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Old 04-27-2012, 05:16 AM   #226
roddy409
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Thanks for reporting in ... we were starting to worry about you guys!

And thanks for posting all that detail as it will definitely help us all in our planning phases. :)

Roddy & Laura
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Old 04-28-2012, 08:28 PM   #227
IronAdventurer
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great adventure guys

may i ask what camera are you using on this trip?? - what ever it is, pictures come out great
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Old 04-29-2012, 01:23 PM   #228
westfrogger
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Originally Posted by IronAdventurer View Post
great adventure guys

may i ask what camera are you using on this trip?? - what ever it is, pictures come out great
It's the photographer ... not the camera! Anyhow, details on page 1.
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Old 04-29-2012, 01:55 PM   #229
mrwwwhite OP
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Flashback Cameroon

Towed on Ekok to Mamfe road with a burned clutch.

https://vimeo.com/41110568

https://vimeo.com/41110567

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Old 04-29-2012, 02:13 PM   #230
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It's the photographer ... not the camera! Anyhow, details on page 1.
Cheers!



Our kit: Canon 5DMkII + 24mm f1.4L + 70-200mm f2.8L and our old 20D + Sigma 10-20mm f4,0-5,6 (for sale :) )
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Old 04-30-2012, 04:14 AM   #231
westfrogger
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BTW ... where do you store all that gear, and how does it handle the vibration?
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Old 04-30-2012, 11:08 AM   #232
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Originally Posted by westfrogger View Post
BTW ... where do you store all that gear, and how does it handle the vibration?
In a big Lowepro backpack in the top case. Not the best setup (definitely would change in the future to a big duffel bag instead of a topcase + 2 drybags on top of the side cases) but so far it worked great. No major problems for the photo gear but our macbook has a cracked screen probably from the vibrations and hard conditions. We carry the 5D + 24 in the tank bag most of the time and the 20D+10-20, 70-200 laptop and all other wires adaptors etc in the backpack inside the top case. Also our power inverter died on us recently so we'll have to repair/ replace it; not from the vibrations but rather because the moisture in Nigeria - Congo area.

Cheers,

Ionut
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Old 04-30-2012, 12:05 PM   #233
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Keeping It Real

Charl lives in Cape Town and is a keen rider. We could also say he is some sort of an urban priest, a welcoming guru to his Bikers' Church, where he's working to offer hope to many lost souls. He read our story on advrider.com and invited us for lunch. What a find! Charl has become a friend and a solid source of information, helping us to find the affordable accommodation at the surf house, a fitting shop and even a free garage so I can service my bike. But the best part was the day trip we took with Charl and two of his biking mates. We left at a frisky 6.00 a.m., so we pushed the snooze at 5.00.



After Ceres the traffic slowed down, sketchy zulu and xhosa barracks stopped popping from behind the swanky white neighborhoods and protea, the national flower in SA, took over reign. Innumerable buses bearing the pink prickly beauty covered the hills that soon swelled into mountains. Soon the roads become too narrow to allow two bikes side by side. Bend after bend we felt again our hearts pumping with joy, the world was ours, we were young, and nothing could go wrong. Baboons in winter coats seamed to agree. And the horizon was wide and deep.





We lined up to let our metal horses cool down and to enjoy the view over the veld. It felt good to know that we were heading over there.







In the middle of this the thirsty land, two free souls, brothers, piled onion sacks on top of another and built a home. Not far from there, their equally hippie pub offers homemade ginger beer, scones, preserves and tea to lost travelers who happen stumble upon this lonely places.




The youngest brother




The dormant architects in us appreciated the interesting "agro" decor.








The original window bars, a nice touch!


The flag from the Apartheid era, reason fro some inflated passions


The place and time were spot on





Beyond this remote retreat we would part ways: the guys were going to continue East and return the next day, we were riding north to Stonehenge, the location for the Africa Burns festival (the local Burning Man).



The heat intensified, as if someone had left a cooking stove on. 40 kays and a couple of funky gates further, we were pushing it uphill on the lost path that leads to the home of fringe South African artists. Every year, by the end of April, the whackiest people gather in this desolate place. Then the air had cooled to a bearable 30+ degrees. A whole community of wild campers arrives in search of inspiration, toting along some of the most amazing pieces of kinetic art. The cooky machines have a short lived destiny: their ephemeral magic will last only as long as the festival. On the last day, the intoxicated stampede will turn arsonist, setting everything on fire, so next year new inspiration will be born out of nothing again. The Cerberus of this jolly Hades is Bernard, a lovely Malawian dude based on the premises since a couple of years ago.




Some remnants of last year or anonymous work in progress litter the veld.







We enjoyed a beer with the dudes who take care of the place - the so-called African 'Stonehenge'. We would have loved to stay over for the festival, to join in ecstasy the 5000 people strong gang of creatives and their wacky machines. Maybe some other time. To go back, we chose to drive along False Bay, to smell the dearly missed Indian Ocean. Its warmer waters wrinkled in rapid waves, the beaches stretched forever in the haze of yet another sunset that only Cape peninsula can deliver. Too late to drive thru the Cape of Good Hope park though: too pricey to dedicate just 20 minutes, we'll have to come back or forget about it. But not too late to drive the insanely fun Chapman's Peak. With bends and delirious views that only a Mission Impossible writer would imagine, nature has frivolously put them together along this scenic drive that any petrol head must do. As the darns took over, we had arrived in Table View. We were home. Our last standing brain cell barely recorded that we had driven over 600 kays: maybe a record distance months ago (even if a seizable part of this distance was off-road), had now become a normal feat.




mrwwwhite screwed with this post 04-30-2012 at 12:42 PM
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Old 05-01-2012, 01:48 AM   #234
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Making A Muscle



We had hardly used our riding gear since we had arrived at the surf house, so we thought that had to change. The best thing about Cape Town are the hikes. In less than 30 minutes one can be far from the bustling city, sweating it out under one of the most amazing cloudscapes and enjoying awesome views of the ocean. We went for two hikes, but the possibilities are endless, really. We started the ascent in the stunning Hout Bay.




Hout Bay Harbor


Zak was constantly 100 meters ahead of us

The path was rocky and easy, a patchwork of all sort of fynbos (fine bush) populating the mountain. Fynbos are fine-leaved shrubs and plants that have taken root in the nutrient poor soils of the Cape, each plant having found a different specialized solution for adaptation to a harsh climate, swept by the wind and baked in the sun. Their delicate structure hides an incredible sturdiness. Fynbos accounts for almost 80% of the 8,500-plus plant species on the mountain slopes. This is the floral kingdom that boasts the highest concentration of heathers. More plant species per square meter here that in the Amazon!


Fynbos







The path led to a fresh water source. We filled our bottles, then turned towards Chapman's Peak. We felt like walking to the clouds, and up here we could still hear and smell the ocean, pounding restlessly the shore. The ocean was thrusting with might into the shores. The sound reverberated up to the cliffs. Sounds of dramatic fight to conquer new ground, to born new matter.



The shark fin shaped rock glistened in the afternoon haze. But the show was just beginning to unfold.





We were alone, the vibration in the muscles only reminder that we exist, that the whole experience is not an illusion. Our temporary vehicles of flesh and bones struggled to keep up with the flight of the spirit. We dissolved, tired and aware, into the energy that flowed free and sublime. It was pure happiness, but once back in the city we were again the same barbarians. Shelving our recently acquired emotions for a greasy plate of phad thai.



Table Mountain



Of course we couldn't leave Cape Town without hiking on Table Mountain. The distinctive flat-topped summit (highest point is 1,086m) lies in the heart of the Cape Floral Kingdom, the smallest, but richest of the world's six broad floral regions. The extraordinary silhouette of this most recognizable landmark has been luring us to go up every day from Table View.



We were 5. Dorothee is from Germany, and after recently getting her degree in hospitality management, she was managing the surf house for her compulsory graduation internship. After her stint in Cape Town she will be catering to your needs in Majorca starting next month. Guillaume is from France, and he was at the end of a 11 months round-the-world journey with his girlfriend. His passion: surf and kite surf, and he was on a mission to find new spots in remote places. Stephane, also French, had taken a week off to kite surf and SUP with Gui. As Gui has been traveling like us for a quite a long time, he was closer to our newly acquired views of the world, so we had become quite close at the surf house. Even if he knew when he would arrive home, and where home was. We didn't. The whole gang was in good spirits, even if the hours were a bit off. We had started the ascent after 16.00, but we made it to the top in about 1 hour and a half.



The path was quite steep, but great fun, the only problem was that we were walking in full sun, sweating like hell and quickly exhausting our water reserves. Note to self - chatting while hiking up Table Mountain, not a good idea.



From up, the ocean appeared even more luring. If only the waters wouldn't be so cold and ghastly! Cloudscapes dramatically enveloped the sheer cliffs. We enjoyed the free show for a while, then a helicopter hovered above our solitude, reminding of civilization. We were tourists, intruders in this mineral citadel, our spiritual moment only a brief illusion.







Up there the illusion was less inconspicuous: a way-too-fancy cafe on the top plateau, an establishment more appropriate to exist in an airport than in nature. I guess something must lure non-hikers up… We cynically recorded the paradox and did what we had to do: enjoy civilization. After some drinks - at airport bistro prices - we decided against cheating (taking the cable car down) and took the same route down.



Muscle shaking a bit, reconstituted fruit juices bubbling in our bellies. Our sprint ended where it had begun, only the parking dude had left, probably to roll yet another intense rifer. We had been also trippin' but our drug had been fresh air and the abyss. Obviously the only way to celebrate this was with an excellent glass of South African red.
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Old 05-01-2012, 10:26 AM   #235
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Thanks Ionut.
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Old 05-02-2012, 04:33 AM   #236
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You make me sound like such a nice guy

Here is a picture of Hein's Tankwa jacuzzi I'm going there this weekend again.

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Old 05-02-2012, 07:40 AM   #237
skyguy
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It took me three days, but I'm finally caught up in this ride report. FANTASTIC!
Romania should erect a statue to celebrate your accomplishment, or put you two on a stamp.

I look forward to following you two and your adventures as your turn north!

Thanks for taking the time to take the pictures and write it all down.
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Old 05-02-2012, 10:14 AM   #238
Parigi
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Romania should erect a statue to celebrate your accomplishment, or put you two on a stamp.
I second that motion
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Old 05-02-2012, 03:18 PM   #239
casperghst42
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I think it's been said before, but your photos are truly amazing....


Casper
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Old 05-09-2012, 04:39 AM   #240
Wander4Days
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great stuff!

I have been following your trip since Camaroon and enjoying all of it! Great ride and great recap! I have shared your trip with friends and family that don't ride and they're all fans now too. We'll be looking forward to your next big adventure!
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