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Author Topic: Oasis-Sutherland on the Purple Hooligan: Better stick to gravel, dear...  (Read 4261 times)

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Offline LRFan

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Right,  baie buy jy nie ernstig seer gekry bly n lekker trippie  na Ceres berge
 

Offline Ri

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Right,  baie buy jy nie ernstig seer gekry bly n lekker trippie  na Ceres berge

Dankie LRFan :)

Waar was jy en jou pragtige vroutjie laas naweek? Ek het gehoop julle maak ook 'n draai by die Oasis Spitbraai. My co-rider het nogals 'n KLE500 gery  :thumleft:
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Offline GSBoland

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mooi RR en foto's.   :thumleft:
Black 1100GS
 

Offline 2StrokeDan

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Ri, daar is baie ryers wat net daar by daai Jetta sou tou opgooi, en nog miskien bel dat die treiler hul en bike kom laai.

Respek dat jy aangegaan het.

Ek sien nou hoekom jy heelwat val, jy ry saam met daai hooligan Charl.
 

Offline eikeboom

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Watch it Dan!
Let's go into the mountains...there's likely to be peace and quiet
 

Offline 2StrokeDan

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 :laughing4: :laughing4:

 

Offline Ri

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Ri, daar is baie ryers wat net daar by daai Jetta sou tou opgooi, en nog miskien bel dat die treiler hul en bike kom laai.

Respek dat jy aangegaan het.

Ek sien nou hoekom jy heelwat val, jy ry saam met daai hooligan Charl.

:thumleft: Ek ken nie iemand met 'n treiler nie, ek moes maar self by die huis kom :imaposer:
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Offline Ri

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From Tankwa Padstal, we took the R303 / Swartrug road into the Kouebokkeveld. The plan was to reach Merweville that day, but since we left Oasis so late we knew it wasn't going to happen. We would still do Ouberg Pass though, and stay over in Sutherland.

Turn off onto R356 to Sutherland


Hooligans playing, waiting for me to catch up after closing the last gate


Quick comfort/photo break on the way.


Ready to ride


When we got to the Matjiesfontein/Sutherland turn off, we took a bit of a break and had some snacks.

You've gone too far...


Clowning around


We then turned left towards Sutherland, me in front for some reason. Relishing not being in Mr Convivial's dusty trail for a change, I opened up, and Eikeboom had quite a task chasing me down to explain that he had miscalculated, and the turn off to Ouberg pass was a kilometer or so back. Except he didn't explain it that succinctly, with the result that Mr What?-My-Earphones-Were-On and I waited at the Matjiesfontein T-junction to find out what's going on, while Eikeboom waited for us at the Ouberg turnoff. We eventually found each other, and continued on to Ouberg Pass.

At the turn-off, Mr Hayfever managed to regain pole position and was off, while Eikeboom and I followed at a more leisurely pace until we reached the Ouberg Pass turnoff. Here we found Mr Convivial with concerns about some crack in the frame or a loose screw, or some such.

Eikeboom and Mr Convivial promptly unrolled their not-inconsiderable tool bags, and tried to attend to the situation. Me, being very mechanically minded, assisted by keeping out of their way and taking these beautiful pictures for your viewing pleasure.

Turn off to Ouberg Pass








I saw a crack


On your knees, boy.


After about 30 minutes of faffing, we headed into Ouberg Pass. Mr Dusty-McHayfever roared off into the distance, and Eikeboom prepped me on what to expect.
« Last Edit: May 01, 2017, 11:05:51 am by Ri »
Tales of the Purple Turtles: Ride Reports
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Offline Dorsland

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Hehehe, enjoy your writing style Ri. Is the guy you are ragging a friend of yours?
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Offline 2StrokeDan

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Hehehe, enjoy your writing style Ri. Is the guy you are ragging a friend of yours?

I was wondering about that myself.......love this classic; "Mr Hayfever managed to regain pole position" :imaposer: :imaposer: :imaposer: :imaposer: :imaposer:
 

Offline Ri

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Riding up Ouberg Pass, I did the opposite of what I usually do, because what I usually do is fall  :imaposer:

On my last day ride, where I fell many, many times, Grazer remarked on my lack of throttle control. He had a point. My automatic response when I was in trouble was to pray and open the throttle, and hope grace and the bike would get me out of it. This worked, sort of, in that I didn't fall immediately. But I would still often fall, as it was a 50/50 chance whether I would regain or lose control later on, and usually I was fortunate that when I did fall, I was not in as much trouble as I would have been before. But still, to avoid falling had to become the aim here.

To this end, Mr Convivial took me gravel riding in some dodgy area just over Sir Lowries Pass, where recent veld fires and rain had made the road more hazardous than I was comfortable with. I did, in the end, manage to practice some throttle control.

Ouberg Pass is incredibly beautiful, with steep climbs and dramatic drops. It is also terrifying for a relative newbie, as it is a washed out 2-spoor with gashes and biggish round rocks and rock shelves that defy tires to get a grip. My terror was compounded by the fact that Eikeboom kept to the right and slightly back of me, meaning that if I didn't keep my line, or lost control, I could potentially take him with me as I plunged over the edge.

Shaking with adrenaline, I crept up the shaley pass in 1st gear, hugging the stone wall, throttling down slightly when the going got more shifty. At the first steep hairpin bend, I came to a gasping stop, shoulders frozen and unable to turn the bike. Eikeboom tried to show me how to take the turn, but I was unable to mimic his slow and flowing movement. Instead I turned like a learner drive - twisting the handlebars then straightening, twist then straighten. It was the jerkiest turn ever, but I managed it without falling - a big win for me.

At the second hairpin bend I stopped again, but this time I composed myself and took the plunge/turn. The video clip of me reaching the top of Ouberg Pass must be the slowest ascent ever  :imaposer:

But whatever. I'd made it without falling. Celebratory pats on the back all round!

Beautiful vistas



Photostop. Ouberg lies ahead...


About halfway along Ouberg Pass






Made it to the top with no hassles!!






Very chuffed with ourselves!


Flood damage...  :eek7:


Sun sinking fast




The sun sank quickly after we crested, and we were still about 50km away from Sutherland, which meant another night time ride. Mr Convivial sped ahead, stopping briefly now and then to check we were still behind him, later telling tense tales of death-by-bunny-and-buck near misses.

Eikeboom stuck to the safe haven of my pool of LED lighting, and we sped on into the night. It got really cold really quickly when the sun went down. At one point, a bunny hopped across my path and tested the space between my and Eikeboom's bikes, but lucky for him there was plenty and he escaped unharmed after a few ricochets. At around 8 pm we roared into Sutherland, stiff and cold, and headed for The White House. We didn't mean to roar, but that place is so quiet!

Sadly for us there were no rooms at the White House, as there were a coterie of astronomy students studying the night sky (queue Mr Dad-Jokes). The lady of the establishment pointed us in the direction of a house to rent, and Eikeboom made the deal. Mr Convivial said he'd like to camp on the lawn. Eikeboom and I roared with laughter. Karoo towns mos don't do lawn.

Soup-and-bun dinner and some fortifying sherries later, we retired to our villa, where I soaked in the bath for probably an hour, not something I'm fond of doing, but my leg was throbbing a bit. After everyone had cleaned up, we took turns hooking various devices into the TV, and admired the photos each of us had taken during our journey.

Then it was off to sleep, and an early rise in the morning to get fuel for the long road home.

The White House has a pool! Who knew.
« Last Edit: May 01, 2017, 11:07:46 am by Ri »
Tales of the Purple Turtles: Ride Reports
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Offline Tom van Brits

Hoe meer ek hier loer hoe meer wil ek ry! Pragtige wereld - ek glo nie ek sal ooit gereed wees om Suid Afrika permanent agter te laat nie.
Die Karoo praat met mens se hart - maak dat mens n liedjie wil skryf al is jy nie eers musieklik nie!
 

Offline XRRX

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Respect Ri!!!  :o
Glad you're telling the tale yourself!!!
 

Offline Herklaas

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 :sip: Nice telling it, you are one up on me, I still have to do the Ou Berg.
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Offline Ri

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As per usual, I was up early. I woke the house Bunnies and we fought over the coffee and milk portions before getting dressed and packing quickly to go fill up our fuel tanks before the proprietor of the station went to attend church.

The inhabitants of Sutherland probably didn't appreciate the roar of Mr Considerate's exhaust at 08:20, as it is louder than even my busted, air-sucking, whumping Airage exhaust. We stopped at the petrol station and Eikeboom braved the fearsomely licky dog that protected the owners' premises, by dint of loving you to death, to awaken the owner.

The surly-looking owner, who is actually quite nice, waived the R20 after-hours fee, explaining that it was to discourage the locals from knocking him up at 00:23 to put in 23c of fuel. Reminded me of my student days, when we would scrounge for small change, and 76c worth of fuel was enough to get you home :biggrin:



Also turns out the friendly puppy had just pitched up at his house one day. He had asked around but since he couldn't find the owner, he had decided to keep the mutt, and had had her spayed. She now follows his steps doggedly  ;D

Mr Convivial asked the owner for a bolt. The owner unlocked his workshop, scrounged around a bit, and offered two, but Mr Convivial rejected one. Eikeboom and I stayed to fill up while Mr Convivial raced home to fit his new bolt. Eikeboom soon received a message, could he please ask the owner for the rejected bolt as well? Since turns out that might actually be the size needed. Fine. Eikeboom patiently knocks up the owner again, who patiently opens up his workshop again to fetch the other bolt. We pay and leave. Later on Mr Budget-Conscious complains that we didn't need to BUY the second bolt, as he could've left the first one at the workshop. At R8.00 a bolt...  :eek7:

The owner of the establishment we had rented for the night came to inspect and lock up the premises, and we were ready to leave. From here on, our paths split. Eikeboom would head to Fraserburg, Calvinia and the West Coast, and I would head home to the Northern Suburbs with Mr Convivial via Matjiesfontein, Karoopoort, Ceres and Bainskloof.







Since we had to put fuel in early, we were ready to leave by about 09:30. We said our good byes, and hit the road. I hadn't had a decent cup of coffee yet, so we enquired of the house owner, who directed us just up the road to the Blue Moon, which was open for about 2 hours until church or afternoon siesta started, can't remember which. Lovely place, quite decent coffee.







We then hit the road, and reached the Keurkloof turn-off towards Karoopoort at about 11:00. Here, I pointed out to Mr Convivial that his one support strut of his luggage rack had broken off completely. I suggested putting his heavy luggage on my bike, but he pooh-poohed me, and started tying up the strut with what seemed like washing line and duct tape.



While he was DIY-ing, I provided assistance and support by walking around taking photo's, and soon noticed two bikers on a DR650 and an Africa Twin who had stopped in the Matjiesfontein Road. I walked over to say hallow.









So Johnny had ridden down from Jozi on his DR650 to join his friend Koos for a few days' touring around the Karoo. And Koos had had T-shirts made for the two of them to commemorate the occasion. I thought it was very sweet :biggrin:



Finally Mr Washing-Line-And-Duct-Tape had the strut tied up to his satisfaction, and we headed off again.


« Last Edit: May 01, 2017, 11:11:01 am by Ri »
Tales of the Purple Turtles: Ride Reports
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Offline Ri

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Barely 20 kms away, I came upon Mr Washing-Line-And-Duct-Tape standing in the road again.



The pesky strut had escaped the strict confines of the washing line and the duct tape. A better solution was needed. He was very keen to knock up a nearby farmer to get access to a welding machine, because all these farms have welding machines. I said there's no farm nearby. He said we just passed one. I said I don't think it's a farm, it was completely devoid of any agricultural activity.

I insisted that Mr Convivial put his heaviest luggage on my bike, although I quailed at having to handle the extra weight. I could barely handle my own weight! But I wasn't keen on spending another hour next to the road while Mr Convivial DIY'ed more solutions. We transferred the luggage, and lightened the load somewhat by removing the tool bag to put on his bike.

Loaded!


Mr Convivial, as far as I am concerned, should now tie up and be ready to go. But no. Mr Convivial is kneeling by his bike again, using branches and duct tape to strengthen his struts, remarking that the people who bent the struts must've cracked it. I look at the strut pipes and suggest that although the cracks were the benders' fault, perhaps he should consider sturdier material when reconstructing his support structs.

He kindly shares the beer with me.


See this twig...


I joke on our shared WhatsApp group that I'm going to get home in the dark again. Everyone LOLs - It's barely 12:00.

A bunch of bikers zip past us single file and I wave them on. Mr Convivial hoped they would stop, as he would like a metal piece with which to strengthen his strut(s). I'm surprised - I thought he had things well in hand. His doleful look says "no". I step into the road like a copper and firmly put up my hand to stop the next biker. Turns out to be a lovely lady by name of Tjoppie, who promptly jumps off her 800GS, takes a selfie with me, and then gets on with the job of helping Mr Convivial. The two bikers and support vehicle behind her suggests that we've intercepted a serious tour. They had spent the night in Gamkaskloof, and were on their way to Tankwa Karoo.

Selfie with the awesome Tjoppie


They swarm around Mr Convivial's bike. One of the bikers up ahead turns back to see what the hold up is, and he has heavy-duty cable ties on him. They use Mr Convivial's metal Allen keys to strengthen his support struts with the cable ties. 10 minutes later they hop on their bikes, and disappear in a haze of dust. Mr FIFY's bike resembles a hedgehog with all the cable ties sticking out.

More helpful then me  :lol8:




Coming back for his crew


I can fully imagine Tjoppie serving as pit crew in a Formula 1 race


All done!


Annnnnd ... Rescue Squad is off  :-[


Hedgehog the bike




We finally get on our bikes. For me it's a bit shaky with the unaccustomed extra weight. I pull off, hoping Mr Hayfever would ride behind and check that I'm okay with his luggage ready to topple me, but he duly passes. It's a lovely gravel highway, and we can travel at speed, meaning Mr Eat-My-Dust doesn't quite pull away from me. I ride behind him, swerving from the one side of the gravel road to the other, trying to stay out of his dusty entrails. He notices me swerving like a laden swallow, but keeps to the middle of the road, because his tire is a little bald and he felt it shake a bit back there.

As we near Karoopoort, with the extra load keeping my back wheel steady as a rock as I cross the shaley "middelmannetjies", I bite down on the gravel between my teeth and the hooligan kicks in. I open up, and gradually overtake Mr Eat-My-Dust. The torquey DRZ400 can't top the souped-up Hooligan for speed. I pass in a blaze of glorious dust and keep my speed high, childishly determined that he won't pass me again before we reach tar. Mr Eat-My-Dust sensibly stops and waits for my dust to settle, and then continues.

When I reach the Ceres T-junction, I come to a wobbly stop, take photo's and wait for Mr Done-And-Dusted.





Then I get on the Hooligan, shakily push off and ride on towards Ceres.



Mr Done-And-Dusted stops on my heels, very thirsty as we hadn't stopped for a drink for 100kms (when I'm tired, I GOOI), and we buy him a bottle of cold water, and soft serves for us both. Delicious!

We hit the last stretch home. I eventually come to a wobbly halt in front of his house, and untie his bag as quickly as possible, then I'm off into the night, finally arriving home, in the dark, at 19:30.

I immediately WhatsApp Tom van Brits on Gough Island with photo's of my lower limb, which is looking quite poxy by this time even though it isn't really that painful. He offers some expert medical advice (aspirin, diclofenac, massage), which I follow religiously, and some expert riding advice (maybe motorbikes aren't for you) which I promptly ignore. After 3 weeks all the bruising was gone and the swelling was just slightly noticeable. Thanks Tom :thumleft:

All in all, it had been an awesome, awesome trip  :ricky:

Some more beauty shots




« Last Edit: May 05, 2017, 07:23:25 am by Ri »
Tales of the Purple Turtles: Ride Reports
PROJECT SAS WILDEHOND III Contributions: R Snyman Capitec Savings Account 1545860511 Balance (2017/12/07): R3,190.23 - R1,600 for steel purchase
 

Offline Tom van Brits

Good laughts and great pictures....you got to ride more as your RR's is entertaining! That Tjoppie girl can ride that Gs800adv rather well and also a very good person, got respect for her. On tour where I act as their medic she called me dr Watson 😂😃 and had a nickname for almost everyone.

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Offline Swannie 685

What fun it was to read this Ride Report  8)

Well done Ri  :thumleft:
Wanneer ek iets wil herstel, is dit heeltemal gef*k daarna.

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Offline Ri

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Thanks, I had great fun writing it!  O0

I'm conflicted. I don't really want to fall again, but it can add some lekker drama to a ride report  :imaposer:
Tales of the Purple Turtles: Ride Reports
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Offline eikeboom

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So I enjoyed the trip thus far with my two companions very much. In spite of the accident and other minor niggles, it was really enjoyable and fun. But now it was time to be on my own, and I went further into the Karoo and along the West Coast while Ri and Pierre went back home.

I have made a 3 minute movie from the photos and footage from all three of us, as a sort of a summary of the trip. It will be posted here in due time.
Let's go into the mountains...there's likely to be peace and quiet