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Offline sidetrack

Ok let's go check out the Northern Province and Limpopo
« on: May 17, 2011, 09:50:37 pm »
I still had Monday and Tuesday free after putting in some leave for the East Cape Bash which turned out to be a no go, the bike was just serviced and ready to roll. Dirtwarp spent some time on Google Earth and we had a ride planned up towards Limpopo / Northern Province. Great have not done much riding up there, it did not dissapoint ! The inevitable tar had to be dispatched quickly, wyk Satan !



The first bit out towards Renosterkop Dam have been done a couple of times but always provides different terrain depending on what the weather has been up to. There were still some sandy bits and shallow water crossings around. Luckily not much mud, would hate to be plastered in the stuff with three days of riding to do.





Early morning cool down



Bikes used for the trip : KTM 450 XCW and KTM 525 EXC
Total km's covered : 1200 km give or take
Average fuel consumption : 20km/l







Fuel stop at the Village of Mapoch, the 450 was running a stock 9 L tank. Dirtwarp ran out of fuel once on the trip 40m before a garage the rest was covered no problem, felt a little daft with my 25L fuel tanker :) The locals were happy to see some bikes and could not understand why you would sit on a bike for a whole day and then camp in the mountains ! Bought some canned food and bread for the braai later that night, tasted like mannah from heaven.





Single track and ANC voting rallies were popular attractions on day one.



We were heading north east towards Ga Mampuru to join up with the Olifants river and follow some tracks running along side it. It turned out to be some great riding. Typical bushveld with thorn bushes sandy tweespoor. Also had a big moment when the rear slided and at one point I was totally sideways, just not sure if it was going to be a low or high side. By some miracle the bike got back into line, luckily I brought three pairs of underwear !









Masses of tracks all over, just watch out for the occasional goats and cattle.



Heading towards Tswaing and Penge, never again will I ride a camping chair with. Sat on it for about 30 mins but had to lug it along for freakin days.





On the banks of the Olifants, like sand then come and play here.



Our stopover for the night would be close to Wolkberg. The pass leading to the camp site included some switch backs, steep climbs and forestry sections. We only got to site after night fall and we had to pull on all our Bear Grylls survival tricks to get the fire going. Spaza shop food and dodgy meat never tasted so good !





Day two would bring totally different scenery, stay tuned .....
« Last Edit: May 17, 2011, 10:03:36 pm by sidetrack »
Little by little, one travels far

J.R.R Tolkien
Ride reports :
http://www.wilddog.za.net/forum/index.php?topic=134175.0 Penge's pass and the Old Forest http://www.wilddog.za.net/forum/index.php?topic=9421.0 - Orange Atlantic adventure http://www.wilddog.za.net/forum/index.php?topic=7514.0 - 805 km day trip http://www.wilddog.za.net/forum/index.php?topic=20260.0 - East Cape Bash http://www.wilddog.za.net/forum/index.php?topic=70199.0 - Two KTM thumpers head north
 

Offline dirtWarp

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Re: Ok let's go check out the Northern Province and Limpopo
« Reply #1 on: May 17, 2011, 10:48:17 pm »
Those tracks next to Olifants river were brilliant!

..and then there was that part where I did the first 120KM on a totally flat rear tire  :o
That Mitas C18's sidewalls are well made, and that 450, very light  :thumleft:

1200KM on an enduro bike and I already crave for more!
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Offline madmike999

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Re: Ok let's go check out the Northern Province and Limpopo
« Reply #2 on: May 17, 2011, 11:12:56 pm »
respect, nice ride, hope there is more!
'82 R100 RS,  '98 Africa Twin,  Vespa 180 Rally
 

Offline sidetrack

Re: Ok let's go check out the Northern Province and Limpopo
« Reply #3 on: May 18, 2011, 09:39:30 am »
respect, nice ride, hope there is more!
Plenty
Little by little, one travels far

J.R.R Tolkien
Ride reports :
http://www.wilddog.za.net/forum/index.php?topic=134175.0 Penge's pass and the Old Forest http://www.wilddog.za.net/forum/index.php?topic=9421.0 - Orange Atlantic adventure http://www.wilddog.za.net/forum/index.php?topic=7514.0 - 805 km day trip http://www.wilddog.za.net/forum/index.php?topic=20260.0 - East Cape Bash http://www.wilddog.za.net/forum/index.php?topic=70199.0 - Two KTM thumpers head north
 

Offline GRUNT

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Re: Ok let's go check out the Northern Province and Limpopo
« Reply #4 on: May 18, 2011, 09:48:29 am »
So out with it then, we're waiting impatiently!! BTW your luggage is it the GL great basin or coyote? all feedback appreciated, as I'm in the market and can't decide between the two sizes
I am pure Krogan,you should be in awe!
 

Offline dirtWarp

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Re: Ok let's go check out the Northern Province and Limpopo
« Reply #5 on: May 18, 2011, 10:12:04 am »
So out with it then, we're waiting impatiently!! BTW your luggage is it the GL great basin or coyote? all feedback appreciated, as I'm in the market and can't decide between the two sizes
coyote  :thumleft:

I ramped at high speed.
Did forest hill climbs up 50degree inclines, while dodging logs and I still couldn't shake that bag  8)

Items it carried:
1 Liter of oil, a lot of tools (KTM's), 1man tent, pack light sleeping bag, some T-shirts and jocks, and a couple of other essentials.

IMO, if you cant fit it into this bag, you probably don't need it.
KTM 525XC-W.. unleash the thunder
 

Offline sidetrack

Re: Ok let's go check out the Northern Province and Limpopo
« Reply #6 on: May 18, 2011, 10:49:39 am »
The bags are worth every cent, I have used the Dirtbagz system before and they also work great for 650 and smaller thumpers but the Coyote can just take so much more and needs no additional brackets. Day 2 coming up, heading into the forests.



« Last Edit: May 18, 2011, 10:50:20 am by sidetrack »
Little by little, one travels far

J.R.R Tolkien
Ride reports :
http://www.wilddog.za.net/forum/index.php?topic=134175.0 Penge's pass and the Old Forest http://www.wilddog.za.net/forum/index.php?topic=9421.0 - Orange Atlantic adventure http://www.wilddog.za.net/forum/index.php?topic=7514.0 - 805 km day trip http://www.wilddog.za.net/forum/index.php?topic=20260.0 - East Cape Bash http://www.wilddog.za.net/forum/index.php?topic=70199.0 - Two KTM thumpers head north
 

Offline sidetrack

Re: Ok let's go check out the Northern Province and Limpopo
« Reply #7 on: May 18, 2011, 11:18:35 am »
Day 2

As the sun came up we were able to have a good look around, mountains covered by Pine plantations and some patches of indeginous forest. We were the only people staying at the campsite and luckily had plenty supply of fire wood.





We now found ourselves to the to south of Heanertsburg and the plan was to head to town and then into Magoebaskloof. On day 1 the liner protecting the tube from the spokes on Dirtwarps bike made it's way past the bead of the tyre. Never seen anything like that before, the tube was still holding fine so we just cut it off. The repair was made early on  day 2. Some electrical tape did the trick.



Wheel ready for repair.



We were ready to roll, paid our camping fees and headed towards Heanertsburg. We got to do the pass a second time, at it's highest point it climbs to 6500ft and then decends back to 4000 feet. Neither bike had any carburation issues on the whole trip which had a couple of these climbs.







Stretch the legs



Just before town we had a nice little rocky section which then opened up into a beautifull valley called Black Forest.





Had to stop and take a look around, what a great place to visit. Peacefull, perfect getaway from the city life.



It was almost lunctime, luckily the town was just around the corner. Burgers and beer at the local pub and grill yeah ! It's situated on Heanertsburg one and only main street you can't miss it. The town itself as described by Google :

"Haenertsburg is a village situated on the edge of the Great Escarpment in the Limpopo Province of South Africa, on the R71 road between Polokwane (formerley Pietersburg) and Tzaneen.

Farming and tourism are the main economic activities on "The Mountain" as it is called by the locals; Haenertsburg is in mountainous terrain. The Iron Crown is a well-known landmark.

Frequent mists and relatively high rainfall have created a lush vegetation with afromontane forest patches occupying the kloofs (gullies) which dot the rolling grasslands and surrounding mountains. Unfortunately, large areas of rare, and botanically very diverse, grassland (Woodbush Granite Grassland) have been planted to timber (primarily timber for pulping). These monoculture plantations extract a great deal of water and the resulting water shortages downstream (in the Kruger National Park and Mozambique) are cause for concern. A local group, FROHG (Friends of the Haenertsburg Grasslands) helps to conserve the indigenous flora and fauna.

The scenic beauty of the Haenertsburg area attracts many tourists. It is a favoured spot for cycling, biking and fishing. Sailing and other watersport take place on nearby Ebenezer Dam. The steepest mountain pass in South Africa, the Magoebaskloof pass, leads one down from the Highveld of the Haenertsburg area to the Lowveld adjoining the Kruger National Park, falling approximately 600m in altitude in less than 7 km travelled.

Haenertsburg is also famous for the annual Spring Fair where various crafts and flower displays are exhibited. July sees the advent of the Holistic Fair which displays the diverse creative talents of the Mountain folk. Every Friday and Saturday morning the Morning Market is run by the Duchess of Atholl.

The town was established in 1886 with the discovery of gold by Carl Ferdinand Haenert here.






To be continued ...
« Last Edit: May 18, 2011, 11:20:48 am by sidetrack »
Little by little, one travels far

J.R.R Tolkien
Ride reports :
http://www.wilddog.za.net/forum/index.php?topic=134175.0 Penge's pass and the Old Forest http://www.wilddog.za.net/forum/index.php?topic=9421.0 - Orange Atlantic adventure http://www.wilddog.za.net/forum/index.php?topic=7514.0 - 805 km day trip http://www.wilddog.za.net/forum/index.php?topic=20260.0 - East Cape Bash http://www.wilddog.za.net/forum/index.php?topic=70199.0 - Two KTM thumpers head north
 

Offline sidetrack

Re: Ok let's go check out the Northern Province and Limpopo
« Reply #8 on: May 18, 2011, 12:59:25 pm »
Various tracks run all over the Magoebaskloof range, the area is a haven for mountain biking, hiking and fishing. We followed a route that was planned using google earth. Dirtwarp declared himself King of the kloof.





Plenty of small rivers and creeks running through the countryside. The average rainfall for this area is around 1200mm, one of the locals told us that they had 600mm in one month. The water looked inviting, after two days of riding I was looking forward to a good wash up :) I really like this pic.



At one point we took a wrong turn and ended up riding an overgrown track, it eventually opened up into a bamboo plantation ! Inclines, slick rock and navigating some submerged tree stumps  made for some great riding.





Back on track we passed the Dap Naude dam and went down to the dam wall. The dam was built in 1958, the dam wall is 23m in height.





Just cruizing



Look out points abound, how is this for a view





Our overnight stop was getting close luckily just off the R71 we came across a Pizzeria / Pub. Met some interesting locals as well, they obviously had one too many ! The food was great, wood fired pizza just as it should be !





We arrived at the stopover point for day 2, Granny Dot's B&B. No camping facilities meant we had to break the budget. It is run by an elderly couple and is highly recommended. They started with Avo farming but then converted it to a B&B. Some spectacular views to be had, I could sit here all day.



Day 3 would be the longest part of the trip
Little by little, one travels far

J.R.R Tolkien
Ride reports :
http://www.wilddog.za.net/forum/index.php?topic=134175.0 Penge's pass and the Old Forest http://www.wilddog.za.net/forum/index.php?topic=9421.0 - Orange Atlantic adventure http://www.wilddog.za.net/forum/index.php?topic=7514.0 - 805 km day trip http://www.wilddog.za.net/forum/index.php?topic=20260.0 - East Cape Bash http://www.wilddog.za.net/forum/index.php?topic=70199.0 - Two KTM thumpers head north
 

Offline Cave Girl

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Re: Ok let's go check out the Northern Province and Limpopo
« Reply #9 on: May 18, 2011, 01:10:53 pm »
Looks like you had fun - Looking forward to day 3   :)
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Offline LeonDude

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Re: Ok let's go check out the Northern Province and Limpopo
« Reply #10 on: May 18, 2011, 01:18:18 pm »
Nice ride!  :thumleft:
Great news, my book 'Sniffer' has seen the light of day of Amazon Kindle!
https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01N664WIH
Check out my website for free short stories!
http://www.leondekock.com/short_stories.html
 

Offline sidetrack

Re: Ok let's go check out the Northern Province and Limpopo
« Reply #11 on: May 18, 2011, 06:47:22 pm »
Day 3

Getting ready to head back home, quick check over on the bikes and the usual lubing of chains and we were off.



The first part of the ride would see us stay close to Tzaneen, in fact by 11:30 we were still 20 km outside of town ! I knew that this was going to be a long day and that a night ride was going to follow. The other option was to camp another night at Loskop dam, we would see. Slick down in the valley.



And some more twee spoor made for good riding, some places petering out into single track







We came across this picnic spot tucked away in the Agatha forest, took a break and had a look around. Would be back here for sure.







Last stop before the forest would make way to some bushveld terrain, we were lucky to spend two days in riding nirvana.



Refuel, Mr Pink glasses decided he would pose on my bike.



Unfortunetly everything did not go according to plan, we wanted to go through Legalameetse Nature Reserve and approached it from the Eastern side only to be told that we could not continue into the park No bikes allowed. We were now forced to backtrack and do some serious mileage all on tar :( We made for Orighstad and got onto a fast rocky track that ran all the way to Burgersfort. The idea was to get back onto the planned route at Groblersdal. The tar was painfull as I knew what good riding we were missing out on. I have done the route before from the Western side and it was some of the best riding ever. See ride report here :

http://www.wilddog.za.net/forum/index.php?topic=7514.0

By now it was very late and the only dirt left was a small shortcut from Stoffberg to Loskop which we made just before sunset.At Loskop we decided to do the last bit home and not stay over. My bikes headlight is dire, luckily the 450 had a better setup and we could creep home to end off a great ride.

HID se gat, check out my 1 candle power unit !



Thanks for reading !
Little by little, one travels far

J.R.R Tolkien
Ride reports :
http://www.wilddog.za.net/forum/index.php?topic=134175.0 Penge's pass and the Old Forest http://www.wilddog.za.net/forum/index.php?topic=9421.0 - Orange Atlantic adventure http://www.wilddog.za.net/forum/index.php?topic=7514.0 - 805 km day trip http://www.wilddog.za.net/forum/index.php?topic=20260.0 - East Cape Bash http://www.wilddog.za.net/forum/index.php?topic=70199.0 - Two KTM thumpers head north
 

Offline LouisXander

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Re: Ok let's go check out the Northern Province and Limpopo
« Reply #12 on: May 18, 2011, 07:26:58 pm »
Hey julle farkin moegoes, nou wat nou? Ek wou nog saam!!!!
Don't dress for the ride,........dress for the fall!
 

Offline sidetrack

Re: Ok let's go check out the Northern Province and Limpopo
« Reply #13 on: May 18, 2011, 07:42:23 pm »
Hey julle farkin moegoes, nou wat nou? Ek wou nog saam!!!!
Jou bike nie nog by Runner nie ? Anyway ons beplan kla die volgende trip.
Little by little, one travels far

J.R.R Tolkien
Ride reports :
http://www.wilddog.za.net/forum/index.php?topic=134175.0 Penge's pass and the Old Forest http://www.wilddog.za.net/forum/index.php?topic=9421.0 - Orange Atlantic adventure http://www.wilddog.za.net/forum/index.php?topic=7514.0 - 805 km day trip http://www.wilddog.za.net/forum/index.php?topic=20260.0 - East Cape Bash http://www.wilddog.za.net/forum/index.php?topic=70199.0 - Two KTM thumpers head north
 

Offline Brakenjan

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Re: Ok let's go check out the Northern Province and Limpopo
« Reply #14 on: May 18, 2011, 07:49:04 pm »
Nice one guys!  :thumleft:

dirtWarp, are you happy with the 450? And do you still have your 525/530?
 

Offline dirtWarp

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Re: Ok let's go check out the Northern Province and Limpopo
« Reply #15 on: May 18, 2011, 07:54:10 pm »
Hey julle farkin moegoes, nou wat nou? Ek wou nog saam!!!!
Louis, as jy kon sien waar ons moes ry op plekke sou jy en daai groot XR iets oor gekom het, regtig!

Ons sal weer die roete doen en van die mal stuff uit haal.
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Offline dirtWarp

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Re: Ok let's go check out the Northern Province and Limpopo
« Reply #16 on: May 18, 2011, 07:59:02 pm »
Nice one guys!  :thumleft:

dirtWarp, are you happy with the 450? And do you still have your 525/530?
The 450 is kickass.
It does 120KM/h @ 3200rpm (Makes most HP @ 7500rpm)  :thumleft:
But, I have to take 500ml of oil on a 1200KM ride.. it uses some, but so does the 525.

No, I sold the 525.
KTM 525XC-W.. unleash the thunder
 

Offline Brakenjan

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Re: Ok let's go check out the Northern Province and Limpopo
« Reply #17 on: May 18, 2011, 08:13:47 pm »
Nice one guys!  :thumleft:

dirtWarp, are you happy with the 450? And do you still have your 525/530?
The 450 is kickass.
It does 120KM/h @ 3200rpm (Makes most HP @ 7500rpm)  :thumleft:
But, I have to take 500ml of oil on a 1200KM ride.. it uses some, but so does the 525.

No, I sold the 525.

 :thumleft: 

Your 450 sure is purty - turned out to be a good buy.  :thumleft:
 

Offline dirtWarp

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Re: Ok let's go check out the Northern Province and Limpopo
« Reply #18 on: May 18, 2011, 08:17:33 pm »
:thumleft: 

Your 450 sure is purty - turned out to be a good buy.  :thumleft:
Thanks, but, I do miss the 525's bottom end torque.
KTM 525XC-W.. unleash the thunder
 

Offline The Badger

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Re: Ok let's go check out the Northern Province and Limpopo
« Reply #19 on: May 18, 2011, 08:24:57 pm »
Lekker ride and pics. Thanks. :thumleft:
Good friends and fresh mud......

It is not about what you ride...... but WHO you ride with !