TechnomadicJim on May 07, 2014, 07:29:53 pm
Thanks Jim, enjoying your RR  :thumleft: :sip:

Great :) Thanks for tuning in!

Excellent RR - Just finished reading the whole thing up to now. Enjoy your journey further and will keep an eye on your progress.

Let us know if and when you pass Durban, so we can have a beer !

Wow, thanks for reading the whole way through! Will let ya know for sure. Here's another installment for you :

---

After unsuccessfully obtaining a visa for Mozambique I decided to head down to Cape Maclear. It was only about 300 km's and the route across the hills is a particularly nice ride. Lots of twisty roads and amazing views. I got some great video on this drive too.

(http://i.imgur.com/1E9bNBo.jpg)

There's so little traffic on the Malawian roads I decided to pose for a photo to take a break.

(http://i.imgur.com/2o6JLLv.jpg)

I arrived at Cape Maclear and on a recommendation decided to stay at Fat Monkeys. Its a really nice, well run place with dorms literally next to the beach. I hung out with two Scottish guys for a couple of days and just chilled.

(http://i.imgur.com/SU2SwBE.jpg)

Next I headed south again to Liwonde National Park and stayed at Liwonde Safari Camp (http://www.liwondesafaricamp.com/). I went on a boat safari but it wasn't that great. I saw 3 elephants from a distance and a few hippos. Perhaps it was the wrong time of year or something. I also think I was spoiled by the excellent safaris I did in Zambia. I also found the prices at the safari camp to be quite expensive too. Dinner was $15 for a buffet with no other options. Here's my hammock camp.

(http://i.imgur.com/bcHQcqh.jpg)

Being conscious of my time running out (only 2 months left!) I headed south again to Zomba and checked into Pakachere Backpackers (http://www.pakachere.com). It's a very well run place that seems mostly setup for volunteering but did me fine. I was feeling quite ill with a bad stomach when I arrived so slept for most of the afternoon and then chilled out the following day to get try and improve. 

Feeling a bit better I left my stuff at the backpackers and drove up to the Sunbird Hotel on the Zomba plateau and had a cup of tea (very British of me). The drive up was excellent and I heard that the hiking was good up there so I drove towards the waterfall thinking I might just hike up and see it. To my delight there was a full on 4x4 trail in a loop around the plateau with stunning view points. That's Mount Mulanje you can see in the distance with Zomba city in the foreground.

(http://i.imgur.com/kwwfB59.jpg)

(http://i.imgur.com/BwMslYc.jpg)

About half way round the loop is Chingwes hole which is a deep cave system where apparently the local chief used to throw lepers and mad men.

(http://i.imgur.com/KHIhuf4.jpg)

Move impressive in my opinion is the view from there.

(http://i.imgur.com/ToD1Rek.jpg)

(http://i.imgur.com/fJHt2JT.jpg)

The road was pretty crap but easily handled by my trusty CTX 200.

(http://i.imgur.com/tQUIlgs.jpg)

I was really happy to have had a surprise few hours driving round the plateau and really recommend it to any other bikers heading up to Malawi.

Next I drove to Blantyre and checked into Doogles Lodge. I only had two days left on my Malawian visa so I didn't bother trying to apply for a Visa and went straight to the Honda dealership the next morning. Fortunately the guys managed to fit me in and do a same day service for the 20,000 km's. Whilst in the showroom  i noticed they were also sending a brand of bike simply called "Tough". The following was written on the tank! "Read Owaner smanual carefully before driving"

(http://i.imgur.com/MaZh1nD.jpg)

Later that evening I went out to dinner with some volunteers. Malawi is FULL of "volunteers" by the way. I didn't actually meet that many travelers / backpackers whilst in Malawi. We walked to a nice Indian restaurant in town and had a good meal. I brought up that we should get a taxi back as it was late but the volunteers brushed off my suggestion despite me insisting it was a dangerous move. On the way back I was proved right when a guy cut the bag strap from one of their bags and ran off with her camera, phone and purse. The camera's photos hadn't been backed up either. The local's who saw it all happen asked what the hell we were thinking walking around at night especially in that area. I resisted the obvious "i told you so!" but it was definitely a wake up call for them.

I got up fairly early on the last day of my Malawian visa and headed off for the Zobue border. I was following my GPS but forgot to double check the route (it sometimes sends me in odd directions because i tell it to choose the shortest route). It turns out I was being routed a more direct route which I realised when I was sent down this path. Fortunately I was only 20 km's off track and corrected myself.

(http://i.imgur.com/XQFnhHU.jpg)

The whole way to the border I was worrying about having not got my Visa in advance like most people do. The manager at Doogles even doubted they would issue me one there. Leaving Malawi was easy and the staff were very efficient and speedy. I drove the few kilometers to the town of Zobue and was swamped by "help". Whilst collecting the necessary forms I noticed a lot of cash being passed around inside passports and being shoved under the desk which didn't give me much confidence in the process. I asked for the visa application form and he gave it to me which was a relief. It took about an hour of messing about but I managed to get the visa for 
$75. I had my photo and finger prints taken! I also paid $30 for "insurance" which included the temporary import permit. I think this was too high for bike insurance but the "help" already filled out all my forms and had them processed so I just paid it and was relieved to have made it through.

Welcome to Mozambique! My 7th sticker on the bike.

(http://i.imgur.com/zpg6Lbd.jpg)

The roads started out generally quite good. The problem was being constantly run off the road by trucks overtaking each other and not caring if there was any oncoming traffic, especially a motorbike!

(http://i.imgur.com/BoNe9bq.jpg)

I arrived in Tete and found it difficult to find any accomodation. I also couldn't locate a Vodacom office so I could get my sim card and data plan setup. I did notice some signs to a camp site and followed them instead. The campsite was called "Jesus E Born" and was essentially some family's small plot next to the Zambezi river. I paid 200 Mets for the night and had a bucket shower in the evening as the shower was broken. I later found out that this camp site used to owned by some sort of religious man (hence the name) but was sold and now not very trust worthy. Apparently some dutch campers had their tents slashed and stuff stolen in the night. Security was pretty non existence there and there was not much of a perimeter fence. This is why sleeping in a hammock is nice... I can keep an eye on all my stuff beside me with just a glance.

(http://i.imgur.com/aVapIdL.jpg)

Here's the view of the bridge and Tete as the sun was going down.

(http://i.imgur.com/d1bvuSV.jpg)

The next morning I got up early and set off for Chimoio. It was a long drive and mostly uneventful apart from being run off the road by the odd truck just to keep me on my toes. After arriving in Chimoio i found a Vodacom shop and got my sim and data plan. This mean't I could then look up where the Pink Papaya Backpackers (http://pinkpapaya.atspace.com/) was located so I could check in! Having the internet on the go is such a useful thing its one of the first things I try and organise when I enter a country. The Pink Papaya is a nice homely hostel run by a German called Anya who is very helpful and full of local knowledge. She recommended I go on a day trip around Lake Chicamba where she has sent some bikers before who enjoyed it. Unfortunately it rained quite heavily for a few days so I holed up and waited until it cleared and set off.

I had actually seen Lake Chicamba a few months before when I was in the Chimanimani mountains in Zimbabwe. Here's the picture from my previous ride report (http://www.wilddog.za.net/forum/index.php?topic=137240.msg2782084#msg2782084) :

(http://i.imgur.com/ePK2A2n.jpg)

Driving west from Chimoio you turn off after about 40 km's and you will eventually come across the dam. I got told off by security for taking this photo. 

(http://i.imgur.com/Suhstwf.jpg)

I ate a nice fish lunch at one of the restaurants overlooking the lake and continued my ride. To be honest the Zimbabwean side was more impressive.

(http://i.imgur.com/igvOrwJ.jpg)

As the weather had cleared up nicely I headed down towards Vilanculos. On the way I had to join the military convoy which I just about caught 10 minutes before it left. We passed without any gun fire or other incidents which was good although I did hear that a bus was shot at and several people injured a few days later.

When I arrive in Vilanculos I had a look at Zombie Cucumber (http://www.zombiecucumber.com/) which was very nice but there was hardly anybody there so I checked in to Baobab Beach (http://www.baobabbeach.net/) backpackers. I had the dorm to myself for most of my 4 night stay which was a nice bonus. Here's a couple of pictures I took around the grounds and the view :

(http://i.imgur.com/LkPTYDw.jpg)

(http://i.imgur.com/ILdbLzd.jpg)

It took a few days of waiting but I managed to get on a tour and dive of Bazarota with Odyssea dive (http://www.odysseadive.com/) which was amazing. Really awesome place. Here's a GoPro shot selfie from the dune I hiked up :

(http://i.imgur.com/LernNZt.jpg)

Beautiful coloured water and dunes.

(http://i.imgur.com/jKoOfbJ.jpg)

I did two dives (my first in Africa) on the two mile reef.

(http://i.imgur.com/rZF7Mue.jpg)

Moray Eel :

(http://i.imgur.com/0RoX2bq.jpg)

Shoal :

(http://i.imgur.com/ywLpagF.jpg)

My best picture of the dive's :

(http://i.imgur.com/QbSIMVE.jpg)

(http://i.imgur.com/Q5edAHG.jpg)

Underwater selfie...

(http://i.imgur.com/s99YnF1.jpg)

Some fish. I'm really crap with their names...

(http://i.imgur.com/3K9C0UU.jpg)

Finally I get my first puncture! The value was ripped from the tube so I just replaced the whole tube for 250 Mets. I did try and get the tyre off myself but I just couldn't get it off and I was starting to damage the tyre so I gave up and this guy did it for 75 Mets.

(http://i.imgur.com/GPHry8u.jpg)

Not wanting to linger too long in Mozambique I headed south again to Tofo. I crossed the Tropic of Capricorn for the 3rd time (in 3 countries) of my trip :

(http://i.imgur.com/DetoVI0.jpg)

I had a drive around Tofo but wasn't that impressed to be honest. I'm not much of a beach person as I find them boring and Tofo felt very touristy so I decided not to hang around too long. Whilst there I stayed at the Mozambeat Motel (http://www.mozambeatmotel.com/) which is a South African run "boutique" backpackers. Very nice place with an awesome pool, bar and cinema! 

(http://i.imgur.com/u6z6xKG.jpg)

A view  of the beach from Casa Barry (http://www.casabarry.com/).

(http://i.imgur.com/7fm4HUM.jpg)

After only two nights I headed south to Maputo. It was a long slog or a ride. 500 km's. I left at 9am and arrived 5:30pm. It was mostly continuous riding and just to set me up for the day I got soaked by heavy rain about 50 km's out of Tofo. It took about 300 km's before I finally dried. Nice! Also about 100 km's from Maputo I noticed my speedo started malfunctioning. Something I need to work out along with the fact I have just run out of chain lube.

Most of the police waved me on during the day but one guy stopped me took a closer look and just pointed and said Go! I didn't hang around... Another one went through all my documentation with a fine tooth comb and let me proceed because he couldn't find anything out of order. He did question the fact my driving license expires in 2051 which was a weird mistake by the UK DVLA who issued the license. The traffic into Maputo was terrible. I arrived at rush hour and combined with all the road works going on it was a nightmare getting to "Base Backpackers" where I checked in for a couple of nights.

I spent today trying to buy chain lube. I went to the main Honda dealership and they didn't have any idea and just told me to go to Game which I did and as I expected they didn't sell any. Tomorrow I will try Mica and the Yamaha dealership. I also took the front tyre off today and inspected the speedo gear. As I thought the guy who replaced my inner tube didn't seat the gear correctly and its worn down part of it. The guys at Honda will take a look tomorrow. They have CTX's and XL 200's so they should have the part. If not I will get it sorted in Swaziland.

Ideally I would like to leave for Swaziland tomorrow but will see how I do for time. I don't mind Maputo as it seems like quite a nice city with plenty to do. I plan on crossing into Swaziland via Goba and heading for wither "Sundowners" or "Sondzela". I reckon I will setup a base at one of those two and spend a few days exploring Swaziland in loops. Its such a small country it should only take a few days to explore.

As always I'm interested in anyone's feedback on things to see and do, roads to ride etc.. As I'm getting close to South Africa I'm sure you guys know plenty about this area. More long term I'm also looking for a nice itinerary to get back to cape town so please send your recommendations :)

Distance so far : 22,500 km's
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: badballie on May 08, 2014, 08:25:55 am
Great stuff ! I love Blantyre  ;D, spent many days there on stop overs. Doogles is cool and you meet the nicest volunteers there  ;).

Tete is a dump in my opinion.

Plenty to do in Swaziland, whilst you are there. And as you say, easy country to explore over a few days, as distances are not that great.

Check out Swazi candles in Malkerns

Ezulwini Valley, make sure to have a drink at the Why not, If not pub  ;D

Piggs Peak - the whole area is beautiful as well as the ride there

Riders Ranch in Sidvokodvo just south of Manzini with various bikes all over the pub

Hlane game reserve etc
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: mox on May 08, 2014, 11:51:08 am
Nice Jim,

Checkout Sibebe Rock, worlds second largest granite monolith and the worlds largest exposed granite pluton, 10 km's out of Mbabane.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: Howie-WP on May 13, 2014, 03:49:43 pm
Wow.... just read this thread from start to finish.....all the while sitting in an office and realising what adventures can be had if you just do it. Amazing to see so many others doing similar trips through Africa. When sometimes us africans think we have to go elsewhere to "see the world" as it were.

Thanks TechnomadicJim for a very entertaining read.  :thumleft: Cool to see the help and advice offered for places to see as well.

Out of interest as I might have missed it, are you on a sabbatical or doing some work as well? Also what has been you budget for the trip?

 :ricky:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: TechnomadicJim on May 16, 2014, 09:23:38 am
Great stuff ! I love Blantyre  ;D, spent many days there on stop overs. Doogles is cool and you meet the nicest volunteers there  ;).

Tete is a dump in my opinion.

Plenty to do in Swaziland, whilst you are there. And as you say, easy country to explore over a few days, as distances are not that great.

Check out Swazi candles in Malkerns

Ezulwini Valley, make sure to have a drink at the Why not, If not pub  ;D

Piggs Peak - the whole area is beautiful as well as the ride there

Riders Ranch in Sidvokodvo just south of Manzini with various bikes all over the pub

Hlane game reserve etc

Thanks for the tips. I found Swaziland and really nice country to visit. Compared to some of the countries I've just come from it feels like a very peaceful and easy going place.

Nice Jim,

Checkout Sibebe Rock, worlds second largest granite monolith and the worlds largest exposed granite pluton, 10 km's out of Mbabane.

I didn't hike it but drove past it on my way down pine valley. A very nice ride indeed :)

Wow.... just read this thread from start to finish.....all the while sitting in an office and realising what adventures can be had if you just do it. Amazing to see so many others doing similar trips through Africa. When sometimes us africans think we have to go elsewhere to "see the world" as it were.

Thanks TechnomadicJim for a very entertaining read.  :thumleft: Cool to see the help and advice offered for places to see as well.

Out of interest as I might have missed it, are you on a sabbatical or doing some work as well? Also what has been you budget for the trip?

 :ricky:

Slacking off work hey ? ;) Thanks for taking the time to read it through. It makes it all the more worth it when I know people are enjoying it.

I'm a techie and work online while I travel so I still get paid. I've been travelling on and off (50% Europe downtime 50% world travel) like this for the past 6 or so years but this is my first pure motorbike trip. I actually can't imagine travelling any other way from now on so I'm sure there will be more adventures to come. You're always planning the next trip in your head. Plenty of time to think when you are on the road. Budget is a tough one to figure as I'm still earning but I plan on going through all my bank statements and working it out at the end. I will post it up. I am quite curious about it too!

On with the ride report :

The guys at Honda Maputo were pretty useless and didn't have the part or any chain lube and couldn't tell me where I could buy any! Do they not lube their chains at all ? Anyway I left Maputo and headed west through Matola. I popped into the Yamaha dealership and managed to buy some chain lube there.

Leaving Mozambique was quick and easy. Entering Swaziland was even easier! They didn't even require a TIP or check any of my documentation. I paid 50 rand road tax and that was it.

(http://i.imgur.com/8fq9WBw.jpg)

The guys watched as I stuck my Swaziland sticker on the bike too.

(http://i.imgur.com/qTJV3Rx.jpg)

I had lunch in Sideki and sorted out an MTN sim card. MTN are the only provider in Swaziland on account of the king apparently owning a 30% share and banning all competitors. On my way to Manzini I was stopped by the Swazi police for a license check. He was curious about my GoPro so I managed to get this picture.

(http://i.imgur.com/v39yOTR.jpg)

I headed straight for Sundowners Backpackers (http://www.swazisundowners.com/) and checked in late afternoon. Its a really nice and comfortable place to base yourself and I heard from some of the peace corp volunteers that its the best backpackers in the country.

I was still having trouble with my speedo and noticed Carson Motors just outside Manzini so I popped in the next morning and they replaced the special washer inside for 90 rand.  Below is a picture of the old one. You can see how its worn away where it wasn't seated properly. Unfortunately though this didn't totally fix my problem. The speedo is fine when you are accelerating but when you engine break or cruise it's all over the place. I'm due a service soon so will have it sorted properly then. I reckon the park this washer meshes with is worn too.

(http://i.imgur.com/HSh3r8G.jpg)

The guys in the dealership were very helpful and pretty amazed that I had taken the CTX so far. They have a lot of them in Swaziland so they know the bike well.

That evening I drove up the hill behind the backpackers and watched the Swazi sun set. I also got a nice time lapse video of it too.

(http://i.imgur.com/PW4lTCI.jpg)

I had a lie in the next morning which is easily done at Sundowners, a very comfortable place! I headed out on the bike through Pine valley and past Sibebe to Malolotja Nature Reserve. There was no fee to enter the park and they didn't seem to care I was on a bike which was unusual. I rode all the way around the park for a few hours and took in the awesome views :

(http://i.imgur.com/gYAOya2.jpg)

(http://i.imgur.com/uZY0SYf.jpg)

That evening I had a few beers and a chat with Sergio the owner who rides a GS 1200. Also staying at Sundowners was Max who rides a KLR 650. We all agreed to head out the next day to explore one of Sergios routes in the South West of Swaziland. You can see Max behind me on the KLR.

(http://i.imgur.com/lWOKgVq.jpg)

Stopping for a few pictures.

(http://i.imgur.com/2CLEg5Z.jpg)

(http://i.imgur.com/pQ5ljaY.jpg)

Awesome view point behind one of the cell towers.

(http://i.imgur.com/XWXXDbw.jpg)

Sergio and I.

(http://i.imgur.com/NX7yGfQ.jpg)

Nice trails through the forests.

(http://i.imgur.com/f5Mz21w.jpg)

You can view or download our route here (http://www.openstreetmap.org/user/TechnomadicJim/traces/1704099) (in GPX format).

Being very aware of the end of my trip looming and after 5 days in Swaziland I decided it was time to head back into South Africa. Here's the route I took as suggested by Max. Mostly tar but with around 20 km's or gravel it was a scenic route towards the border.

(http://i.imgur.com/tFV7Knj.jpg)

(http://i.imgur.com/W8x0jtn.jpg)

(http://i.imgur.com/I06YTt6.png)

Now the flags are building up on the front of the bike people often stop for a look and read out loud all countries I've visited so far. Here's a picture of four guys talking about my bike.

(http://i.imgur.com/65GX8Gr.jpg)

The border crossing itself was pretty straight forward. The fact I had already been in South Africa did cause them a little problem but I have a flight booked for the 30th of June which put them at ease. The police also wanted to check my passport and then driving license but when he saw we were the same age (32) he didn't care about my license any more... weird.

(http://i.imgur.com/osRYeDA.jpg)

The road beside pongolapoort dam.

(http://i.imgur.com/rdvkKSq.jpg)

I shouldn't really have left it so late to leave as the sun was starting to set and I still had 50 km's of gravel to drive before I made it in to Sodwana. Still I made it just before dark and checked in to Natural Moments Backpackers (http://www.divesodwana.com/) and got a room for 150 rand per night for two nights. The next morning I headed next door and managed to get on a lunchtime dive to the Stringer dive site on the 2 mile reef.

(http://i.imgur.com/saQsN11.jpg)

Underwater there are fish.

(http://i.imgur.com/eOsYDOG.jpg)

Including this Potato bass who was very friendly and curious. I've never seen one before but one of the divers was banging on the floor and it came right up and was very interested in what he was doing. Amazing.

(http://i.imgur.com/L5U5Fn4.jpg)

The next morning I headed down the coast to St Lucia and checked in to Budget Backpackers (http://budgetbackpackers.co.za/). Being low season I have a whole dorm to myself for 150 rand a night. I plan on going to the crocodile center and visiting the beach today.

Not exactly sure where I will go tomorrow but I may pop in to Durban to get the bike serviced on Monday. As always if there are any suggestions I'm all ears.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: oldmannorman on May 16, 2014, 06:51:46 pm
It's been a pleasure following your adventure. Keep it coming. If you have another service in George, (like your 1000 service) give me a shout. Would like to meet you.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: The Badger on May 18, 2014, 06:23:21 pm
Thanks for the enjoyable and informative rr....:thumleft:

Oh..... and it was good meeting you today.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: EssBee on May 19, 2014, 07:54:39 am
Thanks for the enjoyable and informative rr....:thumleft:

Oh..... and it was good meeting you today.

as above...+1 !!!!!
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: Airguitar on May 24, 2014, 10:21:36 pm
What a great read, and the pictures are magnificent!
Your English self-deprecating humour gives us a great look inside your mind as you ride and write.. It's like I'm there.  :thumleft:


OK now that you've kept me reading for 2 1/2 hours straight can I please go to bed?

Moderators, I believe this RR qualifies for entry into the Roll of Honour!  :deal:  ??
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: YamaV on May 25, 2014, 10:29:32 am
What a great read, and the pictures are magnificent!
Your English self-deprecating humour gives us a great look inside your mind as you ride and write.. It's like I'm there.  :thumleft:


OK now that you've kept me reading for 2 1/2 hours straight can I please go to bed?

Moderators, I believe this RR qualifies for entry into the Roll of Honour!  :deal:  ??

+1 epic trip
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: TechnomadicJim on May 25, 2014, 08:43:00 pm
Thanks for the enjoyable and informative rr....:thumleft:

Oh..... and it was good meeting you today.

as above...+1 !!!!!

Thanks to both of you for the great day out! Sorry its taken so long to get the ride report written.

It was a pleasure meeting both of you and your mrs's. I've put some of the pictures up below. :)

What a great read, and the pictures are magnificent!
Your English self-deprecating humour gives us a great look inside your mind as you ride and write.. It's like I'm there.  :thumleft:

OK now that you've kept me reading for 2 1/2 hours straight can I please go to bed?

Moderators, I believe this RR qualifies for entry into the Roll of Honour!  :deal:  ??

Thanks man! and reading the whole way through! Yes you can sleep now, you've earned it :) heh.

Thanks for your kind words. I really love that people like yourself are enjoying the rr so much. It means a lot.

+1 epic trip

Hey Vian! Good to see your still on board. Hope you're well!

---

I drove down to beach in St Lucia and had a walk around for a while. Its a really nice long beach and almost nobody there.

(http://i.imgur.com/wbK2Gdf.jpg)

After a drive around the town and lunch at the yacht and boat club. I headed to the crocodile sanctuary. I got chatting with the owner who was also a biker. Nice guy.

(http://i.imgur.com/aQI6KIm.jpg)

I don't remember learning this one for my theory test!

(http://i.imgur.com/96spnpC.jpg)

The next day I drove to Durban and checked in to Gibela Backpackers Lodge (http://www.gibelabackpackers.co.za/) which wasn't cheap at 240 rand a night for the dorm but its a very well run place. I guess you would call it a "flashpackers" rather than a backpackers. I got in contact with "The Badger" on the forum and he suggested we go out for a ride in the valley of 1000 hills. We met up Sunday morning along with EssBee and his wife and headed out. The weather was great and the views stunning as we weaved off road through the hills.

Taking a tight corner a bit too fast I managed to lowside and my foot got trapped under the bike as I fell forwards. I didn't actually fall over but must have twisted my ankle under the bike. It didn't feel too bad initially so we kept on riding.

(http://i.imgur.com/G50BI3d.jpg)

Stopping for a rest by this cascading river. In the distance were some "plastic bikes" (as The Badger called them) riding up and down the side of a very steep hill. Impressive stuff.

(http://i.imgur.com/BPDTShV.jpg)

We finished up the rider about lunch time with the awesome view of the Umgeni river.

(http://i.imgur.com/EfwYtzU.jpg)

Here's a panoramic my The Badger.

(http://i.imgur.com/Lv1uwyL.jpg)

We headed down to The Badger's house where his wife kindly made us some lunch and we sat around chatting for an hour or two. After sitting down for a while my foot began to hurt more and by the time I made it to the backpackers it was really quite painful. Here's the bruise that was starting to form a few days later after the swelling had gone down. Ouch!

(http://i.imgur.com/xRgR3Rf.jpg)

After resting my ankle for a few days in Durban I could nearly walk again so I booked my bike in and got it serviced at the Honda dealership in Pinetown. It cost me 1330 rand! I had got used to cheap services on my travels and this was a bit of a shock but they did a good service and drove me around which is was being serviced. In fact I'm not entirely sure that the Honda dealerships in Malawi and Zimbabwe were official dealerships just because they had Honda painted on the wall outside. Ohh well.

The next day I was feeling better and decided to head off to the Champagne Valley in the Drakensburg. After taking the motorway about 2/3rds of the way I set my GPS to avoid motorways and took an R road and then some dirt roads the rest of the way. I came across this bridge full of cows.

(http://i.imgur.com/MYjVjmp.jpg)

As it became for hilly I could tell the scenery was going to only get better as I got deeper into the mountains.

(http://i.imgur.com/zv8pUPw.jpg)

The mountains in the background as you drive into the Champagne valley.

(http://i.imgur.com/MtNTv0y.jpg)

I headed for Inkosana Lodge (http://www.inkosana.co.za/) which was recommended by the last backpackers. The place is pretty much empty because it's low season but its a really nice place to stay and very reasonable at 150 rand per night for my personal dorm. The day after I arrived I regretted leaving so early. My ankle was really hurting again and the bruising had got worse. Perhaps I had pushed myself a bit too much! 

One evening I had a nice long chat with a friendly Australian lady and a fellow Wild Dog who I didn't actually get the name of in the end. Please post up here if you read this so I know who you are. It was a pleasure to meet you and have a good chat :)

This morning I decided that I should probably go and have the ankle x-ray'd just in case it was broken and needed treatment. I hopped on the bike drove 5 meters and noticed I have a flat front tyre! Noooooo! This is really not what I need right now. Its Sunday too and nobody is about to help me out so I soldier on and manage to get the tyre off and with the aid of some washing up liquid I managed to break the bead and inspect the inner tube. That crappy repair I had done in Mozambique was back to haunt me again. The rubber band that protects the tube from the spokes had snapped where he had bodged it together with glue and thread. Its a lot colder now so I wonder if that was what made it break now as opposed to earlier. I managed to get some thread, glue and gaffa tape and repair it. It seemed to hold and was a bit of a pain to get on the rim again as its much smaller than it was originally. I must replace it soon before it goes again otherwise I will probably have to make one with an old inner tube. I decided to use my new spare tube instead of patching the old one as its a slightly better brand and will hopefully last longer. I managed to get the tyre back on again with the aid of more washing up liquid only to pump it up and realise I had pinched the tube. Grrrrr.... So again I remove the tube and repair it and replace it. Guess what ? I pinched it again! Remember I'm trying to sort all this out with a really sore potentially broken ankle. Not my best of days. I carry on though and repair the tube again. This time I pinched it twice.

(http://i.imgur.com/jkMNoKN.jpg)

I decided I needed a different method so I went online and researched some extra tips. This time I inflated the tyre slightly and used the other side of the tyre lever with more of a hook to get it back on. This worked perfectly. Success! 

(http://i.imgur.com/yKrYHXw.jpg)

Very happy with myself after 3 hours of hobbling about and 4 patches later I have fixed both inner tubes and finally put the tyre back on the bike so I can get myself to Ladysmith for an x-ray tomorrow. I notice this evening that my ankle if feeling better than yesterday and the bruising has gone down a lot. I think I will see how I feel tomorrow. I'm hoping to explore the Drakensburg and then drive the sani pass soon so I hope to get better sooner rather than later.

KM's so far 24,800.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: 777 on May 25, 2014, 09:16:42 pm
Did I see your bike outside the FNB bank in Pmb on Friday ?
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: TechnomadicJim on May 25, 2014, 09:18:53 pm
Did I see your bike outside the FNB bank in Pmb on Friday ?

Yes :) I was changing some money. heh. Small world!
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: Tiger8 on May 26, 2014, 11:47:37 am
If you are getting down into the Eastern Cape, PE way, give me a shout, would gladly have you stay with us for a few days, before you push-on to further explore  :thumleft:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: Casting from Turd on May 26, 2014, 11:50:40 am
If you are getting down into the Eastern Cape, PE way, give me a shout, would gladly have you stay with us for a few days, before you push-on to further explore  :thumleft:

Like wise here.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: The Badger on May 26, 2014, 03:11:52 pm
Eeeish James...... sorry to hear about your ankle man.
I hope it is not broken.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: EssBee on May 26, 2014, 03:53:06 pm
Wow, Jim, that does look sore... ( "Eina" as us SAfricans would say  ::) ) Sorry, man, hope it pans out okay....
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: TechnomadicJim on May 26, 2014, 06:01:18 pm
It's been a pleasure following your adventure. Keep it coming. If you have another service in George, (like your 1000 service) give me a shout. Would like to meet you.

Sorry oldmannorman I missed your post. I will indeed keep it coming and it would be my pleasure to meet up with you in George. I will PM you when I'm a bit closer and hopefully we can work something out :)

If you are getting down into the Eastern Cape, PE way, give me a shout, would gladly have you stay with us for a few days, before you push-on to further explore  :thumleft:

Like wise here.

Thanks guys. Will message you both when I'm nearing PE.

Eeeish James...... sorry to hear about your ankle man.
I hope it is not broken.

Not broken :)

(http://i.imgur.com/TN6Y8Nb.jpg)

Wow, Jim, that does look sore... ( "Eina" as us SAfricans would say  ::) ) Sorry, man, hope it pans out okay....

Its feeling much better already and I rode into Ladysmith today and back without problem. I reckon a few more days of rest and can prepare to drive the Sani pass.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: mox on May 27, 2014, 09:13:00 am
Great news that nothing is broken! When you get to the top of Sani make sure you have a few of these  :biggrin:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: woody1 on May 27, 2014, 09:37:34 am
Just take enough money with.  Beer at the top is EXPENSIVE.  Any Shebeen elsewhere in Lesotho the same beer is half the price.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: EssBee on May 27, 2014, 09:48:16 am
 :thumleft:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: The Badger on May 27, 2014, 11:12:18 am
:thumleft:

 :thumleft: Glad to hear...
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: oldmannorman on May 27, 2014, 06:26:04 pm
 :sip: Looking forward to your PM
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: Deep6 on May 28, 2014, 11:28:22 am
Quote
One evening I had a nice long chat with a friendly Australian lady and a fellow Wild Dog who I didn't actually get the name of in the end. Please post up here if you read this so I know who you are. It was a pleasure to meet you and have a good chat

Hi there James

That would have been us that you met at Inkosana Lodge in the Drakensburg. (Harry and Julie).

I had been following your adventures on the forum and when I saw your bike parked outside the lodge I knew I had to look you up and make our introductions.

We could see that you were in a lot of pain from your damaged ankle and wished that we could do more for you than just offer you anti-inflammatory tablets and pain killers. Good to see that the x-rays showed no serious damage which would have been very bad news for you I'm sure, here at the tail end of your journey.

We had a great evening talking with you and hearing of your fascinating adventures and your impressions of some of the countries you had ridden through. If we had not been so tired I'm sure we would have carried on talking into the small hours of the morning.

It is a privilege to meet someone who has the determination and courage  to follow their dreams and to live the life that they choose.

We wish you many safe miles in your future journeys and we're looking forward to seeing the videos that you have made of your adventures.

Regards

Harry and Julie
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: Dirt Junkie on May 28, 2014, 06:21:36 pm
Great RR, epic trip
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: TechnomadicJim on June 09, 2014, 06:10:31 pm
Great news that nothing is broken! When you get to the top of Sani make sure you have a few of these  :biggrin:

For sure! Would have been a bit of a bummer this late on in the trip. I didn't manage to try the beer unfortunately but maybe I can find some here in SA.

Just take enough money with.  Beer at the top is EXPENSIVE.  Any Shebeen elsewhere in Lesotho the same beer is half the price.

I had enough money up there but didn't try the beer. Doh! I don't really drink during the day or by myself so there wasn't really much of an opportunity. Perhaps I will find it here in SA.

:thumleft:

 :thumleft: Glad to hear...

:thumleft:

Quote
One evening I had a nice long chat with a friendly Australian lady and a fellow Wild Dog who I didn't actually get the name of in the end. Please post up here if you read this so I know who you are. It was a pleasure to meet you and have a good chat

Hi there James

That would have been us that you met at Inkosana Lodge in the Drakensburg. (Harry and Julie).

I had been following your adventures on the forum and when I saw your bike parked outside the lodge I knew I had to look you up and make our introductions.

We could see that you were in a lot of pain from your damaged ankle and wished that we could do more for you than just offer you anti-inflammatory tablets and pain killers. Good to see that the x-rays showed no serious damage which would have been very bad news for you I'm sure, here at the tail end of your journey.

We had a great evening talking with you and hearing of your fascinating adventures and your impressions of some of the countries you had ridden through. If we had not been so tired I'm sure we would have carried on talking into the small hours of the morning.

It is a privilege to meet someone who has the determination and courage  to follow their dreams and to live the life that they choose.

We wish you many safe miles in your future journeys and we're looking forward to seeing the videos that you have made of your adventures.

Regards

Harry and Julie


Hey guys! Thanks for commenting :) Ankle's doing much better now and thanks again for your concern at the lodge. It is appreciated when you are on your own. Also thanks for your kind words about my trip. I hope to have a good video done after im back for a couple of months. Will post it here for everyone of course. All the best!

Great RR, epic trip

Thanks man!

---

After leaving the hospital happy that my ankle wasn't broken I was greeted with another flat tyre. That bodge repair I had made on the rubber band that that protects the tube from where the spokes screws must have given way. Luckily there was a petrol station close by so I got them to pump it up again temporarily which gave me just enough air to get to a local motorcycle shop. They replaced the inner tube and the rubber band for me while I had lunch at Wimpy (Dagwood and chips, nice!). Unfortunately I must have dropped or left my gloves somewhere in all the mayhem as they wern't with my helmet when I picked up the bike. That's my second pair lost now! Doh! I blame the relaxant / pain relief they injected me with before the scan.

Unfortunately my speedo wasn't working again and upon further inspection back at Inkosana lodge I noticed that they had not seated the speedo gear properly and it had pulled the cable out. Not a problem though as I fixed this up myself and the speedo actually works 100% now as opposed to before where it would falter when I wasn't accelerating therefore giving a slightly (~12% according to my gps) mileage reading. All good now though :)

(http://i.imgur.com/OJjBzCy.jpg)

The bike working well again I was bored hanging around the lodge (as nice as it was) and decided I needed a day out riding round the Drakensberg so I headed off first to the Cathedral Peak hotel for some tea (of course!). Here's a couple of pictures of the peaks :

(http://i.imgur.com/sppVDhw.jpg)

(http://i.imgur.com/13LDpFO.jpg)

Next I took this windy gravel road towards northern Drakensberg :

(http://i.imgur.com/HP2eFOS.jpg)

I popped in to the Amphitheater Backpackers (http://www.amphibackpackers.co.za/) for some lunch and then looped back round to the northern Drakensberg.

(http://i.imgur.com/bBu1awz.jpg)

I came across the graffiti on the way and had to stop for a picture. Always makes the bike look cooler when there's some colour matched artwork behind it!

(http://i.imgur.com/tTaSCbm.jpg)

Time was getting on so the next day I decided to head towards the Sani pass and drove across some pretty remote windy gravel roads. On the last stretch with the sun setting I came around a corner with the sun in my eyes and just about saw a truck at the last second parked at possibly the worst part of the road with no warning triangle. I hope the next drivers that come along see the truck in time! I checked in to Sani Lodge Backpackers (http://www.amphibackpackers.co.za/) where I spent the night in one of their dorms.

In the morning I set off down the pass and got stamped out of SA no problem and began working my way up the pass. The scenery really is spectacular here.

(http://i.imgur.com/Z9h9S4W.jpg)

The view from about half way up down the valley.

(http://i.imgur.com/haG7Z1J.jpg)

As I was working my way up I noticed a guy walking down and as I got closer recognised him. His name was John from Ireland and we had met in Malawi at Nkhata bay so we chatted for about half an hour and swapped details. Small world!

Next I tackled the end of the pass with its tight hairpin turns. Doing it on the CTX200 was actually pretty easy if I'm honest despite my tires not having so much grip left in them.

(http://i.imgur.com/iTOFqlu.jpg)

(http://i.imgur.com/xUnaXIG.jpg)

The Lesotho immigration was pretty run down but quick and efficient. I had to pay 30 rand for the bike and that was all.

I popped into the highest pub in Africa and had some lunch where I met some other tourists who were very interested in hearing my story after they heard how long I had been on the road. One of these characters was a south African called Rudy who gave me some pointers on a route and explained about Prince harry's involvement in Lesotho and his motorbiking across it quite frequently. Interesting.

(http://i.imgur.com/NyuEb7M.jpg)

It must have been about 3pm by the time I left the pub and headed off to try and find some accommodation. I couldn't find very much information online about Lesotho so I was relying on a poorly drawn map I had been given by a guide at the last backpackers. I made my way down the very rocky roads and wondered, at the pace I was going, whether I would actually make it somewhere before dark! I took a turning just before Mokhotlong and after about 10-20 km's reached a turn off to a lodge that was on my hand drawn map. The locals pointed me down a terrible road which lead to some stone houses. The guy in the local shop showed me the hostel / lodge that was 150 rand a night. I was the only one there but glad to have found a bed for the night. It was freezing cold and there was no heating or electricity of course. I cooked up some baked beans and tuna and made myself a cup of soup to warm up. Luckily I had my sleeping bag the duvet and 3 blankets to keep warm.

I slept pretty well and had my breakfast then went outside to check on the bike and came across this guy who I thought was a night watchman. He didn't speak any English nor I Sotho. He seemed to be pointing at some sticks so I just nodded and gave him the thumbs up which is pretty standard when you can't speak the language. After breakfast I began packing up the bike and he started to play one of the sticks which have a really weird sound. It was pretty interesting and entertaining while I packed the bike so I gave him 10 rand which I think was perhaps too much. He was so pleased he tried to kiss my hand!

(http://i.imgur.com/IvhKb0C.jpg)

Setting off I came across the first ice I had seen outside of a drink. It really is cold up here and its not even properly winter yet! 

(http://i.imgur.com/LLIXJ8S.jpg)

The road was in pretty bad condition and my ankle was still a bit sore so it made it tough going in places. Looking at the distance involved and my lack of accommodation options I was again a bit worried I had bitten off more than I can chew. Still the scenery was amazing!

(http://i.imgur.com/3aTf3lR.jpg)

Another village up in the mountains.

(http://i.imgur.com/OHsUO3v.jpg)

One of the rivers winding its way through the mountains. Spectacular.

(http://i.imgur.com/pz6kitK.jpg)

They seem to be working on extending the roads towards the Sani Pass and I wonder how long it is before its tar all the way!

(http://i.imgur.com/Fpx6voy.jpg)

After averaging 20 km's an hour (with breaks) I made it to Thaba Tseka and that's where the proper tar began. They also sold fuel there which was a relief as I wasn't sure at all on how easily obtainable fuel would be. I had been carrying my extra 10 liters of fuel just in case. I had some lunch and then headed off towards Roma where I planned to spend the night on the advice of Rudy the previous day. If I had more time and my ankle was a but better I would have liked to have perhaps explored up to the Dam and stayed there for the night.

(http://i.imgur.com/M16Fxo6.jpg)

I worked my way through the many mountain passes including this interestingly named one. Must have been tough back before it was paved!

(http://i.imgur.com/wY9aepj.jpg)

The decent down towards Roma was impressive too. Nice twisty roads to ride along.

(http://i.imgur.com/WAutXmj.jpg)

The landscape become less mountainous the further west you travel through Lesotho. As I drove into Roma I came across this rock jutting out of the ground next to the church.

(http://i.imgur.com/CGRHucf.jpg)

I stayed at The Trading Post Lodge (http://www.tradingpost.co.za/) which I gather is where they start the Roof of Africa (http://www.roofofafrica.org.ls/) race from. I met a really nice Canadian couple who were adopting two local orphaned boys. One of them sat on the bike with my helmet on for some photos. Kids do love motorbikes.

The next morning I headed for the border. I avoided Maseru and headed south exiting and entering SA at Sepapushek. I do prefer small border crossings as I find they are quicker and friendlier like this one.

(http://i.imgur.com/AVzKyOG.jpg)

I didn't really have a plan so I headed towards east London and met another biker on the way called Johan from Bloemfontein so we stopped at Wimpy and I had some lunch while he had a coffee and some ice cream. I left it a bit late to make it to East London so ended up staying at a small B&B in Queenstown. That evening I released I had missed the "Wild Coast" area. "The Badger" had recommended Port St Johns to me so rather than heading to EL I headed there the next day.

Port St Johns was OK I guess. I stayed at Amapondo Backpackers (http://www.amapondo.co.za/) for a couple of nights as I needed some rest. I usually like to spend at least a couple of nights at places because its getting quite tiring getting everything ready each day and also it allows you to actually experience some of it rather than rolling on through.

Some backpackers I met recommended that my next stop should be Mdumbi instead of Coffee Bay so I checked it out. Here's a picture of the river joining the sea on the way in.

(http://i.imgur.com/3nK9yJu.jpg)

Mdumbi beach. There were a few surfers staying at the place too. Seems like a popular spot.

(http://i.imgur.com/C64Vntz.jpg)

I checked into Mdumbi Backpackers (http://www.mdumbi.co.za) and decided to stay for a couple of nights. I met some friendly people to hang out with in the evenings and spent the next day visiting Coffee Bay and the "Hole in the wall" :

(http://i.imgur.com/KZctO10.jpg)

(http://i.imgur.com/PhzxeqJ.jpg)

On my way back I was riding a gravel corner when a cow ran in front of my bike at the last minute. I grabbed a fist full of front brake and fell off again on the same bad foot. Damn! I swore at the stupid cow that ran off and expected more ankle pain. Fortunately for me it wasn't crushed under the bike and it didn't seem to do much damage so I was lucky and drove a little slower round the cows on the rest of the way back.

(http://i.imgur.com/nB56S2W.jpg)

I get most of my travel advice from other travelers. Its the most up to date information and almost always a good choice. I was recommended to stay at Buccaneers Backpackers (http://www.cintsa.com/) in Cintsa as my next stop instead of heading into East London. I drove a lot of gravel through the hills and eventually popped out on the N2.

(http://i.imgur.com/FDxa9X3.jpg)

The next day I headed to Hogsback and checked in to Terra Khaya Eco Backpackers (http://www.hogsbackecobackpackers.com/). Its an interesting off the grid eco farm with very friendly people. I managed to snag myself a room for 100 rand as their dorm is full of laborers working on some new buildings. They even have an out door bath which is pretty cool to use at night looking out at the stars above.

(http://i.imgur.com/0QiRIcj.jpg)

I spent the next day exploring 60 km's of the forest trails around the area.

(http://i.imgur.com/ATZnlOg.jpg)

I rode across the side of this hill which I guess looks a bit like a hogs back (?) and round the back. Really nice trails.

(http://i.imgur.com/BwrEdHi.jpg)

Tomorrow I'm probably going to head off somewhere else. I haven't decided where though so lets see what happens. Just over 2 weeks until I want to be in cape town giving myself a week to sort things out and sell the bike.

KM's so far 27,000.

I also need to begin looking into selling the bike. I've just put an advert up in the Wild Dog (http://www.wilddog.za.net/forum/index.php?topic=152868.0) small ads section so check it out here (http://www.wilddog.za.net/forum/index.php?topic=152868.0). I'm very interested in any help selling it so if you know anyone who might want it or if you yourself want the bike let me know by PM. All the details are in the thread there. I'm also interested what you think about the price (22,000 rand) and description etc.. I plan on listing it on gumtree soon but thought I would try here (http://www.wilddog.za.net/forum/index.php?topic=152868.0) first.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: MegaPix on June 09, 2014, 06:59:09 pm
Jim, if you didn't drink some Maluti Beer you lost out
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: Tiger8 on June 09, 2014, 09:30:16 pm
NIce RR Jim, welcome to the Eastern Cape  :thumleft:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: Gérrard on June 10, 2014, 08:07:16 am
Hey Jim, truly epic, and thanks again for all the trouble you take to update the RR.

PLEASE let us know when you in PE and make a plan to stay over a day or two. Would be great to meet and kuier a bit.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: mulder on June 11, 2014, 08:53:28 am
Great little bike that, loved mine. Excellant RR
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: Casting from Turd on June 11, 2014, 01:53:07 pm
Jimbo, was very lekker to have you visit.

Thanks  :thumleft:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: EssBee on June 11, 2014, 02:04:58 pm
Once again....nice RR James! Glad you did Sani! Yeah....TG you didn't hurt that ankle again when you grabbed a handful to avoid that cow...shoo!!!!
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: Gérrard on June 12, 2014, 09:55:53 pm
Thanks for the visit Jim. Pleasant evening was had by all
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: Tiger8 on June 13, 2014, 08:06:56 am
Thanks G, Crab and Jim, was a good evening. All the best with the remainder of your journey.
That CTX is an amazing little machine, after last night I was very tempted to make you an offer, but sanity prevailed  ;)
Cheers Jim  :thumleft:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: TechnomadicJim on June 13, 2014, 02:56:27 pm
Great little bike that, loved mine. Excellant RR

It is indeed. Thanks man :) Good to hear from other CTX fans!

Jimbo, was very lekker to have you visit.

Thanks  :thumleft:

Thanks again for putting me up. It is very kind of you and much appreciated. Was cool to put a name to a face and hang out!

Once again....nice RR James! Glad you did Sani! Yeah....TG you didn't hurt that ankle again when you grabbed a handful to avoid that cow...shoo!!!!

Yeah for sure! I need to be more careful, especially on this home stretch!

Thanks G, Crab and Jim, was a good evening. All the best with the remainder of your journey.
That CTX is an amazing little machine, after last night I was very tempted to make you an offer, but sanity prevailed  ;)
Cheers Jim  :thumleft:

Thanks for the visit Jim. Pleasant evening was had by all


I had a good evening too hanging out and chatting. It was nice to meet you all at last! A special thanks to jupiter for the pizza, tea and giving me a room to crash in. Much appreciated! Freezing ride back this morning. Brrrrr... Thought I would let you sleep in Tiger8. Didn't want to come knocking on your door at 7am for coffee. heh...

Thanks again guys!  :thumleft:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: Tiger8 on June 13, 2014, 03:38:35 pm



I had a good evening too hanging out and chatting. It was nice to meet you all at last! A special thanks to jupiter for the pizza, tea and giving me a room to crash in. Much appreciated! Freezing ride back this morning. Brrrrr... Thought I would let you sleep in Tiger8. Didn't want to come knocking on your door at 7am for coffee. heh...

Thanks again guys!  :thumleft:
[/quote]

Nah..... was ready with fresh brewed Cappuccino, you missed out and freezed your nuts off  :lol8:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: katana on June 14, 2014, 08:40:32 am
When are you in CT again?
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: Bells Angel on June 15, 2014, 07:02:13 pm
Awesome stuff Jim, have spent this miserable Sunday afternoon reading your RR from A to Z. Thank you for sharing your trip & all the best for your last few weeks in SA.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: oldmannorman on June 18, 2014, 03:21:44 pm
Thanks for the visit.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: TechnomadicJim on June 19, 2014, 04:56:55 pm
Nah..... was ready with fresh brewed Cappuccino, you missed out and freezed your nuts off  :lol8:

Doh!

When are you in CT again?

Early next week. I'm just up the road in Knysna at the moment.

Awesome stuff Jim, have spent this miserable Sunday afternoon reading your RR from A to Z. Thank you for sharing your trip & all the best for your last few weeks in SA.

Cool! Thanks for tuning in Bells Angel. Glad to have distracted your from all this miserable weather :)

Thanks for the visit.

Thanks again oldmannorman! It was a real pleasure to hang out with you for the evening and morning. Thanks again for all the food and drinks and the room to crash in. It really is appreciated. If all goes to plan I will pop by and see you for a cup of tea tomorrow on my way through. Will text you before I leave.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: YamaV on June 19, 2014, 07:02:50 pm
Hey Jim!

What route are you going to take from Knysna towards Cape Town?

Lots of options of course ;)
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: Warren Ellwood on June 23, 2014, 10:07:00 am
I was out with some friends this past weekend for an overnighter on the bikes. We stopped at a restaurant in Montague for a quick coffee, and as we were leaving, Jim pulled in to the car park. We unfortunately didn't have too much time to chat, but it was a privilege to be able to shake your hand.

All the best.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: Crab on June 23, 2014, 10:15:40 am
Montague! Then the journey is done. Well done Jim.
Now he,s just got to sell his bike and fly away.
Title: SPOT the DIFFERENCE!
Post by: zebra - Flying Brick on June 23, 2014, 03:10:26 pm
SPOT THE DIFFERENCE
Well, 8 odd months later, and Technomadic Jim walks back in the Store. and he has a tan.....  :biggrin:

He visited us 9 months ago, before he bought his Honda, and then several times before/after his 'shakedown' trip to Knysna and back.

He reckons the Honda Bushlander worked brilliantly, I think two punctures, on broken chain (today, back in CT!), and one chain replaced on his journey, as well as 1 sprocket.

Bike did 29,000-odd kilometers, and the bike never skipped a beat!

He has bought a new mudguard, and is taking the existing one back with him - with all his stickers on it - purely as a keepsake!  :thumleft:

Great seeing you again, Gentleman Jim - thanks for popping in, and a safe journey back home!
Best regards
Chris & Team  :thumleft:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: TechnomadicJim on July 04, 2014, 10:59:58 am
Hey Jim!

What route are you going to take from Knysna towards Cape Town?

Lots of options of course ;)

Hey man! I took mostly the R62 route.

I was out with some friends this past weekend for an overnighter on the bikes. We stopped at a restaurant in Montague for a quick coffee, and as we were leaving, Jim pulled in to the car park. We unfortunately didn't have too much time to chat, but it was a privilege to be able to shake your hand.

All the best.


Nice to meet you all :) It was a bit weird having people recognise me in the wild! I hope you lot had a great weekend ?

Montague! Then the journey is done. Well done Jim.
Now he,s just got to sell his bike and fly away.

Yes! All done. Great to meet ya at jupiter's. Shame I wasn't a week earlier and could have come shooting with you all.

SPOT THE DIFFERENCE
Well, 8 odd months later, and Technomadic Jim walks back in the Store. and he has a tan.....  :biggrin:

He visited us 9 months ago, before he bought his Honda, and then several times before/after his 'shakedown' trip to Knysna and back.

He reckons the Honda Bushlander worked brilliantly, I think two punctures, on broken chain (today, back in CT!), and one chain replaced on his journey, as well as 1 sprocket.

Bike did 29,000-odd kilometers, and the bike never skipped a beat!

He has bought a new mudguard, and is taking the existing one back with him - with all his stickers on it - purely as a keepsake!  :thumleft:

Great seeing you again, Gentleman Jim - thanks for popping in, and a safe journey back home!
Best regards
Chris & Team  :thumleft:

Yep only 2 punctures, 2 chains and one front sprocket. Great seeing you too Chris. All the best!

---

I left Hogsback and headed to Addo after an invitation from John to stay at his backpackers (http://www.addobackpackers.com/). I left a bit late after so ended up riding the main road through the park in the dark which wasn't the best idea. I also ended up riding straight past addo backpackers (http://www.addobackpackers.com/) and managed to see my error with only 2% battery left on my gps! John welcomed me and sorted me out with a nice room for the night despite me turning up late and unannounced. Thanks again John!

(http://i.imgur.com/IG3nDFT.jpg)

The next days ride was an easy one down to Jefrey's Bay. I popped in to Game in PE on the way to get some oil. I met an 82 year old ex-biker on his scooter and had a good chat. The more flag stickers on my bike the more I get approached by people curious about my trip. At lunch time I met up with jupiter for some tea near his work. We had a good chat and agreed to meet up with a few others over the next days. I checked in to a dorm at Ubuntu Backpackers (http://jaybay.co.za/) in Jefrey's Bay and had some good food at Nina's Real Food. Recommended!

I arranged with jupiter to come visit the next evening and he kindly offered me a room for the night so I didn't have to drive back. It was a really cool hanging out with Tiger8, Crab and jupiter. Thanks for the pizza too :) After a good nights sleep I headed back to Jefrey's Bay. It was freezing and I should have taken up Tiger8's offer of a coffee in the morning. Doh!

(http://i.imgur.com/e11d8qQ.jpg)

Jupiter gave me a map and suggestions for riding Baviaanskloof. Along with Die Hell I had Baviaanskloof recommended to me right at the beginning of my trip and was looking forward to riding it. I set off the next morning through Patensie and paid my entrance fee.

(http://i.imgur.com/IWJW4zL.jpg)

This was the main deeper water crossing of the route. I heard later that one side is much deeper than the other and I think I went down the deep side as the bike was just over half submerged for a small part of it. Nothing compared to my Botswana crossing of the pans (http://www.wilddog.za.net/forum/index.php?topic=137240.msg2760583#msg2760583) so I wasn't too phased.

(http://i.imgur.com/0uMNfWp.jpg)

I passed a fair few bikers on the way and stopped for lunch with 3 German bikers who worked for Mercedes in East London. They made me some bacon and noodles, nice!

(http://i.imgur.com/H0DqmTn.jpg)

Jaywalking :

(http://i.imgur.com/yAMUkAS.jpg)

I see Radioman (http://advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=689134) has been here too!

(http://i.imgur.com/Sz3aJF7.jpg)

I exited Baviaanskloof quite late and ended up staying at a B&B in Uniondale. The next morning I rode Price Alfreds pass to natures valley and checked in to Wild Spirit Backpackers (http://www.wildspiritlodge.co.za/). They even accepted Bitcoin (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bitcoin) and I was their first customer. Pretty cool! Its a nice chilled eco backpackes with some nice walks in the area. Here's the view from their dining area :

(http://i.imgur.com/QvI20nr.jpg)

I popped down to Natures Valley for lunch and walked on the beach :

(http://i.imgur.com/tceVvdE.jpg)

As I was riding back up the hill I noticed my front sprocket was slipping and upon closer inspection it was completely worn! oops! I had to be really gentle on the throttle. I booked myself in for my 28,000 km service at Honda George where I had my original 1k service. The next morning I packed up and headed off (gently) to George. Luckily they fit me in and remembered me from before.

(http://i.imgur.com/ppbh2DL.jpg)

With a new sprocket and a fresh service the bike was back to normal again. I met up with oldmanorman who kindly invited me to visit. I ended up staying the night and having a great dinner and chat that evening and following morning. Thanks again oldmanorman! It was a pleasure to meet you and your wife :)

I headed back to Knysna for a couple of nights and ate some great sea food and watched a few world cup games before heading back into George for one quick cup of tea with oldmanorman and then on to Ladismith Backpackers (https://www.facebook.com/ladismithbackpackers) where I stayed a night.

(http://i.imgur.com/521Hlp0.jpg)

The next morning I headed to Cape Town. It was a weird feeling seeing the roads and places I saw nearly 9 months before. It began to really sink in that my trip was nearly over. I passed Ronnies Sex Shop but only stopped for a photo as I wanted to get into Cape Town.

(http://i.imgur.com/kbHYNNt.jpg)

I arrived in good time and checked into my favorite backpackers there, the B.I.G Backpackers (http://bigbackpackers.co.za/) in green point. Th next day I rode Chapmans Peak (http://www.chapmanspeakdrive.co.za/) one last time and had some lunch at Olympia Cafe in Kalk Bay (https://www.facebook.com/OlympiaCafeKalkBay). Good food if you get a chance! As I drove back the chain felt as if something wasn't right but on inspection I couldn't see anything wrong. It was only when I got back to the backpackers I noticed the problem :

(http://i.imgur.com/fNtQ6ek.jpg)

Eeek! The following morning I picked up my replacement front mud guard from Honda and asked if they could sort the chain but they gave me the address of Craig's motorcycle repair. On my way along the N1 just before the woodstock junction the inevitable happened. My chain snapped and I was stuck :

(http://i.imgur.com/LH29WVE.jpg)

I called everyone I knew and eventually got hold of a guy called Steve who picked me up and took me to Trac Mac where I had a new chain fitted for 250 rand. Phew!

(http://i.imgur.com/aoJpdZf.jpg)

Next I stopped off to see Chris at FlyingBrick (http://flyingbrick.co.za/) and then I picked up my original tires from PistonPete (http://www.outridersa.co.za/) at Outriders.

(http://i.imgur.com/5ULmvZK.jpg)

The following day I took the bike to the viper lounge (http://www.viperlounge.co.za/) for a good clean. It only cost 125 rand and they did a great job! An hour was spent by two guys giving it a proper clean. All shiny and new with the front mud guard replaced.

(http://i.imgur.com/P3Ss7fP.jpg)

Thanks to the advert on the forum (http://www.wilddog.za.net/forum/index.php?topic=152868.0) I sold the bike to a fellow wild dog on the Saturday (I left on the Monday). I've asked for a photo of the new lady rider when she's out on her first ride. I know she will look after my companion for 9 months.

I hiked Lions Head on the Sunday and got a nice picture taken on a decent camera :

(http://i.imgur.com/7SL8cd0.jpg)

And another on one of the bench's near company gardens.

(http://i.imgur.com/iGlOL58.jpg)

Monday evening I took the MyCiti bus to the airport and flew with British Airways direct for 10 hours arriving in the UK 6:00 am. Two more buses and I was back with my family. I have the front mud guard, worn sprocket and a cracked sump plug as keep sake's from the bike.

(http://i.imgur.com/XWGXgDp.jpg)

Thanks to everyone who I met on the trip and everyone who followed me online with my ride reports. It was great to have you all along for the ride!

I plan on posting a few stats like my budget and all my GPS traces. I also want to edit together a video of the trip and will obviously post that here too although that may take a little while to edit together so bear with me ;)

I'll let you all know when my next adventure takes place but in meantime I have a hell of a lot of work to do!

Total KM's 29,000. 9 Countries, 9 Months.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: badballie on July 04, 2014, 11:08:24 am
Excellent Jim  :thumleft:

Glad you enjoyed your trip - it was great following your adventures here  ;D
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: woody1 on July 04, 2014, 11:21:04 am
 :thumleft: thanks again for sharing.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: Tiger8 on July 04, 2014, 11:33:10 am
Brilliant Bud!

Thanks for sharing your trip with us, it has at times been tense waiting for updates when you were out of cell coverage and we needed our ride fix  8), but like any good adventure it has come to an end. Glad you are home safe with your family, it won't be long before all your ideas and goals need refreshing and your head starts to rattle, you mentioned a 7 month itch  :pot:  :lol8: , then you plan the next trip to see the world.  :thumleft:

Cheers Jim.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: Gérrard on July 04, 2014, 12:17:17 pm
Thanks Jim. It was a good one. You are truly a Gentleman Adventurer. All the best for the future Adventures.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: Topie on September 08, 2014, 11:57:52 am
Nice report..very inspiring.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: TechnomadicJim on December 01, 2014, 01:56:59 am
Hi Everyone!

Its been 4 months since I left SA. I wanted to give you all a quick update. I've been mainly catching up on work but I've also been going through all my footage and pictures. I'm going to begin editing it together soon with the idea to create a narrated mini (30 minute or so) documentary. I'll be sure to upload it to youtube and post it on here when its finished.

In the meantime here's all of my GPS traces I took on the trip collated on to one map. Its really cool to be able to visualise it in this way. It's really interesting zooming in on areas like the Messum crater in Namibia, the Makadikadi pans in Botswana and the Chimanimani mountains in Zimbabwe. All area's I was exploring without much idea of direction.

(http://i.imgur.com/0TTkUfe.png) (http://imgur.com/0TTkUfe)

Click here for a higher resolution version. (http://i.imgur.com/0TTkUfe.png) The different colours represent a different trace which is generally a different day. I've added the map to my first post too for new people who come across this thread.
Title: Re:
Post by: Dorsland on December 01, 2014, 05:39:26 am
You have gathered some wonderful memories there Jim. Did you find getting back into the routine again a bit of a challenge?
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: Monteith on December 01, 2014, 06:58:58 am
Wow, looks amazing!! Looking forward to the you tube  :ricky:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: Mountain Goat on December 01, 2014, 07:07:00 am
Amazing!!

Don't know how you are going to fit all that into a 30min video!
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: Tiger8 on December 01, 2014, 09:06:44 am
Nice Jim, looking forward to the Video  :thumleft:
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: oldmannorman on December 01, 2014, 09:12:31 am
Nice Jim, looking forward to the Video  :thumleft:
+ 1000
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: YamaV on December 01, 2014, 09:17:52 am
Awesome Jim, looking forward to the documentary!
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: DirtyHarry on December 01, 2014, 09:41:16 am
Very nice RR about a great trip.
You must stayed in every backpackers along your route in Southern Africa :biggrin:
It's nice to see these trips being done on small bikes. Which proves it again. A great trip is not about the bike at all.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: The Badger on December 02, 2014, 11:59:39 am
Good one Jim...... Thanks for a superb RR  :thumleft: I hope your ankle has healed after our little ride in the Valley of a Thousand hills.

Keep well and regards from Fran and I.
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: EssBee on December 02, 2014, 12:36:52 pm
Hey Jim, good to "hear" from you again...yeah, hope that ankle is all healed and good!
Title: Re: Southern Africa on a Honda CTX200 Bushlander
Post by: Sleuthdog on December 09, 2014, 02:34:08 pm
I've been riding a CTX200 for a couple of years, guess it's time to do some touring of my own!  :)