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Offline wino

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April frontier trip - day 1
« on: May 01, 2006, 12:28:35 pm »
Another adventure to be had by three school buds! The three of us had a road trip three years ago in a car ? seeing that we have all evolved to having ds bikes the choice mode of transport for this trip was made in destiny.
Day 1
The Friday morning I left early from Jhb in high spirit. Being autumn already, there was a slight bite in the air, just enough to keep me alert without lulling me into hibernation.

Entering Sasolburg:

Usually on longer trips I ride with a map and gps. As fate would have this time I opted for the gps only, bad mistake! The gps acted up and could not be used, hence I soon found myself on strange roads and being a public holiday, could find no store on the platteland dorpies to buy a map. In the city I have become accustomed to stores being open on pretty much all the days of the year and it was thus quite a culture shock!

After having done a loop via the N1, I soon found myself on the route that I rode last September when we did the Baviaans/Hel. The road is pretty straight and visually becomes boring very quickly, but once you pass Marquard, the Maluti mountains in the yonder provides some stimulation.

The sight and smell of fresh harvest:

From Marquard to Ladybrand the scenery is awesome and the road twists and winds its way around the koppies ? definitely worth the ride. Regarding shops being closed on the platteland on a public holiday: in Ladybrand (scenically situated town) the only eatery open was a Wimpy where I had a quick bite.

After Ladybrand the scenery once again changes to the ?grassy? flatlands and the road is straight.

Crossing the Caledon river. If you look closely, you will see the level to which the river rose during the past rains:

In Zastron it was time for the first church pic:

This weird formation just outside of Zastron provided some stimulus ? maybe the rockclimbers out there will recognise it:

Oh yes, a journey without wind just seems impossible. You know you are in for a tough one when special signs are posted!

Time to cross the mighty Orange river at Norvalspont:

In Colesberg I came across this sign - well, I had a good chuckle, but there is also something disturbing about it! I thought about a career in civil service, sponsored by?

In Colesberg I made the decision to push on and maybe have the night stop en route to Graaff Reinet further on.

The sun was starting to set, the wind died down and the traffic with it. Perfect riding conditions, slipping in and out of the shadows provided by the koppies and savouring the golden veld:

A panoramic view at the top of the Lootsberg Pass:

And a bit further on:

The sun was now starting to set at a swift rate. My idea of sleeping over in Nieu Bethesda was dissolving with it. Onwards then to Graaff Reinet:

1100k?s for the day, as a result of stupidity!