Monday, 1 March 2010

Moto S.A. DAY 4. Cape Town to Calvinia.

03 February 2010
From today I am Solo and hoping to make my first night stop at Calvinia. I left my son at Cape Town International Airport at 10:00 and made my way across to the N7 for the ride north. This routing was a deliberate choice as I wished to avoid the 'normal' roads to Johannesburg the N1 and the N12.
Also, I wanted to pop in for coffee with an old friend who lives in Moorreesburg.
I reached Moorreesburg at about 11:30. It was good to see my old mate again, but I could really only stay for about an hour. Then it was the N7 again with Calvinia as my goal.
The N7 is a wonderful road with little traffic and a good surface. At Piketburg (126 km from Cape Town) I stopped for fuel (Trip: 910 km) at the Engen service station.
I was tempted to stop for a bite, but I wanted to get on and anyway I was not hungry yet!

So, it was a quick pit stop - in and out!

Although there was a fair distance to ride that day, I still took time out to stop and stretch and take a few pictures. The whole route was beautiful.

This is near Citrusdal.

See what I mean about the surface and the scenery? There were a few cars and trucks, but not many. I also overtook (more than once) a long haul passenger coach going to Namibia.

It was impossible NOT to keep stopping and admiring the scenery.

This is just south of Clanwilliam.

Is this a biker's paradise or what?

Answer: YES.

This is somewhere between Clanwilliam and Klawer.

I just HAD to stop at these rocks. Being on the bike alone and experiencing this remarkable scenery was very special for me.

I like this picture. That reflected road goes back to Cape Town!

Crossing the Olifants river near Klawer!

Rocks, trees, riverbed and mountains ....... brilliant!

Melkboom was not on MY map!

"Hoot please for attention. Beware of the dog" Okay.

This is Vanrhynsdorp. I like Vanrhynsdorp. It has pretty flowers and interesting houses.

Is this house interesting - or what?

What is it about little South African houses that I find so attractive? Maybe it's the corrugated iron roofs and the stoeps. But mainly because they lack pretentiousness.

A quiet street in Vanrhynsdorp; and shops just down the way!

These must be school kids in their red jerseys! OK, it's the R27 from here to Calvinia .... and beyond!

Oooops! A large truck had overturned on Vanrhyns Pass shedding its load over the whole carriageway. There was a traffic jam of trucks, but cars and bikes got through without too much difficulty.

The policeman directed me into the culvert. A shingle ramp had been placed opposite the police car. Because of the loose stones I nearly lost control of the snaking bike as I exited the drain and almost crashed into the police car. But I managed to keep it together and live to fight another day. Whew! I was past the lorry logjam!!

This is to demonstrate how useful a cargo net is. Perfect for carrying water too.

On top of Vanrhyns Pass and looking back to the west.

Let's see which direction this road is going! Should be about east to Calvinia according to the map!

The GPS says 089-degrees True. 1 degree north of east!!

Made it with some time to spare before sundown! Now I just have to find somewhere to stay. In fact I was looking for either the 'Rolbos' or 'Die Blou Naartjie'. I never found the 'Rolbos' and 'Die Blou Naartjie' was full. This was lucky because I found this beautiful self-catering place called 'Steenkamp se Gastewoonstel'.

This is the back garden of Steenkamp's. It had chickens and goats, a little water reservoir and a vegetable garden. I could live here!

The bike is parked in the back yard.

Another view of the yard. Isn't it lovely?

This is the front of the house. Pink and green. What's not to like? And look at the garden!

This is the view from my apartment!! What do you think?

I had the end apartment on the corner of the house. It had a huge bedroom and living room. A large kitchen and also large bathroom. It was brilliant.

Just to the right of this picture is a really lovely restaurant called 'Myl 250'. After a shower, shampoo and shave, I went there for a very good pepper steak and chips and a couple of Castle beers. Some people talking on their mobile phones at a table near me said, "Ag, sorry for the noise hey!" This is my kind of town. Not only does it have character and style, it has manners!

Steenkamp Gastewoonstel
Waterstraat 29
Calvinia 8190
Tel/Fax: 027 3411 110

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