South Africa

Discussion in 'Africa & Mid East' started by Johnnybags, Jan 8, 2013.

  1. Johnnybags

    Johnnybags n00b

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2010
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    Location:
    Big Bear CA
    Hello all,
    Johnnybags here. Big Bear Trail Riders member and San Diego Adventure Riders enthusiast.
    My girlfriend and I are going to South Africa and are hoping to work some dual sporting into our intinerary.
    We've found a local operator but they only have bigger adventure bikes. Although we may have to go 2up, we were hoping to find an operator or contact that provides or has access to something smaller than an adventure bike so girlfriend can ride her own bike.

    Sorry if this was the wrong 'thread' for this but I am exploring ALL options.

    Any info would be appreciated

    John Arelt
    619-241-3268
    jbagsafety@aol.com
    <!-- / message -->
    #1
  2. SA Ranger

    SA Ranger Adventurer

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2011
    Oddometer:
    13
    Location:
    Deep Dark Africa
    Hi John

    You are going to love the Riding in SA !!! firstly when you say smaller 450 660 800 smaller ? secondly where in SA will you be traveling?
    #2
  3. eltonw

    eltonw n00b

    Joined:
    Jan 25, 2007
    Oddometer:
    3
    Location:
    South Africa, Botswana, Iraq
    I second that - South Africa and Southern Africa is a great place to ride especially if you can take in some of the other countries around.

    1. Great source of info can be found here: http://www.wilddog.za.net/forum/index.php which is a very active, very big local bike ciommunity especially for adventure riders.

    2. Consider buying two small bikes and kitting out with basics. US dollar is strong, you can sell bike again and get back at least 60 - 70% of your equipment costs. Lots of local rental companies available but rentals are pricey as the low demand for bike rentals, insurance costs, risks, nature of dual sport etc means they have to load their prices to reflect risk. Depends on what you want to do and see, what your riding skills are etc. You can pick up two very good condition KLR650 for less than $10k and sell them again for 60 - 70 % of that back but you have no restrictions on distance, where or how you ride, deposits, insurance etc. You can pick up 2 Honda XR650L's for that price as well and these will be 2012 models with most likely a long range tank already fitted if not some other nice bits.

    feel free to drop me a mail on eltonwilmot@gmail.com for some info and options
    #3
  4. Two Plugs

    Two Plugs Long timer

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Groningen Province - Top of Holland
    You could try to get in touch with the South African Africa Twin club (google on it). Its great to ride over there. Skip the touristic roads (like the Garden Road in West Kaap provincie) but take f.e. Route 62 from Cape Town (Kaapstad) to the east, visiting towns like Outshoorn, de Aar (steamlocomotive cemetary), de Rust, Graaf Reinet en Avontuur (Adventure). The mountainpasses over the Hottentot Holland mountains are some of the most spectacular on the Planet.

    If you want to do some real nice offroading, you simply can't avoid riding the Vredenfort Dome. This is the oldest meteor impact crater world wide (streching over 200 km / 120 miles), about one hour motorway riding from Johannesburg. The best place for finding accomodation is the little town of Parys in the Freestate Province. Its the portal to the Dome.

    Hartbeespoortdam is the place where on Sunday, SA bikers gather for a breakfastrun. North of Pretoria.

    Limpopo province is spectacular too. Google on Medike mountain resort. In Mpumalanga Province the scenic Panorama Route can't be missed. I found very good accomodation in Sabie, a good portal to do the Panorama Route, 'Azalea Bed & Breakfast'. The owner is a little of an religeous nutcase but actualy quit nice to go along with. And his accomodation is simply great value for money.

    Barberton is a great place to, with a nice offroad mountainpass heading in to neighbouring Swaziland. Friends are running a great pub for bikers over there: The Nugget Saloon in Barbeton.

    There is SOOO much to see / to do in what I would call the most spectaculair country on the Planet.

    My pics, incl Swaziland and Mozambique:
    http://varaderointernational.smugmu...frica-1/5686694_BKfMDG#!i=351253437&k=RKgtmrn

    http://varaderointernational.smugmu...frica-2/5696081_MDB5kv#!i=351258966&k=W59RX4k
    #4
  5. Johnnybags

    Johnnybags n00b

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    Location:
    Big Bear CA
    We will be staying in Cape Town. Primary reason for trip is is to visit my GF's daughter who will be there for a 'semester abroad' at the UNiversity. So dual sporting is secondary. At the most we will do 2 consecutive days of a small loop each day staging out of our hotel/apt in Cape Town. Possibly one overnight loop.

    My GF is very confident on her KLX250s and has even been on my XR400R. She does alot of the upper level beginner to intermediate stuff in and around Big Bear.

    We found the operator linked below and they are exactly what we are looking for. Reasonable rental prices, verified routes with GPS provided, guided and self tour. We are doing the self tour as I am proficient with the GPS navigation.

    Only problem being the smallest bike they have is XT660 Zenere. Seat height is 2" above that of her 250 as well as 160 heavier. I'm confident with a little exposure to the bike she could pull it off but she is a little apprehensive and therefore I dont want to commit to the upfront rental expense.

    We were hoping to find and are still planning to contact the operator for the option of a ture dual sport rather than an 'Adventure Bike'

    Thanks for all the feedback but as of right now I think our best option is 2up on one of their 1200's

    http://www.dualsportafrica.com/
    #5
  6. Johnnybags

    Johnnybags n00b

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    We are staying in Cape Town to visit her daugther while on a 'semester abroad' at the University. So that will be our main focus with maybe 2 days of short loops to Paarl Rock and/or an overnight loop around Cederberg.

    My GF confidently rides her KLX250s in and around Big Bear RM125 around Johnson Valley and has even been on my XR400R.

    This operator http://www.dualsportafrica.com/ has almost exactly what we are looking for except that their smallest bike, XT660 Zenere, is 2" taller and 160lbs heavier than her bike. I believe with a little exposure she could handle the bike it's the confidence factor. And I'm not ready to pay the upfront rental price to find out she isn't comfortable on the bike and in traffic.

    We were hoping to find something more in the TRUE dual sport range either from a vendor or a local fellow rider.

    At this point it's looking like 2up on one of their 1200's is our best option which I am fine with but she REALLY wants to ride.
    #6
  7. Welshman

    Welshman B.U.F.F.

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    Try "Red Cherry Adventures" they rented KLR 650's at one stage I think also Wilddogs for advice
    #7
  8. Two Plugs

    Two Plugs Long timer

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    #8
  9. Johno33772

    Johno33772 Johnny Africa

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2006
    Oddometer:
    907
    Location:
    St Petesburg, FL
    Craig is great! I hired a Super T from Craig & his prices were so reasonable that I hired him as a guide as well....this way we got to see more & did'nt have to mess with navigation.... I did this even though I am an Expat.
    My Wife enjoyed it so much that I came home and bought a Tiger 800.
    If you Guys are riding Big Bear area , you're Girlfriend should do fine on 660 Tenere. I rode Big Bear DS ride in 2010 & got a Plaque....best DS ride in the US!
    Have Fun....you'll fall in love with Africa!
    #9
  10. Two Plugs

    Two Plugs Long timer

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    I have no experiences with Craig, but just visited his excellent webpage. He is CHEAP regarding the bikes he's offering... Stored under my 'favorites'!
    #10
  11. Johno33772

    Johno33772 Johnny Africa

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2006
    Oddometer:
    907
    Location:
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    Bikes were in great shape, he's a wealth of info & has a laid back approach.
    #11