20 March 2015
Start: 07:30 End: 14:40 Distance 106km Avg: 17 km/hr
The early part of the ride was down a cracking Qhubeka dirt road. Some decent (get off and push) hills but otherwise flat with firm, smooth surface. The scenery is still bushveld but once we get onto the “plateau” it becomes smooth grassland. We get attacked by a pack of hunting dogs but fortunately the owner calls them back before we get mauled. I was seriously considering testing the pepper spray on the cur growling inches from my calf. I wonder if the owner called them off because we didn’t look fit for human consumption.
The dirt road doesn’t last forever and then we turn onto the tar road to Bronkhurstpruit. It’s hot, dry with an intermittent headwind. The verge is non-existent and we repeatedly have to ride off the road to avoid vehicles passing too close. I feel like we are going nowhere as the kilometres barely tick by on my odometer. I realise about 20km from the end that my odometer is not working correctly and sporadically drops down to less than 10km/hr. According to it, I am going nowhere. Hopefully it just needs new batteries. I wish I could replace the batteries in my legs periodically. Alas, I must rely on glucose and determination.
We pass the sign for Gauteng and manage a celebratory nod at having made it to our third province on this tour. It’s a significant achievement but just after the sign, a long hill looms so we don’t party too hard.
I am glad to arrive at the campsite for the evening. I am very glad to hear that the shower is hot. I am less glad to find that it fluctuates between surface-of-the-sun hot and arctic tundra cold. It makes for an interesting wash as I get more cardio for the day leaping in and out of the shower. I discover afterwards that Colin, who reported that the shower was hot as he was first to make it to the ablutions, had the same problem but neglected to mention it. Thanks Dad.
We have discovered that it is Om Die Dam tomorrow which will make for some interesting route planning tomorrow as we plan to stop at Hartebeespoort on our way to our third peak which is in North West.