Welcome to my blog, these are the ramblings and musings of an (upper) middle aged biker and if you enjoy braais, (barbeques) beers and motorbikes then hopefully you will enjoy what Janet and I do; we do lots of braais, we drink lots of beer and we tour South Africa on our motorbike, which at the moment is a BMW R1200RT. Join us, read about what we do and please leave us your comments.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Fantastic Eendekuil weekend

Janet arrived back from Durban just before 4pm on Friday and we managed to get out on the road just before 5pm, she had time for a beer (I offered her a cup of coffee!) and to pack her pannier case and we headed out. Don't you just love a biker chick?
It was a lovely ride, there was a bit of a strong wind to start with, but we soon rode away from it and it took us just over an hour to do the 133kms to the Eendekuil Hotel and that was in spite of the 64km stretch from Velddrif to Piketburg which we had to do at 100kmh because it is such a bad road. Actually it was because of that stretch that it took so long to do only 133kms!
The sun had dropped down over the mountains as we roared into the parking area at the hotel, it was getting slightly chilly as we joined Dick and Janet who had already established themselves on the veranda and it didn't take us long to get a beer and get ourselves into a relaxed state.
We had a couple of drinks, met up with another biker; Rick who was on a KTM 990 Adventure who joined us for the evening. It was during dinner that Rick learned that I was carrying 25 fresh oysters in my top case and he decided that he was going to tag along with us the next day, in fact his exact words were "I'm going to keep that red BMW in my sight all day!"
We had a very pleasant evening although everyone went to bed a lot earlier than I did, I should have had Frank with me - but then again, maybe not! After a really good breakfast on Saturday Dick and Rick rushed off to Clanwilliam along the N7, at first I was keeping up with them but then I slowed down and said to Janet; "They are going too fast, I want to just cruise and look at the scenery." she was happy, that was exactly what she wanted to do so I dropped our speed and we sat relaxed in the early morning sunshine and enjoyed a relatively slow 74kms and met up with our friends at a service station just outside of the town.
From there we rode together (after Janet had managed to score some cardboard cups from one of the takeaway shops) up to the "Pakhuis Pass", this is one of the most amazingly picturesque areas that I have ever seen. The last time we had rode along there the road had been tar for only about ten kilometres out of the town so we had turned back with no idea how wonderful the area is, it had previously only been accessible to the 4x4 drivers and off road bikers, now it has been opened up to us road riders as well and what an spectacular ride it is! The rock formations are unbelievable!
We stopped in a shady area and considered opening the oysters then but we could see the road stretched out ahead in the valley and decided we just had to carry on to the end, maybe there would be a better spot! There wasn't but the ride was fantastic,
It was worth it just to ride to the end of the tar road, about 30kms further and then turn around and ride back.
All the time it was getting hotter but we didn't notice, the new tar stretch was fantastic and there was no traffic, just a few other off road bikes travelling through from Calvinia to Clanwilliam.
By then we had decided to return to our shady spot to open the oysters and drink some of the wine, Rick was still hot on our heels!
I couldn't get enough of the absolutely amazing scenery, Janet did a great job with the photos, I think she volunteered because she was worried that I was going to try my usual method of engaging the cruise control and taking pictures with one hand on that winding road!
We soon got back to our original shady spot overlooking the valley and pulled off for a break, it was about eleven o'clock, time for a snack and something cool to drink.
Here you can see Rick on the KTM just in front of me, he couldn't believe that he had met up with someone carrying a bag of fresh oysters in the middle of the bush!
We sat in the shade on a mountain eating fresh oysters and drinking dry white wine out of the cardboard cups which Janet had managed to acquire and thinking "What the hell could be better than this?" Rick was saying things like; "Never in my wildest dreams................!" as he slurped another fresh oyster.
Later that evening, after a couple of beers at the "West Coast Hacienda" where I had a nice chat with the owner; Marius, and a good ride back to Eendekuil it was time for dinner. Chicken and lamb, rice and vegetables.
and I could go back as many times as I wanted! I did. That meal was for the unbelievable price of R50, about 7USD or 4,5GBP, in fact the whole weekend; two nights accommodation, two dinners and two breakfasts and all of our booze (which was quite a lot!) cost us less than R1,000! A real bargain. Dick and I had quite a good party that night, we found out how to work the disco set up and the two of us sat listening to music and talking crap........it's a guy thing! After another good breakfast the next morning we were ready and raring to go.
We rode towards Piketberg, and then just outside of the town we took the road that leads up to "Bo-Piketburg", an incredibly winding, narrow road that climbs steeply up the mountain to a lush farming area where proteas grow wild alongside the road and farms are nestled in the unbelievably beautiful folds in the multi-hued countryside. We followed the narrow, winding ribbon of tar through the freshly scented farmlands, revelling in the sheer beauty of the area. We were travelling at about 30kmh waiting for the tar to end but wanting to carry on until it did in case we missed another enchanting vista.
All too soon that road did come to an end, at a farm gate and we stopped for a break. It was sublime, a beautiful day in a spectacular area and reluctantly we decided that it was time to head back.
We retraced our path back to the pass and soon we were looking down over the town of Piketburg, a spectacular pass and a wonderful ride and we still had more than an hour to go!
The BMW and the KTM head off down the mountain pass.
I couldn't resist another photo on the road home, this time Janet wasn't sleeping! Dick was behing me and we still hadn't managed to shake off Rick on the KTM! It's amazing what a bag of oysters will do!
We said our "Goodbyes" outside of the town and split up, Janet and I went to one of the local hotels on the beach for an ABF (Absolute Bloody Final) before heading home, it had been a wonderful weekend.
I now really want to go back to the hauntingly beautiful "Pakhuis Pass", I want to park the motorbike and wander amongst those magical and mystical rock formations, then I want to go back up to "Bo-Piketberg" and take another of those winding farm roads to its eventual farm gate and take lots of photographs to show you how beautiful our area is. We will do this very soon, watch this space!
I really recommend the Eendekuil Hotel to you Capetown bikers, R180 bed and breakfast! You can't beat that and Magda rides a pink R1200GS!


George F said...

Beautiful pictures and roads, I will have to go back and tour South Africa one day ;-)

the rider said...

Give me a call when you do come over George! I'll be happy to show you around.