Sunday was a misty morning, and we’d decided to use the mtb’s again. I wanted a long ride today to punish my legs for feeling slow through the week.
Rob, James and I set off early, after a brief tooling session on J’s bike to get it roadworthy 😉 we headed into Tokai forest and chose to ride up to the tar road that goes to the mast as i assumed I’d be doing laps around Noordhoek peak later. We’d gone early so that Rob could get back in time to fetch his girls from the hospital – He’d only taken one in and three days later returning with two. I’m not so sure he got a bargain!
It wasn’t so chilly and was really nice and quiet through the lower slopes, rob and I chatted, while J seemed short for words, or breath it turned out. As we got higher we cleared the mist and were greeted but clear blue skies and the morning sun on our backs. We stopped a little way up the tar road an reflected on life’s little miracles and enjoyed the view for a change.
We turned and headed down again, taking the singletracks all the way down. I haven’t been up here in ages and it’s feeling great. There are loads of new little jumps along the trail and the little trail beavers have been busy building and maintaining the tracks down. They’re looking good and they are nice and firm in the cool morning. We meet Robbie, Noel and Chris in the car park as my brothers split. I turn and head back up with a new crew.
We go up the same route back to the tar, but the mist is higher this time and cold as we descend. We chatted for a bit and got cold, but now we’re cruizing along the backbone at level 4 and off to Silvermine Gate. I’m surprised there so much standing water in the road after a week or two of warm weather, and the river crossing at the waterfall is also quite deep. Up at the gate we find Carel, who’d turned up on his road bike and then rushed home to exchange for he right weapon. I say weapon as he’s wielding a new Merida 69er spec’d at over R70K and fresh off a win at the WP XC champs in the Sub-Vets.
After greetings were on the bikes again and head up to Noordhoek peak. The mist breaks again at the top of the switchbacks and it’s time for the arm warmers to come off, the view is awesome and the mist is very dense. It feels like you’re on top of the world and easily forget you in a major city. We must do this more often. Down the other side is cool again and I let the brakes go and build a small gap to give myself time to pull the warmers on again at the dam. We head back through the gate and towards the singletracks once more. I lead the first one with Carel smoking behind me… the second trail we wait for a few riders to leave a gap and then I tail Carel. Just into the descent I see something flutter as he passes and I think he’s dropped his sunnies, I swerve to miss them but in doing so lose the front end and crash narrowly missing a stump in the middle. Nothing major but I’ve got a few grazes and smashed up my speed sensor (which I only realize a bit later and have to hike back up to fetch) The culprit turned out to be an empty packet of energellies… not worth the pain!
Back on the trail they’re waiting for me on the bend and we set off again. Carel can’t shake me and we get to the bottom together.We pass loads of riders, dads and kids and families together. The mist has burned off and the day is shaping up to be a good one! Carel and I roll home on the tar together as the rest peel off in different directions and it’s been a good day despite the injuries!