I awoke early Sunday morning to the subdued sounds of people moving around, chatting and preparing to ride home, it was still dark but it was calm and clear and starting to lighten in the east. After my ablutions I walked down to the coffee tent, already there were a lot of people there and we greeted each other as I spooned Ricoffee into my styro cup, it still tasted good as I headed back to the campsite.
Already several people were up and about and to my surprise there was even movement from Frank's tent, he surfaced and went off for the first of many cups of tea. I packed my bike and then bundled the tent up and stuffed it into the rubbish bin, ready to go. (My tent had passed its "Use-by" date, two of the poles had split and the front zip had pulled apart, time to buy a new one.)
Some really nice Harleys and even though (as you will know by now) I am not an HD fan, this blue one was a real beauty.
Look closely at the exhaust, there were two slightly longer pipes protruding out the back and these had gas burners, this bike attracted massive attention by emitting huge flames either when it was parked, as in this photo, or even more spectacularly as he was riding along. This guy must have invested a lot of money in this machine!
After bidding all of my friends farewell and a safe journey I saddled up, eager for the ride home. It was 06h30 when I rode out of the gate and I stopped for a sunrise photo over the harbour.
It had been a good rally and now it was time to get home. My original intention had been to head back to the R62 and have breakfast in Barrydale which I had done last year but that's a bit of a long haul and by the time I got to Riversdale I needed petrol and by then I was also hungry. Many of you will know that there's a very good Wimpy there so I decided to kill two birds with one stone.
I noticed that it was only about 100kms from Riversdale to Swellendam so I decided to stay on the N2, it wasn't that busy on a Sunday morning and it was easy to maintain a 150kmh cruising speed and I must say that the N2 is in very good condition, I really enjoyed the ride especially after being fortified by a good breakfast and some nice coffee.
From Swellendam to Ashton is a lovely fast road with only one relatively short "Stop/go" section at the beginning,
no matter, it gave me a chance to lift my bum off the saddle and to have a chat with the other bikers, soon we were blasting our way through the wide twisties on one of my favourite sections of road. I cruised slowly through Ashton and then Robertson, both places well known for speed traps and then I was on the fast 50km stretch to Worcester - man I love that road!
I didn't need to stop in Worcester, still enough petrol so I by-passed the "Whistle stop" even though there were several bikes parked outside, I was on a mission. Road works on the road through to Wolseley delayed the cages a bit but not me, I was thoroughly enjoying my self and maybe sensing that they obligingly moved aside to let me fly past.
Slowly though the small town and then out on the newly surfaced and widened road past Tulbagh and through the often baboon-infested "Nuwekloof Pass", by the time I got into Riebeek West I needed a leg-stretch, saddle muscles were cramping slightly but man I was happy! I fueled up and walked around a bit, I was still too early to stop for a beer as pubs and restaurants only open at 11h00 so I pushed on, only an hour to Saldanha, I would be in time to take the "ladies" out for lunch.
It was 11h30 when I parked the bike outside the house, exactly five hours to do 490kms with two stops, not too bad I reckon, and what an enjoyable ride. What's next?