Welcome, Guest. Please Login or Register

Author Topic: Pilgrims Rest- One Night Stand  (Read 1247 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline UFUDO

  • Member
  • **
  • Bike: BMW R1150GS Adventure
    Location: Gauteng
  • Posts: 124
Pilgrims Rest- One Night Stand
« on: November 13, 2006, 06:32:44 pm »
The weekend of the 4th November a bunch of us did a ?One Night Stand? to Pilgrims Rest. There was Chris and Leonie on a 1200GS ADV. Hein and Shaun on 950 Katooms and Johan on a 990 Ktm. Dennis the ?Ingilsman,?  the author of this trip report, was riding his 650 Dakar. Myself and Belinda where trying out our new HP2.
Our plan was to get to Dullstroom as quickly as possible, have breakfast/brunch and then explore the roads in the Lydenburg area. The plan was then to overnight at Pilgrims Rest Campsite.
Here is a plan of our route to Pilgrims Rest.
 



I?ll let Dennis the ?Ingilsman? continue???????..


"The next bit's a bit more technical than we've done up to now."
So began one of those understatements for which bikers are famous. Yes, the road was a little challenging, but such was the scenic splendour that I wouldn't have missed it for all the world. Add that with the cameraderie, the laughter, the true bonding and the sharing of such an experience - well, what can I say? Wow!
The beginning? Oh, yeah, well, I'm sure Garth said we're to meet 6 for 6:30 - I even remember that I winced, thinking that would mean rising at 4:30 and riding for an hour to get there..
Duly at 10 before 6, I arrive at said meeting point, and wait, ... and wait... and wait. By 6:40 I'm beginning to panic, and by 6:50 I'm sure I got the date wrong. Whew, at 6:55, two KTM's arrive, and the familiar tones erupt from a helmet "Hoe gaan dit met jou, Inglsman?". So grateful to see someone, anyone, I just about hugged the lad!
More folk arrive, and Hein, balls to the wind, as they would say in a less elegant publication than this, decides to change his brake pads! Kan jy dit glo? Asking for a screwdriver he sets off with a leatherman, and one slip later, under strict instructions from Chris, he gets carted off to hospital to return later with 3 stiches
Now the rest of us have to hang about, wondering what's happening at the hosital - we needn't have worried: when asked how things were Hein answered "Sy is getroud!" (as usual his mind was a little off topic). The extra time gave us a chance to catch up - it had been a year or two since I'd ridden with this crew!
We set off via Bapsfontein, then left to the N4. Straight to Belfast Engen (so Johan could get unleaded!) then into Dullstroom for breakfast. After some indecision we settle for The Waffle Log. This is a new spot on the left hand side coming into town from Belfast. They had a good menu and after much indecsion most of us ordered a frying pan containing mince, beans and spicy chillies (the effects of which were heard from Johan's corner not too long after!), a lot of milkshakes, and the laughter that accompanies such good events. The comedian (shall we say clown?) in Johan begins to show itself.


Tummies full we set off  just out of  Dullstroom onto a dirt road. I don't know what it is, but there's a certain feeling hitting "first dirt" gives you - almost as if one's body heaves a sigh of relief.
 


Shaun showing how it must be done?




 Get back to the story! Ok, ok, the road narrowed, then up a short ridge, and over into a wide valley, with hills overlapping in blue distance, a meandering stream, and green meadows. Awesome!
About now it was noticed that Chris' Battlestar Galactica (for thats all one can call something so huge, compared with the fine, slender figures of the KTMs and the BMW Dakar). Even the HP2 looked trim beside that monster! Well, it was noticed that old Galactica had the amazing ability to generate clouds of dust, so much so that few were keen to have to ride behind the beast!
Chris and Leonie ? Battlestar Galactica


A short break and then off again, a little tar, then second left up an amazing road, winding via hairpin bends up a hill of note (later look at the map - the hill is a mountain called Santa, at 2042m). Over the top, round the bend (as I'm sure some would say we were!), and voila! a bed of lavender. A stop is made for pics, and the ever present need for a smoke, then on and up to meet the 577 where its right to Lydenburg.  

 

Good thinking on Garth's part and we take a detour almost completely around Lydenburg, and get the thrill of the first bends on our way to Pilgrims Rest. Stopping at the Crystal Springs turn off, its time for a biltong and smoke break. It?s at this happy gathering that we hear the words "The next bit's a bit more technical than we've done up to now."
Stop at Crystal Springs turnoff


The road starts off well enough, the to entrance of the forestry place, but then soon shows what its made of. Shale, loose and crumbly, sitting on top of bone-jarring ridges of shale-in-the-making. It certainly took all our concentration, but the views more than made up for .. well, I can't really say the pain because that was what we went for - the challenge of the offroad ride, and what a ride it was too. As if it was too easy, Garth, in the lead, insisted on taking us up side paths, as if the joy of turning a fully laden bike on a narrow, rutted track just added to the general fun of the day!

We stop at a view of forever, and Hein tells us he has ridden a bicycle over that large mountain to the left. Shaun decides we, the people, are not good enough to take a pic of him and his worthy steed, so he grovels about in the dust to line up his camera then scoot over to his bike in time for it to take a happy, if dirty, snap of him looking ever so chuffed at his genius for getting it right.
The bikes are lined up and pictures taken, then we mount again for an excellent descent to a small valley and a closed gate! Thank goodness it was unlocked - our thanks to Belinda for having staggered off and opened the gate(s) for us.

Onto a wide, well travelled public dirt road, covered with that fine dust that gets into everywhere, and renders the road virtually invisible. Off go the two KTMs and I follow, stang all the way, in a vain attempt to see over the dust cloud. This works for a while, but around one corner the cloud just takes over. I really can't believe it - how could 2 bikes make such a .. Just as I'm about to finish that sentence I zoom into the worst part of the cloud, only to find that its being made by a BIG YELLOW construction vehicle. Shaken, but not deterred, I overtake, and give it my best, to attempt to catch up. Most of the dust has settled by now, and I am able to make good speed, only to find myself drop into a valley, then up onto a mountainside, confronted by a Toyota Prado in the center of the road. Eek! That was close - I almost had the imprint of a Toyota emblem on my nose.
Arriving in Pilgrims Rest we turn in and park haphazardly in front of The Vine - time to get rid of that thirst. All are amazed at how much dust I have on my clothing - I didn't say how close my meeting with the BIG YELLOW truck had been!
The campsite was a peaceful haven after the dust of the day - hot showers, tents put up by some, whilst others raided the local stores for what turned out to be amazing grub. Wood is bought and soon a fire is roaring. About this time J J and Elmarie come roaring in. Yes, it is good to see old friends again.
Our Kitchen for the evening.

JJ and Nelmarie


 A little interest is caused when a Safari truck comes rumbling in and Hein gets a return wave from a pretty young thing in the back. We just had to laugh at Hein's two man tent! and much ragging ensued about the concept that he must have had his eyes on something else when he bought that one.
Hein?s tent. Just as well the pretty young thing from the Safari truck didn?t join him for a bit of ?slap and tickle!!?

After a great meal, and an incredible salad, one by one we all turn in, what a great day it has been (well, some folk, no names mentioned, stayed up til the wee hours consuming more than wee drams of rum - a fact highlighted by their bleak looks at the breakfast table the next day).
Most of the crowd slept in til well after sunrise. They tell me it was so that the groundsheets could dry, but somehow I don't believe that. It was decided that breakfast will be had in Graskop, and that we'll take the Long Tom Pass road home. Breakfast consisted amazingly of lime milkshakes, flapjacks, omlettes, bacon, pancakes with ice cream, caramel and banana, and some even had a slice of black forest cake!  Once satisfied, it was time to mount up, causing the usual stir, fill up and head off thru the bends.
Breakfast in Graskop


A stop on a pass for a final round of photos (and the coercion of a great sales lady wanting quick sales - R10, R10, R10 was the cry, seeing a number of us heading off as proud possesors of "daai heerlike skilpadjties" to quote Elmarie) and we're off home.


What an exhilarating time. Renewing friendships, doing something we all love, discussing bikes (and the fact that 3 years ago the majority were BMWs while now the KTM?s had the majority!!!), the friendly ragging. Even Garth getting upset over a few male member's wish to be holding his new wife, Belinda,  when it came to having their pics taken. All things to be remembered, things that bring a smile to one lips, and a faraway look in our eyes.
Yes, I'd do it again, any day!
"Africa is not for Sissies!!"
 

Kev

  • Guest
Pilgrims Rest- One Night Stand
« Reply #1 on: November 13, 2006, 07:44:54 pm »
Very good report! I like that HP2 shot in the land of giants. Very cool! :thumbright:
 

Offline chrisB

  • Senior Member
  • ***
  • Bike: BMW F650GS / Dakar
    Location: Gauteng
  • Posts: 935
Pilgrims Rest- One Night Stand
« Reply #2 on: November 13, 2006, 08:47:05 pm »
Hey Garth this one cool report! Wish I was there...  :( keep us up to date on the next one nighter!
G650 Xchallenge - uBerThuMper II
 

Offline Leo

Pilgrims Rest- One Night Stand
« Reply #3 on: November 13, 2006, 09:27:41 pm »
Thanks for sharing Garth  :wink:

I see Camojo is on his Katoom  :roll:

(Sal vir hom bid, maar ek belowe niks! :? )
Grey Haired Riders Don't get that way from pure luck!
 

Offline funacide

  • Administrator
  • Senior Member
  • ***
  • Bike: KTM 1190 Adventure
    Location: Gauteng
  • Posts: 3,485
  • Thanked: 1 times
    • Mediro Business Service Management
Pilgrims Rest- One Night Stand
« Reply #4 on: November 13, 2006, 11:14:10 pm »
Hey Ufudo

Great report, I remember some of those roads from our last trip with fond memories...

Thanks for sharing!!

How is the HP2 going??
KTM 1190 ADV R
 

Offline Gnomad

  • Member
  • **
  • Posts: 53
Pilgrims Rest- One Night Stand
« Reply #5 on: November 14, 2006, 07:17:06 am »
Sure, "food". whatever you say...




Obviously on a liquid diet.  :D
 

Offline Stephan

  • Senior Member
  • ***
  • Bike: BMW R1200GS
    Location: Gauteng
  • Posts: 1,540
  • bwk
Pilgrims Rest- One Night Stand
« Reply #6 on: November 14, 2006, 07:48:54 am »
Great report, looks like you had a fantastic time out there!  :D
Hard reality does not often coincide with the people's wishes - Nelson Mandela
 

Offline JourneyMan

  • Bachelor Dog
  • *****
  • Bike: BMW F650GS / Dakar
    Location: Gauteng
  • Posts: 11,797
  • Pretoria
Pilgrims Rest- One Night Stand
« Reply #7 on: November 14, 2006, 07:53:49 am »
Quote from: "Gnomad"
Sure, "food". whatever you say...




Obviously on a liquid diet.  :D


Nothing like liquid refreshments after a long day's riding to bring out the smile in you! :D

Lekker riding there! Thanks for sharing.
He who angers you, controls you.
 

Offline Grondpad

  • Senior Member
  • ***
  • Bike: BMW R1200GS
    Location: Western Cape
  • Posts: 711
  • Thanked: 1 times
  • Ek laaik tiet kwaai....... :)
Pilgrims Rest- One Night Stand
« Reply #8 on: November 14, 2006, 08:13:03 am »
Lekker report !!
 

Offline GIDEON

  • Born in the year of the Tiger
  • Senior Member
  • ***
  • Bike: Triumph 800 XC
    Location: Gauteng
  • Posts: 4,853
  • Thanked: 8 times
  • Bikes est dans mon sang
Pilgrims Rest- One Night Stand
« Reply #9 on: November 14, 2006, 08:52:08 am »
GREATE report there
Congrats on the new monster


Nobody can be exactly like me. Sometimes even I have trouble doing it.
 

Offline Clockwork Orange

  • Senior Member
  • ***
  • Bike: KTM 990 Adventure
    Location: United Kingdom
  • Posts: 2,319
  • Thanked: 18 times
Pilgrims Rest- One Night Stand
« Reply #10 on: November 14, 2006, 09:31:52 am »
Great report there and stunning pic's. Its always a pleasure to see a few Katooms in the mix. That HP2 must have loved that terrain :lol:
When in doubt...grab throttle!!!
 

Offline Inglsman

  • Member
  • **
  • Bike: BMW G650 X-challenge
    Location: Gauteng
  • Posts: 323
  • He sure makes a beautiful world!
Pilgrims Rest- One Night Stand
« Reply #11 on: November 14, 2006, 10:03:56 am »
Hey! Nice Pics you put up, here's the one about Shaun grovelling in the dirt..

then a nice one of the view and the hp2 in full darth (oh sorry garth) vader mode

Evidence of Hein's folly

A nice look at the hillside

and then a final JJ and Elmarie

It was fun, when's the next... oh, yeah, you lot are off to Malawi... :)

(oh, yeah the pics are a bit big... don't know why! A good ad for the N70 cell phone they were taken on! :)
Cheers!
 

Offline Inglsman

  • Member
  • **
  • Bike: BMW G650 X-challenge
    Location: Gauteng
  • Posts: 323
  • He sure makes a beautiful world!
Pilgrims Rest- One Night Stand
« Reply #12 on: November 14, 2006, 10:44:16 am »
How do I make those pics come out smaller - can I use raw html in there? :roll:
Cheers!
 

Offline JourneyMan

  • Bachelor Dog
  • *****
  • Bike: BMW F650GS / Dakar
    Location: Gauteng
  • Posts: 11,797
  • Pretoria
Pilgrims Rest- One Night Stand
« Reply #13 on: November 14, 2006, 11:00:12 am »
Use Irfanview.

Free software. Works like a charm. Google it.
He who angers you, controls you.