The Chas Everitt Around the Pot, presented by SEESA, introduced many South African cyclists to the amazing scenery of the Swellendam and Breede River region of the Overberg. Now, with the launch of a ‘Do It Yourself’ series the event is expanding the riding opportunities and creating the potential for amazing new experiences. Come explore on one of the DIY Around the Pot adventures.
From September 2021, cyclists will be able to sign up for one of three bikepacking route options, which follow the existing Chas Everitt Around the Pot, presented by SEESA, course. Riders can choose from the 200-Miler, 100-Miler or 60-Miler route, each of which can be undertaken over a number of days. In addition to choosing the duration of the trip there are also various accommodation options, extending from self-supported bikepacking to staying in luxurious guest houses.
“Swellendam is simply a spectacular place to ride a bike” Chas Everitt Around the Pot, presented by SEESA, founder Rohan Germishuys said. “It has been bitterly disappointing to have had to cancel two editions of the race due to Covid. Which is why we came up with the DIY Around the Pot concept; which we will host year-round, in addition to the July Around the Pot race. It allows cyclists to visit the area, under all but the most stringent covid levels, and ride the beautiful routes in their own time.”
“We’ve collaborated with various guest houses as well as restaurants to facilitate the DIY Around the Pot rides” Germishuys explained. “Riders can book accommodation and meals, in order to be self-supported in luxury, or canvas tents, through www.tentrentals.co.za. Alternatively, they can go full bikepacking and carry everything they need for the days they’re out on the route on their bikes. Whichever way they choose to undertake the ride it is sure to be a memorable adventure.”
For riders with less time on their hands, or those who are less fit, the 60-Miler route is the perfect DIY introduction to exploring the area. It loops from Swellendam to Malgas, in the Breede River, and back. It is an easy one-day ride, but those wishing to break it up can book a night’s accommodation at the Tides River Lodge. Likewise, the 100-Miler route is also very ridable in a single day, but even fitter DIY adventurers may wish to break it into two 80-kilometre days by spending a night on the banks of the river, in Malgas.
The 200-Miler route is best suited to longer duration trips. As the much anticipated Around the Pot 200-Miler has yet to be held as a race the route is still largely unexplored. The ideal way to take in the route would be over four days of riding, with three nights spent out on route. Luxurious accommodation can be provided to ease the journey, at Halfaampieskraal, the Tides River Lodge and Strawberry Hill Guest Farm.
In Swellendam, meanwhile, Aan de Eike provides the perfect staging point from which to begin and end any every DIY Around the Pot ride. Not only is it a cyclist friendly guest house, but it also boasts a restaurant and secure, off-street, parking. One can therefore check in the evening before the ride begins, enjoy hearty Overberg cuisine to fuel the ride and rest assured while on the bike that the car is safe while you are away. To further enhance the experience riders (over the age of 18) will each be treated to a bottle of the region’s award-winning local wine, Sijnn Wines.
“The idea behind the DIY Around the Pot rides is to attract more cyclists to Swellendam, throughout the year” Germishuys clarified. “We have the terrain, the weather, the accommodation and the restaurants to cater for riders year-round. Bikepacking and adventure cycling are growing and there is no better place to explore on your bike than the Overberg, be it over one day’s riding or four.”
To find out more and to plan your Do It Yourself Around the Pot adventure visit www.aroundthepot.co.za.
DIY Around the Pot Accommodation Partners
|Tent Rentals||www.tentrentals.co.za||Arranged for your convenience|
|Aan de Eike||www.adlc.co.za||Swellendam|
|Tides River Lodge||www.tideslodge.co.za||Near Malgas, Breede River|
|Strawberry Hill||www.strawberryhillfarm.co.za||Grootvadersbosch, Heidelberg|