We saddled up in wet conditions, intermittent rain and drizzle and it was cold. I phoned a friend in Saldanha and was told that it was clear and sunny but windy on that side so I was confident we would ride out of the wet quite soon.
The shortest route home would have been N2 into Capetown and then R27 to Saldanha which is only some 220 kilometers but who wants to go the shortest way on a motorbike? The route I took turned out to be 425 kilometers and part of the way was new to Janet which she really enjoyed.
The weather started to clear by the time we reached the N2, I rode quite slowly out of Gansbaai and through to Stanford because I was feeling the cold and was thus quite tense, it took me a while to relax and get into the ride.
We passed through Riviersonderend (which I think means "River without end" or perhaps "Endless River") and took the R317 at Stormsvlei. An interesting back road that winds up through the pass on the "Riviersonderendberge" (Endless river mountains?), a rugged and dry area with huge aloes growing wild next to the road
The R317 then winds down through picturesque wine country and in this valley area we were somewhat protected from the wind, it was a lovely ride and by 10h00 we were back in the Wimpy restaurant in Robertson enjoying a welcome cup of coffee and a good breakfast.
Back on the road and now in familiar country, high speed along the R60 to Worcester and then the R43 via Wolseley and Tulbagh and by then the wind was slamming us, the Nuwekloof pass was busy and so was the 17 kilometer stretch to Hermon where I was leaning over to the left to counter the buffeting wind, not so pleasant.
Past Riebeek I decided to take the Malmesbury route to avoid the dreadful roadworks outside of Moorreesburg, it's slightly longer but there were only two stop/go sections and we didn't wait long.
It's almost 90 kilometers to the R27 and most of the time we were traveling like a yacht leaning into the wind, I was not enjoying this part very much and just wanted to get it over with so I pretty much ignored the speed limit.
I stopped at the intersection between Vredenburg and Saldanha and we chatted deciding to go in via Vredenburg to the Phoenix bar where the wake of my brother and friend Vincent Van Vuuren was taking place, we missed his funeral earlier in the day but at least we could go and pay our respects to his family and to his club members; the Gypsy Jokers.
Rest in Peace my brother, you will be missed.
Saturday we would rest, take it easy and then Sunday would be the memorial service to fallen bikers at the Biker Church with the local toy run afterwards, I'll tell you all about it.