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Author Topic: MAYBE NO SHOES, BUT A BIKE AND THE WHOLE OF AFRICA !!  (Read 48442 times)

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Oppad

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Re: MAYBE NO SHOES, BUT A BIKE AND THE WHOLE OF AFRICA !!
« Reply #60 on: August 21, 2008, 11:24:17 pm »
Bef...This is the real thing
 

Offline Jacko

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Re: MAYBE NO SHOES, BUT A BIKE AND THE WHOLE OF AFRICA !!
« Reply #61 on: August 21, 2008, 11:33:25 pm »
Nardus

Jy's 'n adventure-biking legend. Ek wonder wat Charley en Ewan daai tyd gedoen het?

Soms dink ek ons worry te veel oor die bikes en farkles en vergeet van die doel van ons passie en belangstelling, ie, die verken van die vreemde en die ontmoet van ander mense. En face it, 'n mens kan dit op 'n Yamaha Passola ook doen (maar hy kan nie groot panniers vat nie  ;D).

Die doel is - en ek dink ons almal is soms skuldig daaraan om dit effens te vergeet - om plekke en mense te ervaar. Of jy nou op 'n gefokte DT50 of 'n pimped-out 1200GSA ry. Die bike is eintlik 'n tool, 'n medium of 'n "enabler" waarmee ons hierdie ongelooflike dinge ervaar.

Ek stel dit as 'n feit dat wat julle gedoen het, iets is wat geld nie kan koop nie. Dis soos The Right Stuff - 'n man het dit, of hy het dit nie.

Jy het dit by die bucket loads, Sir.

Maximum wespec, aai!
"The test of a man is not the forum nor the field; not the marketplace nor the amen corner, but at his own fireside. There he lays aside his mask, and you may judge whether he be imp or angel, king or cur, hero or humbug." -  William Cowper Brann
 

Offline Stofstreep

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Re: MAYBE NO SHOES, BUT A BIKE AND THE WHOLE OF AFRICA !!
« Reply #62 on: August 22, 2008, 09:29:14 am »
:drif: :drif:
Zim is one of the most beautiful countries.
Hope to be able to do something similar one day. Just pack up and go.

« Last Edit: August 22, 2008, 09:29:56 am by Stofstreep »
Be careful of the words you say.
And keep them soft and sweet.
For you never know from day to day.
Which ones you'll have to eat.
 

Offline Nardus

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Re: MAYBE NO SHOES, BUT A BIKE AND THE WHOLE OF AFRICA !!
« Reply #63 on: August 22, 2008, 09:38:05 am »
Kobie and Ans - my Stomp Tande!

As was mentioned at the beginning of the report, my adventurous genes come directly from my parents. I thought you might find this interesting too. I have asked my dad for a couple of slides he had of their trip through Africa, back in 1955. Scanned them onto my computer and will share a couple of pics with you. It was on this trip that they met each other for the first time.

Both of them were not too bad looking, in fact Ans was actually quite a looker (and sexy!)

On their arrival in Europe.



One hundred years later ... these pictures were taken beginning of this year in Lesotho - they went camping !





The group that left Pretoria in 1955 - the oldest member of the group was over 60 years old.



Mokoros tied together as a pontoon in the then Congo



Pushing the busses through the Congo





One sunshine day



Over 50 pontoon crossings in Congo (DRC) alone !



Into Sahara Desert - thats my mom



Somewhere



Into the soft stuff !!




And pushing the busses through the Sahara Desert - FAAAK !!








Now, if you want to know why my Uncles (Oom Retiefs) wife (Tannie Bessie) divorced him eventually 30 years after this trip. The main purpose of this trip - it was their HONEYMOON !!


« Last Edit: August 19, 2009, 01:55:53 pm by Nardus »
Let the snake slide and the lizzard slither and LET IT BE !
 

Offline malgat (RIP)

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Re: MAYBE NO SHOES, BUT A BIKE AND THE WHOLE OF AFRICA !!
« Reply #64 on: August 22, 2008, 09:42:37 am »
it all makes sense to me....

die appel val nie ver van die boom af....
IEP KRUGER
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AFRICA TWIN XRV750
 

Offline Trailrider

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Re: MAYBE NO SHOES, BUT A BIKE AND THE WHOLE OF AFRICA !!
« Reply #65 on: August 22, 2008, 09:49:05 am »
Wow wow wow
 

Red

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Re: MAYBE NO SHOES, BUT A BIKE AND THE WHOLE OF AFRICA !!
« Reply #66 on: August 22, 2008, 09:54:45 am »
it all makes sense to me....

die appel val nie ver van die boom af....

You lucky man.  Your mother probably send you off with her blessing as well.  She is very special for sure.    :thumleft:
 

Offline Biesie

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Re: MAYBE NO SHOES, BUT A BIKE AND THE WHOLE OF AFRICA !!
« Reply #67 on: August 22, 2008, 09:56:13 am »
Ek bedank sommer en begin ry !!! Die dae toe manne nog manne was en regte bikes gery het ...  :biggrin:

Brilliant RR !! :thumleft:

 

Online Hidalgo

Re: MAYBE NO SHOES, BUT A BIKE AND THE WHOLE OF AFRICA !!
« Reply #68 on: August 22, 2008, 10:28:32 am »
What a report !!!

Thanks for sharing this with us Nardus.

Reading a report like this conjurs up something in me and all I want to do is pack the bike and riiiiiiiiiiddddeee with no worries about bills and all the day to day stuff ....

Awsome  :thumleft:

THX
H
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albert smit

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Re: MAYBE NO SHOES, BUT A BIKE AND THE WHOLE OF AFRICA !!
« Reply #69 on: August 22, 2008, 10:35:00 am »
Ek bedank sommer en begin ry !!! Die dae toe manne nog manne was en regte bikes gery het ...  :biggrin:

Brilliant RR !! :thumleft:



Stem ve daai een (regte bikes) - ek ook bedank planne soms - het al dele v Afrika gedoen - maar sal die hele ene moet aandurf... April 2010 is my plan...ook noord sonder defnitiewe planne.....

Dankie vir die report sover Nardus.   :thumleft:

Groete,

A.   ;D


 

Offline Nardus

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Re: MAYBE NO SHOES, BUT A BIKE AND THE WHOLE OF AFRICA !!
« Reply #70 on: August 22, 2008, 11:54:59 am »
Zambia


We actually had to first cross into the Caprivi Strip, part of Namibia, before crossing over into Zambia. I still cannot figure out why Namibia has this loooong protrusion wedged in between a number of other countries.

Ferry crossing over Zambezi River





This part of our journey was fortunately not very eventful, but it surely had some of the most beautiful parts of this continent. The people were extremely friendly, especially towards South Africans. A vibe us white African fellows were not used to experiencing. We would often drive off the road, into the lush bush for a couple of hundred meters, pitch the tents and just sit around with a binocular doing some serious bird watching.

Camping, bird watching, this was life - this was great !!!



Friendly Zambian Kids





Zambezi sunset





Cleaning pot and brushing teeth



We followed this road all the up to Mongu, a couple of kilometers from the Angola border and then all across via Lusaka to Patauke, heading for Malawi.

A rapid - upper section of the Zambezi





The planes between Mungu and Lusaka



A restaurant in the outskirts of Lusaka - the original one !



Filling up with water on the way




One of the local residents, Abel, in the town of Patauke spotted us when we were refueling and invited us to sleep at his place for the night. We had done a couple of hundred kilometers on tarmac and it was time for some adventure again. We noticed that the map showed a track running past the South Luangwa National Park and enquired about it. Abel felt very strongly that we should not attempt it. According to him it has not been used by a vehicle in eight years. Apparently the locals warned the uninformed French tourist with a Landrover that he should not venture on that route but he did so in any case. It took people over 2 months to get the Frenchy and his Landrover out of the mud. We, on the other hand, were on motorbikes and obviously much tougher than a Frenchy. Abel said that we could try, but if it rains we will also get stuck in the mud. No, Abel, look the sun is shining and it will only take us a day or two were my words.

So off we went. Well we were nothing more than 20 km from Abels house when some strange dark clouds appeared from nowhere. About fifteen minutes later it was pouring buckets. We were fixing a flat tyre when 3 local fellows came past on bicycles and they warned us: You better ride while it is still raining, or you will struggle in the mud. Surely I thought, riding in the rain was not so nice, it can only get better once the rain stops. Well, we must have done another 5 km and then the rain stopped. We were slipping and sliding and were all over the place, but not often in the track. I will never forget how Johan started kicking his bike with all his might - he was so angry, frustrated and generally pissed off from all the struggling, almost in tears!! The black mud was slowly turning into a very sticky putty that would clog up both the front and rear sprockets, so much that it stalled the Tenere's engine - not even full throttle in 1st gear could get the rear wheel to turn. It took about 15 minutes to fish out all the mud with a stick and as you were going again the front wheel would stop. It picked up so much mud that the wheel got stuck between the two forks. Needless to say, the 3 locals on their bicycles came walking past us and we never saw them again. We then decided to pitch our tents in the road and wait for the mud to dry out. Two days later we packed up our tents, got on the bikes and rode on. We obviously did not plan for this delay, so we were eating mielie pap mixed with a bit of Bisto sauce for five days!!

This is where the rain started - I hope you have noticed the luxury chair on my handlebars !







We left the bikes 50m apart and pitched the tents in between for 2 nights



Note the clogged up front wheel



By the third day, most of the roads were negotiable, until we got to the place where the Frenchy got stuck. Yes, his 8 year old tracks were still there. His tracks were so deep in the mud that our pannier boxes would rest on the sides of his track and the wheel would hang in a puddle of water. The locals helped us to push the bikes through. We gave them our Malaria pills, as we had decided to stop taking them - cannot keep on taking them for so long - cant be healthy.

Pushing our way through in the Frenchy's tracks.



Apart from loosing some sweat and struggling a bit in the mud, it was exceptionally beautiful in this part of Zambia. It must be worth coming back to stay at this National Park one day (which I did, in 1996)

Safe at last!!

This was close to the National Park entrance gate



And our last nights camping at a Rhino Camp before heading off to Malawi




Malawi


Most of you have probably been to Malawi - what a great place! Cape Maclear in those days was a bit wilder (less commercial). The only place to stay was at Mr Stevens, who would cart all his stock and tourists with a very old Datsun 1600 bakkie. Nowadays, Mr Stevens dont really feature anymore, but Cape Maclear is still a great place to park off at.







Cape Maclear Nature Reserve





Johan had a friend that worked and stayed in the Liwonde National Park, so we stopped over for two days with his family (Riaan, was his name). He was at the time constructing the Mvuu Camp and did some work on the Rhinos. Again, a very nice Park worth visiting.

A view from within the Liwonde National Park - long ago Malawi would have looked like this, but with the overpopulation we mostly see mangos, mielie fields villages



At Riaan's house in the Park - what a nice place to live and the kids are getting home-schooled here - lucky bastards !!






Let me take a short diversion and tell you a bit more about my riding companion and good friend Johan Robinson.

What a man !!



I met Johan during my studies in Stellenbosch, he stayed in a house across from ours. His dad is Robbie Robinson, who was the Director for National Parks in SA for a while. The result of having a very eccentric father with very eccentric genes is that your child will often be even more of an oddball than yourself. In fact, Johan was somewhat of a misfit in society. He grew up in the bush (in Parks and the like, throughout SA) with no friends of the human kind and it was only when he went to high school in George that he started socializing with people. Johan was extremely shy and withdrawn in front of people he didnt know. I will never forget when a group of our friends sat in a room in Stellenbosh, drinking a beer and chatting, when somebody that Johan did not know entered the room to join the discussion. Johan would, without anybody realizing it, stand up walk over to the far corner of the room and sit there on the floor - not participating anymore. (He has improved slightly over time).

As a riding partner on a trip like this, you could not really ask for a better partner. He is very familiar with being in the wild, keen for adventure, low maintenance and will only speak when necessary. Johan and I are good friends to this day. Johan is now married with two kids and has been working in Africa ever since.

Daai Johannes Kerkfiets Deng. Taken last year on my farm.





Back to my story

We slept a night right on top of the Zomba plateau. As we were not allowed to do that, we had to leave early in the morning. That night I developed a helluva headache. It can only be Malaria fever. I did not want to take the Fansidar tablets, not knowing what the result would be as I still had to ride bike in the morning.

We left for Mulanje and it was extremely painful. The last 70 kilometers I had to stand on my footpegs just to keep the vibration of the bike and road away from my head. I could not recall any memory of the last few kilometers or arrival at Mulanje. Apparently, Johan pitched my tent, threw the three tablets down my throat, dragged me into the tent, appointed a local skivvy to keep on eye on me, purchased a huuuuge Mulanje pineapple and a bunch of bananas, which he left in my tent. Seeing that I will not be around for a day or two, Johan then left to climb Mount Mulanje. A recall a couple of times where I wanted to turn around or go for a pee, but the pain kept me lying in the same position.

I woke up three days later with very full bladder and the headache gone. Took a ten minute wee and ate the pineapple and bananas. Found a river close-by and took a nice swim - very refreshing. Johan returned that afternoon and was glad that I am okay. According to him the mountain was a must-see, so the next morning we both climbed the mountain - very steep, with real Fynbos at the top.

Mt Mulanje



On top of Mount Mulanje



Locals are felling and sawing Mulanje Ceder trees on top the mountain and were getting paid 5 Kwatcha (50cents in USD) per 6m plank for carrying it down !!



Then we were off to Mangochi and back into Mozambique



Back to Mozambique !

Will follow soon ...
« Last Edit: August 19, 2009, 02:12:09 pm by Nardus »
Let the snake slide and the lizzard slither and LET IT BE !
 

Offline popipants

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Re: MAYBE NO SHOES, BUT A BIKE AND THE WHOLE OF AFRICA !!
« Reply #71 on: August 22, 2008, 12:30:13 pm »
STOP THIS NOW!!!!

I have got work to do!!!!!



I've been on the Jameson diet for a week, so far I've lost 7 days....
 

Offline letsgofishing

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Re: MAYBE NO SHOES, BUT A BIKE AND THE WHOLE OF AFRICA !!
« Reply #72 on: August 22, 2008, 01:05:16 pm »
 :thumleft: :thumleft: :thumleft: :thumleft: :thumleft: :thumleft: :thumleft: :thumleft: :thumleft: :thumleft: :thumleft: :thumleft: :thumleft: :thumleft: :thumleft: :thumleft: :thumleft: :thumleft: :thumleft: :thumleft: :thumleft: :thumleft: :thumleft: :thumleft: :thumleft: :thumleft: :thumleft: :thumleft:
Nardus, this is THE best ride report EVER!
Well done man!
There is nothing you can do about the past and you can't predict the future...all you have is the now...live it to the fullest.

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CaptainWobble

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Re: MAYBE NO SHOES, BUT A BIKE AND THE WHOLE OF AFRICA !!
« Reply #73 on: August 22, 2008, 01:13:23 pm »
The thread is turning into an obsession.  :drif:

But Is still can't get over that hair on the first page...   :)
 

Offline funacide

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Re: MAYBE NO SHOES, BUT A BIKE AND THE WHOLE OF AFRICA !!
« Reply #74 on: August 22, 2008, 01:18:23 pm »
Nardus

Awesome stuff. This is so inspiring and makes me want to leave tomorrow.. Well done and keep it coming  :thumleft: :thumleft: :thumleft:
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JohnST

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Re: MAYBE NO SHOES, BUT A BIKE AND THE WHOLE OF AFRICA !!
« Reply #75 on: August 22, 2008, 01:45:08 pm »
This is the mother of all ride reports!! Well done!!

Maak my moer lus om sommer via Namibie huistoe te ry vanmiddag!!  ;D
 

Offline Yefimovich˛

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Re: MAYBE NO SHOES, BUT A BIKE AND THE WHOLE OF AFRICA !!
« Reply #76 on: August 22, 2008, 02:00:06 pm »
STOP THIS NOW!!!!

I have got work to do!!!!!





+10000000000000000000 :thumleft: :thumleft: ;D ;D
If at first you don't succeed, lower your standards
 

dustsucker

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Re: MAYBE NO SHOES, BUT A BIKE AND THE WHOLE OF AFRICA !!
« Reply #77 on: August 22, 2008, 02:33:59 pm »
ek vlieg elke maal heel ingedagte op, stap in die kombuis in en soek in die yskas vir `n milk stout om aan te suig terwyl ek lees...net om te besef ek is by die werk en al wat in die yskas is is `n bakkie yoghurt and gemufte kaas.  ;D
 

Offline Stofstreep

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Re: MAYBE NO SHOES, BUT A BIKE AND THE WHOLE OF AFRICA !!
« Reply #78 on: August 22, 2008, 02:41:11 pm »
.
Be careful of the words you say.
And keep them soft and sweet.
For you never know from day to day.
Which ones you'll have to eat.
 

Offline zetman

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Re: MAYBE NO SHOES, BUT A BIKE AND THE WHOLE OF AFRICA !!
« Reply #79 on: August 22, 2008, 03:17:52 pm »
Hel my maat jy is die koning van Adventure  :drif:
Hou die Tyres op die Grondpad...