The Cederberg on two wheels MzansiBride

Winona Griggs

The Cederberg: A Motorbike Adventure

Imagine this: embarking on an incredible motorbike journey through the heart of Africa, from Cape Town to Cairo. Can you feel the excitement? I sure can! I’ve been fortunate enough to complete a similar adventure myself, and now my friends Fred and Freddie are about to embark on their own epic two-month trip. They’ve asked for my input and support, and I couldn’t be happier to assist.

Last week, Fred called me with an enticing proposition: a test run through the captivating back roads of the Cederberg. They wanted to try out their new pannier system and bike modifications, and they invited me along for the ride. As soon as I saw Fred’s name light up my phone, I was hooked on the idea.

I’ve visited the Cederberg numerous times over the past two decades, although not recently, and never by motorcycle. It’s not exactly a hidden gem for bikers, as many riders spend their weekends exploring the breathtaking landscapes and mostly deserted dirt roads. Now that I’m back in Cape Town and have an off-road bike, I had the opportunity to experience the area in a whole new way, and boy, was it an eye-opening adventure!

So, here’s the deal. We left Cape Town and decided to take a different route. None of that mainstream N7 for us. That road is just a breeding ground for terrible drivers, if you ask me. And wouldn’t you know it, right outside Moorreesburg, some maniac in a red Toyota almost ran over my friend Fred. I swear, people drive like they’re trying to break speed records or something.

READ  What s your favourite padkos MzansiBride

Anyway, I was so relieved when we finally reached the dirt road. I don’t know about you, but I love the feeling of venturing off the beaten path. It’s like a breath of fresh air. Next time, though, I’ll definitely be looking for an alternative route. The N7 can keep its chaos.

Once I ventured into the mountains, the dangers of the highway quickly faded away, only to be replaced by the much more enjoyable dangers of rocks, sand, and mud. After a quick detour back to the pavement and a satisfying lunch at the Yellow Aloe in Clanwilliam, I hit the gravel road once again. This time, I journeyed to Wuppertal and braved the signposted 4×4 trail to Matjiesrivier. It was an exhilarating ride that perfectly encapsulated the kind of roads you can find throughout Africa.

There were a couple of challenging uphill climbs, plenty of loose rocks that required careful navigation, a few shallow river crossings, and even some short stretches of deep sand that put my riding skills to the test. But under the bright blue sky, it was absolute perfection. I couldn’t help but imagine how much more challenging those roads must be in the winter, especially after a good rain. They must become a muddy mess, adding an extra layer of excitement and adventure.

Man, we had a blast! We took it easy, stopping often to snap some cool pics. The KLR’s fan was acting all wonky, and the bike started to overheat because the tailwind was blocking the airflow to the radiator. But hey, we were in no hurry.

READ  Blind bushbuck s epic leopard encounter

The funniest thing happened when Fred senior shook his head disapprovingly at his son for almost hitting his brand-new, wide panniers against his parked bike. It wasn’t hilarious on its own, but it set the scene perfectly. Just moments later, Fred senior, still huffing and puffing about his son’s reckless move, lost his grip, and both he and his son crashed into the bushes. I had a good laugh, although I’m not sure they saw the humor (they sure learned their lesson about the width of their bikes though).

Now, I had my own little moment of forgetfulness later that evening when we were setting up camp at the Cederberg Oasis. Can you believe it? After sleeping in a tent for more than 22,000 kilometers, I managed to forget my tent poles back in Cape Town. Luckily, my buddies were cool about it and let me share theirs. We ended up having a great time, drinking plenty of beer (I’m a big fan of honesty bars), feasting on half a sheep’s worth of braai, and getting a snug but comfy night’s sleep. The next morning, we hit the road back to Cape Town, braving the rain. I have a feeling I’ll be heading back to the Cederberg Oasis real soon.

Leave a Comment