Up early to get ready for the long ride to Tulbagh. Approaching Mowbray, the clouds were getting darker and almost everybody was there already when Mandy and I arrived. Quick greetings all round, with John Lee having to excuse himself from the ride as his bike`s one baffle had popped out and he did not want to cause any damage to any valves.

It then started to rain, so it was a very quick briefing on the restaurant and the route. As we were riding towards the N2, Harold and Mads approached from the N2 and they had to do a quick U turn at Durban Road intersection to join up with the group.

It was then onto the N2, onto the M5 and onto the N1. We stayed on the N1 until the Klapmuts/Wellington off ramp, turning left towards Wellington. Riding through the farmlands it was rather cool with very little sunshine to warm us up.

As we were about to turn left into the road towards Wellington coming from Paarl, Sean Anderson rode up next to me and indicated that he needed to find a toilet. Well we turned right at the big church on the left and the road going towards Bain`s Kloof Pass. Fortunately, I found a restaurant at the last petrol station on the right and stopped the ride. Sean and John v. d. Spuy were off their bikes and off to the toilet at the back of the garage/restaurant. I followed suite as I had taken a slow mag fizzy tablet with my blood pressure medication. John`s excuse was that he had had TWO cups of tea before he had left home. What with the cold weather and the vibrations from the bike, neither helped to relieve the pressure on the bladder. Sean`s excuse I think was that he had enjoined himself at the dinner/prize giving a bit too much the night before.

Once the three of us were back on our bikes, it was off to Bain`s Kloof. At the start of Bain`s Kloof, there is a sign that indicates that the pass is 25 kilometres long. I never knew that before. Any way it was time to settle down and concentrate on all the BUMPS and VERY SHARP CORNERS. The roadway is also very narrow, so it was a very slow ride through the pass. Not like the “old” days when we were young and headstrong and thought that no harm could come to us. The road was also wet in the pass, so more caution was called for.

At the T junction with Bain`s Kloof and the Worcester road I pulled over, to make sure that everyone was still with the group. Tail end Charlie, Mike Meiring, soon joined us and then it was time to continue our journey. We continued along the road until the T junction at the base of Mitchell`s Pass and turned left towards Wolseley/Tulbagh. Bypassing all the turn offs to Wolseley, we continued along until the first turn off to Tulbagh. As one turns into the road there is a big white cement slab on the left stipulating that Tulbagh was founded in 1699. That is 320 years ago. 47 years after Jan van Riebeek had landed in Cape Town in 1652.

Approaching Tulbagh, we slowed down as the speed limit in the town is 60 kilometres. Down the hill and past the service station on the right, where the refuel stop was on the economy ride in August 2019. Two hundred meters further we found parking on both sides of the road outside the Tulbagh Hotel. As we entered the hotel, we were guided to the terrace outside overlooking the street, where the tables had been set up for us. Hot beverages were ordered, which could not arrive quickly enough. Unfortunately, the breakfast took a long time to arrive, but when it did arrive it was hot and filling with lots of toast, butter and 2 different types of jam. Champagne was ordered and paid for by the club. Thank you, Nomads. Still definitely the best and oldest club in the country. Some people ordered more coffee and then it was time to settle the bill with Nomads paying for the 8 qualifiers for the incentive breakfast. Once again, Mandy handled that side, adding the tip in and calculating what Nomads had to pay. A BIG THANK YOU to Mandy for doing the finances on every ride.

Thank you to everyone who attended the ride and the rides during the past year. It is really appreciated by me and Mandy for the effort that you want to ride, no matter the venue, distance and the weather. RIDE SAFE and we will see you all in 2020.  It is a LEAP YEAR. With the Olympics and the FIFA World Cup taking place during the year.

There were 15 members, 4 visitors, 12 bikes and 1 car.

Ride and drive safe over the Festive Season.

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This post was written by nomads