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Author Topic: Zim Gravel Travel Tour 2014. Rough, tough and rewarding!  (Read 13194 times)

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Offline Vosperd

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Re: Zim Gravel Travel Tour 2014. Rough, tough and rewarding!
« Reply #40 on: July 14, 2014, 10:00:35 am »
Thanks Mark! Looking good.  :thumleft:
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Online JustBendIt

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Re: Zim Gravel Travel Tour 2014. Rough, tough and rewarding!
« Reply #41 on: July 14, 2014, 10:06:02 am »
I wanna go back ...

Keep it coming JBI
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Offline Vosperd

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Re: Zim Gravel Travel Tour 2014. Rough, tough and rewarding!
« Reply #42 on: July 14, 2014, 10:49:55 am »
I wanna go back ...

Keep it coming JBI

with a new rear shock!
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Offline king edward

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Re: Zim Gravel Travel Tour 2014. Rough, tough and rewarding!
« Reply #43 on: July 15, 2014, 10:14:17 am »
Very polished report, thus far Markie - on a roll - keep it going brother
  :sip:  Ed
 

Offline Vosperd

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Re: Zim Gravel Travel Tour 2014. Rough, tough and rewarding!
« Reply #44 on: July 15, 2014, 10:30:06 am »
Jeez Eddie, you have to go on three gravel travel tours, switch from BMW to KTM, break your leg before you make your first post!

Talk about breaking a leg! :imaposer:
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Offline Frog

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Re: Zim Gravel Travel Tour 2014. Rough, tough and rewarding!
« Reply #45 on: July 15, 2014, 10:44:32 am »
Really enjoying this. Looking forward to the next installment :thumleft:
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Offline king edward

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Re: Zim Gravel Travel Tour 2014. Rough, tough and rewarding!
« Reply #46 on: July 18, 2014, 04:04:57 pm »
Jeez Eddie, you have to go on three gravel travel tours, switch from BMW to KTM, break your leg before you make your first post!

Talk about breaking a leg! :imaposer:

It's simple Dries - never knew how to post.....!!! Tee Hee
 

Offline Just Blip It!

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Re: Zim Gravel Travel Tour 2014. Rough, tough and rewarding!
« Reply #47 on: July 20, 2014, 09:06:33 pm »
Day 3  ďWild Ride

I was looking really forward to this day, we were entering the area where I had grown up. After breakfast we set off to the nearby town of Chiredzi. Many years ago my Uncle was the District Commissioner here. How the town has changed! The road leading into town from Hippo Valley used to be tarred, now it had deteriorated to such an extent it was now gravel all the way into town! Turning Chiredzi into a dusty dirty town. Passing through the residential area, I remembered how beautiful the gardens were when I was a boy, now there was barely a blade of grass around the houses, only the big shady trees bore testament to what was.




Fuel prices in US$!


Leaving Chiredzi in our dust we turned north and entered the Devuli Ranch, part of the Save Valley Conservency. After signing the visitors book at the boom gate we were allowed in. Always amazes me that bikes are allowed into these areas, in SA it would never be allowed.




Devuli Ranch was one of the biggest cattle ranches in Southern Rhodesia when it was started in 1919. 750000 hectares! Cattle containment fences were erected and water resources re-routed.  Wild animals were locked out of their traditional watering holes and indigenous grazing animals were forced to compete with cattle herds.  Predators that stalked the cattle were shot, and native animals that carried diseases harmful to the cattle were destroyed.

In 1991 Devuli Ranch was divided into 15 smaller land units, and in November 1992 members agreed to shift operations from cattle ranching to wildlife preservation.  Cooperative and respectful interactions between landholders allowed the move to sustainable natural resource management.  The wildlife and habitats were acknowledged as assets to be nurtured, to ensure their benefits continued into the future.
Cattle and internal fences were removed, and in conjunction with the Department and the The World Wide Fund for Nature, began monitoring and managing the restoration of the habitat.  In 1995 a 330km electric perimeter fence was built as a protective enclosure to protect the 3400 square kilometers/340 000 hectares of the conservancy.


.......and here we were riding through this amazing conservancy! Our route was over 120km of gravel roads and tracks through the bushveld. We were just through the boom gate when we saw the first signs of elephant, massive foot prints in the road with Mopani tree branches lying in the road.  I wondered how these elephant would react to the bikes should we come close to them?! Unfortunately we didnít get to see them, but we did see Kudu, Impala, Giraffe, Wildebeest, Warthog Monkeys and Baboon. The beauty of the bushveld was amazing and a real privilege to enjoy it from the bikes.





Mario.


Vosperd and Chuck.


Pades in action!




Jagsding Gameviewing.












Jagsding having a momentary lapse of talent. Got his luggage wet! :imaposer:




Zulu!




Africa! Got to love it!




King Edward and Jagsding!


Anthony throwing it away.........again! :imaposer:




It was sad to finally leave Devuli and get back on the tar. We headed on the tar for 20km to Birchenough Bridge, another small rural town on the banks of the Save river. Birchenough Bridge is the name for both a bridge across the Save River (pronounced Sa've) and a village next to the bridge. Birchenough Bridge is called after Sir Henry Birchenough. The bridge is spectacular and can be seen from miles away as the arch towers above the baobab trees. The bridge was completed in 1935 and was an amazing engineering feat of itís day!







Birchenough Bridge towering above the Baobabs.






Chuck at the bridge.


Mario.


We stopped at the Birchenough Bridge Hotel hoping to have lunch and a few cold beers. This also used to be a great hotel in its day, Saturday afternoons this hotel would have been packed with people lunching on the long veranda and children swimming in the hotel pool. What we found the opposite, not a visitor in sight, run down old building, overgrown garden, empty swimming pool and only one employee, the manger who informed us he had no food in the hotel only beer. While we sat down to a few cold beers, Dries and the Anthony went back to the village to find lunch which turned out to be chips and bread rolls. Not bad with beer!





Jagsding going for a dip in the hotel pool.


After lunch we crossed over the bridge and turned onto a track towards Chipinge, back into the rural areas, we passed through little villages and settlements, the locals took time off their daily chores to wave at us as we passed. Friendly people  and excited children flocked to the roadside to watch the bikes, definitely not something they were used to seeing!



Zulu had a little too much sun.




Towards the end of this road we came to a long river crossing and here the fun began! Whilst filmimg the bikes crossing Pades and I conspired to splash  King Edward, we chatted on our Senaís with me telling Pades when to charge into the river to get Eddie. Great fun and a good laugh!


<a href="https://www.youtube.com/v/gK6fEVy3OOo" target="_blank" class="new_win">https://www.youtube.com/v/gK6fEVy3OOo</a>








Just Blip It!




Back on the tar it was for a very entertaining twisty road up and over a mountain pass toward Chipinge, the scenery had changed from dry flat bushveld to rocky mountains with big indigenous Msasa and Mfuti trees lining the roads and mountains. Johan and I hit the front opening the throttles on the 990ís enjoying the corners.

<a href="https://www.youtube.com/v/V3X8t_30O0g" target="_blank" class="new_win">https://www.youtube.com/v/V3X8t_30O0g</a>


We turned off the tar onto a goat track shortcut over the mountains to Chipinge.





Chipinge is a town with a big farming community, famous for its tea and coffee plantations. We stopped in the small town to fill up and grab a cold drink only to be met by the local village idiot/madman dressed in rags who came at us holding a rock and shouting at the top of his lungs something to do with Zanu PF and white people. Quite intimidating! At first none of us removed our helmets anticipating some violence, but it turned out his bark was worce than his bite and although he continued to pace up and down in front of us shouting and screaming he did not become violent.











We rode out of Chipinge to our overnight accommodation on a working tea farm called New Years Gift, finding the guest house proved to be a challenge and after touring the surrounding farm areas for sometime we eventually stopped on the lawn at the guest house. Wow! Beautiful gardens with giant shady tress, lots of cold beers, we relaxed on the lawn, a perfect ending to a perfect day!





Jagsding befriending the help!








Paddy relaxing after a hard day in the saddle.


Johan. A wolf in sheeps clothing! He rides a KTM!  :pot:


Pades rolling a Zim Zombie Zapper!  :eek7:  :imaposer:


New Years Gift Guest House. Lekker old colonial hospitality!


Basic but comfortable!


Supper was very good for a hungry bunch of riders.




After supper myself and Pades were awarded the Pink Ties! I still don't know why, with our impeccable behaviour and faultless riding! I think there was an underhanded conspiracy happening behind our backs! :patch:


Riding Africa's lesser traveled tracks, discovering true adventure!
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Online JustBendIt

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Re: Zim Gravel Travel Tour 2014. Rough, tough and rewarding!
« Reply #48 on: July 21, 2014, 12:07:25 am »
 :blob7: :hello2:
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Offline Vosperd

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Re: Zim Gravel Travel Tour 2014. Rough, tough and rewarding!
« Reply #49 on: July 21, 2014, 02:57:19 pm »
Quote

Dries noticed his Mitas tyre which he had fitted for the trip was disintegrating! The knobblies were breaking out of the tyre, very worrying when there is still more than 2000km to go!  :o




Boys just an update the tire supplier (Piston Pete) came good on the mitas cliam and he has a new one in store waiting for me! Well done Pete and thanks again mate. I will make arrangements.

Obviously not happy it came apart but very appreciative that Mitas standing up for their product and inspires confidence to keep on buying their product!  :thumleft: :thumleft:
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Offline Varkboer

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Re: Zim Gravel Travel Tour 2014. Rough, tough and rewarding!
« Reply #50 on: July 22, 2014, 02:09:52 pm »
Baie nice sover ek wens ek was daar ek is defenatief in folgende keer :deal:
Baai Geeles
 

Offline Vosperd

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Re: Zim Gravel Travel Tour 2014. Rough, tough and rewarding!
« Reply #51 on: July 23, 2014, 08:28:52 pm »
kinghtrider

WTF. Why are we waiting..... :pot: :peepwall:

If he wrote like he rode we would have been on the 2015 RR already!  :imaposer: :imaposer:
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Offline BLK

Re: Zim Gravel Travel Tour 2014. Rough, tough and rewarding!
« Reply #52 on: July 23, 2014, 09:18:41 pm »
Thks for the RR.Reminds me of travelling around this area 44 yrs ago,Birch bridge etc.Things have changed and changing!!

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Offline Ian in Great Brak River

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Re: Zim Gravel Travel Tour 2014. Rough, tough and rewarding!
« Reply #53 on: July 24, 2014, 10:22:25 am »
Great report, and hats off to lots of good planning.

 8)
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Offline Toors

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Re: Zim Gravel Travel Tour 2014. Rough, tough and rewarding!
« Reply #54 on: July 24, 2014, 02:15:38 pm »
please sign me up for next year :thumleft:
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Offline Varkboer

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Re: Zim Gravel Travel Tour 2014. Rough, tough and rewarding!
« Reply #55 on: July 25, 2014, 05:10:52 pm »
Waaaaaaaaaaaaaars Blipit :ricky:
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Offline Kerritz

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Re: Zim Gravel Travel Tour 2014. Rough, tough and rewarding
« Reply #56 on: July 25, 2014, 07:28:32 pm »
Ja wonder ek ook  :patch:
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Offline trevorwb

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Re: Zim Gravel Travel Tour 2014. Rough, tough and rewarding!
« Reply #57 on: July 25, 2014, 08:18:21 pm »
An excellent rr .I definitely feel like I have missed out on a great trip.
 

Online Bushcat

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Re: Zim Gravel Travel Tour 2014. Rough, tough and rewarding!
« Reply #58 on: July 25, 2014, 08:39:21 pm »
Very lekker RR, we lived at Birchenough Bridge from 78 to 80, my oldman was based there. Our house was behind the hotel on the river bank of the Sabi River as it was known then.
My ballie blew 80% of his fingers off there after playing with a Rifle grenade that was lodged in the fence after we got stonked by the gooks.
Eastern highlands is one of the best biking areas to ride, will definitely be doing a trip back that way.
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Offline Mark62

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Re: Zim Gravel Travel Tour 2014. Rough, tough and rewarding!
« Reply #59 on: July 28, 2014, 09:41:05 pm »
Oops....
Just asking can you pay in Rand at the petrol stations and anywhere else ???
Planning to go to Zim asap  :ricky:
BMW  1200  GS Adventure 2014                                       4000km so far +10999km
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