So I was fortunate enough to start this week in the best possible way – and that of course is mountain bike riding as I got invited for an InstaRide (you heard me!) as a prelude to the Momentum Grape MTB Ride that forms part of the Stellenbosch Wine Festival. The concept of the ride I think is fantastic and Meurant Botha did will in having the vision taking the riders from Coetzenburg Sports Grounds to the gate of Jonkersjoek and back, apparently the thing cyclist do in Stellenbosch (maybe the will realise they can go through the gate and onto amazing single tracks, anyway that is not what this ride is about, it is all about family and dad, mom and kids enjoying a morning out on the bicycle and taking in the beautiful surrounding on this not at all difficult ride with rolling road closures. There is one small bump in the road as you go towards Lanzarec Wine Estate, but if my 110kg’s could make I am sure with a little bit of effort everyone will do that with ease.
So dusts off those bikes in the garage put on some lube and hope that your sons or daughters won’t embarrass you on the bike by dropping you on the abovementioned small incline in the road. A bonus, besides the beautiful scenery is a little bit of flat single track through the forest, some flat flowing gravel road and riding on the foot path back to Coetzenburg with some tar road in between.
Now I would like to join in the fun, but seeing this is a family ride and that elusive female wife has not yet caught me and forced me to commit, it might seem odd that a Phat Boy ride there alone. To all my friends with families, I can’t think of a better way to enjoy the Stellenbosch Wine Festival as by enjoying some outdoor time on the bike with the little ones – and the wife.
To keep it official here is the official press release”:
From 30 January to 1 February 2015, visitors to the Stellenbosch Wine Festival will again be able to experience the very best of what this popular wine region has to offer – the best wine, the most delicious food, great music and art and the breathtakingly beautiful natural environment of the Boland. The 2015 festival will offer an innovative family friendly format that for the first time will be held at the Coetzenburg grounds, a beautiful new venue that will serve to enhance this already well-known festival.
The Momentum Grape MTB Ride is an exciting new addition to the annual Stellenbosch Wine Festival presented by Pick n Pay, and promises a fun cycling outing towards Jonkershoek and back. Most of the 18km ride takes place on local tar roads with small sections of easy dirt roads and tracks to make sure you do use the knobblies on your tires!
Heading out from the Wine Festival venue at Coetzenburg, riders head up Jonkershoek Road past estates like Lanzerac, Starke Condè and Rudera, up to the turnaround point at the Nature Reserve gate before embarking on the return loop via Assegaaibos and the Jonkershoek Road cycle path. The turnaround area is also the highest point on the route so riders can look forward to mostly freewheeling back home.
Although this ride is well known to any Stellenbosch local, an added feature is that special permission has been obtained from Cape Nature to utilise the more secluded Assegaaibos section to the route, which is not usually accessible.
All finishers receive a special commemorative medal as well as entry into the wine festival where a lucky draw takes place after the ride.
Registration can be done from 06h00 at Coetzenburg Sports Grounds for the ride that will set off at 07h30.
For entries (R100 online and R130 on the day), visit www.stellenboschwinefestival.co.za or contact Dirtopia at 021 884 4752. All entrants to the MTB ride will receive Stellenbosch Wine Festival venue access. An additional cost of R75 is applicable if you wish to partake in the wine tasting experience.
– See more on www.endurohub.co.za