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Author Topic: Rat racer's weekend getaways  (Read 3415 times)

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Offline Xpat

Re: Rat racer's weekend getaways
« Reply #40 on: September 01, 2020, 09:35:15 am »
Flashback from the past: Since the light wasn't the best on this trip due to overcast sky, I will dump here pictures from my prior trip up the Penge pass and Legkalameetse forrest almost year ago, to give the place better justice:


































« Last Edit: September 01, 2020, 09:36:20 am by Xpat »
 
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Offline Xpat

Re: Rat racer's weekend getaways
« Reply #41 on: September 01, 2020, 09:41:07 am »
Flashback from the past 2: The forrest section:















































« Last Edit: September 01, 2020, 09:42:34 am by Xpat »
 

Offline sidetrack

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Re: Rat racer's weekend getaways
« Reply #42 on: September 01, 2020, 09:57:12 am »
 :thumleft:
For indigenous forests you can also try Fundudzi and Wild Coast areas
Little by little, one travels far
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Offline Xpat

Re: Rat racer's weekend getaways
« Reply #43 on: September 01, 2020, 10:41:26 am »
:thumleft:
For indigenous forests you can also try Fundudzi and Wild Coast areas

Thanks, I will definitely have a look around that Fundudzi place soon  :thumleft:

Offline Offshore

Re: Rat racer's weekend getaways
« Reply #44 on: September 01, 2020, 10:41:40 am »
Great RR, Thanks for sharing.
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Offline sidetrack

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Re: Rat racer's weekend getaways
« Reply #45 on: September 01, 2020, 05:10:16 pm »
:thumleft:
For indigenous forests you can also try Fundudzi and Wild Coast areas

Thanks, I will definitely have a look around that Fundudzi place soon  :thumleft:
Just be carefull the Lake is enchanted and you might return with a spell cast on you  :biggrin:
Little by little, one travels far
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Offline Xpat

Re: Rat racer's weekend getaways
« Reply #46 on: September 01, 2020, 08:01:25 pm »
Day 2 - Tzaneen to Tonteldoos via Wolkberg reserve

We woke up in the morning to a rain. We procrastinated for about an hour until it eased up a bit, geared up, fuelled up and set-off. I took it very easy on wet mountain tar with my C02s at the back. I took it even easier when we hit dense fog in the forrest on top of the mountain with visibility in some places easily less than 20 meters.

I'm sure Bart was very gratefull for this as he is not a quick learner and as last week came on a trip in the middle of winter in Leatt enduro jacket - which is fantastic to flow a lot of air in hot weather - and without any windbreaker. We he was freezing his nuts off. After about0 30 km of miserable tentative cold tar ride, we finally turned off onto the dirt track heading to the Wolkberg reserve gate another 15 or so km away. The ride through the misty forrest reminded me a lot of back home, where we still have big chunks of real forrest left.

Here som imagery along the route:








































We came upon what I expected to be the gate to the park, but it was just an admission office with no one around. The signs weren't let's say encouraging continuing on that route, but we decided to try anyway....
« Last Edit: September 01, 2020, 08:02:45 pm by Xpat »
 

Offline Xpat

Re: Rat racer's weekend getaways
« Reply #47 on: September 01, 2020, 08:19:23 pm »
We came eventually to the actual gate to the Wolkberg reserve. It was closed, but not locked so we made it through and stopped at the empty entrance office. There were fresh car tracks and we hanged around and hooted few times to see if anybody will show up. Nobody did, so after ciggy or two we mounted the bikes and set-off.

Straight away we got lost on some forrest foothpath with trees fallen down all over the place. So we backtracked to the office, found the right track and set-off.

This is magnificent track consisting from two distinct sections: the top section runs on top of the Wolkberg (I think) mountains providing great views and vistas (especially if there isn't mist to fuck it up for you - at least that would be my guess since we had the mist). It then descends very steeply down to the Mohlapitse river valley, which it then follows for another 20 or so km to the Fertilis village at the bottom of the Orrie Baragwanath pass.

Top section:



























































« Last Edit: September 01, 2020, 08:26:52 pm by Xpat »
 

Offline Xpat

Re: Rat racer's weekend getaways
« Reply #48 on: September 01, 2020, 09:06:50 pm »
And the river section down at the bottom of the valley - this section includes about 23 rivercrossings. Luckily the water was low and some were completely dry. Bart still managed to drop the bike in one of the crossings - fortunatelly he did not drown the bike, and we were on our way in no time again.



































« Last Edit: September 01, 2020, 09:08:12 pm by Xpat »
 

Offline Xpat

Re: Rat racer's weekend getaways
« Reply #49 on: September 01, 2020, 09:15:37 pm »
And the last bit to Fertilis:

















































After short break at the bottom of Orrie Baragwanath pass, we gunned it with one stopover in Steelport to Tonteldoos for overnight and early morning rush back to GP. All in all, very good weekend of some of the best riding in SA.
« Last Edit: September 01, 2020, 09:17:06 pm by Xpat »
 

Offline BuRP

Re: Rat racer's weekend getaways
« Reply #50 on: September 02, 2020, 07:52:17 am »
Day 2 - Tzaneen to Tonteldoos via Wolkberg reserve

I'm sure Bart was very gratefull for this as he is not a quick learner and as last week came on a trip in the middle of winter in Leatt enduro jacket - which is fantastic to flow a lot of air in hot weather - and without any windbreaker. We he was freezing his nuts off. After about 30 km of miserable tentative cold tar ride......

.... during which I was hoping for anywhere possible to buy a black plastic bag: to cut 3 holes in and don it, over my Tshirt and under my fantastic jacket which yes, is a bit cold and porous to water - but still is a great and light, arms-thornproof jacket!  :thumleft:
But to no avail, slippery misty tar in a persistent rain, c c c cold!
Fyi Xpat, I've bought since an allegedly waterproof, removable inner-lined, CE-approved Impact-protected (that's a HINT!) behemoth weighing more than my modest boop, which I will wear on future endeavours - so bring it on, I should even be Cyrillic-weather proof now! Oh, yes, large zippered vented areas too, I only hope it will stand up to thorns as well as my Leatt does, let's see...




Where you saw this waterfall is beyond me, for the life of me I cannot and do not remember seeing it!
Was this next to a grazing Trex perhaps, or a Walrus sneaking up on some impala?


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Offline Sheepman

Re: Rat racer's weekend getaways
« Reply #51 on: September 02, 2020, 08:12:39 am »
Lovely scenic route 👌 Great RR of the middle weights ! ( no pun intended Burp  ;) )
 
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Offline Xpat

Re: Rat racer's weekend getaways
« Reply #52 on: September 02, 2020, 10:34:57 am »
:thumleft:
For indigenous forests you can also try Fundudzi and Wild Coast areas

Thanks, I will definitely have a look around that Fundudzi place soon  :thumleft:
Just be carefull the Lake is enchanted and you might return with a spell cast on you  :biggrin:


Luckily I'm not superstitious. And I spit three times over my left shoulder every morning so no evil spirit has a chance anyway  O0

On related note - do you by any change have a nice gps track for that area? I started plotting tracks on satellite, but the dense forest makes that exercise quite difficult. Ta.

Offline sidetrack

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Re: Rat racer's weekend getaways
« Reply #53 on: September 02, 2020, 04:16:19 pm »
:thumleft:
For indigenous forests you can also try Fundudzi and Wild Coast areas

Thanks, I will definitely have a look around that Fundudzi place soon  :thumleft:
Just be carefull the Lake is enchanted and you might return with a spell cast on you  :biggrin:


Luckily I'm not superstitious. And I spit three times over my left shoulder every morning so no evil spirit has a chance anyway  O0

On related note - do you by any change have a nice gps track for that area? I started plotting tracks on satellite, but the dense forest makes that exercise quite difficult. Ta.
Sorry I have never been, only bucket list ride for me. Rooi (Cobus) said he has some tracks maybe PM him ?
Little by little, one travels far
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Offline BuRP

Re: Rat racer's weekend getaways
« Reply #54 on: September 02, 2020, 06:16:54 pm »
Pffft Penge is a walk in the park

Lol, I did one better I think, dropped mine there twice  :P
One Xpat witnessed, the other time he was ahead of me already so he had to wait a bit: sorry!  :-[

My @Toys2Go racks and crashbars worked well - and for those who also have these I hope you also bought the non-painted versions, as only a minor scratch is visible if you look very closely  :thumleft:
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Offline MRK Miller

Re: Rat racer's weekend getaways
« Reply #55 on: September 02, 2020, 08:04:54 pm »
Which is what we did, until about 10 - 15 km before Lydenburg, when I noticed a shortcut through the mountains. We would miss the scenic pass, but it was dirt which takes preference so we turned on and headed into the mountains. This turned out to be a cracker of a pass - gnarly and remote with great scenery. Unfortunatelly at the end it turned out to be on private property


Beetge kraal pass. Also wanted to do that as a shortcut from burgersfort to tonteldoos, but rode into that gate, which was not market on base camp yet by that time. Awesome report. My wife and i are heading up to do orrie end of Sept. Now that i know we can ride through wolkeberg reserve, that is for sure a option
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Offline dirtWarp

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Re: Rat racer's weekend getaways
« Reply #56 on: September 05, 2020, 01:59:38 am »
Man that place is dry!

You should take your 500 next time and return via Bewaarkloof.
Have a hearty breakfast though
 

Offline Xpat

Re: Rat racer's weekend getaways
« Reply #57 on: September 05, 2020, 07:57:57 pm »
COVID camping outings - June 2020

In June in the middle of the COVID craze I went out for two weekend overnighters in the bush. While there isn't any decent riding available in Gauteng, luckily there is fantastic bush riding available right on its north-west borders in De Wildt and further up north towards Borakalalo NP. So one could sneak out easily into the bush around the police blocks on the provincial borders. That area offers bush riding almost on par with some of the exquisite riding one would normally find in places like in Botswana, and yet it is rarely explored by adv bikers. Which is great as it leaves the area more or less untouched and available for the few real GP adv enthusiasts to explore. 

I had been doing exploratory day trips in the area even before COVID, but the limitations imposed by that insanity made me to focus on the area heavily during COVID, when other more remote options were trickier to get to. The problem was it was right in the middle of the winter and days were short with late starts due to freezing temperatures in the morning and early sunset which made bush riding tricky with long shadows making visibility tricky in the bush past 2 pm. On the positive side, the bush is actually beautifull in the winter as the bush is very colorfull with myriad of autumn leave colors.

With short riding time available in the day, the logical solution was to sleep over to extend the area of exploration in the bush. Due to COVID, there was no accommodation available, so I had to resort to the very last option on my preference list - bushcamping. Which had its own challenges as it was freezing in the night and there was no food to be had, so I had to make a plan for warmer sleeping bag and source grid for braai in the bush. On the positive side I had a spot hidden deep in the bush in dry riverbed in mind for decent overnighter.

I set-off from Midrand on Saturday 20/6 at about 9:00 am when there was enough light and the temperature was pallatable enough. I sneaked out of GP through Ga Rankuwa and I hit the De Wildt track behind the mountain. Despite of few enduro riders I have encountered, De Wildt tracks were very overgrown due to winter and COVID restrictions. I have bumped into few enduro riders who run through the COVID blockade, but much less than one would expect on normal weekend there.





























« Last Edit: September 07, 2020, 01:13:03 pm by Xpat »
 

Offline Xpat

Re: Rat racer's weekend getaways
« Reply #58 on: September 05, 2020, 08:03:34 pm »
After quick stopover at the DeWildt shebeen I have gunned it to Jericho and hit the Tolwane river track there going up to Ga-Rasai:


























« Last Edit: September 05, 2020, 08:04:26 pm by Xpat »
 

Offline Xpat

Re: Rat racer's weekend getaways
« Reply #59 on: September 05, 2020, 08:14:26 pm »
I arrived at Ga-Rasai village quite late and stopped in the spaza shop for quick refreshment. After that I sneaked up into the bush to my planned camping spot where I arrived at about 4pm. It was getting dark quickly so I start up the fire and set myself up for the night. I have braaied some wors and settled down for the night in the dry riverbed. Which I was told later wasn't the smartest move as it is usually the coldest place. And yes, it was bloody cold with temperatures way below freezing. I also found out that by mistake I have bought ladies / small people sleeping bag, so I couldn't move in the bag and was more or less stuck to one position for the whole night. Which wasn't exactly condusive to good night sleep...

But any night in the bush always beats rotting back home in GP.


Ga-Rasai spaza shop






Bushcamp somewhere north of Borakalalo:
































« Last Edit: September 07, 2020, 01:06:50 pm by Xpat »