Just a quick congratulations to the organisers of this year’s Die Burger Mountain Bike Challenge Stellenbsoch. It was such a nice ride, well marked out and only one or two short sections of congestion.
There were quite a few distances on offer, and I went with the moderate 42km ride. Starting at Eikestad Primary School, we made our way up through Coetzenberg and road around the base of Stellenboschberg before cutting down by the hangbrug and across the Jonkershoek road and up Botmaskop. Quite a bit of a climb here as we road across towards the Helshoogte Pass. This was the first congestion point, as everyone had to walk along a small single track section before getting off their bikes to cross the Helshoogte Road.
Our route then followed the old Helshoogte Pass and we road around a bit on the farms below Simonsberg. Riding out towards Welgevonden we crossed the R44 and made our way up towards Pappegaiberg with our second long climb. At the top we road along and down the other side into Stellenbosch. This is where I was unlucky enough to suffer a “snakebite” puncture, going straight through both the tubes in my back wheel, forcing me to stop, take the spare tube from the front wheel and put it in the back. Once I got going again on the down hill, I quickly noticed my lack of brakes, which I had failed to reconnect. No worries though, some careful shoe-tyre action resulted in me coming to a stop before I picked up too much speed.
Anyway, through the town a bit on some odd “offroad”/pavement sections and we were once again back at Eikestad Primary.
It was one of the nicest rides I’ve ever done, beautiful scenery and kudos also to all the cops/marshals sitting at the road crossings, they meant we never had to stop, or worry about crossing the roads. Will definitely be doing this one again next year.