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Topics - konrad

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Ride Reports / 9 DAY ROUN-TRIP UP TO RIEMVASMAAK(KALAHARI) AND BACK
« on: January 08, 2015, 12:34:52 pm »
On the 27th of December 2014 myself and my fiancé  left Johannesburg on a 9 day round trip of the green Kalahari on my new LC BMW ADV.
We left Johannesburg on the N12 up to Wolmeranstad and joined up with the N14 at Vryburg.the weather was all ok,until we arrived in Klerksdorp. From there up to vryburg we rode in rain storms that made visibility nearly next to none. What a tiring ride that was. From there up to Kuruman and the next day the long ,hot and relentless haul up to Augrabies. The bike was fully loaded with paniers,topbox etc and in that Northern Cape heat,I had to stop many times just to get my brain working again as it was frying in the helmet from the heat.
From upington we went down to kakamas and then turned north towards augrabies. What a relief when we finally arrived in augrabies(dundi lodge) and we could unpack and relax with a beer in the cool swimming pool. It was like heaven on earth. The next day we went into the park, as they allow motorbikes to do the sandy roads in the park. Besides two scary water crossings, the road in the park was easily managed with the karoo 3,s I had on the bike. Only thing that was a killer was the heat,the temperature was hovering at 39 degrees celciyus.
The next day we decided to tackle the route up to riemvasmaak and and lutzputs. The first 15km up to the turnoff into the desert was all tar and the roads were in tip top condition. From there it became dirt and we had the worst corrugated road I have ever ridden on. The corrugated section made for about a 30 minute ride of losing every filling in my mouth and then the fun started. I must add, Michelle is not used to standing on the pegs, so it was tricky with her sitting as pillion and me standing on the pegs and trying to keep that front wheel going in a direction I wanted it to go. The road got all narrow, sandy and winded itself through the barren landscape of nothingness and tremendous heat. The temperature was in the low 40,s. I must add, we were fully kitted ,neckbrace,boots and all  and had to stop every 15 minutes to pour water down our suits to try and survive. After what felt like a lifetime, and me swearing nonstop and Michelle praying nonstop, we arrived at riemvasmaak down in the canyon. We could not wait to get rid of our clothes and dive into those pools at riemvasmaak and just saviour the scenery. Words cannot describe the scenery. We were swimming in rock pools with the canyon all around us and not a sound. Very few people venture into the canyon at riemvasmaak,due to the road  conditions etc and we had nature all to ourselves. After a relaxing 2 hours at the pools we decided to hit the road again. This is here where I realised, the new lc adv is a bike of note. The road out of the canyon is steep and like sani pass and after many times hearing michelle begging me to stop as she wanted to jump off,because the open cliff drops on the side,made her go in panic mode de lux. I just carried on and now and again could go into 2 nd gear but mostly first gear. At the top we breathed a sigh of relief and there I made the mistake of my life. I met a local selling rocks and asked him,if the road that becomes the N10 is better going back via kakamas to augrabies and lutzputs,than the one we came on and he said yes. Big mistake  the first 10 km was lovely and then the shit hit us like a ton of bricks. The road turned into a white sandy,gravel road with corrugation like waves in the Indian ocean. Besides a very rattling ride we had the front wheel going its own direction every couple of seconds and it was like riding on ice with road tyres. The local indicated the road to be about 20km so I just hanged on for dear life and rode the bike like a bronco horse and michelle giving a scream so every often. When 20km came and gone and all you saw  in front of you is a white road going as far as the eyes can see,I realised we are in for a rollercoaster ride with no end. The locals 20km turned into 125km of hell!!!1
Finally we got back onto the tar at kakamas and stopped at the pienk padstal for a drink as my throat was on fire. As I got off the bike and removed my helmet,I said to no one in particular” dit was seker die k….ste pad wat ek nog ooit gery het op n bike”. The next thing a local farmer replied,”ek weet van waste pad jy praat,dis nie verniet gedoop suicide road. Well,I then felt very proud of us having done those roads through the desert and having done it without any damage to bike or limb. The next couple of days we just did odd offroad riding and mostly relaxing at dundi and also fitted in a bush pilot taking us on an adrenaline rush flight over and into the canyon at augrabies up to Namibia and back.
From augrabies we then went south to griekwastad ,via groblershoop. One thing about the northern cape roads,is their condition. Must be the best tar roads in the world and no traffic. It was not uncommon to maybe see a car pass every 30 minutes. From the very little one horse town of griekwastad,we went bundu bashing again/ this time we were fully loaded and with all our gear etc,and having app 500kg between my legs,it made for very tiring and scary riding on another white sandy road. After what felt like a full day,but at most 90 minutes,we arrived at Koekais  and had one of the best stays of our holiday at this lodge. That night I slept like a bomb as all the riding was slowly getting to me and my body was protesting. Well,all good things come to an end and after a short stay at Koekais it was back onto the road of hell and so we winded the off roads all the way up to Kimberley,where we stayed at the big hole in a shanty town,and next day  back home.
After nearly 3800km in 9 days,my body felt like it was to hell and back
Anybody wanting to experience the best on/off roading and scenery that will blow your mind, a trip up to augrabies and beyond, must be done. You will never be disappointed, thats now if you love proper on/off roading and on roads that hardly see traffic or humans :):):)
here follows some of our trip video links. when on youtube try and keep the quality settings of playback at minimum 720HD to appreciate the scenery

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N9a5pqtNMGE

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MF4xo4GCygc

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EJ0cta_W8DM


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Planning a Ride / advice needed green kalahari roads
« on: October 09, 2014, 04:51:04 pm »
The wife and I am going to tour the whole of the green kalahari in december and january.we will be on my gs adv lc .on my way back from augrabies to gauteng I was thinking of going via the witsand nature reserve.has anyone been to witsand recently anf how is the roads. As I will be fully loaded and 2 on there wont be any riding on the pegs.also I want to find out the best and shortest route from upington side.all info will be appreciated

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