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Author Topic: Licenced to Ride: Singles Tour (13 - 28/10/2020)  (Read 2858 times)

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Offline Ri

Re: Licenced to Ride: Singles Tour (13 - 28/10/2020)
« Reply #40 on: January 31, 2021, 07:57:57 pm »
The second phase of the cavalry - sister, brother-in-law and family with car and trailer - arrive just before lunch time. Friends of Karel also arrive unexpectedly, and everything gets thrown together for a big, "gesellige" braai. where brannas and coke flows along with the spitsfondighede. By the time we load Blue and leave for Somerset West, we are all best friends.

We also discover that Karel's youngest Boxer absolutely adores tomato, and it is too sweet to see how this shy dog carefully gulps the slices from our fingers.










Blue is transferred from the bakkie to my trailer for the last leg home. It is a terrible thing to see a touring bike debilitated, but this is not the end of my tour just yet.




 

Offline Tom van Brits

Re: Licenced to Ride: Singles Tour (13 - 28/10/2020)
« Reply #41 on: January 31, 2021, 08:13:38 pm »
Baie mooi Ri  :thumleft:
 

Offline Ri

Re: Licenced to Ride: Singles Tour (13 - 28/10/2020)
« Reply #42 on: January 31, 2021, 08:20:57 pm »
Monday - Wednesday 19 - 21/10/2020

The second single comes into play.

Blue is dropped off at @Dux 's workshop for some expert care and attention, and Hooligan, my first love/DR650 is loaded up. Dux has been fixing and pampering Hooligan, as my family plans to buy him from me, and he is in good condition to go. I'll ride  Hooligan for the rest of my holiday, and then leave him at the farm for my family.

@Dux can give more information (although I would prefer if he didn't name names), but it transpires that the other workshop had, with great foresight, sealed Blue's carburettor or gasket with sealant. The fuel had not interacted with this well. It dissolved and clogged up the carburettor, leaving me stranded. I ask the other workshop whether they accept responsibility for the clogged carburettor, but they deny any wrongdoing, and I leave it at that. Their workshop is full of youngsters and singles are a thing of the past.

I spend a few lazy days in the Northern Cape before I carry on with my journey, roaming the farm, visiting my mom in the old age home in Fraserburg and playing on the farm's DR200s.








Making up food packages to be handed out where needed.




Tea and light lunch at the Pers Malva. I'm barely able to keep up with my healthy and lively mom <3




 

Offline Ri

Re: Licenced to Ride: Singles Tour (13 - 28/10/2020)
« Reply #43 on: January 31, 2021, 08:51:18 pm »
Thursday 22/10/2020

With Hooligan packed up and ready, it's time to ride again. I head for Willowmore via Beaufort West, following any gravel farm road that heads in the general direction of the Karoo National Park and Molteno Pass, which my brother-in-law told me is beautiful.




It still hasn't rained in the Karoo, and the veld is very dry.










Here and there, thankfully, some rain has fallen. This is a small dam outside Loxton.










I ride at a speed of between 60 - 80 kph, taking my time and looking around. The road kinks around a beautiful tree and as I round the bend, about 20 baby meerkats playing in the middle of the road scatter in all directions. I slow down even more, delirious with delight, head swivelling in all directions as I try to take in all the disappearing stokstertjies. They are gone in an instant and I laugh my joy out loud.

Up ahead is a low water bridge with a hint of moisture and green sludge, and I carefully roll through it at my very slow speed. The next moment, the back wheel bites the dry surface and comes swooping around to throw me down to the ground, my hip and thigh taking the impact. As I go tumbling I start laughing again, imagining writing about this most pedestrian of falls.

I lift up Hooligan, and walk around stretching my legs before continuing my journey.

The meerkat creche were playing in the road between the low water bridge and the tree where the road swerves out of sight.




Quite a picturesque place to take a tumble








Nope, I don't know what happened here.




Hooligan's gear lever lost it's shoe, but thankfully it was lying right there and I just popped it back on.






Tortoise on the move.




Dry dry dry




Aaargh, tar again.








I notice another scratch from the fall I didn't see before. Ooops...




Molteno Pass


























 

Offline Ri

Re: Licenced to Ride: Singles Tour (13 - 28/10/2020)
« Reply #44 on: January 31, 2021, 09:01:45 pm »
I fill up at Beaufort West and try to get moving as soon as possible. What with masks and badly designed fuel stations, there isn't really enough shaded space to park and make plans. It's peck and hunt on the mobile phone, and then set off again.

Next stop is Willowmore through Rietbron. I haven't ridden here before, and having done it now, I'm not keen to do it again. There is nothing to break the monotony of the flat, barren terrain, and it would be easy to fall asleep on a more comfortable bike. Even my thumper lulled me into a bit of a stupor.








Rietbron's informal settlement is to the left of the road, and Rietbron CBD to the right.








The road goes straight through town, and everything is closed up in the heat of the day.  I stop at a closed shop just to rest my seat and take a photo, and am amused to see someone pop out of the SAPS station two blocks away.

[imghttps://lh3.googleusercontent.com/pw/ACtC-3f9Oswf_iNN4QV7oDrABCJuc6q00Vz6cTEoBnZczQ4kUPukgXcOYvD8FKX_gnJAa9G2LkpiJ2ku9TT7GXVc6wiIFaS9Afr7YRV7u2ZvKwKn36V07d-Ll1QE-hz8Ig_D2vcVuPIstDTd2Dsoi88YmW9U=w1426-h1070-no?authuser=0[/img]http://




Tar again, near Willowmore now.







 

Offline Ri

Re: Licenced to Ride: Singles Tour (13 - 28/10/2020)
« Reply #45 on: January 31, 2021, 09:19:15 pm »
I fill up at Willowmore and ask the fuel pump attendant directions to Jumper's Place. "Go back, turn right, and at the stop street turn right again. After a few meters it's on your left, big trees, you can't miss it." And indeed he is spot on.






I ride into Jumper's place to a fanfare of excited dogs, and Rony, @Die Malletjie , shows me where to park and offload my stuff.








Rony knows his way around bikes, and I ask his help with a few items. The gear lever boot had got lost again along the way and the lever was chowing my foot, and my front wheel was a bit skew again, as per usual after a fall. He also attends to some small electrical issue, but I'm most impressed with the hosepipe gear lever boot Hooligan now sports.




















I've left Boxer country, and I'm now in Bouvier country








The sophisticated electricity system in the cabins




I try to take a shower at dusk, but the water pressure drops and the gas heater won't kick in. Shivering in my short towel, I give up the ghost and get dressed. I'll try again in the morning.

Later on Rony cooks me the most delicious steak and egg with chips and beetroot salad, and we discuss and listen to heavy metal music deep into the night. We discover that we share a favourite song: Scorpion's "Send me an Angel". Rony also educates me on Rammstein, and I am seriously impressed with the band.

Much later than I had intended, but full of contented bonhomie, I head to my sleeping quarters.
 

Offline chopperpilot

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Re: Licenced to Ride: Singles Tour (13 - 28/10/2020)
« Reply #46 on: February 01, 2021, 05:40:10 am »
Very nice RR  :thumleft:
Something does not look right on your chain linkages. Maybe just the pic
Bottom chain guide is busted.

Sent from my FIG-LX1 using Tapatalk

Yes but not what I am talking about. I have drawn a red arrow pointing to the linkages
Correct

I have difficulty seeing where you marked the pic.

The guide however caught my eye.

Sent from my FIG-LX1 using Tapatalk

Current Bikes : KTM 990 R, KTM 500 XCW

End of an Era : Suzuki DR 650 SE, Husqvarna 610 TE
 

Offline Dux

Re: Licenced to Ride: Singles Tour (13 - 28/10/2020)
« Reply #47 on: February 01, 2021, 09:16:45 am »
Monday - Wednesday 19 - 21/10/2020

The second single comes into play.

Blue is dropped off at @Dux 's workshop for some expert care and attention, and Hooligan, my first love/DR650 is loaded up. Dux has been fixing and pampering Hooligan, as my family plans to buy him from me, and he is in good condition to go. I'll ride  Hooligan for the rest of my holiday, and then leave him at the farm for my family.

@Dux can give more information (although I would prefer if he didn't name names), but it transpires that the other workshop had, with great foresight, sealed Blue's carburettor or gasket with sealant. The fuel had not interacted with this well. It dissolved and clogged up the carburettor, leaving me stranded. I ask the other workshop whether they accept responsibility for the clogged carburettor, but they deny any wrongdoing, and I leave it at that. Their workshop is full of youngsters and singles are a thing of the past.


Over and above that there were loads of loose bolts and nuts on the bike , needless to say that I would not recommend them to anyone .
Motoworx
motoworx1@gmail.com
073 232 5389 / 065 967 4661
Unit 6 Viben square
8 Viben Road , Brackenfell
 

Offline Ri

Re: Licenced to Ride: Singles Tour (13 - 28/10/2020)
« Reply #48 on: February 01, 2021, 09:34:49 am »
Monday - Wednesday 19 - 21/10/2020

The second single comes into play.

Blue is dropped off at @Dux 's workshop for some expert care and attention, and Hooligan, my first love/DR650 is loaded up. Dux has been fixing and pampering Hooligan, as my family plans to buy him from me, and he is in good condition to go. I'll ride  Hooligan for the rest of my holiday, and then leave him at the farm for my family.

@Dux can give more information (although I would prefer if he didn't name names), but it transpires that the other workshop had, with great foresight, sealed Blue's carburettor or gasket with sealant. The fuel had not interacted with this well. It dissolved and clogged up the carburettor, leaving me stranded. I ask the other workshop whether they accept responsibility for the clogged carburettor, but they deny any wrongdoing, and I leave it at that. Their workshop is full of youngsters and singles are a thing of the past.


Over and above that there were loads of loose bolts and nuts on the bike , needless to say that I would not recommend them to anyone .

Oh believe me neither would I. Blue, all fixed up and riding again, is my pride and joy once more but riding Hooligan again was awesome. I'll be a hardcore Suzuki DR650 fan to the end.
 

Offline the ruffian

Re: Licenced to Ride: Singles Tour (13 - 28/10/2020)
« Reply #49 on: February 01, 2021, 10:01:37 am »
Brilliant portrait of the Malletjie and his doggzz...
 

Offline frankmac

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Re: Licenced to Ride: Singles Tour (13 - 28/10/2020)
« Reply #50 on: February 01, 2021, 12:06:12 pm »

I've left Boxer country, and I'm now in Bouvier country


Love the Bouviers aka Vlaamse Koehond and Vuilbaard. Had 5 over the years, wonderful natured hounds.

After the last one I decided I had had enough of clipping them especially here on the coast. 
 

Offline Ri

Re: Licenced to Ride: Singles Tour (13 - 28/10/2020)
« Reply #51 on: February 01, 2021, 01:07:57 pm »
Brilliant portrait of the Malletjie and his doggzz...

I agree, one of the best photo's ever, Die Drie Vuilbaarde ;-)
« Last Edit: February 01, 2021, 01:10:13 pm by Ri »
 

Offline sidetrack

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Re: Licenced to Ride: Singles Tour (13 - 28/10/2020)
« Reply #52 on: February 01, 2021, 02:04:43 pm »
Those wide open spaces  :drif:
Little by little, one travels far
J.R.R Tolkien
 

Offline Ri

Re: Licenced to Ride: Singles Tour (13 - 28/10/2020)
« Reply #53 on: February 01, 2021, 02:54:30 pm »
Friday 23/10/2020

@elandsrider plans to visit Eerste River near Kareedouw around the time of my visit, and suggests meeting at Willowmore on Friday morning for breakfast, then riding through Baviaanskloof.

Riding through Baviaanskloof twice in the space of 2 months...?! YES PLEASE!

He sends me an article about the farmers scraping the Baviaanskloof road and even filling up Smitskraal a bit, but I don't pay it much mind. I've ridden through there twice now in total, I'll be fine.

Friday morning I'm at the fuel station early, trying to plait my now-long COVID hair to keep it out of my eyes, when Richard eventually arrives. The road from Kareedouw is longer than he expected, and perhaps he had one more beer the previous night than he admits to. He fills up and greets me with a small hug. We decide to get going and rather have breakfast in the Baviaanskloof, since Rony said there's a nice place for roosterkoek about 20km into the 'Kloof.






When we turn into the Baviaanskloof, Richard lets me set the pace, apparently content with my slowish speed.






I forget the unwanted side-effect of riding with others: sometimes I end up in photo's. I stiffen whenever a lens points my way. I swear I look it too, a deer in the headlights. But the female in me still feels flattered enough to post these.




Hey! A bike almost as low as my bonsai DR650.




A new friend.




Another tortoise on the move. I catch him/her from the corner of my eye as s/he steps off the low water bridge.

Why the fascination with tortoises? I don't know, but on this trip they catch my attention. I think because Dorsland had mentioned them being electrocuted by jackal wire, I was just happy to see so many of them around.






Two aliens eye each other warily






The road is covered in loose gravel and stones, signs of the recent grading, and bakkies racing past kick up thick clouds of dust. One bakkie cuts a tight corner too tightly and almost takes out Richard; they exchange friendly words in emphatic sign language.

From about 20km in we keep a sharp lookout for the roosterkoek spot, our stomachs gnawing at us, but it doesn't appear. Finally, 60km into Baviaanskloof we find our breakfast spot, closer to lunch time. As promised though the roosterkoek is delicious, and it is loaded up with every kind of breakfast goodie Richard desires.






The temperature is forecast to reach the low 40s, and the shady tree offers a lovely breezy spot.
















The garden is a riot of flowers.




Ominous clouds menace us, jealous they're missing out on a great ride.



 

Online Blikkies1

Re: Licenced to Ride: Singles Tour (13 - 28/10/2020)
« Reply #54 on: February 01, 2021, 03:11:42 pm »
Great going, well scribed, subscribed.
It's the end of the road as we know it and I feel fine.
 
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Offline Ri

Re: Licenced to Ride: Singles Tour (13 - 28/10/2020)
« Reply #55 on: February 01, 2021, 08:46:43 pm »
It takes a while to sign into the Baviaanskloof Nature Reserve. Last time we passed through, I don't think we had to pay, but this time round Richard spots the price of entry and I owe him a beer ... or three.

The nature conservation guy is impressed with our modes of transport, and laments his own KTM450 because he battles to find the right sized wheels for it in the rural areas. Apparently a group of riders promised that when they ride this way again in December, they will bring him the right sized tyres. I really hope they kept their word.

A few drops fall as we pull away, but the ranger assures us that no rain was forecast, and we'll probably have a dry ride all the way through. He is right. Apart from a few drops here and there, which nicely settles the dust, it is very hot and humid and dry. The ranger brags about the condition of the road, assuring us we'll be riding a virtual highway all the way to Patensie, clearly very proud of the work done by the farmers, and I find it heartwarming that he takes such pleasure and pride in it.




It is greener here than it was last time I passed through, and it lifts the heart




Taking a comfort and photo break... because I can mos like to take peechas.






Judging by the tracks in the road, we are the first people riding up to the lookout point since the grading.






I've learnt to park in ways that make subsequent pull aways easier.










I hope Richard remembered to use sunscreen




Yours truly, riding in the same t-shirt since I bought it at the WC Malgas Bash yonks ago, because the colour doesn't fade, cotton is awesome and I love the design. Sometimes I alternate it with Thumper Bash t-shirts.




Eventually we reach a much changed Smitskraal. It had been shored up and filled in from the other side, but from this side it is still a deep 2-spoor filled with big round white rocks. Richard rides through first, and then I paddle my way through without incident.












What used to be a long submerged road is now a mere puddle. I remember the tales of derring-do when others crossed thigh-deep in water and bikes became wholly submerged when dropped by unweary bikers. That time will come again, but I'm a relieved it isn't now.






The spitting clouds disappear and the air grows more hot and humid. A small group of "voetgangers" catch my eye and I stop to take photo's. They bunch on top of each other, the group on the ground turning to change the direction of the whole group as they try to look more menacing than they are.






Patiently waiting for the crazy woman taking photo's of little black grasshoppers in the mid day sun.




The road after Smitskraal is as bad as it has always been, with steep uphills and downhils, cement slabs with crumbling bumps to let the water to run to the sides, deep washed out ruts and naked stone banks. I choose my line and crawl down carefully, crossing the ruts at right angles so the wheel doesn't get caught, and hoping Richard is OK. He's been riding for longer so he should be. There isn't time to stop and take photo's, and we just regroup every now and then.

At Holgat Pass I hug the inside cement line, even though it looks worse than the outside one. I'm not in the mood to ride over the krans if I can't make my turn. Suddenly a 4x4 comes racing around a small blind bend, and without thinking I push Hoolingan into a DR650-sized gap in the foliage to the right. The 4x4ers merrily wave their beers and cigarettes at me before speeding onwards.

I carry on cautiously, but there are no other hooligans on the road except me. I reach the top without further incident, and stop to take a breather. Richard catches up with me, breathing fire at the racing 4x4 and incredulous that I managed to evade their dumbassery. It is sweltering, and we get going again.

At the last low water bridge before we leave the nature reserve, I come to a sudden stop. I'm overheating, I need to cool down. It is as well that we stop, because Richard notices that his bash plate had come loose, and he needs to remove it. While he fights the rubber mounts, I walk further upstream, and dip my t-shirt in the water to cool myself down.




The indestructible Hooligan weathers Baviaanskloof with aplomb, yet again.






Naked BMW




We reach the exit of Baviaanskloof and take celebratory pics.




Magical place that I would ride again, any time. It would be awesome to camp here for a few days and explore on foot. Hmmm...






Escape from Paradise. Sigh...




We have one goal in sight now, and that is a beer. Richard also needs to buy hamburger buns for dinner, but that is his indaba. We stop at Padlangs, a place I've never visited before, and I have to admit to being underwhelmed. It's a beautiful spot, but pricey.


















We continue to Patensie to fill up, and then turn back towards Elandsrivier Road. As we turn onto Elandsrivier Road, a plastic comes racing along, the rider wearing no safety gear, roars past us up Elandsrivier Road with a jaunty wave, and soon turns back to pass us again going in the other direction with a jaunty wave. Maybe he heard us and just came for a look-see.




Plastic hooligan






The first few kilometres of Elandsrivier Road is as bad as I remember from our previous trip, ridden out, bumpy, rutted, corrugated, stoney and just horrible. We finally reach the towers near the Grootrivierpoort Road turnoff, and from there the road improves slightly. It becomes a silent, sweeping, curvy ride into the deepening dusk, our bikes snoring quietly while birds flit overhead. The views are breathtaking.








There goes Grootrivierpoort Road, meandering off into the distance.








« Last Edit: February 01, 2021, 08:49:56 pm by Ri »
 

Offline Ri

Re: Licenced to Ride: Singles Tour (13 - 28/10/2020)
« Reply #56 on: February 01, 2021, 08:51:10 pm »
Eventually we reach a hairpin bend to the left with a small board bearing the legend, River Bend. Richard takes the turn and disappears. I stare at the narrow, rutted road covered in lose stones in dismay. Where did he go? I carefully plod along and eventually find Richard waiting at the gate to his and other properties.






The property is on top of a hill, with the river far below. The view all around is spectacular. The cottage where I'm staying is next to the main house. It is quiet, and there is a bird nesting in the lamp outside my door that takes fright and flees for its life every time I open the front door. It's late, and Richard and his son invite me to join them for dinner of burgers. We chat about our various trips, and then I head off to sleep.


















Sundowners in this pool must be absolute heaven.



 

Online Blikkies1

Re: Licenced to Ride: Singles Tour (13 - 28/10/2020)
« Reply #57 on: February 01, 2021, 09:20:38 pm »
Well done on making it over the last passes, bucket-list stuff, you can pat yourself on the back! I felt the same when exiting the gate in Dec, couldn't believe it was over so soon but was also on the hunt for cold beer:) Next time, plan to stay at Duiwekloof about 10km after you enter, you won't want to leave, we stayed an additional night. Thanks for the RR, would love to have your writing talent.
It's the end of the road as we know it and I feel fine.
 

Offline Tom van Brits

Re: Licenced to Ride: Singles Tour (13 - 28/10/2020)
« Reply #58 on: February 01, 2021, 09:28:11 pm »
Ri this would make a nice canvas
 

Offline Ri

Re: Licenced to Ride: Singles Tour (13 - 28/10/2020)
« Reply #59 on: February 01, 2021, 10:43:04 pm »
Well done on making it over the last passes, bucket-list stuff, you can pat yourself on the back! I felt the same when exiting the gate in Dec, couldn't believe it was over so soon but was also on the hunt for cold beer:) Next time, plan to stay at Duiwekloof about 10km after you enter, you won't want to leave, we stayed an additional night. Thanks for the RR, would love to have your writing talent.

Thanks. Was hot already in October, cannot imagine in December...!!

I always pass the various camp sites and think "next time", will definitely have to make a plan. Before I break another ankle/foot, while I can actually go explore ::) Will keep Duiwelskloof in mind, thanks for the tip.

Thank you. Glad you enjoy. I wish I had words of wisdom for the writing, but if you love it you have to keep at it, writing and rewriting and editing. I don't know that my voice is particularly unique, but I do try to be honest and not too wordy or repetitive in my descriptions. I don't always succeed. But if I can smile at my own stuff, hopefully others will too :)