2012-10-14 Riebeek Kasteel, Wellington, Baden Powell

After much debate about whether to ride or not as the wind was blowing a gale outside and according to www.yr.no was only going to get worse, we decided that a sleep in seemed the obvious choice as nobody had informed the Nav whether they were joining us for a ride. 

I can't remember when last we had a lie in on a Sunday morning and for a few moments I got really excited that I could snooze for another hour or so. That was until we received an sms at 7am from Erich to say he was waiting for us at the Tokai garage.  As we were both still in our jammies, Erich was summoned over to our home, we served him a cup of coffee and left him to page through some bike magazines while the Nav and I managed to shower and get kitted up in record time to set off on our usual Sunday escapades.  

We left Tokai just before 8am and headed off to Marine Drive via the Foreshore. To avoid the windy mountain passes,the Nav decided that we would head off to Riebeek Kasteel for breakfast and make our way to Wellington from there.  

The route to Riebeek Kasteel included Contermanskloof, Occultdale, Klipheuwel, Slent Pad (one of the worst gravel roads in Cape Town for sure), Haaskraal Rd, Porseleinberg Rd and a not often used farm road which led us into the sleepy town of Riebeek Kasteel.  I could not help having a feeling of dejavu, as we had breakfast in Riebeek West last Sunday and we travelled a few of the same roads again today, except this time in reverse direction. We enjoyed a relaxing breakfast at the Fat Cats Kitchen where we received the usual superb service from Craig our waiter.  It was good catching up with Erich as we last saw him on our Baviaans trip in March 2012 and we were happy to see that he had recovered fully from his unfortunate injuries on the trip and finding some time in his hectic schedule to join us for a ride.

After breakfast we retraced our steps for +/-4kms before crossing the Berg River (see pics) at Zonkwasdrift and joined the tarred road between Wellington and Ceres.  We took a right and 5kms later turned left onto the Bo-Hermon gravel road ultimately winding up in Wellington.  We enjoyed the most majestic views from the hills just past Schalk Burger's farm in the direction of the Slangrivier vineyards, situated on the slopes of the Groenberg Mountains.  The vineyard takes it name from the winding stream which flows from the Groenberg. 

The Nav and I waved goodbye to Erich as we parted ways in Stellenbosch while we made our way to Somerset West to visit the Nav's cousin Brent. From there it was tar all the way home from Somerset West via Baden Powell to Tokai.  As the south easter was howling, we hit a few crosswinds on Baden Powell but fortunately nothing too serious, although we were both spitting out beach sand that blew inside our helmets when we got home.  

The route (changed somewhat due to wind conditions)Tokai, Occultdale, Porseleinberg Pad, Riebeek Kasteel, Bo Hermon, Wellington, Stellenbosch, Somerset West, Baden Powell

Erich approaching the end of the Occultdale Road on route to Klipheuwel 
A leg stretch after navigating the Slent Pad in Klipheuwel - one of the worst gravel roads in the Cape! 
A group of youngsters admiring our bikes

The Nav and Erich patiently waiting for me as I am snapping away the two pics below
view to the left - The crop sprayer being serviced before take-off
view to the right - Wind howling on top of the mountain in the distance
Riebeek Kasteel in the distance
anyone know what the 'shed' in the mirror is called?
The Nav at the Berg River crossing after Zonkwasdrift
Erich at the Berg river crossing
The Ed's KLR at the Berg River crossing  - still nice and clean but not for long!
you guessed it... we turned right
Wellington in the distance 
Menin Rd on route to Wellington 
hidden valley of Wellington - majestic viewsThe Berg river flows along the western border with two smaller streams, the Spruit and Kromme and  the mighty Hawequas stands guard on the eastern side. The Bainskloof Pass, built by the famous Scot, Andrew Geddes Bain was (before Du Toitskloof Pass) the only gateway to the north.

Pirelli MT60 - 8000kms later - ready and waiting for the Nav to clean
Anakee 2 - 11000kms - waiting in line for a  clean
The Nav, armed and dangerous cleaning KLRs 

Distance travelled: 285kms 

Thanks Erich for getting us "up and out" today!  Had it not been for you we'd have missed out on a glorious day in the countryside, enjoying what we do best on a Sunday.   Glad you could make it and hopefully your hectic schedule will allow you to fit in the occasional ride so that you can join us again soon. 

Safe travels everyone, till next week
"4 wheels move the body, 2 wheels move the soul"

about Wellington - Did you know?  

There were two attempts to name Wellington but it was only when Sir George Napier suggested that the town should be named after ’England’s greatest soldier’ that in 1840 the town of Wellington was proclaimed after the Duke who defeated Napoleon at Waterloo – somewhat ironic considering the town’s forebears.