(Dayride – 19/05/2018)
It’s been a while and the “Groot Trek” is over, the dust has settled on the home front and our feet are itching to just get some km’s on the tyres. Carel and I made a date with our bikes to finally go for a mini ride on Saturday. We had some good friends who were also eager for a dirt day and without much effort we had ourselves a ‘’ breakfast ride – gone long’’ again.
With only one firm arrangement in place, being the meeting point on Saturday morning we knew that whatever way we were going it would be 2 things, Beautiful and Fun. That was enough for me.
From the Bp Garage we exited and met up with Neels at the Strawberry farm near Somerswet west as the yellow 1150 decided she wanted the day off and Neels was to have a day out on an 800. In true fashion he took this pleasant surprise with a grin on his face and we headed to the N2. Quickly ascending Sir Lowry’s Pass, it wasn’t long until our turn off onto the Appletizer road. From there we turned tar to dirt onto the Highlands road. Considering its been a while, I didn’t even give my famous kopwurm time to have a chat, I voided it as I was hungry for this dirt and beautiful landscapes that comes with it.
The area of Grabouw is lush and green after the rains that we have had. The earth looks alive again, the aromas and smells that you get through the open visor is fruity and fresh. It’s almost like drinking a good wine, without the hangover.
Coming back onto tar we headed left to Ecology Farm. Here we sat in the garden, amongst the protea bushes and had hearty breakfast. This venue hasn’t been around very long, but is worth the stop. Here they farm with proteas and have a protea nursery too. Anyone who knows me well enough, will know here I felt at home… ‘’fynbos blommietjies is my hart’’.
After breakfast we headed in the direction of Karwyderskraal, just after the turn Neels led us off onto dirt again. Never riding here before, I was too busy trying to make calculations of how badly I would see my ass today than to even look at the signboards of the roads I was turning onto.
The landscape in this area is breathtaking. Beautiful and stretches as far as you can see through your helmet. Carel started subtly prepping me for a road through the comms as a friendly warning. I only heard every second word, and wondered what the peptalk was about, and then it came… I looked down the hill, it was steep, and at the bottom some of the guys was already waiting for me – to have my turn. Loose rock here we go… tick tock, tick tock. Arriving with the rest of them in one piece, I thought to myself, I am alive and so is my Ducky so I guess we did ok. Just as I gathered my witts again Carel started with is peptalk, seriously. Then I looked up, and here was a narrow loose rock path, and we were going up ! big girl panties on and I stayed sitting and jiggled up there. Getting to the top, if I wasn’t shaking so much I probably would of jumped off the bike and high fived myself.
Alive and kicking I caught up to the group. We stopped to have a moment and I was grateful that I don’t always know where I am going before the time, because if I knew I was going to have to face that I probably would have avoided that road completely, yet here we are testing and flexing our confidence muscle all the time. I love it (maybe I should get a plastic ….??).
Coming out onto tar near Genadendal we made our way to Greyton, this would be our turnaround point. We popped into the restaurant 1854 for lunch. The menu is mouthwatering and the atmosphere is very chilled. We had good food and the boys did some Ale-tasting. The air changed from 27 degrees and we knew our winter sun would be leaving us soon.
Leaving Greyton we did another detour onto dirt and ended up somewhere on Van der Stelspas. The road look a lot different than the last time I rode it. It is so much prettier in this season. It’s so green and fresh.
We turned back onto tar at the Theewaterskloof dam. What seemed to be a quick zip through Franschoekpass ended up dropping into Franschoek as the sun started setting, painting the skies different shades of magenta and yellow, framed by black silhouette of the mountains.
Perfect ending to another good day to be alive.
Sometimes the best days are the ones where you just go where the road leads you. And having good friends to do it with makes it a forever epic adventure.