Lesotho, The Mountain Kingdom awaits...

RUSTY- Russ Rathbone's picture

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After much pre trip planning we had all the fine details for a sucessful trip and everything seemed to go according to plan. We plotted the route after speaking to the guys Wayne Haylett, Cobus Botha, Hendro Scholts (5 Capped springbok), Niel Duplessis (Coach for the Cheetas.) and myself Russ Rathbone ROUTE: Day1: Packing and loading BikesPacking and loading Bikes · Bloemfontein After a long trip by car we arrived in Bloem exhaustedAfter a long trip by car we arrived in Bloem exhausted · Botshabelo; · Maseru, Roof of Africa rally. The Roof of Africa - Around the town. Meseru that is to qualify and get poll positionThe Roof of Africa - Around the town. Meseru that is to qualify and get poll position · Mohale Dam; On route to Katse Dam the rain poured and those of us who were NOT suitably dressed paid the price of being rather uncomfortableOn route to Katse Dam the rain poured and those of us who were NOT suitably dressed paid the price of being rather uncomfortable · Thaba Tseka; · Katse Dam sleep over. On the A3 highway it works to about 224km from Maseru to Katse. The dam was maissive and although we arrived at the Hotel in the dark and pouring rain we could still see how big Katse Dam was.The dam was maissive and although we arrived at the Hotel in the dark and pouring rain we could still see how big Katse Dam was. Day 2: · Over Katse, up and down the side; · Mokhotlong, turn right before the town; · Sani pass, Sani Top Chalets sleep over. No Cobus, this is the highest pub not the widest!!! Sani Top Lodge with great food after a ong and wet rideNo Cobus, this is the highest pub not the widest!!! Sani Top Lodge with great food after a ong and wet ride The sign indicating that it's the highest pub in Africa.The sign indicating that it's the highest pub in Africa. The Sani Top Pass looking from this angle it just seems to disappearThe Sani Top Pass looking from this angle it just seems to disappear No picture can do justice to the firts 200 meter section of this pass. I love hectic, but this was hectic, hectic....No picture can do justice to the firts 200 meter section of this pass. I love hectic, but this was hectic, hectic.... The mid section of the pass. Stevet told me to go up and down and now I'm sorry I did'nt listen to him.: Although at the time I was stuffed and out of breath and only later did the Team Docter Niel say that it was because if the altitudeThe mid section of the pass. Stevet told me to go up and down and now I'm sorry I did'nt listen to him.: Although at the time I was stuffed and out of breath and only later did the Team Docter Niel say that it was because if the altitude Day 3: · Himeville; · Lower Loteni; · Rockmount; · Ntambamhlope; · Bergville; · Sterkfontein dam; Golden Gate, WOW! Why did'nt everyone tell me it was so beautiful. Now that I've seen it I recognize all the post card pictures.Golden Gate, WOW! Why did'nt everyone tell me it was so beautiful. Now that I've seen it I recognize all the post card pictures. · Golden Gate sleep over. That night we stayed at the Drakenstein Gardens Hotel. Great accomodation, food, and over all stay.That night we stayed at the Drakenstein Gardens Hotel. Great accomodation, food, and over all stay. Spectacular scenerySpectacular scenery Day 4: · Clarens; · Ficksburg; · Clocolan; · Excelsior; · Bloemfontein. ACCOMMODATION: Night 1: (no other formal camping sites I can find) Katse Lodge, 011 718 6452: · A – Rooms sharing with an interlinked bathroom at R400 pp including Dinner, bed and breakfast. · B – Rooms sharing with interlinked bathrooms at R300 pp, own food Night 2: Sani Top Lodge, 033 701 2888: · A – Rooms with communal ablutions at R350 pp including Dinner, bed and breakfast. · B – Camping at R70 pp, own food. (Dinner R75, breakfast R45) Night 3: Golden Gate National Park, 058 255 1000: · Conservation fee of R19 pp per day. · A – Family cottage or Farmhouse sleeping 5 pax at R995 per night, own food. This was the most spectacular accomodation venue which was the old stone farm houseThis was the most spectacular accomodation venue which was the old stone farm house · B – Camping at R256 for the night (six pax on site max, price worked on five pax) with own food. Thus we have two options: A – 2 nights with dinner, bed and breakfast and one night at the cottage with own food at R949 per person. No tents and extra gear, bad weather at night does not bother us, less food to carry or buy and less risk. B – One night bed, two nights camping with own food at R422 per person. Camping gear, food, extra weight, but maybe more adventurous! We have to decide this week in order to book. Let me have your feedback. This site is "research in development" RIM site by an outside ranker who left school long before PC's enterered the market. Here's to hopeing....
Stevet's picture
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Joined: 2007/11/02
Hi Russ Just a quickie - the roads are long and in places quite difficult - Mountain Climbing road means 4 x 4 only - learnt this at my peril when i was in a hire car . But the views are unbeleivable as you literally drive around the mountains looking down on the rivers that seem miles away. Another alternative is after going down Sani - turn around and go back up - make your way to Mokhotlong and follow the road throught to Oxbow lake - stopping at the Afri Ski lodge for a drink - make your way to Buthe Buthe and then come out at Caledonspoort - which is Fouriesburg - then make your way back to Golden gate - truly memorable. The beauty of this is that you literally drive along on top of the world - lookinhg out over the tops of all of the mountains- if not mistaken it is the highest tar road in the country - tar to be interpeted as potholes joined together by lines of black stuff. Whichever routes you take - have a great time and a safe trip.
n/a
RUSTY- Russ Rathbone's picture
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Joined: 2007/09/04
Stevet is the best...... Thanks Bud. Your tips and recomendations have been forwarded to the group for their concideration. I love adventure bikers, they rock!!!!! Only problem is I always desperatly want to share the experience with my adventure buddies. This site Charels runs for us makes this possible. Thanks Charlie!!! Rusty in the eye of adventure.
chris dunn's picture
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Joined: 2007/06/18
Russell are you definitely leaving on the 27th? I would have loved to have come with, Sani Pass is one of my biking goals. I only get back from Jhb on Thursday night. If there is a change of plans please let me know. Chris
RUSTY- Russ Rathbone's picture
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Joined: 2007/09/04
I'm so sorry you could not have made this trip Chris. It would have blown your mind as we live in such an awsonly beautiful country. Next time perhaps.......... Rusty in the eye of adventure.
flatoutmac's picture
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Joined: 2008/12/12
Good to meet you guys at "round the houses". I see you had good trip. Ours was also very good!. Regards. Graham Maclachlan
Andyman's picture
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Joined: 2007/06/22
Welcome to the forum Graham,..... your 'photo' seems to brand you as a Wild Dog. Enjoy the genuine answers, clean culture and good chat on this forum. Andyman Yup that's me. Standing up in the traffic on the 1150GSA.

Andyman
Anyone can ride a bike fast....   But can you ride your bike real slow???

Andyman's picture
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Joined: 2007/06/22
Rusty, excellent trip, thanks for the photo's and report. But surely there's more....? You guys did some serious iron butt hours to get the distance covered. And by now your next service is due..... Andyman Yup that's me. Standing up in the traffic on the 1150GSA.

Andyman
Anyone can ride a bike fast....   But can you ride your bike real slow???

RUSTY- Russ Rathbone's picture
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Joined: 2007/09/04
Hi Graham How on earth did you find me here buddy???? LOOK GUYS!!!!!!!!!! THIS IS MY NEW FRIEND GRAHAM WHO RIDES THE ROOF AND WHO WAS WITH MANY GERMAN OKS doing the area on big adventure KTM's. I met at the roof of africa event. Great meeting you in Lesotho bud. Thanks Rusty in the eye of adventure.

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