A perfect day with sunny 26 degree weather. I rode up the N7 from Cape Town and crossed into the Cederberg Mountains over Nieuwoudt's Pass, from there over Uitkyk Pass and on to Kromrivier. The electricity was out but they still managed to make a meal for me which was accompanied by one of their excellent craft beers. After Kromrivier I decided to take the longer way back via Ceres which is along a long ascending and descending gravel road until you come to the tar and descend down Gydo Pass and on to Prince Alfred's Hamlet and Ceres. From there I took the quick route down Mitchell's pass and past Tulbagh back to Cape Town.
Took a ride to the Ceder Brew brewery at Kromrivier in the heart of the Cederberg Mountains today to sample some of their craft beer, and to see their brewery. The weather was just perfect and started out at 15 degrees and topped out at 28 degrees. There was a light breeze but the ride was a real pleasure. The gravel road to Kromrivier is in good condition so you can easily ride 60 - 80km/h (just a few short corrugated sections). Although it was lunch time I had a light breakfast (cost only R40) accompanied by their Pumpkin Ale (made with pumpkins from the farm). After lunch I was given a quick tour and explanation of how the brewery works. Apparently their beers are also for sale through Roland Liquor Store in Cape Town. I also tested out the new Kaoko Cruise Control on my bike. Worked very well and made the longer stretches of tar a lot easier as I did not have to grip the throttle the whole time. It is essentially a big friction nut and the nice thing is that it releases in the same direction you use for de-accelerating so it is easy to disengage in a hurry if you need to. Details for Ceder Brew (including the GPS coordinates) are at www.cederbrew.co.za/contact-us. I left home at 08:40 and arrived at Ceder Brew at 12:40 (with a few photo stops and a stop for coffee). I left at about 13:45 and got home at 17:00.
To break the new bike in we decided to do the run out to Barrydale and go a bit beyond that and take a circular route on gravel (180+ km) and back round to Montagu. The bike just purred along at 140 on the N2, eating up the miles. We had the usual stops at Dassiesfontein (to find the geocache), the Karoo Saloon, and at Ronnies Sex Shop (to say hi to Ronnie and find another geocache). Then we hit a "very" long stretch of gravel and I tried out the off road suspension settings.... wow she just soaked up all the bumps and it was a surprisingly good ride and we passed only one 4x4 along the whole 180km.... Got back to Cape Town after about 12 hours and still felt surprisingly good! Total of 671km travelled at average 5.5l/100km with about 186km on gavel.
We rode up the N2 over Sir Lowry's Pass, through Swellendam and over Tradouw Pass to Barrydale where we had lunch at the Country Pumpkin. From there we rode through to Ronnie's Sex Shop on Route 62 where we had a drink and chatted to Ronnie. The road back was the 180km stretch of gravel that starts before Ladismith and stretches over Ouberg Pass to Montagu. We also found a geocache on Ouberg Pass. Weather was clear and ranged between 26-33C degrees. We travelled 612km and it took us 11 hours and 59 minutes with the various stops.