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Author Topic: Limpopo Fartabout  (Read 6323 times)

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Offline Xpat

Limpopo Fartabout
« on: December 04, 2016, 10:08:51 am »
Intro

I've been out of action with broken leg since July and it's getting on my nerves - especially as I'm sitll not able to ride over the upcoming holidays. So to keep myslef occupied, I concocted this quick mini report from a 5 day ride I've done in May around Limpopo river. No 'War and peace' this time - just a video and some photos with description.

The route took me from Midrand via DeWildt and dirt roads up to Elisras/Lephalale on day 1. On day 2, I crossed to Botswana in Zanzibar, from where I went for an exploratory loop of the tracks around  Bonobong and then moved for sleepover in the Molema Campsite in the Tuli reserve. On Day 3 I rode through Tuli reserve game viewing, crossed back to SA in Pont Drift and on Mikie's recommendation went for some more game viewing in adjacent Mapungubwe NP (where interestingly one is allowed to ride bike, at least in the main section), and ended up overnighting in a lodge in Alldays. Day 4 turned out to be great ride through the deep sand roads of northern Limpopo from Alldays to Marken where I took to the mountains crossing to Vaalwater and continuing on to Rooiberg along Waterberge and going down Bakker's pass. After sleepover in Rooiberg lodge, I have hit the dirt roads following western boundary of Borakalo NP to Jericho, where I hit the DeWildt shabeen and took the DeWildt route back to Police station and back home. The plan originally included exploring the mountains around Tzaneen - especially the mysterious Penge pass, but I got lazy and it will hav to wait for another trip.

Map of the route:





And here is the video summary of the trip:

<a href="https://www.youtube.com/v/hc2R0oYD1Ew" target="_blank" class="new_win">https://www.youtube.com/v/hc2R0oYD1Ew</a>


Edit: The video doesn't seem to work on my Apple Safari browser, but seems fine in Firefox. If you have problem viewing it, you can see it here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hc2R0oYD1Ew
« Last Edit: December 04, 2016, 07:31:18 pm by Xpat »
 

Offline Xpat

Re: Limpopo Fartabout
« Reply #1 on: December 04, 2016, 10:39:13 am »
Day 1

As mentioned in the intro, on Day 1 I started from Midrand, rode up through DeWildt to the shabeen and then connected to the dirt roads heading up to Elisras/Lephalale through Rooiberg and along the Marakele NP.

Entering DeWildt behind the mountain:




Shabeen in DeWildt with the usual suspects




Marakele NP:






Offline Xpat

Re: Limpopo Fartabout
« Reply #2 on: December 04, 2016, 10:55:27 am »
Day 2

Day 2 took me on dirt roads from Elisras to Zanzibar border crossing, where I crossed to Botswana and rode up to Bobonong to explore dirt roads along the Motloutse river. Unfortunatelly my map said that riding in the riverbed is not allowed, so I just did a loop out to Toping and then headed back to Tuli block for some game viewing and sleepover in Molema campsite on the bank of the dry Limpopo river.

On the way from Lephalale, I chose Beauty (I may be lying and may have gone actually the Beska way, but it sounds better that way):



Swartwater CBD - or rather the whole of Swarwater:



Few riverbeds of tributaries to Motloutse river around Toping - I wasn't able to establish if they can be ridden. If yes, this would be a riding paradise:




Some wildlife in Tuli on the way to Molema campsite:



Molema campsite, with my cabin:





Dry Limpopo river (still one has to watch out even while walking to almost dry puddles - there are big crocks sitting there in waiting). This time there were no elephants around unfortunatelly - I just saw some spoor.







Offline Xpat

Re: Limpopo Fartabout
« Reply #3 on: December 04, 2016, 11:34:24 am »
Day 3

This was a short day - I was tired from the prior day's hot rally, so I took it easy and packed in early in the afternoon. I took off from Molema for a leisuredly game drive through Tuli towards Pont Drift (have seen the normal fare, but nothing exclusive), where I crossed to SA and within 2 - 3 km turned into Mapungubwe NP for some more game viewing (none was on offer). After that I didn't feel like pushing much further and headed for early overnight in Alldays.

Game in Tuli:











Mapungubwe NP:




Offline Xpat

Re: Limpopo Fartabout
« Reply #4 on: December 04, 2016, 11:49:02 am »
Day 4 & 5

Day 4 took through the sandy roads of northern Limpopo to Marken, where I hit the mountains to Vaalwater and Rooiberg for final sleepover. Next day I rode back home along the western boundary of Boralako NP to Jericho, where I headed for the DeWildt shabeen and final ride through the bush back home.

Exquisite sand in northern Lesotho - demanding, but not too harsh - great fun (check the video in intro):





Heading for Waterberge and Bakkers pass:







Bakker's pass (really scenic, unlike that adjacent joke called Rankin's pass):







Next day - last leg of the bush riding through DeWildt:


« Last Edit: December 04, 2016, 11:54:07 am by Xpat »
 

Offline Charel

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Re: Limpopo Fartabout
« Reply #5 on: December 05, 2016, 11:57:45 am »
Very nice, looks like a nice full packed short breakaway.
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Offline Xpat

Re: Limpopo Fartabout
« Reply #6 on: December 05, 2016, 03:24:33 pm »
Very nice, looks like a nice full packed short breakaway.

Yup, perfect loop and getaway from Gauteng for few days (say long weekend), which is for some reason mostly ignored by most of the Gauteng jockeys. I think most believe - wrongly I will add from experience - that the adventure riding paradise lays south. Which is fine with me - I'm a greedy bastard and prefer to have the whole playground for myself   >:D
« Last Edit: December 05, 2016, 03:26:08 pm by Xpat »
 

Offline Charel

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Re: Limpopo Fartabout
« Reply #7 on: December 05, 2016, 03:28:11 pm »
I totally agree. I have done the south of SA in car alot, my main passion is to go up into our neighbouring countries and discover what they have to offer. I just need to take that first step...

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Offline Xpat

Re: Limpopo Fartabout
« Reply #8 on: December 05, 2016, 03:33:08 pm »
Well, I'd say just go. It really is no biggie - especially Botswana, Swaziland and such. I"ve been to Bots only this year 3 times on the bike (and may head there again over holidays in 4x4 - sadly, my leg is not strong enough yet to go on the bike).

You just need passport.
« Last Edit: December 05, 2016, 03:33:48 pm by Xpat »
 

Offline Just Blip It!

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Re: Limpopo Fartabout
« Reply #9 on: December 05, 2016, 05:17:59 pm »
Great pics Martin! Sorry to hear you not up and riding yet...........did you have complications after the opp?
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Offline Tom van Brits

Re: Limpopo Fartabout
« Reply #10 on: December 05, 2016, 08:27:12 pm »
I have to come back to this thread when internet is better, at this stage the pictures are unfortunately not loading  :(

Agree with you, everyone (almost) fly down South and miss out on places like the Namib and Botswana and more.
That to me is where the real beauty of Africa lies - further up North  :laughing4:
 

Offline Xpat

Re: Limpopo Fartabout
« Reply #11 on: December 05, 2016, 08:38:12 pm »
Great pics Martin! Sorry to hear you not up and riding yet...........did you have complications after the opp?

Thanks Mark!

No, I didn't have any special complications I'm aware of, it just seems to take time to recover fully. I'm walking without stick, but there is still some discomfort so I limp a bit if I don't focus. And still need to build up muscles to be able to run. But I will get there - from what I've heard from other people with similar injuries, my reconvalescence doesn't seem way too long.

Offline Xpat

Re: Limpopo Fartabout
« Reply #12 on: December 05, 2016, 08:41:30 pm »
I have to come back to this thread when internet is better, at this stage the pictures are unfortunately not loading  :(

Agree with you, everyone (almost) fly down South and miss out on places like the Namib and Botswana and more.
That to me is where the real beauty of Africa lies - further up North  :laughing4:

Tom, I'm afraid there may be too many pictures on this page for it to load on the island. You may need to wait till you are back.

Offline Tom van Brits

Re: Limpopo Fartabout
« Reply #13 on: December 05, 2016, 08:48:52 pm »
I have to come back to this thread when internet is better, at this stage the pictures are unfortunately not loading  :(

Agree with you, everyone (almost) fly down South and miss out on places like the Namib and Botswana and more.
That to me is where the real beauty of Africa lies - further up North  :laughing4:

Tom, I'm afraid there may be too many pictures on this page for it to load on the island. You may need to wait till you are back.

Seems to be the case Martin...agh well I can always come back to it. Easy to find as you put most RR's accessible through message signature.
 

Offline Flouw

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Re: Limpopo Fartabout
« Reply #14 on: December 05, 2016, 09:26:38 pm »
Can anyone see the route taken??

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Offline Xpat

Re: Limpopo Fartabout
« Reply #15 on: December 05, 2016, 09:32:38 pm »
Can anyone see the route taken??

I can see it, but it seems to take a long time to load. It is either new forum problem (as I'm typing it is very slow), or the Google Photo problem - unfortunatelly Google discontinued Picasa and moved all the photos to their new service and it is very temperamental. Just give it a minute and it will come up. If not, let me know and I can send you link to the googlemaps with the route.

Offline Charel

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Re: Limpopo Fartabout
« Reply #16 on: December 06, 2016, 05:04:06 am »
I'm also not able to load the route

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Offline Xpat

Re: Limpopo Fartabout
« Reply #17 on: December 06, 2016, 06:24:18 am »
Here is the link to the route on googlemaps, where you can zoom in and out and export the route to GPS as KMZ file (which you can then convert to gpx file using web converters:
https://drive.google.com/open?id=1PZDWEQhmQzmewS61EB4h7LxXPLQ&usp=sharing


And attached is the static image of the route. The route is correct about 90%  - probably 100%, but I didn't down'load it from GPS, but recreated it in googlemaps from memory.

Offline Xpat

Re: Limpopo Fartabout
« Reply #18 on: December 06, 2016, 06:43:56 am »
Here is the link to the route on googlemaps, where you can zoom in and out and export the route to GPS as KMZ file (which you can then convert to gpx file using web converters:
https://drive.google.com/open?id=1PZDWEQhmQzmewS61EB4h7LxXPLQ&usp=sharing


And attached is the static image of the route. The route is correct about 90%  - probably 100%, but I didn't down'load it from GPS, but recreated it in googlemaps from memory.

The one thing that is not correct on the route is track through DeWildt up to/down from Jericho. That one is not available on googlemaps and I just approximated it on the nearby routes. But it should be no biggie to soure track from Police Station to De Wildt shabeen (I didn't ride riverbeds, just the bush track most people use on return journey back to Station). That said, I wouldn't try it (ot least whole length) on a big bike, unless you are really good.

Offline Charel

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Re: Limpopo Fartabout
« Reply #19 on: December 06, 2016, 07:57:46 am »
Thank you Xpat
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