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Offline popman.rhonwyn

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solo around lesotho
« on: August 13, 2020, 09:51:11 pm »
Hey guys,,, :biggrin:

So had this ache for quite some time, even though I have never ridden a scrambler or a enduro or even a dual sport/adventure bike... I did research on bikes and the tenere felt right for the first step or entry into the adventure world...without spending too much. Eventually I found a deal before lockdown and over the months started to  stock up on some gear/tools/accessories. Practice and studying off road techniques was number one priority in my free time and I came to a point where I felt confident to take on a trip around Lesotho... :)

It was a matter of unpaid leave or faking a sick note for work to get a few extra days off over the weekend... :lol8: I had a gut feeling to rather do the right thing,, so I waited and the long weekend looked like the perfect opportunity.. :thumleft:

Checking the route options as well as looking for BnBs I was assured not to get lost on the trip   ;D 

Day 1 BFN to Rhodes 8 Aug

05:30am ...just outside BFN on the way to Dewetsdorp I drove straight through a T junction over the stop and double highway into a construction site    (Turns out google maps are not updated ) it was dark and was going at 100kmh, the GPS took me through a dumping site past the location and I have never driven that side of bloem... :imaposer:  I properly shat myself and thought this trip was a shit IDEA... luckily no damage to the rims , did not hit an excavator , or any crossing traffic..

I finally made it to Zastron and head to Lady Grey via Sterkspruit  and the mountain ranges started to show ...upon refueling I randomly met 3 riders from BFN at the petrol station in Lady grey, they asked me where I'm heading to? and if I wanna join on a detour through Jouberts pass and a farm named ''vulture...'' something(it was between Barkley and Lady grey) basically on route close to my BnB in Rhodes. After the detour they went back on route to Hogsback...Our roads split in barkly and the solo journey continued...

There was still about 4hours of daylight riding and went from barkly to Lundeans nek,,, certainly one of the top 3 highlights of the trip,,, a lot of gravel twisty incline and decline roads...but so much fun :biggrin: on my way back from lundeans nek I took the wartrail turn off to tiffindell (big mistake)  and as soon as I started the incline on the mountain the road got hectic ,,,very rocky , tires packed together over the rough patches,, and eventually got stuck, lost traction and dropped the bike ...to steep to pick up the bike and turn the bike around, to tired and over exhausted for the days ride,,, I rested and enjoyed the view just to regain enough strength to move the rocks and turn around the bike,,, called it a day and headed to Rhodes to book in BnB...

On the way back I took a corner at speed over eager and gatvol/moeg and fell hard and got the bike stuck on my leg and broke my boot clips..I realized its either a hard fall or long way down 30 to 40m down the side slope of the road and made the best out of the situation. Only damage was a broken plastic hand guard... Now properly sore , tired and hungry I took it easy to walkerbouts bnb and arrived just past 6pm  .

Some pics of day one..







   
 

Offline popman.rhonwyn

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Re: solo around lesotho
« Reply #1 on: August 13, 2020, 10:02:24 pm »
Day 1 pics

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Offline GravelFox

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Re: solo around lesotho
« Reply #2 on: August 13, 2020, 10:07:57 pm »
I wondered how you experienced Volunteershoek/Bidstone pass. With my around trip I came down it with the XTZ and overcooked my rear brake.


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Offline m0lt3n

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Re: solo around lesotho
« Reply #3 on: August 13, 2020, 10:14:33 pm »
I have been day dreaming of wartrail. That corrosion berms a going down is just perfect for jumping. There is so many of them you can slowly increase pase and jump each one a little more till you know exactly what your suspension can do. It's awesome!
.
Those mishaps at the end of your day would have really had me feeling very down. Good on you for continuing with the trip!
Dooie visse gaan saam met die stroom...
 

Offline popman.rhonwyn

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Re: solo around lesotho
« Reply #4 on: August 13, 2020, 10:19:23 pm »
I wondered how you experienced Volunteershoek/Bidstone pass. With my around trip I came down it with the XTZ and overcooked my rear brake.


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I just had a look now... That was the exact point where i turned around.. I was so exhausted... Did you manage to make it to the top??

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Offline popman.rhonwyn

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Re: solo around lesotho
« Reply #5 on: August 13, 2020, 10:21:57 pm »
I have been day dreaming of wartrail. That corrosion berms a going down is just perfect for jumping. There is so many of them you can slowly increase pase and jump each one a little more till you know exactly what your suspension can do. It's awesome!
.
Those mishaps at the end of your day would have really had me feeling very down. Good on you for continuing with the trip!
Yeah I remembered those berms . they almost bottom out my suspension.. But with the right setup i can imagine you can have a blast

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Offline OomD

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Re: solo around lesotho
« Reply #6 on: August 14, 2020, 06:54:21 am »
The routes you did are basically part of the Ben10 trip I did last year with my son, those jumps on Volunteershoek makes for awesome riding! Well done on tackling those, passes, especially with little adv experience. You'll remember this trip as the one that opened a whole new world for you.

Well done, thanks for sharing! :thumleft:
 

Offline GravelFox

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Re: solo around lesotho
« Reply #7 on: August 14, 2020, 07:02:31 am »
I wondered how you experienced Volunteershoek/Bidstone pass. With my around trip I came down it with the XTZ and overcooked my rear brake.


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I just had a look now... That was the exact point where i turned around.. I was so exhausted... Did you manage to make it to the top??

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Hi Popman. I came from Tiffendale so for me it was going down. I think, since I did it the pass deteriorated more. Looking forward to the rest of your RR.


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Offline trevo

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Re: solo around lesotho
« Reply #8 on: August 14, 2020, 01:46:53 pm »
I wondered how you experienced Volunteershoek/Bidstone pass. With my around trip I came down it with the XTZ and overcooked my rear brake.


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Went pass the boom gate that said "closed", wrestled a loaded GS1150 with a pillion up, eventually made it to Tiffendale and stayed over, road was closed as a track dozer was fixing it. Listen to your wife  :imaposer:
DILLIGAF
 

Offline Grunder

Re: solo around lesotho
« Reply #9 on: August 28, 2020, 01:30:47 pm »
Nou waar is die res?  :biggrin:
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Offline popman.rhonwyn

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Re: solo around lesotho
« Reply #10 on: August 28, 2020, 01:32:56 pm »
Nou waar is die res? 
Sal die naweek update gee oor dag 2. Bietjie hectic die kant. Sorry vir delay...

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Offline Clockwork Orange

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Re: solo around lesotho
« Reply #11 on: August 28, 2020, 05:54:52 pm »
Awesome. Looking forward to the rest.
When in doubt...grab throttle!!!
 

Offline Noneking

Re: solo around lesotho
« Reply #12 on: August 29, 2020, 04:12:15 am »
Nice!
Patiently waiting for the rest
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Offline Froggy23

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Re: solo around lesotho
« Reply #13 on: August 29, 2020, 05:57:00 am »
Well done, thanks for sharing.
I did a solo trip from the Cape to Rhodes, Tiffindell through Lesotho and then to the Wild Coast and back home.

It was not my first trip like you and Itís life changing stuff.
You did well for your first trip.
Looking forward to hearing about the rest of the trip, Iím sure it wonít be your last !

Cheers,
Andy.


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Offline popman.rhonwyn

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Re: solo around lesotho
« Reply #14 on: August 31, 2020, 06:19:42 pm »
Day 2 Rhodes, Tiffendel,Tenahead,Mount fletcher, Matatiele, Kokstad, Underberg, Bergville  :deal: 9Aug

I would recommend  walkerbouts in BnB to anyone,,,the hospitality, food and accommodation is spot on. The previous night supper I smashed two full plates of bobotie, geel rys and veggies including pudding  :lol8:I was sitting with an proper english oom from Cape town,, he was shocked to see how much peeps from the freestate chow... hak vrystaat...  :laughing4: he also advise me on some routes to bergville...

Early morning I geared and packed up for the the day and all my clothes were still wet from previous day sweat :snorting:..as well the inners of my adventure suite..I hanged it up to dry but seemed no use.. (Will upload pic)

I punished a decent breakfast and head to Tiffindel. It was so cloudy and windy, the ascent was a bit tough ,,,at a stage there are these steep cement spots sitting on  sharp  corners at 180degree bend,, so As I approached midway through the bend there was friggin COW in the road and we both got a moerse fright ,,now keep in mind, it is steep incline right after sharp turn...either I fall or hit this cow... :-\  anddd fortunately with the fright it got it moved slightly out of the way..how fast it happened and the image it imprinted was this moerse wide open cow eye ball felt so close in my face... and I just drove on shaking my head and thinking WTF is a cow doing this high? and out off all the spots,, why in the middle of the road..  :laughing4:

Closer to Tiffindel the road smoothed out and first signs of snow on the sides of the road. I wanted to stop at Tiffendel for a coffee but it was closed and all the signs read open on the way... It was very misty at the resort.. and a proper feeling of ghost town... there was nobody..

So I turned back and saw the gate that led to Tenahead... This route was probably one of the toughest but the most scenic views and beautiful landscapes I have ever seen...  ;D mannn,, it was just awesome... most definitely number 1...too much to take in...  :'(I must say, its about 30km but takes about 1 hour to 2hours to drive...there is about 6 gates (I fell at about 2 of them)cause of bad un-even stopping surface..so easy to miss step and drop the bike...so you have to stop, get off , open the gate, put a rock infront of the gate, cause it is super windy, push the bike through, close the gate, back on your iron horse,,,

Eventually made it to Tenahead lodge... I could quickly see why it costs R2000 per night... I had a coffee and stood in front of the fire place, building chats with guests. Just down the road from Tenahead is Naudesnek pass which provides one hell of an amazing view. So at that stage I was supposed to be on my way to Mount fletcher but accidentally took the wrong turn off and drove back all the way to Rhodes which I only realized when I saw the road sign Rhodes 10km... :eek7:
...I stopped had a look at the GPS and saw I drove about 20km in the wrong direction.. The scenery was amazing so I did not take notice...there at Naudesnek is a board that says Maclear but is blown over by the strong winds, easy to miss.. this is the road to mount fletcher...so I head back ,took the Maclear turn off ... descended down Naudes pass...

holy smokes.. :-\ it was one long trip to mount fletcher (80km of stunning scenery) and it got real late. When I refueled at mount fletcher I realized Bergville was still 400km and it was about 4pm...I booked and payed my accommodation in advance at amphitheater BnB in Bergville..totally underestimated my travel time... I google maps the fastest route to Bergville,,it took me through Matatielle, Cedarville, Kokstad, Underberg, Howick N3 to  Winterton then arrived 11pm @  bergville... :ricky:...I was roast toast :lol8: I almost drove right into my bed...(see pic)

Some pics...







 

Offline popman.rhonwyn

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Re: solo around lesotho
« Reply #15 on: August 31, 2020, 06:26:25 pm »
Bits

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Offline popman.rhonwyn

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Re: solo around lesotho
« Reply #16 on: August 31, 2020, 06:43:07 pm »
More bitsss

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Offline Grunder

Re: solo around lesotho
« Reply #17 on: August 31, 2020, 06:44:24 pm »
Awesome. It just gets better ans and better
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Offline GravelFox

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Re: solo around lesotho
« Reply #18 on: August 31, 2020, 06:46:22 pm »
Long days for that area...well done.


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Offline ETS

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Re: solo around lesotho
« Reply #19 on: September 02, 2020, 03:10:11 pm »
 :thumleft: :thumleft: :thumleft: respect!!
If i had to explain you would not understand anyway......
 
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