The Experience 2017 pt5

I got back onto the tar and worked our way back to the starting with a major smile on my face, dusty and happy, charging! Not believing I could do this, and there it was … the finish line chute! As I was alone outpacing the toppie, I sprinted alone to make it look like I too was chasing the race snakes of the A Batchers and bunny hopped over the line! I air punched and realized that I had finished! Finished? Yes, finished! 

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The Experience 2017 pt4

I flowed and flowed and flowed oh and did I say it flowed? Got to the first water station, feeling fresh and stopped to have a quick chat with the nice ladies and gaze over the scenery. Clicked back in and pedaled up the school with cheers from the locals and chocolate asking, I just wonder where they got that idea of asking for chocolates from.

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The Experience 2017 pt3

Poof! Chris fired the gun and then we were off … C Batch with their bikes were off … I gladly waved and noted that I will be back here, on my bike a few hours later! We rode and got to the first major climb on the tar, and I immediately put the hammer down to set up a pace no one could match and it worked as I caught up with the father-daughter duo whom I met the evening before and just joined their train up until we went off the tar onto the trails where we flowed before I decided their pace was just too slow for me and overtook them before the lekker downhill by Tugela River. Flowed down, and as I was about to touch the river going to cross it, a few guys were pushing across the river and I thought … hmmm maybe I don’t need to push over this river, possibly I could ride over it. I rode it right! Until a rock came in front of me and I went over my handle bars right into the water, cooled down a bit but was hilarious for those around me and forced me to lose my gloves as they were wet. No one around me could believe a bloke on a hardtail could go swimming during a race. For a moment I thought my race was over and then I realized all was still well, bike was still well; body was okay … no damage was done. 

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The Experience 2017 pt2

The Saturday alarm went off, still yawning and wishing not to get up. I stood up, knowing I had a mission to complete. I went on and played Eye Of The Tiger to get the blood running and get Flashy warmed up and so the shower was awesome and headed again to the kitchen area where I was again met with a bouquet of bikers with arm and leg warmers. They were indeed freezing and I wasn’t, still had no idea why I wasn’t cold. Went in the kitchen, grabbed a bowl of oats and a cup of coffee (since I heard oats and coffee are a good pre race food choice). 

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The Experience 2017 pt1

(Day 1)

I had set out a challenge to myself, to one day complete Ridetheberg , and there it was a year later and the weekend gazed into my eyes. Thoughts came into my mind whether I had prepared enough for this event. Were the intervals that were suggested to me enough? Was the rough climbing of Gustav Klingbeil tough enough to chisel me for the Drakensberg trails? Only the weekend that lay ahead could tell …  (Photo Malose Sebata)

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The Experience in 2016

Friday morning , topped up my little Polotjie with fuel and set out a course using a GPS to a place I’ve never been before … Bergville , what was set out to be an amazing weekend in the mountains , far far away from human civilization and the deafening sounds of city cars and busses. The trip was filled with what one could call “scenic routes” , from the off ramp heading to Harrismith and the overberg pass leading up to the AllOut Adventures route. Words alone cannot describe the beauty one experienced on the route , the vendors with figurines and foreign tourists constantly nagging to have a photo of them taken. 

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Memoirs of non-rider

It is almost two years that I drove up the D119 for my interview at All Out Adventures. I remember looking at the trails and thinking, wow who made these little paths for people to walk on. My excuse is I was a city boy and have never heard of mountain bike trails, still I was amazed by how beautiful these little paths were. Fast forward to June after I was appointed, Chris took me to explore a new trail in the Langkloof area; oh by then I knew that the little paths were actually Mountain Bike trails. Boy did we walk, he didn’t really prepare me for that. Typical city boy behaviour you might think, in my defence I had not really converted from being a city boy to a country boy yet. Back to the story, I was blown away standing at the top of the mountain looking down at a beautiful valley. I felt proud to be part of a team marking a new trail that people would drive from all over the country to ride on.

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I’m just an ordinary guy – S’bu Hlongwane

I’m just an ordinary guy at a completely unique fully marked 150 km of trails in the Northern Drakensberg. I started riding in 2013 –  Chris introduced me to Mountain Biking which I had never done before. I still remember Chris’s question “Would you like to ride fast?” Yeah sure!  

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Serious riding without being a serious rider

I love mountain biking with a passion, everything about it from the fast flowing downhills to the slow grind up some switchbacks. It really is a happy place, with the exception of riding through the veld when my Dad told me it was glassy smooth but he actually just wanted to recce the new Ride the Berg route. (Which can’t only be on the 150km of trails that are already made but has to have some new exciting bits that are only accessible once a year!) Of course it is all worth it in the end, being a regular Drakensberg Trails rider, it was refreshing to ride the brand new beautifully groomed trail that was created in record time by employing a group of enthusiastic trail builders from the community.

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A Tribute to Ridetheberg 2017

I sat on my bike, surrounded by fellow riders, listening to Chris giving us the run down on the course for the day, but wondering what really lay ahead. This was the start of the 2 day Ride the Berg event and there was now no going back.
Chris emphasised the fact that we were riding in very special surroundings and suggested we all take some time to look around whilst riding and to “drink in” the wonderful atmosphere that we were privileged to be riding in.

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