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Author Topic: Sani Hustle  (Read 847 times)

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Offline Roadhawg

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Sani Hustle
« on: May 29, 2019, 10:25:46 am »
Well that was interesting.

Been itching to do Sani in the Dry, ever since doing it in the Rain 2 years ago, so I signed up for the Bonafide MotoCo's sani trip.  Great guys to ride with.

Sorted my Enduristan luggage out. With a heat shield of the exhaust, and a small brace on the left hand side, these bags can be run without racks. It makes them the same width, if not slightly narrower than the bars (I actually forgot I had them on during the ride home yesterday and was amazed I didn't clip a chevron while scootching past a truck on VanReenens, they really are nice and narrow)

Packed and ready.




Clarens for a beer and lunch (I hadn't had a beer for about a month running up to this point, and had the most hectic 2 work weeks ever also....so this was heaven. I thought about just staying there for 4 days  :lol: )

Golden Gate area and Sterkfontein.


Amphitheatre backpackers. (really cool place to stay)


Hipster coffee in Nottingham Rd area.

Right.
Sani.

So I'd done it in the rain. I had heard "it's in bad condition" lately, but I'm thinking it's Sani, how bad can it be? and it's dry. I got this.
Banged it up to the SA border. Hella dusty because of the roadworks but I'm feeling alright and slinging the big bike around no problems.
I honestly thought that was the hard part over. Nope.

Get going on Sani proper, and it' pretty rocky and eroded but not too bad. Just before the first bigger water crossing I get a bad bounce off some rocks, knock it into neutral, almost bail but catch it and just get passed by a mate on a 1200 Scrambler. There's a tight right hander just after this and I see my mate who has done a RTW trip stuck in some rocks trying to avoid a bakkie coming down. He was spinning like mad trying to get going again.  That was a warning, if he's struggling it's not as easy as I remember.   

Anyway, get through that first water crossing before an area that is traditionally quite rocky (it's just before you get into the main "gulley" up to the switchbacks).   I come round the corner to that area and it's pretty chaotic. There's an old dodgy bakkie parked on the right had side, and 2 bunches of locals standing on the right hand side, some of them swarming the now stuck 1200 Scrambler "helping".  I have to stop because I'm not sure where the fuck to ride to pass this lot. It's not steep but it's full of loose rocks. As long as you keep moving and stay light it's usually not too bad.

I try to get going, rear wheel spins on the loose rocks into a ditch, bike pitches over and chucks me off.  Fall #1.   The "Helpers" RUSH in trying to push and shove the bike. FUCKING annoying. I can sort myself out, I just need to get the thing onto some slightly flat ground.  Pick it up and start walking the bike just a bit to the left where I can see some decent traction to get going again. Fucking drop the thing on the other side now.   FFS!!!  I'm sweating. My goggles are fogged to fuck. I'm starting to get violently fucking angry with these "helpers".
My left handguard has now bent down and is catching the clutch lever every time I try to pull off. The fucking "Helpers" are still shouting and going nuts, trying to push and pull the thing and just fucking annoying the hell out of me and making a tense situation 10000X worse.  Eventually my RTW mate comes back and we get a little space from the fuckers.  Fortunately I had the exact torx driver in my bar bag and while sitting on the bike, loosened the clutch lever mount and rotated the thing down to clear the hand guards.  Rock the bike a bit, stand up and open up and get going.




Jesus fuck, that sucked.  I pass a couple okes at the top of that section and decide to get going a bit just to clear the disaster area.   Ride round past that first lookout point and decide to stop and catch my breathe, sort my shit out, take a photo and let my goggles clear.  Fuck. I need some water.....Whats that? Oh, The water bottle I had strapped and clipped to my pannier bag is now gone....and my baseball cap that was clipped to my tailbag.  THOSE MOTHERFUCKERS!!!! And it didn't just fall off, the carabiner I used to clip it on was still there but bottle gone.
(Turns out later, they all jumped out when the dude on the 1200 Scrambler came through and were making him take really dodgy lines to get stuck. The far right, and far left sections were actually not too bad, but they were standing on the one side and had the bakkie parked on the other.)


Anyhow, at least it's pretty.

Now for the switchbacks.  Get going again and get through the first couple without any problems. Some loose rocks but just gotta keep the gas on and get up.

Nearly to the top I realise going into a right hander that I'm kinda stuck on the inside of this up coming hairpin and the inside of the turn is packed with big loose rocks. There's no ways I'll manage a 180 on that shit.  I see the outside of the turn is nice and clear, So I decide from the inside I'm gonna ride straight up, over the loose rocks and up to the clear section. I'll then stop, and do a "3 point" turn type thing to get the bike pointing the right way and fire up the next section.

Nope.


Went through the rocks fine, Apply front brake, not enough traction and the bike just starts sliding back wards.  Almost caught it a couple times but a final slide got really fast and I realised this was getting dangerous quickly and if this thing flips with me under it, it won't be pretty.  Abandon ship and let her go over.  I go flying backwards into those rocks. Back protector and helmet for the WIN!!!   (It was stupid, I know it either use the rear brake, or let the bike stall and use engine compression....but shit goes out the window when you're in a bit of a state.)

But now the bike is lying past 90deg in some rocks. There is no ways I can pick it up like that, especially since I'm now completely fucked from the previous drama.

Wait for some dudes in a LandRover on the way down to help pick it up and get going again.   The rest of the switchbacks went ok, mainly because I fucking refused to drop the bike again. I had one GIANT moment where I got a bad bounce in some rocks and ended up pointing directly off the cliff, on the power, for a moment. Somehow I managed to pull her back pointing straight and get up.

Come around the last really steep switch back, and a group of okes are standing there with a truck parked on the only useable piece of road in the steep corner.  I'm forced to stop again and these twassholes standing there burst out laughing. Fuck them.  Eventually we get the fuckers to move the truck and go up the rest of the way.


At the top I was honestly thinking about just carrying on through Lesotho to Clarens the next day, instead of going back down.

(I'm not peeing off the edge I promise)   
Had a mighty cold but fun night at the top. The backpackers is a bit sketchy there but You'll live.   minus 2.5deg c when we woke up at around 7am.

I still wasn't looking forward to riding down, but I figured gravity is on my side now, just gotta keep the front wheels rolling over the loose shit.  Went down with very little drama but I fucking tip-toed down because of the previous days experience.  Had a good look at the bad area near the bottom and yeah the far left and right sides were pretty simple with a big rock field in the middle.





Anyhow, lekker ride through the Lower lotheni rd after that. Such an epic road with epic scenery. 


Slabbed it home on the highway yesterday. 

Besides some scratches and dings to the crash bar, the bike seems perfect. I had a good look around the bike at Sani Top, and again last night and there doesn't seem to be a scratch on it, but a proper wash this weekend will tell I guess :mrgreen:     When I dropped it near the top I was sure I had fucked it up properly, but the thing is built like a tank.



Oh, And okes laugh about hipsters on "Modern Classics".  The Bike that got up first, with zero drama was a stock standard Triumph Bonneville T100 with like 2cm of ground clearance.  In those sorts of conditions, being able to put both your feet down is priceless!



Pics mine or:
https://www.instagram.com/bonafidemotoco/
https://www.instagram.com/ridemotostakephotos/
https://www.instagram.com/kimludbrook/

« Last Edit: May 29, 2019, 10:54:56 am by Roadhawg »
Stu
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The following users thanked this post: Bundu, andrew5336, wilfwalk

Offline Noneking

Re: Sani Hustle
« Reply #1 on: May 29, 2019, 10:36:09 am »
Some nice pics!
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Offline Grunder

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Re: Sani Hustle
« Reply #2 on: May 29, 2019, 10:43:52 am »
Lekker man  :ricky:
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Offline Roadhawg

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Re: Sani Hustle
« Reply #3 on: May 29, 2019, 10:55:26 am »
Some nice pics!

Edited to add photo credits. :thumleft:


Apparently I need more practice in rocky stuff :-[
Stu
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Offline Noneking

Re: Sani Hustle
« Reply #4 on: May 29, 2019, 11:09:20 am »
Some nice pics!

Edited to add photo credits. :thumleft:


Apparently I need more practice in rocky stuff :-[

Come visit us in the Lowveld, we can practice all you like..... :peepwall:
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Offline Grunder

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Re: Sani Hustle
« Reply #5 on: May 29, 2019, 11:11:46 am »
I was thinking of trying Sani this year but those rocks scare me.

I'm still a Sani virgin  :peepwall:
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Offline OomD

Re: Sani Hustle
« Reply #6 on: May 29, 2019, 11:13:30 am »
Bucking Frilliant! Sjo, Sani is getting rougher and rougher.
 

Offline LouisXander

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Re: Sani Hustle
« Reply #7 on: May 29, 2019, 11:17:03 am »
OomD, every person you talk to tunes you: Noooo man, Sani been nearly tarred up to the border post!

Just shows you how word of mouth inflates.

I saw a group of Triumphs in Clarens this weekend, beautiful bikes really! Also read that the 1200XE has 30mm more suspension travel that the KTM SuperEnduro?
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Offline LouisXander

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Re: Sani Hustle
« Reply #8 on: May 29, 2019, 11:17:16 am »
Don't dress for the ride,........dress for the fall!
 

Offline Roadhawg

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Re: Sani Hustle
« Reply #9 on: May 29, 2019, 11:21:22 am »
OomD, every person you talk to tunes you: Noooo man, Sani been nearly tarred up to the border post!

Just shows you how word of mouth inflates.

I saw a group of Triumphs in Clarens this weekend, beautiful bikes really! Also read that the 1200XE has 30mm more suspension travel that the KTM SuperEnduro?

That was probably us. On Saturday?

The new Scrambler is no joke!  The only negative it has for adv riding is that you don't want to drop it because it's so goddamn good looking.   The one in front of me did go down very gently, but barely a scratch on it.

Another fairly inexperienced rider on one just took it very slow and got up without ever putting it down. Again, the seat height being a bit lower than the KTM makes it  a bit easier in those sorts of conditions I reckon.


And ya, I was NOT expecting to drop a bike on Sani Pass.  I did it in the rain 2 years ago and it was slightly challenging but zero drama. This was a bit different.  Although I think stopping was the main problem. I was rushing and being a bit silly, and after the first couple drops, the adrenalin and fatigue set in and you get even dumber.
« Last Edit: May 29, 2019, 11:22:53 am by Roadhawg »
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Offline LouisXander

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Re: Sani Hustle
« Reply #10 on: May 29, 2019, 11:25:28 am »
Must've been you guys. Those green Truimph's were beautiful Roadhawg, there was a Bonneville in the group as well.
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Offline Roadhawg

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Re: Sani Hustle
« Reply #11 on: May 29, 2019, 11:29:56 am »
Must've been you guys. Those green Truimph's were beautiful Roadhawg, there was a Bonneville in the group as well.

We had 3 1200 Scramblers
2 or 3 Street Scramblers
1 bonneville
3 Tiger 800s
2 650 Gs's
1 1200 gs
My big orange tank and my Mate on a F800 thats gone half way round the world :biggrin:
Stu
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Offline LouisXander

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Re: Sani Hustle
« Reply #12 on: May 29, 2019, 11:44:14 am »
Few woman as well in the group, walked past you okes when you stopped across the City plein
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Offline Sithe

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Re: Sani Hustle
« Reply #13 on: May 29, 2019, 11:58:30 am »
Maybe it's time to go see Sani again 

Thanks for the RR :thumleft:
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Offline Dwerg

Re: Sani Hustle
« Reply #14 on: May 29, 2019, 12:00:24 pm »
Great. Now I'm craving Clarens red ale
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Offline Roadhawg

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Re: Sani Hustle
« Reply #15 on: May 29, 2019, 02:02:23 pm »
Great. Now I'm craving Clarens red ale

Me too!! 
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Offline KaTooMatt

Re: Sani Hustle
« Reply #16 on: May 29, 2019, 02:14:22 pm »
Great. Now I'm craving Clarens red ale

Remember to take Ganjora with you :ricky:
"These are not machines for the meek. Ride it like you stole it, cane it within an inch of its life. It will require a bunch of maintenance and generally tend to be, shall we say, harsh? It was bred for racing, after all. It will devour rear tires and its lust for fuel will astound you. It will suffer indifference and carelessness very poorly. Like heroin and Asian girls, it's not for everybody, but when you absolutely, positively, GOTS to beat every m*****f****** in the race, accept no substitu
 

Offline DanieW

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Re: Sani Hustle
« Reply #17 on: May 29, 2019, 06:51:55 pm »
Very nice dude :)

Looks epic.... we need to plan a "Wild Dogs Sani Experience Trip"

@Noneking can be team captain!! :)
 

Offline Lem

Re: Sani Hustle
« Reply #18 on: May 29, 2019, 07:18:41 pm »
lekker ride report  :thumleft:

will try to ride it before the end of this year :deal:
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Offline 2StrokeDan

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Re: Sani Hustle
« Reply #19 on: May 29, 2019, 07:34:06 pm »
The Sani taxis go up there easier than you guys on bikes! :pot: :pot:

 :thumleft: