MTB Tour de Kloof
Tour report on Tour de Kloof : 16-19 June 2016
Karkloof was this year’s 10th Club 100 MTB tour venue. Most of us had never visited this area and after four days of riding all 17 of us were all bowled over by the massive variety of single track and pathways for MTB riding.
This year was the first time that we had basically an equal amount of eager under 35s and wiser over 35s members. The balance was great. We know that real long term friendships (cycling) are really formed during tours. We off course missed some of our previous “members of standing” – we trust that we will see some of them again in 2017.
During our stay no water found its way into disruptive member’s tyres, but a rock or two did mysteriously appear in a few newbies packs. Not for long because the single tracks quickly sorted that type of extra weight.
We had a few falls and bruises. The best one went to Hendrik who wrote off his wheel in a gorge after slipping off a small bridge. Hendrik had a few bruises and was bleeding a bit, but his front wheel was badly bent. Fear not because Stu and Hendrik jumped on the rim to straighten it. This enabled Hendrik to wobble home.
We stayed at no 11 Karkloof in a few cottages and in one of the multi room houses. Our tour was hosted by Active Escapes with our ridemasters being Kathryn, Sarah, Mathew and Carlos. We portaged for two days to ride from remote areas and this contributed to extending our understanding of the bigger Karkloof. They really showed us great single tracks and the enthusiasm for their Karkloof area bubbled over.
Due to the misbehaviour of some of the tour members fine evenings were quite a long and serious affair. Here our self- appointed fine-master (sheriff) Stu showed that he was well equipped for this strenuous job. Almost everyone was fined. We had to pay by means of Old Brown sherry. Some even volunteered to be fined.
Our new Tour organiser for 2017 will be Tony Cole with back-up for 2018 Stu Gower Jackson. With Tony being in charge of next year’s tour we at least know we will have the privilege of testing the SAB products once again. Various suggestions for the venue for 2017 has been made from a possible fat bike tour in the northern KZN area, Eastern Cape (Imana route), Lesotho and finally Sabie. Tony & Stu will report back and decide where we will be going. The date should be either August or September long weekends. Tour numbers will again be around 16 members. To confirm your place Tony will be asking for the deposits to be paid by December this year.
Tour de Kloof is now over. We have great memories and our bruises are disappearing fast. This Karkloof touring area should for sure be a regular visit for our Club in future. If you want to make the cut for next year be nice to Mr Cole and pay your deposit in time!