Overberg 2 McGregor

John Geldenhuys's picture

Points: 0

It's 6am and the alarm goes off and my mind doesn’t know what's going on, it's not a work day...WTF Mate? Then it clicks, Overberg, Motorbike, BMW, Day Ride and I'm up and getting ready with a smile on my face. Well actually, did get a cuppa coffee to really wake me up! 06:40 and I am heading towards the Engen Garage on the N2 before Somerset West, the meeting / departure point for the ride.


Once we got the brief done and dusted, I looked over the bikes quickly, thinking to myself, this is going to be interesting.

With everyone fuelled up and eager to go, we set of what was turn out to be a great day.
BMW MCC Cape Overnight Ride to Hessaques - Nov 3 - 4



The first stop was the old Houwhoek Pass. Those who needed to deflate….their tyres did so and after a quick brief, we where off. The road down had a wet spots, not uncommon for  the road and luckily no mountain biker was making his way the trail.


Riding into Botriver , I say a sight that made my heart sink a little, flashing blue lights, red cones and a traffic official. Not a roadblock but a marathon was happening. Now, I have had my share of going on rides and having a few pelotons to cope with, but not a marathon before. The officer waved us one and off we went, some of runners didn’t seem to happy having 12 odd bikes coming along, kicking up dust. 10km of low speed runner avoidance (then tend to run in the middle of the road on corners) and staying focused on the road, which was little bouncy at spots, we got to some clear gravel and made some good time.


With the recent rain, we did encounter some water, this one at a turn off that I was tempted to take, but after taking a walk in the water, and sinking away, decided to err on the side of caution rather.


Now, whilst out in the Overberg we can across the following site.

The National Bird
The National Bird

Blue Cranes in multitude. For those who didn’t know, the Overberg is home to over 50% of the total SA blue crane population, which is listed as vulnerable. We where lucky enough to see the courtship dance of the blue cranes, two cranes jumping up and down with there wings extended.


 Not only did we see them doing there little dance but also taking to the air, at a very sedated pace and climbing slowly they rose in what was really a spectacular site.


From here, we made good speed, stopping Caledon for fuel and riding along the Riviersonderend river. Coming around a corner, a "little" puddle caught most of us unawares and with an Adventure charging around the corner, I shouted "Oh Shit", I should have kept my mouth shut and visor down… a bow wave broke over the top of screen and I sampled some of best brown muddy water on offer and what did it taste like you ask?? Well it tasted like Adventure Motorbiking Baby!! 


Arriving at our lunch spot, Eseltjie Rus 25min later, we all enjoyed a cold drink and let the feet breath a little.

Homemade ginger beer, beef burgers and a little surgery (failed thorn removal attempt) all ensued and when the time came to depart, I was feeling a little lazy, but then most of where.



Making our way back home via Rawsonville, we saw the DA leader Mrs Zilla and the rest of the WP government group on bikes, riding for awareness or something, not sure.

Arriving home after a great day, just in time to watch WP clinch the Curry Cup. What a great day.

Bree River
Bree River

To all the riders that came along, the 800's, the R80, which I kick started sorta, sir, what a legend and hope the foot is better.

To the lone Super Tener that joined us (R1200GS next right?), thanks for the laughs. The chit chat and new faces, I hope to see you all soon on the next ride.


Ride Safe and Take Care

John Geldenhuys

Proud BMW MCC Cape Member and Ride Captain



Zack Burger's picture
Joined: 2012/08/03

Thanks John

 Was great ride and next time I will try and not get lost and try and keep up. My 650 have a mind of its own!!!   Was fun and WP made it a super weekend!

 Must say it felt good coming to work and not feeling like an old man after a weekends ride.

 Thanks again John.

You start the game with a full pot o’ luck and an empty pot o’ experience. The object is to fill the pot of experience before you empty the pot of luck.
Tony's picture
Joined: 2008/08/24

Thanks for the ride on Saturday John. It was good to see so many new faces.

Remember some of us joking about all the GSes with their rear mudguards still attached?

Well just before the old Du Toitskloof Pass I notice that my ABS warning light is on. Strange, as we all stopped in Rawsonville - so ABS should be active (i.e. no warning light). Then I notice my speedo indicating zero. Now I know I'm not the fastest rider in the club but I'm sure I was going faster than zero Tongue out. A quick stop, switch off the motor, wait a few seconds and start again. The ABS light is still on! Maybe it's just some dirt  on the sensor. The light stays on all the way home but the speedo is back to nomal. Weird.

Get home in time for the rugby and so all thought of the malfunctioning ABS light are soon forgotten. When I washed my bike I noticed something was missing ...

Where's the red bit?Where's the red bit?

Apparently the LED tail light lens is glued on Frown and does detach sometimes. Just like the rear mudguard thingy!

A bend in the road is not the end of the road... unless you fail to make the turn. ~Author Unknown

Eric McLaren's picture
Joined: 2011/08/11

Zack, the idea is not to try keep up because that is how accidents happen. Ride within your limit and eventually the confidence level will grow. If you got lost then the guy in front of you is to blame as  you are responsible for the rider behind yourself. This is very important especially on gravel when you get the concertina effect as gaps open to avoid the dust. I'm no expert but during the coarse of 2012 I could feel how my riding has improved. I concentrated on beginner rides and took advantage of any training that was on offer.

Committee: Off Road Captain

Salim Patel's picture
Joined: 2012/03/28

Hi John,

Thnak you for a great adventure..we really enjoyed it. Great company, lovely route though the first part was a bit "fun" :-) Enjoyed the suprise of the water crossing though my passenger did get a bit soaked as well. Will defenitely do more.

As an aside, i didn't deflate my tires after my experience with the old front Mitas that decides to just lose all it's air when deflated. The new Metz Karoo worked just fine pumped hard, though I think that letting out some air for the next ride will contirbute to a softer ride.

Really great company as well and congrats to the person who has now clocked his 100 000kms!!- impressive!!

Till next time...The StartThe StartZack trying to figure out why you need to put air in the camel back?Zack trying to figure out why you need to put air in the camel back?the debate on whether to lower the pressures or not...the debate on whether to lower the pressures or not...the discussion on all the fun..the discussion on all the fun..a closer view of the discussion..a closer view of the discussion....really nice being able to take of my boots....really nice being able to take of my boots....now where did I store the Prepsol from Mike?..now where did I store the Prepsol from Mike?

Charles Oertel's picture
Joined: 2007/04/14

A lovely report.  It's really funny that you guys should still be debating whether to deflate your tyres or not.  Here's a tip - the trials bikes ride with 0.5 bar in front and 0.3 bar at the back.  And sometimes even that is too high and we deflate.

Another tip - the first thing that 4x4s do before riding a trail is to deflate the tyres.

Do you see a pattern developing?

Committee: Webmaster / Ride Captain

John Geldenhuys's picture
Joined: 2011/01/31

No one is debating, it's do what works for you. 
The last 5 or 6 off roads I have kept my pressure constant at 2.2, which is 0.5 more than my "usual pressure". Obviously km's of sand is a different story. 

Deflating tyre is recommended, but for me, I am happy running at the current pressures. 




Salim Patel's picture
Joined: 2012/03/28

..agreed :-)

It was a tongue in cheek comment- easier than trying to remember names :-)

I agree that it is easier to lower the tire pressures when off-road and more importantly, that everyone does what they are comfortable with :-)

Thanx again John

Charles Oertel's picture
Joined: 2007/04/14

Salim Patel wrote:
more importantly, that everyone does what they are comfortable with :-)

Yes, and no.  For a while I had the horror of riding with a rank beginner who was "more comfortable with her ABS on" while riding on gravel.  Nothing I did or said could convince her that it is patently dangerous to ride like that.  Not even the story of the guy who died during a GS Challenge because he did not know how to turn off his ABS.

So it is a fine line about letting people do whatever they are comfortable with, especially when the rider is inexperienced.  Rather convince them to do what is safest for them.

Committee: Webmaster / Ride Captain

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