Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Easter Feaster

I need to get permits if you want to do the Tonquani hike. I'm getting the permits tomorrow morning at 9, so need numbers before that.

MCSA charges R25 per person per day for the permit; there's also a day fee payable at the Mountain Sanctuary park.

Come Play :)

Monday, March 29, 2010

Sunday's Kinetic Adventure

'Just for you', Heidi said, 'we've added lots of singletrack for the next Kinetic sprint'.

She knows me well. I prefer singletrack and technical climbs and juicy riding to boring district roads. My friends Dawn and Gail both share my idea of fun, so they joined me for Sunday's sprint.

The cycling leg started with lots of climbing, NICE downhills, a quick pump to protect the non-tubeless tyre from the rocks, going back to fetch a missed control.

Then a bit of running which included finding 3 'Run 1' controls on 'Run 2' maps.

Some more cycling which included AWESOME bits of singletrack, then another running leg which the walkie talkies mostly walked and talked - except when we saw the cameraman :)

(this, and the next picture, were lifted off kinetic's picture site, see more here)

A paddling leg on a totally unsteerable boat with 3 women drivers .... we t-boned and bumped the other boats (and ourselves) out of the way, and just as we learnnt how to steer the boat, it was time to take out.

Both my team members do agility with their dogs; both of them loved being on the 'people-agility' side of things for a change. Some help from another team (whose helmet we rescued while on the paddle) to get over the obstacles, and then a sprint up the stairs to the finish.

.... and for our effort we got some vouchers to go spend on products in the kenetic shop - here we are on the podium (possie 2)

What a great way to spend a Sunday morning!!!

Friday, March 26, 2010

bikepark tuesday night

The MTN bikepark is open on Tuesday nights till 8-ish.
Leave the office early to get through the traffic, and i can be on the bike by 5-ish.
Play till dark, fit a light, and play some more.

Few things beat being on your bike on singletrack and awesome little bridgies, riding tight corners or steep short hills, while traffic's not going anywhere on the N1 next door.

Here's gerard on one of the bridgies, with Pablo underneath.

Zombie birdhouse is open, at last! Lots of new tight turns and short steep climbies.
Oh, and wetlands now has a narrow bridgie-thingy, yaaay!

R300 for a 10-entry-ticket over 6 months. A little more than groenkloof, but excellent for safe midweek-trainig, especially if the open-till-late means you can add some training-time to the short winter-days.

tripping the wilge

The paddling club invited the adventure racing club to trip the Wilge last weekend.

They (the paddlers) must have been thoroughly entertained with the adventure racers falling out of their boats at every tiny little bubbly :)

The venue was great, the paddlers friendly and patient and generous with their tips, the potjie was fantastic, the river mild and forgiving, the company great, the weather perfect - even the night-cycle in the rain without lights :)

Some muscles are sore in a 'it-was-a-good-weekend' sort of way, and my kayak now is more stable through bubblies than it was before the weekend.

here's to many more!

Friday, March 19, 2010

the CRC addiction has begun

There's a vending machine downstairs. For years i managed to ignore it successfully. If i felt like a chocolate, and there wasn't one in my drawer, then i didn't have a chocolate. Until one day i gave in to the vending machine ... it's like removing a plug from a tubeless tyre ...

Put in an order on CRC yesterday. beautiful pink bitsies for the Trance.
There's already a long wishlist for a future order.

'scuse me - i have to go check if my order was shipped yet :)

Thursday, March 18, 2010

alaskan version of the freedom challenge (revisited)

the alaskan version of the freedom challenge is SO on my to-do list.

it might not happen next year - it interferes with Argus, and I'll be going for my 21st next year, so will have to sort that out first.

But reading through the blogs and what these riders experienced - WOW.

entries for 2011 open on 8 april 2010 - race starts on 27 Feb 2011.

2012, anyone??

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Epic, anyone?

It happens every year:
Epic entries are sold out within hours and the waiting-list people just have to make piece with the fact that this year, they won't ride.

Then, a few months, weeks or sometimes days before the event, someone gets a cold, break something, or simply realise they haven't trained enough.

and then entries are practically get given away.

Epic starts THIS weekend.
There are entries available.
On the hub, full team entry going at R10k (this includes the rider change fees of R2500 pp)
My Friend Mummy also has his entry available. Give me a shout if you happen to be in Capetown on Sunday and can use his entry - he won' use it.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

How i'm going to make South Africa's roads safer

gonna wear a black armband on sunday on the Argus tour.

For the cyclists killed yesterday morning.

It will also be a reminder of my pledge to make the South African roads safer.

when on my bike on public roads i'll:
- respect traffic rules
- know that i'm invisible to all vehicles
- ride single file
- in an event, when there's not full road closure, ensure that i stay on the left side of the white line
- wear my helmet - and fasten it (2 guys in groenkloof on sunday - one with helmet, but not fastened, and the other one with his helmet in his backpack???)
- wave and smile thank you when-ever a car noticed me and gave me a gap (even though it was legally my turn at the green traffic light)

when i'm in my car i'll
- not answer the cell phone if i don't have my hands free kit already on the phone (that includes not fumbling for the hands free kit when the phone rings) - calling back is cheaper than repairing damage to the car
- not type sms's
- not put on make-up while in traffic (was watching the whole episode in the car in front of me last week - from base to mascara and liquid eyeliner, 4 different shades of eye-shaddow, lips, even the hair)
- not accelerate when the traffic light is red
- not clog up the whole intersection when the light is green, so that no-one else can get through when it's their turn
- be curteous to at least one driver a day (even if it is a taxi) - with some luck he'll pass it on.

anybody else who wants to help me with this??

Monday, March 8, 2010

How Fragile we are

Read just now about 4 cyclists killed in Oudsthoorn - on the R62 between Oudtshoorn and Calitzdorp. Bakkie overtaking and ploughing into a group of 11 cyclists.

It is such sad news - so unnecessary. 4 families whose lives will be changed forever, 4 people who just stopped dreaming.

Raising awareness for bicycles - that's the reason for the Argus' existence - a protest ride against exactly this.

Will be sourcing a black armband to wear for these riders, who were training for this ride, but now won't be there.

Stop all the clocks, cut off the telephone,
Prevent the dog from barking with a juicy bone,
Silence the pianos and with muffled drum
Bring out the coffin, let the mourners come.

Let aeroplanes circle moaning overhead
Scribbling on the sky the message He Is Dead,
Put crepe bows round the white necks of the public doves,
Let the traffic policemen wear black cotton gloves.


The stars are not wanted now: put out every one;
Pack up the moon and dismantle the sun;
Pour away the ocean and sweep up the wood.
For nothing now can ever come to any good.

- W H Auden

Still the best R18.50 you can spend

didn't want to get off the bike after the second lap in groenkloof today ... but needed some run-time too.

the running trails are superb!

For R18.50 you can get:

- a vida coffee


- friendly cyclists with big grins
- free therapy from what-ever work-stresses of the past week, and clear your head for the week ahead
- have 4 zebras divide the cycling group
- train your river-cycling skills (where does all that water on my favourite piece of singletrack come from?)
- watch 9 giraffes not minding the cyclists
- bridges, technical climbs, one boring climb to keep the roadie-friends happy
- verry nice hiking trails for trailrunning

- and get to call it 'training'

- AND moyos just next door for after-ride munchies.

Monday, March 1, 2010

Argus fever

The World Funride Champ is upon us.
It will be my 20th.

Here's some of the reasons i keep going back - apart from it being an excellent excuse to visit friends and family:

- One night in 3 susters when we queued for fuel - together with LOTS of other cars with bikes on
- Or if you fly down, the vibe at the airport - the millions of bikes, the passengers with helmets sticking out of their hand luggage - you know where they're off to :)
- the expo
- Or when you drive from George or Vredenburg on a Friday afternoon, the convoy of cars all going to the same place. You're one with the world. You belong.
- Getting up early on sunday morning, and the drive into town with millions (ok, maybe only 1000's) of cars with bikes on, on their way to the same place
- the vibe at the start ... the count-down, the music, everybody say whoplaaaa - this is the same, whether you're racing for a pb or dressed up on a borrowed nountain bike
- The people and cycle-tour-specific billboards on that first few kays
- seeing the top of that fist climb just before the blue route
- Flying down the blue route
- Coming over the top of smitswinkel, and then flying towards kommetjie
- misty cliffs. this must be the most beautiful part of the route.
- Chappies. even the climb is pretty.
- Flying down chappies. that's why we cycle!
- Suikerbossie. it's a horrible climb but WHAT a vibe! you feel like a champ, cant get off the bike here, there's too many people wanting you up
- Reaching the top of suikerbossie
- Sprinting, and then that horrible short climbie at bakoven
- The finish :)
- The one year that you did two laps - the incredible feeling of aliveness as you become part of the festivities ans suffering on the second lap.
- Waiting a whole year for another one.

Here's to 2010: Everybody say whop-la!