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Offline Zanie

My Date with Fate: back to Hell
« on: July 09, 2016, 08:04:30 pm »

I have a bone to pick with Die Hel. Actually, it picked one of my bones. Now, almost 2 years later, I was going to take my healed self back there. My insurance: TITS (Time In The Saddle). My reinforcements: Lance, Ilse and Gerhard. Die Hel still held a grudge and levelled a curse at my bike this time, rather than me. Yet I managed to make it out (eventually).

Day 1: Cape Town to Die Hel

Click here for the Google Maps route.

We froze all the way to Touwsriver, with the temperature staying stubbornly between 7 and 9 °C (the Garmin temperature reading with the track above is an overestimate, since it sits in a warmer bag). Given the distance, we planned to shoot straight through to Die Hel; all tar until Swartberg Pass. At least, that was what Ilse and I requested. We did not want to ride Die Hel at night and were worried about the time. Yet the guys still managed to work in an extra bit of dirt from Laingsburg; running parallel to the N1.

Floriskraal Dam

We headed down the R323 from Laingsburg. After 13km, we climbed onto gravel at the Floriskraal Dam turn-off.

Getting to the dam itself, requires the finding of this obscure turn-off:

It resembles a farm driveway:

Lance headed up some impossibly steep concrete tweespoor. I thought he knew what he was doing and followed dutifully. I had to concentrate hard on looking ahead and following my chosen line (it roughly entailed not going off the rather high concrete edges).

Little did I know that Lance had no real idea where the road went. At one point he thought he had reached the end.

It was actually just a very sharp corner.

The road dead-ended on a platform…

…with views of Floriskraal Dam to one side…

…and mountains on the other side.

But where was Ilse?

She had stalled and was now stuck at a very awkward angle on one of the concrete tracks. Luckily her right foot had purchase. If she had tried putting down her left, she would not have found earth, unless in the form of full-body-and-bike contact.

Her first request? Open the visor! Stressed breathing equates to lots of fogginess.

A birds-eye-view of Gerhard’s rescue mission.

With all the bikes (and people!) safely at the top, we partook in some more scenery-gawking.

Ilse opted for a bike-delivery courier service for the concrete tracks return journey; compliments from Gerhard. I tried my hand at self-service, with Gerhard’s action camera watching from behind and Lance’s from below. No pressure! The corner was scary. You could feel the back tyre sliding on the loose gravel despite the application of brakes. The drop to the right (just short of 2m) did not look pleasant.

I managed to survive.

Don’t look down! Only ahead.

The sand monster

The road after Floriskraal Dam started innocently enough. It was beautiful and enjoyable…

…despite all the gates (some of them of colossal proportion).

Legend has it that there are 28 gates on this road. The guys had a tag-team system going: one would open the gate, the other would close it, and vice versa the next time. Ilse and I just breezed through! Gates? What gates?

We went through a private nature reserve en route.

From this point onwards (even beyond the reserve), the sand monster appeared.

The scenery remained stunning, but Ilse and my attention was riveted on the terrestrial surface.

The sign on this gate neatly summed up our feelings at this point: Vêrgenoeg!

The guys, of course, were not phased. They had some sports while waiting for us; creating some brake tracks on the road for us to puzzle over when we arrived.

They even did some recces on roads-less-travelled while us girls were plodding along on the “thoroughfare.”

After a dry river crossing, it got even worse.

And yet…something clicked. Something that my survival instincts have been fighting against for so very long: in sand, speed is your friend.

This knowledge had been purely theoretical until this point. It was the first time ever that I put it into practice. I’ve never had the balls to try it before. I still don’t have balls, but we do the best with what we are given! I can only think that my confidence level reached some tipping point after racking up the kilometres in trip after trip this year.

Disclaimer: “Speed” in relation to me means riding sand in second gear rather than in first or paddling. It was a small victory, but I was delirious with joy. Lance had to deal with strange maniacal laughing and whooping coming through his headset.

Ilse, on the other hand, had hardly been on gravel, let alone sand, in the past few months, due to work commitments. It was a harsh return ride, but she did fine. She has more sand experience than I do overall, as a result of following Gerhard around, who seems to have a thing for sand.

The sand continued.

But I was able to ride it!

The sand monster had not been completely domesticated yet, but I could now classify it as “feral,” rather than “wild.”

It was still snails’ pace for the guys, but Lance was happy that I appeared to cope. Our big Namibia trip was only 3 weeks away. This sand was just a forerunner of what we would face…

Swartberg Pass

The sand road spat us out on the R407. We headed to Prince Albert and then up the northern side of the Swartberg Pass. The southern side has the steepest gradients, but the northern is the most spectacular (from my point of view). Ilse had never been on Swartberg Pass before, while Gerhard had only seen the southern side.

It is a pass that needs to be done at a reverent, slow pace to take in the surroundings.

This also seemed to be the opinion of many flag-waving marshals stationed strategically at the tightest corners. They weren’t worried so much about the view as they were about the cyclists. There was some extreme cycling event taking place on the day. As a result, all the bikers we passed were going at a sedate pace. So were the cyclists! A chat with one of the lady cyclists revealed that she had arisen at some unearthly hour of the morning and could expect to have completed 160km when she arrived at the finish line in Prince Albert!

The water level at the driffie was low.

The red rocks of Swartberg.

Some of the slightly unenthusiastic marshals. After waving a flag for an entire day, I can only assume that your arms feel like they want to fall off.

Unfortunately the area recently burned, but it did not detract too much from the view.

This is the most spectacular part of the pass: where the road doubles back on itself multiple times, gaining altitude fast through a series of hairpin bends.

At the top, all you can do is stare.

Into Hell

Somewhere near the highest point of Swartberg Pass, you find the Gamkaskloof (Die Hel) turn-off. How cool is that? You ride a pass to get to a pass. The sign-board warns of a 2-hour one-way travelling time. Take this seriously if you are of the 4-wheeled variety. We took just short of 1.5 hours; at trundling speed with view stops. I’m sure there are other bikers that go much, much faster.

The very first stretch is relatively tame. We even spotted an adventurous sedan vehicle there the next morning.

Soon you start hitting “points of interest.” Wet points.

Then it gets rough. It’s not technically difficult (I rode this pass when I had just short of 6,000km of total bike-riding experience and next to zero off-road experience), but it is jarring. Especially if (the KTM okes will love this) your bike doesn’t have the best suspension on planet earth.

And yet, smiles all the way!

Another “point of interest.” Rocks this time.

I think this pass is one of the longest in SA; at 30-odd km. It has plenty of eye-candy…

…if you can see, that is. The setting sun was blinding. I used my hand to shield my eyes when it got particularly bad. The helmet peak was not enough. If I ducked my head that low I’d end up seeing instrument panel only. While my odometer and rev counter were indeed intriguing, I desperately needed my attention on the road and one of its over-200 bends/corners/curves.

An approaching car from the front, on a particularly narrow section of road, caused my heart rev counter to rise. I needed both hands for steering, I could hardly see thanks to the sun, and I was 99.9% sure that – before the sun had completely obliterated my peripheral vision – there was a damn ditch somewhere towards the left of the road, where the car was forcing me to go. Ilse, close on my heels, also recounted the car vs. ditch as the scariest episode of our ride. Traffic. The universal bikers’ bane.

Shielding my eyes:

One of the water crossings:

The lookout point above Gamkaskloof valley, a.k.a. Die Hel:

From this point onwards, the scenery shifts from pretty to spectacular. Or maybe “pretty spectacular.”

One of the many hair-pins:

Some cyclists on a hair-pin:
« Last Edit: September 02, 2017, 01:58:47 pm by Zanie »

Offline Zanie

Re: My Date with Fate: back to Hell
« Reply #1 on: July 09, 2016, 08:11:02 pm »
Dead in Die Hel

At Cape Nature’s campsite, at the entrance of the valley, we stopped for a chat with a bunch of other bikers we knew. After our social interlude, the four of us prepared to set off to the house we had booked further into the valley (Snyman’s House). Combining camping and winter did not appeal.

I got onto my bike and turned the key. The lights on my dash flicked on and then faded out. Not good. I did not even have to reach for my starter button to know it would be futile. I tried nevertheless. A tired single note was all I got in response.

I’d heard that batteries died suddenly. My bike had started first try every time this entire trip, even at the look-out point not even 3km back. I use my bike to commute daily (only a full-scale storm is a deterrent) and I go on trips every weekend I can. The battery, an expensive Motobatt sealed unit, was only 7 months old. “Sudden” does not begin to describe it…

Lance tried to push-start my bike (much easier with a 650 than, say, a 1200), as a first port of call, but it remained mute. The sun was disappearing fast. Lance, Gerhard and Ilse decided to push on to secure our digs and food arrangements.

At least I had an entire helpful group of guys, two of them mechanics by trade, to assist.

My bike was brought into the fold:

Being a big group of mechanically-minded bikers, jumper cables and a voltmeter were readily available. Hmm. Some more things to add to our pack list.

There were numerous tries to jump-start my bike’s heart. It would run, but only as long as the jumper leads remained firmly attached. The moment you removed them, the bike would die. The voltmeter showed why. A healthy battery is somewhere around 12V. A sick and dying (or maybe already dead) battery is around 10V. Mine was at 6V. Trying to start the bike would make it drop below 1V. Not just dead. Very dead. Cannot-resurrect dead. It would bleed another bike dry if we continued.

I am terrible with names, but a heartfelt thanks to all who tried. And another thanks for the sherry, to keep me warm until Lance returned. My bike remained with the guys. We would return in the morning; hopefully with a game plan.

It was the strangest experience: being a pillion again. I did not like it. It’s ok when on tar, but I get very nervous when going off-road and I am not “in control of my own destiny.” It’s illogical, considering Lance is a much better rider. He knew my mood and was sweet enough to ride slowly.

We had 15km to cover to our accommodation. The temperature dropped fast, going down to 8°C. Snyman’s House was just after the Gamka River crossing. The concrete bridge is slippery as snot (I’ve seen bikes go down here). Lance crossed slowly and steadily; keeping to the car tracks, where the algae was not as bad.

The “driveway” to Snyman’s House was very rocky. I spared a thought for Ilse, who had ridden it in the dark on her own bike.

Snyman’s House was incredibly warm, given the icy air. The cottage had very thick walls. It also had no glass for its windows; only heavy wooden shutters. Closing the shutters kept the heat in. We had ordered braai packs and some freshly-baked bread, which served as supper. The bread was amazing! The chicken from the braai pack had been frozen and the wood was wet, but the guys somehow managed to serve us perfectly-cooked chicken.

We discussed various options of escape for tomorrow. Given our route today, my bike could scarcely have chosen a place further away from civilisation to die. I had a towing-strap and knew how to use it, in theory (thanks to a self-rescue course), but I was sure that towing out of Die Hel would be singularly terrifying. Therefore our worst-case scenario involved the following:

1) Take the battery from Ilse’s bike (a newer 650) and place it in my bike
2) Lance and I ride to Oudtshoorn
3) Lance returns to Die Hel with Ilse’s battery, while I remain in Oudtshoorn with a dead bike, trying to get help
4) Lance, Gerhard and Ilse join me in Oudtshoorn

It would take incredibly long to do it this way round, which was why we would look at other options first…

Day 2: Die Hel to Ladismith

FYI: I only started my Garmin at the exit of Die Hel, where it joins Swartberg Pass.

Click here for the Google Maps route.

The luck of the devil

The day dawned at a chilly 4°C, but we had slept warmly.

Snyman’s House:

The view from the stoep:

We had heard rumours of a tour group of bikers on 800GS’s in the kloof. We wondered if they would have spare batteries and whether an 800GS battery would fit in a 650GS. Ilse and I went for a walk to the Cape Nature reserve manager’s house to find out about the tour group, while Lance and Gerhard opened up Ilse and Lance’s bikes to see whether 800GSA and 650GS batteries were compatible. They were not. Anyway, the reserve manager, Martin, told Ilse and me that there had been a tour group, but they had left at first light.

Martin was not able to help us with my bike predicament, but he told us to go speak with Donald from Boplaas. We could not phone Donald from Martin’s house, as the baboons had destroyed the telephone lines. Martin gave us the gate code to get into the Boplaas area of Die Hel. We headed back to our accommodation to relay the news to the guys. Gerhard set off on his bike to find Donald, while Lance and I got ready for the big trek.

The Snyman’s House driveway by daylight:

This is the reason you should try to ride the whole kloof:

The gate to Boplaas:

Gerhard had headed off in takkies. He regretted this move when he came to a water crossing. His shoes were a bit damp thereafter.

He finally found Donald – a friendly guy that Lance and I had met on our previous trip to Die Hel, when we stayed at Die Stalletjie. Unfortunately Boplaas had been fully-booked for this weekend.

Donald was our saviour. He did not have a motorbike, but he did have a quad bike. He removed the quad’s battery and gave it to Gerhard. We could leave it for Donald to collect in Oudtshoorn if we got sorted with a battery, or - if we were really stuck - he was ok with us taking the battery and sending money for a replacement. How is that for trust and awesomeness?

Gerhard returned, bearing precious cargo:

Ilse and Gerhard had initially thought they would be waiting around for a bit while Lance and I headed to Oudtshoorn as part of the worst-case scenario plan. They were not ready to leave yet. Lance and I set off, back to where my bike waited.

We just missed our helpful mechanics of the previous night. We could hear their bikes as they exited the valley. This left Lance and I in a bit of a pickle. Our tools were split between Gerhard and Lance. Lance had all the puncture-fixing tools, while Gerhard had the ones that would help with battery replacement. Bad planning.

I tramped around the campsite, trying to rustle up some tools from the local campers, as we did not know how long it would take Gerhard and Ilse to join us. The 4x4 set mainly just gave me funny looks. One family did try to help. They lent me a toolset that looked like Barbie’s first toolset. It came in a miniature, pink box. Unfortunately most of the tools were just that: too miniature. I do not know what would happen to any of the 4x4 campers if they ever broke down. Not a useful tool among an entire camp-load of them…

Eventually a hiking couple stopped to help. The guy was a farmer. Now we’re talking. Farmers seem to come standard with tools and a “boer-maak-‘n-plan” attitude. We had the bike opened up and the old battery out in no time. Then we hit a snag. The quad battery’s terminals were swapped. The bike’s negative terminal wire couldn’t reach. Placing the battery back-to-front didn’t solve anything (both wires didn’t reach in this case).

Flashback: I’d read a what-to-pack thread recently on this forum. It had mentioned wire, for securing broken bits of bike. I’d told Lance this sounded like a good idea. He’d misunderstood and packed a small loom of electrical wire. What luck!

Lance managed to fashion a connection wire for the negative terminal, with Mr Farmer giving some tips on how to make sure it stayed secure. But would the bike start?

It did.

Some passing bikers gave the strange, jumping, squealing girl quizzical looks.

The offending, expensive, dead item in the foreground:

We had to leave off my spotlights and compressor wire, as the creative connection on the negative terminal was not conducive to the attachment of anything else. Anyway, the battery sounded as if it was slightly miffed at its new setting and did not want to co-operate initially.

It’s messy, but it works:

Meanwhile, Ilse and Gerhard were working their way towards us.

« Last Edit: May 10, 2018, 09:13:54 pm by Zanie »

Offline Coxwain

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Re: My Date with Fate: back to Hell
« Reply #2 on: July 09, 2016, 08:11:35 pm »
Im going to read this whole report when I'm absolutely sober....not now

But Zanie ...It looks interesting ....
PIG LITE....Honda NX 650
Thel PIG... BMW R 1150 GS
The Black Bitch ...Yamaha XT 660 R Black Magic ....Yamaha XT 660 Z
Found my next ride .....BMW 1150 GS ...a mans bike

Offline Zanie

Re: My Date with Fate: back to Hell
« Reply #3 on: July 09, 2016, 08:24:10 pm »
Like a bat out of Hell…

Finally, just past noon, we were on our way out.

The battery saga almost distracted me from one of the reasons I wanted to return to Die Hel: find that one corner that had caused me so much pain. It would be easier to find on the way out, as that had been the direction of travel when I hit Mother Earth.

Lance found it. He was standing sentinel with his GoPro to record my survival on this rather unremarkable corner.

Recognition sets in:

I can now see why I fell. After the hair-pins, the road is straight for quite a while. This may have lulled me into a false sense of security. The road then curves gently to the right. I would have kept up my “speed.” It bent to the right again, slightly sharper. I can remember that I started getting worried here, but had thought that I would manage. Then a third right, tighter still. Here is where I lost my nerve, freaked out, focused only on the loose gravel dead ahead, straight-lined it to the edge, grabbed some front brake and slid out. The bike and I had skidded for a bit, with the bike grinding into my trapped right foot.

“Then” and “now” pictures with Lance’s bike and the rocky cut-away to the right as reference (it was funny that the bike happened to be parked in the exact same spot!):

I clocked 27,000 km in the 2 years since the accident. My skill level did not let me down. Today I was able to leave Die Hel with relative ease. Last time had been an ordeal of note.

The road out:

This time I was having a ball:

So was Ilse!

And the guys? Finding random little side roads as usual.

And heading back, before us girls start to worry:

Back on the “main route,” Lance found some tools and a can of tyre sealant. It had probably bounced from someone’s luggage. There was an extremely fast oke on a Kawasaki up ahead. The guys wondered if it was his, but he didn’t seem in the mood to chat or to be caught.

Lance plus water:

Gerhard plus air:

Die Hel is not as deserted as you may think. Keep left just in case, as Gerhard found out.

Engage evasive manoeuvre:

The road less travelled – the other side

In September the previous year, Lance had taken the four of us on a supposed “shortcut” between Meiringspoort and Swartberg Pass.  It had taken 3 hours to traverse 13km of the 50km route, after which we turned around.

<a href="https://www.youtube.com/v/v1NqgJuU520" target="_blank" class="new_win">https://www.youtube.com/v/v1NqgJuU520</a>

We were to find out later that the Swartberg Pass side of the road was actually Swartberg Kruin 4x4 trail, whilst the Meiringspoort side - where we rode – was apparently private. There were also rumours of a locked gate somewhere in the middle. Today the guys found the Western entrance.

It would have been terrible to traverse the full 50km only to come across this:

The guys were disappointed that they could not explore the Swartberg Kruin trail, but they did find a short piece of “road” a bit further on that warranted investigation.

Gerhard vs. tree stump:

Lance vs. gravity:

Lance finding a swampy spot:

There was a lot of bike pushing and pulling going on:

Spot the biker:

Eventually the guys back-tracked to Swartberg Pass….

…and joined us at the look-out point; where we were gawking at someone using a quadcopter.

Forever view from Swartberg Pass:

At first I had been loath to switch off my bike, given the battery’s initial reluctance. Yet it sounded stronger with every subsequent start.

In search of a battery

Our original route for day 2 had included Rooiberg Pass. Unfortunately those plans were scuttled. Today’s mission was three-fold: (1) get out of Die Hel, (2) get a new battery and (3) reach Ladismith area. We managed step 1. Now for the rest.

Time was not on our side as we headed to Oudtshoorn.

The timing of the battery search was not ideal. Not only was it a after 4pm on Sunday, it was a long weekend as well. We had been given the address of a motorcycle shop. The shop window had a 24-hour number. The owner did answer, but he apologised that he was not even near town, as he was on holiday. He recommended Pit-Stop. Here we struck lucky. There were three 24-hour numbers and I got an answer on the first one. Miracle of miracles, I was told that there would be someone out to help us in 10 minutes’ time! The proviso: only cash after hours. No card facilities. No problem!

True to their word, help arrived after 10 minutes. The shop did not have sealed-unit batteries, but at least it had motorcycle batteries. The place was mainly car-focused. The only problem: the battery had to be prepared first, i.e. acid had to be poured in, followed by a 40-45 minute wait for it to cool down. Our two helpers waited with us the entire time and helped install the new battery, despite the fact that we told them they could go home and chill – we could manage.

Lance with our two saviours:

I realise now that I should have kept the dead battery. Apparently Motobatt doesn’t honour warrantees without the broken bit as proof/evidence. I honestly had not realised that the battery was still within warrantee. It felt like I had ridden a million miles with it, but it was actually not even quite 7 months old yet. R170-odd per month for a battery. Sigh.

The quad battery was left with our two helpers. They knew the restaurant owner in Die Hel and would return the battery with him when he came into town, which he did about once a week. We phoned him, just to be sure that all arrangements had been made.

Gerhard and Ilse had gone ahead. By the time Lance and I set off, there was not much sunlight left. We arrived at Koedoeskloof in the dark. We would have supper here, but stay elsewhere - Koedoeskloof did not have any roofed accommodation available at the time. We met up with our bike mechanics from Die Hel, who gave a rousing round of applause that we had somehow made our way out of Die Hel.

After a good supper of kudu burgers, we headed off into the dark. Our accommodation was The Country Garden Guest Farm. It was rather exciting traversing their 6km gravel driveway in the dark.

Imagine the absolute joy when we discovered electric blankets! Yet again, the world outside was cold, but we slept warmly.

Day 3: Ladismith to Cape Town

Click here for the Google Maps route. FYI: Google Maps does not show Joubertspoort Pass as a through road.

Down the garden path

We had breakfast, which we had pre-booked, at reception. We would not be able to find food any time soon on today’s route.

Heading off down The Country Garden’s driveway:

Lance felt a bit playful with camera angles today:

Return to Anysberg

And then we reached Anysberg:

My memory of this place from my last ride was that it had been rather taxing. I had not had time to absorb the view and had given my full attention to the road surface. So much so that I almost rode into a herd of ribokke that crossed the road.

My memory was correct. The road does have its more challenging sections:

Yet there was one massive difference: skill level. Last time it had been a strenuous achievement. This time it was fun!

The rare phenomenon of “standing Zanie”:

Catching a bit of air. Some may simply call it bad suspension.

Gerhard showing how it’s really done:

I think my up-skilling is starting to affect Lance’s subconscious mind. The previous night he had dreamt that I was doing backwards wheelies until I fell off a cliff. The unfortunate end to that dream may be why he would tell me to be careful whenever I got too boisterous.

It was Ilse’s first time through Anysberg. Her feedback corroborated mine: fun!

Ilse had removed an ill-fitting back protector from a newly-bought second-hand jacket. The protector had gone for a scenic flight sometime during Anysberg, somehow managing to escape from where it was wedged beneath her luggage on the back of the bike. A particularly long road-side break allowed some 4x4s to catch up with us. They asked us if a strange, orange object they had recovered belonged to us. The kindness of others seemed to be a theme for this ride.
« Last Edit: September 03, 2017, 04:06:08 pm by Zanie »

Offline Zanie

Re: My Date with Fate: back to Hell
« Reply #4 on: July 09, 2016, 08:36:20 pm »
The obscure Joubertspoort Pass

For a long time, Lance had eyed Joubertspoort Pass on the Mountain Passes website. He had refrained from it during our Baviaans trip, as it had seemed quite rough (it is marked as strictly 4x4) and he did not want to chance it with just the two of us. Now we were four. Game on.

You need to know where to look to find this pass. Without the start’s co-ordinates, we would have missed it. It branches off before the end of Ouberg Pass (not the Sutherland one, but the one near Montagu). Ilse and I initially did not follow the guys when they appeared to bundu-bash off the road. We thought they were just exploring a dead-end side-road, as is their tendency, and waited for their return. Lance contacted me via our comms and told us to follow. Were they serious? Our fuel was running low. Was this wise? Lance responded: sure, this is a short-cut to Montagu. I try to repress the invariable shudder at the word “short-cut.”

The Ouberg entrance to Joubertspoort Pass:

Was this a road?

Apparently so…

The invariable gate (at least the only one on this pass):

Once I had been persuaded that the road did indeed go somewhere, I could give myself over to the enjoyment of the challenge. It was definitely an interesting stretch of road. I’d love to do it again in the opposite direction.

Ilse playing Tetris with the rocks. Now where do the wheels go?

It’s not really as steep as it looks:

Fabulous view:

There was a whole series of fun bumps on the other side:

After the pass, the road took a scenic tour through farmlands…

…complete with pedestrian farm traffic.


Gerhard’s bike’s fuel gauge was on high alert. This, along with the recently-completed awesomeness of Joubertspoort Pass, may have prompted the guys to try yet another short-cut.

This time we were not so lucky. This gate came complete with the usual “private property” fan-fare. There was even a sign showing that no cyclists were allowed. I suppose this would apply to the motorised kind as well.

Retreat! Retreat!

And so ended our off-road adventure:

We hopped on tar from Montagu. An excellent late lunch/early supper was had at Robertson at Bourbon Street restaurant. Our mechanic friends from Die Hel apparently stopped here, but could not get service. By the time we arrived, the place was relatively quiet.

No matter the time, there is always time to take the slightly longer route home via Du Toit’s Kloof Pass (rather than the tunnel). We arrived home in the dark.


I was finally able to go back and face my nemesis. I managed the trip unscathed. Not so my bike. It had a new heart. And some more dings and scratches.

One rather large ding to be exact:

I was rather surprised, as my tyres were at 2 bars and I cannot recall a very hard hit.

A short while after the trip I noticed that one of the bolts that attached my right-hand-side crash bar was coming loose. It was threaded. Tracing the reason for this led to the discovery that my crash bar was snapped. If not for the loose bolt, I don’t think I would have picked it up. I wonder if the break was caused by my fall in Die Hel almost two years ago, or whether it only weakened the metal, which eventually snapped on one of my smaller incidents. I suspect the former, as the only other fall I’ve had that I would not classify as a “side-stand incident” was on the left-hand-side of the bike.

I remember how sad I was when I put the first couple of small scratches on my bike. It now has deep grooves on its nose thanks to that one accident, as well as a multitude of scuffs and scratches all over. It makes me think of one of Lance’s favourite quips: “If you don’t break yourself, you’re not trying hard enough.” Mission accomplished, but I think I’ll stick to breaking the bike rather than me. Bikes heal faster.

Lance created a video of the trip:

<a href="https://www.youtube.com/v/RAjXlZUEuq0" target="_blank" class="new_win">https://www.youtube.com/v/RAjXlZUEuq0</a>
« Last Edit: September 03, 2017, 04:18:30 pm by Zanie »

Offline RobC

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Re: My Date with Fate: back to Hell
« Reply #5 on: July 09, 2016, 08:37:19 pm »
Wonderfull RR! :thumleft:

Offline Kykdaar

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Re: My Date with Fate: back to Hell
« Reply #6 on: July 09, 2016, 09:14:40 pm »
Very enjoyable read :thumleft:

Offline Crab

Re: My Date with Fate: back to Hell
« Reply #7 on: July 10, 2016, 01:27:09 am »
Excellent RR and brilliant video. Some really nice roads there
Look for a shooting star and see Lynda's trail and remember all the great places you shared with her,she will never forget what she shared with you and will show you that in every starry night .

Offline Black_Hawk

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Re: My Date with Fate: back to Hell
« Reply #8 on: July 10, 2016, 04:37:51 am »
Another well written report. Well done Zanie  :thumleft:
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Offline safetysteve

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Re: My Date with Fate: back to Hell
« Reply #9 on: July 10, 2016, 04:50:24 am »
I really enjoyed reading this. Gonna show it to my wife for some inspiration in her journey towards getting a bike.

Thanks for the RR
Current Lover: BMW GSA 1200 LC
Previous Lovers : BMW GS 1200 ADV, Kawasaki KLR 650, Kawasaki KLE 500, Bashan Explode 250, Honda XL185, Suzuki GSX 400, Honda MBX 50

Offline Ama ride ride

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Re: My Date with Fate: back to Hell
« Reply #10 on: July 10, 2016, 09:06:57 am »
Thanks for the lekker RR Zanie. Can see you put in a lot of effort. :thumleft:
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Offline JohnoB

Re: My Date with Fate: back to Hell
« Reply #11 on: July 10, 2016, 09:29:02 am »
Great RR, inspiring me to go there again! Well done to the ladies for handling some challenging roads

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Offline DEE 1150

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Re: My Date with Fate: back to Hell
« Reply #12 on: July 10, 2016, 09:45:30 am »
Very nice RR, photos and video's !

TITS is paying off !

Can see you guys really enjoyed that, well done !!

Offline Heimer

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Re: My Date with Fate: back to Hell
« Reply #13 on: July 10, 2016, 10:15:51 am »
What a great RR  :thumleft:

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Offline George77

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Re: My Date with Fate: back to Hell
« Reply #14 on: July 10, 2016, 03:49:42 pm »
Sal like om julle eendag te join vir n trip! Dit lyk of julle die lekkerste roetes en paadtjies in Afrika vind. Reel maar eendag n trip!

Offline BMWPE

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Re: My Date with Fate: back to Hell
« Reply #15 on: July 10, 2016, 05:51:07 pm »
Great Ride Report  :thumleft: :thumleft:



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Re: My Date with Fate: back to Hell
« Reply #16 on: July 10, 2016, 06:17:36 pm »
. Our two helpers waited with us the entire time and helped install the new battery, despite the fact that we told them they could go home and chill – we could manage.

Deon and Hugo, both good boys :thumleft:

Great RR :thumleft:

Offline whitedelight

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Re: My Date with Fate: back to Hell
« Reply #17 on: July 10, 2016, 08:27:05 pm »
Great report as always. Lance is very lucky to have a girl like you. And great the four of you get to do cool trips. Best video to date in my opinion.
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Re: My Date with Fate: back to Hell
« Reply #18 on: July 10, 2016, 10:51:31 pm »
Really nice report. Well done, and thank you.

Offline Ian in Great Brak River

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Re: My Date with Fate: back to Hell
« Reply #19 on: July 11, 2016, 04:37:17 am »
Thanks for a great ride along on ths RR Zanie, well done!
1978. It's 6am, mid winter...two up on a XL 185S ... off to my first casino ever with all of R40 and we've got a full tank of fuel, so enough to get there we reckon.... that's determination...

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