joomla statistics

Spanafrican Adventures's Blog

The latest news on Spanafrican Adventures operations.

El Pancito at the Races

A 10mth old cyclist can get more attention than one that has cycled continents

A 10mth old cyclist can get more attention than one that has cycled continents

el Pancito doesn't know this yet, but he lives in the heart of one of the cycling meccas in Africa! Howick is most famous for its rather impressive waterfall and the fact that it is the geriatric capital of the country, with more retirement homes than in any other town. However of late other attractions like the hundreds of kilometres of rocky, rolling, singletrack are becoming the reason to visit or live here! (10 May 2015)

Continue reading
178 Hits
1 Comment

The Adventures of El Pancito: First Chariot Micro-Adventure

The first few kilometres of the 70km round trip journey involved some of the Howick and Karkloof well worn trails.

The first few kilometres of the 70km round trip journey involved some of the Howick and Karkloof well worn trails.

It was a matter of time that young Gabriel Gonzalez Ringdahl (aka El Pancito*) would head off on a micro-adventure** by bicycle. Having completed a 7km hike in the Darkensberg at 3mths, a 70km cycle trip at 6mths seemed like a moderate start to his cycling adventures. We tested the Thule Chariot so generously given to us by our friends Carla and William when he was around 3mths,  however despite the fabulous suspension system it was still a little on the bumpy side for such a small tot to head out on a proper adventure. Now a sturdy 6mth old  weighing over 8kg, el Pancito has been well accustomed to excursions in the chariot as a walker, so this next step was to test and see how he faired on a little trip into the Karkloof to meet some friends for the New Year at the beautiful Mbona reserve. Our trusty team included our dear friend  Cath Traynor, a surrogate auntie and bike and adventure enthusiast from the Cape. We were so grateful to have her chaperone us on this maiden voyage and document el Pancito's first baby bike 'steps'!

Continue reading
253 Hits
11 Comments

Spain and the 'supermarket' bike

Setting off for our first exploratory ride from the 'Segur' beachfront.

Setting off for our first exploratory ride from the 'Segur' beachfront.

There is just about no way I can go on holiday and not fit in some riding, to me cycling = holiday. Although in this case I had resigned to the fact that it may not happen. Traipsing my bicycle to Spain for 10 days of family visiting  is just not worth it.  We investigated the possibility of hiring a bike at every bike shop we could find in the Segur de Calafell area (just south of Barcelona), none to be had.  But with some determination a friend of Carlos's mama said she had an old one stored in the basement.

Continue reading
169 Hits
10 Comments

Pre-himalayan training

Lately sunday rides have become really social, today 10 of us set off to explore the karkloof with an added incentive of stopping at Trebadore coffee en route. Our garden looking like car park.

Another glorious winter midlands day. This 65k Himalayan training ride took us stereotypical rolling landscapes that typify the area. Pinus plantations, lush dairy farms, grassland patches and views of the Karkloof, Nthalzan and the snow-covered Drakensberg way off in the distance. I am always in awe of the fact that despite cycling extensively in Karkloof we still get lost, like today - just goes to show you don't have to go far to have a bit of adventure and enjoy some stunning scenery and trails.

Continue reading
141 Hits
1 Comment

What I do at lunchtime

The favourite view of the valley. I usually ride the 14km loop along the main access road into the reserve and then skipping down onto the single track 'dwarfs dawdle' that runs along the top of a dolerite cliff.

This years winter has been particularly freezing, the coldest in 20 years so they say. And I believe them. Daily, Anisa and I have to cope with more than just work issues but keeping warm in an office that faces north and feels like a fridge to any visitor. We have blankets, drink bottles of boiling water, use hot water bottles and reluctantly turn the heater on (yes, being the environmentalists we are ;-)) when we border on hypothermia. Lunchtime is my one opportunity to finally warm up - so its either a 9km run or 15km mtb ride in our lovely Umgeni Valley reserve. It takes exactly the full lunch hour for me to finally feel my toes... but there are the other benefits of course.

Continue reading
145 Hits
1 Comment
Find us on Facebook