Welcome, Guest. Please Login or Register

Author Topic: All in a day's work... (Gabriel's Pass & Doringrivier Crossing)  (Read 10479 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline Archangel

  • Admin & Commercial
  • Race Dog
  • ***
  • Bike: AJS (all models)
    Location: Western Cape
  • Posts: 3,951
  • Thanked: 65 times
  • Of maar net Gabriel
Friday morning, at around teatime, I decided that I wanted to go and find my namesake pass and see if it can be done on a bike. Some searches and phone calls revealed that it's only a hiking trail, but I wanted to see for myself.

After a quick twist of the rubber arm, my Dad (MellowJo) signed up as partner in crime. He had his own agenda, as he always wanted to cross the Doringrivier on the SOS Willehond and we'd be in the area anyways, sort off...  Well, in the same province at least. I was happy to oblige, as I've also wanted to "cross that bridge when we get there", but I had no clue of exactly where this was, nor did I research or plot routes of this particular area (or any other area for that matter), as the planning stages of this trip was non-existent.

The rough draft plan in my head was for me to ride from Cape Town on Friday night, sleep at their spot in Melkbos and then to leave early Saturday for our "half day, morning trip", ride to the Gabriel's Pass, cross the Doringriver and be back in time for the Springbok game at 5pm.

After packing the bike and getting everything ready on Friday night, it starting to rain in town! I wasn't about to get all my gear wet before the next day, so I called off the night ride and opted for an earlier start the next day. I sent messages of the new plans to Dadio, but the post doves took a slight detour.

Come Saturday morning, I was up early and ready to leave when our bloody cat didn't want to come in. After trying for about 20 minutes, I gave up and just left. He'll survive.

I pull out the driveway, and on my way down the road, the bike looses power and I realise that I'm running out of fuel. Jip, the fuel light doesn't work...  >:(

Anyhow, it's downhill to the nearest garage, so I free down, fill up and zero my trip counter.

Finally I'm off...

Offline Lem

Re: All in a day's work... (Gabriel's Pass & Doringrivier Crossing)
« Reply #1 on: August 21, 2016, 02:55:47 pm »
subscribed  :thumleft:
Faith is not knowing what the future holds, it's knowing who holds the future
 

Offline Archangel

  • Admin & Commercial
  • Race Dog
  • ***
  • Bike: AJS (all models)
    Location: Western Cape
  • Posts: 3,951
  • Thanked: 65 times
  • Of maar net Gabriel
Re: All in a day's work... (Gabriel's Pass & Doringrivier Crossing)
« Reply #2 on: August 21, 2016, 02:57:01 pm »
BTW, MellowJo, doesn't even know about this whole shebang that went down before dawn...  ;D

I get to their place at around 07h30, only to find everything closed and locked up. They were out the night before and he overslept our new scheduled departure time (of which he never go the message anyways), so I woke them up with the sound of a thumper.

After a quick tea and toast, gearing up the bikes and dressing, we were ready to ride at 08h35, only 1h35 min behind schedule...  :o

Just before we left, Jo realised that he didn't plug his phone in to charge the previous night. Luckily I brought my battery bank with, because I wanted to make sure I have enough power to last the day. I gave it to him, so that he can charge his phone on the ride, because we'd be home just after lunch anyways, right?

Pic 1 - ready to leave
Pic 2 - route, part 1
« Last Edit: August 21, 2016, 02:58:40 pm by Archangel »
 

Offline Archangel

  • Admin & Commercial
  • Race Dog
  • ***
  • Bike: AJS (all models)
    Location: Western Cape
  • Posts: 3,951
  • Thanked: 65 times
  • Of maar net Gabriel
Re: All in a day's work... (Gabriel's Pass & Doringrivier Crossing)
« Reply #3 on: August 21, 2016, 03:02:30 pm »
Realising we have messed up the start of this trip (and because we didn't plan anything else), we hit tar towards Ceres to get into the mountain range asasp. We did some short stretches of gravel (Zonqasdrif, past Riebeek Kasteel), but mostly tar.

Going through Malmesbury, the temperature dropped and it became obvious that this would be a colder trip than expected. It was sunny skies on the coast, but very misty inland.

« Last Edit: August 21, 2016, 03:03:31 pm by Archangel »
 

Offline Archangel

  • Admin & Commercial
  • Race Dog
  • ***
  • Bike: AJS (all models)
    Location: Western Cape
  • Posts: 3,951
  • Thanked: 65 times
  • Of maar net Gabriel
Re: All in a day's work... (Gabriel's Pass & Doringrivier Crossing)
« Reply #4 on: August 21, 2016, 03:16:03 pm »
At Ceres we stopped and I filled up with fuel. By now I've done 150km and I wasn't exactly sure of my range. The tank size is 12 litres and at this stop I topped up with 8.6 litres. That gives my 17.5 litres per km and a total range of approximately 200 km, if I ride around 100kmph.

I wanted to fuel up at "Op-die-Berg", but I wasn't sure if I'd make it there. We were planning on stopping there again to fill up anyways. From the get go, we knew that fuel range would be an issue, but luckily Mellow's fuel tanker, takes a gazillion* liters, so I could fill up from him if I needed. We were even thoughtful enough to buy a bottle of water and put it in Jo's topbox, so that we could use to transfer fuel at a later stage, if/when required. More stories on that bottle later...

A quick burger at Steers to warm up and fuel the bodies, before we hit the mountains!

*Gazillion = 30 liters in this case. Otherwise know is just enough, or just not enough, depending on your point of reference.
« Last Edit: August 21, 2016, 03:18:32 pm by Archangel »
 

Offline Archangel

  • Admin & Commercial
  • Race Dog
  • ***
  • Bike: AJS (all models)
    Location: Western Cape
  • Posts: 3,951
  • Thanked: 65 times
  • Of maar net Gabriel
Re: All in a day's work... (Gabriel's Pass & Doringrivier Crossing)
« Reply #5 on: August 21, 2016, 03:27:11 pm »
From Ceres we were North bound. Then planned stop at Op-die-Berg almost ended in a fight with the locals, as we happened to the only petrol station in "peak time" and some of the locals were not content with waiting in line. Nor were we willing keep falling in behind, as time was already an issue...

The pic doesn't do it justice, but I'll post it anyway (Pic 1).

The hope was go get to the Cederberg Oasis where we would have a quick sarmie and gather some info on the possibilities around Gabriel's pass.

Pic 2 - route 2
« Last Edit: August 21, 2016, 03:28:55 pm by Archangel »
 

Offline Archangel

  • Admin & Commercial
  • Race Dog
  • ***
  • Bike: AJS (all models)
    Location: Western Cape
  • Posts: 3,951
  • Thanked: 65 times
  • Of maar net Gabriel
Re: All in a day's work... (Gabriel's Pass & Doringrivier Crossing)
« Reply #6 on: August 21, 2016, 03:38:00 pm »
Everything up to this point can be considered as "Intro"

This is where the rubber left the road...

Cederberg, Dual Sport/Adventure bike heaven!

There were some flowers, breathtaking views (even though you've seen it all before) and generally good gravel roads.
« Last Edit: August 21, 2016, 03:40:49 pm by Archangel »
 

Offline MellowJo

  • Race Dog
  • ***
  • Bike: BMW R1150GS
    Location: Western Cape
  • Posts: 1,859
  • Thanked: 68 times
  • Melkbos
Re: All in a day's work... (Gabriel's Pass & Doringrivier Crossing)
« Reply #7 on: August 21, 2016, 03:58:09 pm »
OK, so Archie gives me a call, anouncing that he is going to see Gabriel's pass in the Cederberg .....

I know that his new bike can hardy go round the block with one tank, and he needs someone to pick him up when he falls off the thing, so I decided that I would do the honours and chaperone him.

Bloody good thing I took the tanker as well ..... but more about that later in the story ....
« Last Edit: August 21, 2016, 03:59:04 pm by MellowJo »
Don't worry, be happy ! Don't take yourself so seriously !!
2 x FS1, 200Roadmaster, 400Hawk, XL500R, XS750, XR500R, 600TT, CX500, 1150GS, R1100RS, R1100GS, R1200S, R1200RT, 1150GS (2), K100, R1100S & 35 Cages !!
 

Offline MellowJo

  • Race Dog
  • ***
  • Bike: BMW R1150GS
    Location: Western Cape
  • Posts: 1,859
  • Thanked: 68 times
  • Melkbos
Re: All in a day's work... (Gabriel's Pass & Doringrivier Crossing)
« Reply #8 on: August 21, 2016, 04:01:21 pm »
.... BTW, I declined other biking invites for the weekend because we had a birthday party on Friday night and the rain coming on Sunday, so I had a day of spanner theraphy planned for Saturday ....

But kids bring responsibilities .....  :deal:
« Last Edit: August 21, 2016, 04:46:02 pm by MellowJo »
Don't worry, be happy ! Don't take yourself so seriously !!
2 x FS1, 200Roadmaster, 400Hawk, XL500R, XS750, XR500R, 600TT, CX500, 1150GS, R1100RS, R1100GS, R1200S, R1200RT, 1150GS (2), K100, R1100S & 35 Cages !!
 

Offline Archangel

  • Admin & Commercial
  • Race Dog
  • ***
  • Bike: AJS (all models)
    Location: Western Cape
  • Posts: 3,951
  • Thanked: 65 times
  • Of maar net Gabriel
Re: All in a day's work... (Gabriel's Pass & Doringrivier Crossing)
« Reply #9 on: August 21, 2016, 04:02:33 pm »
Our stop at Oasis provided some valuable info, over and above the Ham, Cheese & Tomato sarmies coupled with warm cup of tea.

Now for those who don't know about Gabriel's Pass, I'd have to take a moment to provide some background.

There is a hiking trail over the mountains from Driehoek to Langkloof. The route is about 10km and crosses what seems to be a valley in the middle with a potential route coming up to the middle of the trail from Sanddrif side.

According to Gerrard (from Oasis), there's no way you can do that on your motorbikes, but we can ask David. We just wanted to see if we could take the route up the middle to see if we can have a look up the valley from both sides. Even google seems to think that we can drive there with a car...

Offline 2StrokeDan

  • a Man of Character
  • Worshond
  • ***
  • Bike: KTM 690 Adventure
    Location: Western Cape
  • Posts: 28,308
  • Thanked: 2814 times
  • Slim like Bill, straight like Steve
Re: All in a day's work... (Gabriel's Pass & Doringrivier Crossing)
« Reply #10 on: August 21, 2016, 04:03:33 pm »
 :thumleft: :thumleft:

I am waiting......
 

Offline MellowJo

  • Race Dog
  • ***
  • Bike: BMW R1150GS
    Location: Western Cape
  • Posts: 1,859
  • Thanked: 68 times
  • Melkbos
Re: All in a day's work... (Gabriel's Pass & Doringrivier Crossing)
« Reply #11 on: August 21, 2016, 04:08:25 pm »
So we stop at Zandrift to get approval and directions when my trusting bike dies .... as in no electrics, none, even the clock is dead ....

Take off the seat and find a loose battery connection ..... phew ... this can be sorted ...

Lever up the tank to get to the bloody battery and eventually get all connected and ready to go ....

Fire up the tanker, but something is amiss, it is firing on only one cylinder ....  ???

.... eventually we find that one of the choke cables got stuck in the battery process and needed to be reseated ....

OK now we are ready to rock and roll ....   :ricky:
« Last Edit: August 21, 2016, 04:13:21 pm by MellowJo »
Don't worry, be happy ! Don't take yourself so seriously !!
2 x FS1, 200Roadmaster, 400Hawk, XL500R, XS750, XR500R, 600TT, CX500, 1150GS, R1100RS, R1100GS, R1200S, R1200RT, 1150GS (2), K100, R1100S & 35 Cages !!
 

Offline Buffel B

  • Race Dog
  • ***
  • Bike: BMW R1200GS Adventure
    Location: Gauteng
  • Posts: 977
  • Thanked: 25 times
  • BMW R1200 GSA LC
Re: All in a day's work... (Gabriel's Pass & Doringrivier Crossing)
« Reply #12 on: August 21, 2016, 04:11:04 pm »
Ditto
Volg die Renoster-metode : "Kop-af en beur-vorentoe"
 

Offline Archangel

  • Admin & Commercial
  • Race Dog
  • ***
  • Bike: AJS (all models)
    Location: Western Cape
  • Posts: 3,951
  • Thanked: 65 times
  • Of maar net Gabriel
Re: All in a day's work... (Gabriel's Pass & Doringrivier Crossing)
« Reply #13 on: August 21, 2016, 04:11:32 pm »
Some Google Earth perspective.

Offline Archangel

  • Admin & Commercial
  • Race Dog
  • ***
  • Bike: AJS (all models)
    Location: Western Cape
  • Posts: 3,951
  • Thanked: 65 times
  • Of maar net Gabriel
Re: All in a day's work... (Gabriel's Pass & Doringrivier Crossing)
« Reply #14 on: August 21, 2016, 04:16:36 pm »
While Mellow was getting the tanker running again, his protege was talking to David (Zandrif owner) who informs us that this "up the creek" path is on their grounds and they don't allow public access and there are locked gates at the entrance to the path. They actually don't even allow bikes in their campsite, but that's another story. Point is, that we won't be driving up from the southern side. At least not legally and not today...

I still at least wanted to see the path, so I convinced Mellow that we should have a look from the Langkloof side, but time was not on our side. (Something we would say often on this trip, and then completely ignore the fact.)
« Last Edit: August 21, 2016, 04:18:34 pm by Archangel »
 

Offline Aprilian

  • Race Dog
  • ***
  • Bike: Husqvarna (all models)
    Location: Western Cape
  • Posts: 1,452
  • Thanked: 55 times
  • 1200 BMX
Re: All in a day's work... (Gabriel's Pass & Doringrivier Crossing)
« Reply #15 on: August 21, 2016, 04:25:57 pm »
Okso nou weet ek hoekom die K nog wynrooi is....
Surely if I was obsessed with motorcycles I’d have more than one; no two; no three; no no, four… ah, never mind…
 

Offline MellowJo

  • Race Dog
  • ***
  • Bike: BMW R1150GS
    Location: Western Cape
  • Posts: 1,859
  • Thanked: 68 times
  • Melkbos
Re: All in a day's work... (Gabriel's Pass & Doringrivier Crossing)
« Reply #16 on: August 21, 2016, 04:38:20 pm »
I thought that the Langkloof is in the Soutern Cape, not in the Cederberg ......   ???
Don't worry, be happy ! Don't take yourself so seriously !!
2 x FS1, 200Roadmaster, 400Hawk, XL500R, XS750, XR500R, 600TT, CX500, 1150GS, R1100RS, R1100GS, R1200S, R1200RT, 1150GS (2), K100, R1100S & 35 Cages !!
 

Offline Archangel

  • Admin & Commercial
  • Race Dog
  • ***
  • Bike: AJS (all models)
    Location: Western Cape
  • Posts: 3,951
  • Thanked: 65 times
  • Of maar net Gabriel
Re: All in a day's work... (Gabriel's Pass & Doringrivier Crossing)
« Reply #17 on: August 21, 2016, 04:43:12 pm »
From Sanddrif (or Zanddrif), we drove back East to the Wupperthal/Ceres route and turned North towards Wupperthal. About 10-15km further, se saw the broken signpost telling us to turn left if we wanted to see what Langkloof is all about.

It's only about 2km from the "Main Road", but it's quite sandy and has some tricky areas. When we got there, we could well and truly see that this Gabriel's Pass is not to be ridden on motorcycle, but the mountain range is spectacular and the slight detour was well worth it.

The trail runs over the left ridge that's barely visible on the 2nd pic. Once again, the pictures doesn't do this place justice. All I can say is go there...

Offline Archangel

  • Admin & Commercial
  • Race Dog
  • ***
  • Bike: AJS (all models)
    Location: Western Cape
  • Posts: 3,951
  • Thanked: 65 times
  • Of maar net Gabriel
Re: All in a day's work... (Gabriel's Pass & Doringrivier Crossing)
« Reply #18 on: August 21, 2016, 04:48:23 pm »
OK, so that put to bed my dream of riding Gabriel's Pass. I was content with knowing that it couldn't be ridden. Perhaps I'll come do the hike in the future.

But for now, it's back to our current trip. Of to Eselbank, then Wupperthal... Or is it Wipperthal?  :patch:   :ricky:

Offline MellowJo

  • Race Dog
  • ***
  • Bike: BMW R1150GS
    Location: Western Cape
  • Posts: 1,859
  • Thanked: 68 times
  • Melkbos
Re: All in a day's work... (Gabriel's Pass & Doringrivier Crossing)
« Reply #19 on: August 21, 2016, 04:51:20 pm »
This Langkloof can be rockclimbing heaven ....
Don't worry, be happy ! Don't take yourself so seriously !!
2 x FS1, 200Roadmaster, 400Hawk, XL500R, XS750, XR500R, 600TT, CX500, 1150GS, R1100RS, R1100GS, R1200S, R1200RT, 1150GS (2), K100, R1100S & 35 Cages !!