Thursday, March 31, 2011

Trans Lesotho: Day 2

Libono to Oxbow
distance: 28 km
vertical ascent: 1100m
time: around 6 hours

The day started with a lovely few kays of climbing on a jeeptrack between fields of Cosmos, and then Grant and Alice (the friendly camera team) joined us on horses on a handmade singletrack cut into the mountainside. After a while the track disappeared and we dragged the bikes up the mountain. Aaargggh bikes were made to ride!

A picnic at the top, and then we found some cattletracks on the other side. A few streamcrossings, some tumbles caused by hidden potholes in the long grass, and generally pleasant riding with Tumi (Lesotho's National Champ; the trackbuilder/sweeper), Fiona (who's writing a book about mountain bike trails), Ray (who was our 'guardian' on ride2rhodes 2 years ago), Francois (a Freedom Challenge finisher) and Paddy (who made it his mission to find and fall into all potholes first).  

When we reached the tar road, Ray and Francois opted for the short way home (some tummy bug issues) and the rest of us crossed the road in search of more singletrack. Tumi lead us off track because there were dogs on the planned track ... more pushing, carrying & dragging bikes - so when Fiona said she had enough and is going to take the tar road home, Paddy & I followed without even thinking about it. We dragged the bikes back to the tar road where I found a stream to fill the empty camelback. It was a short climb, and then a long steep tar-downhill to Oxbow.

Pete and buddies arrived just after us with big grins and stories about a magnificent downhill on the singletrack - i was just  too tired to drag my bike over more obstacles for another hour.  awwww well, next time :)

Swimming with some trout in the deep blue pools of the river below the pub, an afternoon snooze, some bike maintenance and a very good supper.

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