It is going to be bigger, rougher around the edges (I mean not rougher than the accommodation in Greyton last time round) and better than ever. Join us as we kick off 2020 with another Overberg Bikepacking Adventure (OBA 2.0). It will be rad, we promise…
Join The Adventure
When: 6 – 9 January 2020
There is no better way to immerse yourself in a landscape than by riding a bicycle through it. The four-day new year bikepacking adventure, through the Overberg, explores roads and towns on the doorstep of urbanisation. Long gravel stretches are linked by blissfully smooth sections of tarmac. And beautiful scenery abounds throughout each day.
To make things better we will be camping each night. Staying at the Riverplaas, Uitvlugt and Oewerzicht campsites. But because we have a back-up vehicle you won’t need to lug a tent with you on your bike. All the gear goes in the car and we simply ride from point-to-point.
In the evenings we will braai. We’ll kick off each morning with a coffee and breakfast stop and we’ll find somewhere for lunch along the road. The idea is to spend the day on the road, exploring and adventuring. When the road crosses a river, we’ll stop for a swim. If we get thirsty, we’ll grab beers from the support vehicle. What more could you ask for?
How about some info on the riding?
Day 1: Stellenbosch to The Breede River
Date: 6 January 2020
Starting Point: Rustenberg Wines | Arrive 08h00 for 08h30 Departure
Climbing: 1 560m
Overnight Spot: Rivierplaas Campsite
The opening day is a relatively long one. But despite the distance it is relatively easy, because it’s largely on asphalt and we’ll be slack packing rather than bikepacking. So we carry no heavy gear. We’ll start on Rustenberg Wine Estate, just outside Stellenbosch and climb towards Franschhoek via Old Helshoogte Road. The scenic winelands will ensure the early kilometres tick by rapidly before we regroup for coffee in the town established by French Huguenots in the late 17th century.
Then it’s up and over the Franschhoek Pass and along the rolling road to Villiersdorp. After a lunch stop in Villiersdorp there’s a final climb and then it’s all downhill to Rivierplaas, on the banks of the Breede River.
Day 2: Breede River to McGreggor
Overnight Spot: Uitvlugt Campsite
Day 2 takes us from Rivierplaas along the Breede River to McGreggor. There are numerous options for swim stops and a potential detour into Robertson for lunch. The day is short so killing time is a plus. Unless we decide to get to McGreggor early and relax at the Uitvlugt farm dam.
As it’s the only night we spend near town we could go out for dinner or embrace our South African braai culture. The decision will no doubt be made on the ride’s WhatsApp group closer to the time.
Day 3: McGreggor to Greyton
Climbing: 1 240m
Overnight Spot: Oewerzicht Farm
The gravel day. After the opening day’s tar roads and the second day’s mix of gravel and asphalt Day 3 is all about Vitamin G. A quiet back road will take us from Uitvlugt to Stormsvlei, where the route turns West to follow the Riviersonderend Mountains. The support vehicle can join us for this stretch but probably won’t, so a late breakfast at the Stormsvlei Hotel will have to see you through to Riviersonderend.
In the town shares its name with the river and the mountains we will, obviously, stop for pies. No trip through Riviersonderend would be complete without an Ou Meul pie. Refuelled it’s onwards along the river roads to Oewerzicht Farm for the third night.
Day 4: Greyton to Stellenbosch
Climbing: 1 950m
The final day is the longest of the trip, but like the opening day the fact that it is largely on asphalt takes the edge off it. From Oewerzicht we wind our way to Greyton for breakfast before taking on the long road towards the Franchhoek Pass. It undulates and features a couple of fairly strenuous climbs before the marathon ascent of the pass from the Eastern side.
Once at the summit of Franschhoek Pass its an easy roll downhill for a late lunch. Then it’s onwards and homeward bound to Stellenbosch. Helshoogte is the penultimate challenge. The climb to Rustenberg Wines is not to be underestimated, especially on tired legs. But trust us it’ll be worth it.
A final farm dam swim and a night out in Stellenbosch for those who choose to remain in town after the last day will bring the OBA 2.0 to a fine conclusion.
What Do I Need To Pack?
Aside from the obvious bike, helmet and cycling apparel not too much. We’d like to keep stuff to a minimum so please try to double, or triple up depending on the size of the tent, in tents. For yourself though, bring a camping mattress and sleeping bag, casual clothes, including a jacket and long pants in case it gets cold. Toletry wise pack the usuals, in small volumes and Tabard or Peaceful Sleep to keep the riverside mosquitoes at bay.
Download the full check list here.
The idea is to keep the costs as low as possible. Hence the camping accommodation option. We will be splitting the cost of the camp sites and the cost of the back-up vehicles. The exact cost will be communicated closer to the time but you can work on an estimate of R150 per night for camping, per person, as well as R250 for the back-up vehicle. So, roughly R700 in total.
All meals, including food for the dinner braais will be at your own expense. Though we will provide tea, coffee and rusks in the morning to get everyone going.
If you’d like to book a spot in the Overberg Bikepacking Adventure 2.0 drop us an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. Once there’s a preliminary head count, we’ll let you know the exact costs and send you and invoice, so you can make payment via eft.