On the maps this route does not look like much. It looks like a simple out and back right. Wrong! When you ride this route the first time, you will not even realise that you are crossing over your own tracks
Distance 68km (actual)
Single Track 24%
Jeep Track 23%
Gravel Road 45%
Highest Point 1428m
Lowest Point 1097m
Total Ascent 792m
Fun Factor 7/10
Aerobic Factor 6/10
Short Description Rolling gravel hills, bumpy single track and rocky climbs!
Technical Difficulty Some seriously rocky up and down hills, otherwise easy!
Aerobic Difficulty The only real test lies in the short steep rocky uphills.
Get yourself to Queenstown, which is a small town 186km North from East London along the N6. Now find the Shell Ultra City which is on the East London side of Queenstown. At the Ultra turn North into Brewery Street which takes you around the back of the Ultra City. After 500m take the righthand fork, then 100m later keep left. 400m further take a sharp right turn up and over a bridge. Take the 2nd right into Livingstone Road(R392) toward Lady Frere. Precisely 7km out of town, just after the R396 turn-off to Lady Frere, turn left to Bongolo dam. Resist the urge to take the first turn to the dam which sits at 3km out of town, because this road is closed on the day of the ride.
On the maps this route does not look like much. It looks like a simple out and back right. Wrong! When you ride this route the first time, you will not even realise that you are crossing over your own tracks until you reach the dam again and things start looking familiar. I think this is due to the sheer length and twistiness of single track and jeep track that breaks up the gravel road sections.
And these single track sections really make this ride worth while. The gravel climbs are long, but not very steep, so they just feel like forever to get up, but the don’t hurt. What does leave a sting in the backside is the bumpiness of some of the route sections. Especially the loop around the dam on the way to the finish! Eish!
But, all in all this is a great mountain bike race with impeccable organising!