2015 Rally

Sticker Post Retief Rally 2015

Ride with me………by Barry James

 

Post Retief Adventure Bike Rally 22-24 May 2015

 

The Principality of Post Retief nestled deep in the Winterberg mountain range once again successfully hosted the annual adventure bike brotherhood (and sisterhood) at the Post Retief Country Club.

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No fewer than 70 bikes of all ages, makes and sizes from TW200’s to big BMW’S BUZZED TOWARDS THE CLUBHOUSE, BAR AND LARGE BUNKROOM, SWARMING AROUND THE SWEET CHILLED NECTAR SO PROFESSIONALLY SERVED BY THE EVER-WILLING FARMERS OF THESE FERTILE VALLEYS.

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Meticulous planning on the part of Miné Norval (or Mini to many) and her team saw one meal after another being rolled out of the kitchen, steaks, chops, wors, side dishes of note and breakfasts worthy of being branded – Wimpy, Spur, Nando’s KFC and Steers step aside, PRAB’s culinary fair is about to be listed on the J.S.E. (Launch share prices to be announced soon.)

 

Eskom load shedding presented us with a few challenges however we used our brand new political football changeover switch from the ANC 220V to EFF’s 110V and suddenly there was enough to go around AND at half the price! I have it on good authority that should 110V not suffice our beloved country, a new 12V option is readily available under the seat of most motorbikes. Viva BMW, KTM and all other 12 volters!! Viva !!!

 

Our good friend Hillary Fisher from somewhere near the sea cleared all of the obstacles –(potholies and rutatoolies)en route and made it to the Winterbergies! Broken ribs one year and an ankle the following year did not deter this well travelled adventurer!

 

Collar-bone survivor (2014), Henk Aggenbach en route to Post Retief took to the deck once again in a dust enveloped acrobatic display. Night-time rutting also was reported when Rufus Dreyer acquainted himself with a hard landing on Mother Earth 120 meters from Mill Farm’s front door.

 

Doug von der Decken, Benita Blom, Pieter de Lange, Sampie Prinsloo and a number of others all had minor and major skirmishes with nature – some bonking into the bank, others banking into the bonk and the last playing the hide ‘n seek game of “Lord of the Road Departure”.

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Our route set out by Cape to Cairo survivor, Norman Emslie, (KLR Kawasaki Kenya Killer – broke it in half) took us out of the valley of De Waals Kloof where the autumn had carpeted the road in reds, oranges and fading yellows onto the wintering hills of the Katberg Mountain Range.

 

Dagga priests were omni present – “pot-holy’s” large enough to swallow a showroom of Harleys presented the adventurers with a new level of fun – jump it, pass it, around it and damn it!!!!

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Heading deep into rural Ciskei, formally pristine commercial farms now sporting a village, shops and decrepit closed police station, our rallyists pursued the stony, rocky “twee-spoor pad” anticipating at any moment a large notice board saying – WELCOME TO CENTRAL AFRICAN REPUBLIC. Describing this piece of God’s earth would never do it justice, because we the human race often just look at the infrastructure (man-made) and facilities that make farming easier!

 

Well, the Ruitjies is one of the highest carrying capacity natural grasslands in SA situated at 5 00ft and above sea level – awesome summer grazing at high altitude, bordering onto the former Ciskei this “Ruitjies” area is shared by commercial and communal farmers.

 

Summer grazing for cattle and year-round grazing for sheep, this “grazing lawn” environment is extremely healthy in summer however, extremely tough in winter!

 

The “Ruitjies”, a plateau of highly productive grassland stretching possibly 50km from Tarkastad to the Katberg Mountain Range hosts a handful of tough, experienced stock farmers and mostly generations olde!

 

Stock dams in winter will ice over, cows ice ensconced tails will twinkle, tankle till midday only to be re-iced within a day or two. Weaners of exceptional quality are produced here annually achieving top dollar.

 

The windows of the dwellings (Ruitjies) on this plateau may be small, however this summer paradise has been good to many a family!

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A long black snake-like road thing appeared at Waverley with no centre white line – Yes- Road Shedding – Stop/Go’s and all, with the SA Roads authority rebuilding of the Queenstown/Tarkastad tar road. Turning left, road shedding and ALL; – Tarka proved to be a hit. Fuel, air and garage pie to tickle the rut-ah-toolie desires saw us depart south towards the stately Winterberg only to be ripped from the road by aromatic waftings of hamburgers and chips of note at the Winterberg Bowling Club. Bowling being far more dangerous than biking (see annual specs) we hastily made our departure for the Winterberg watershed, water on the Tarka side making a spectacular Kei River/Sea entry and the water heading south to the Great Fish River/Sea entry.

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Only 3 motorbikes casavacs were loaded onto the bike morgue van for the final resting place of Post Retief country Garden.

Amazingly enough the busy bee-hive clubhouse had attracted even those buzzing bees that went AWOL, enticing everybody back to the nectar, braai and pudding so well-prepared by our awesome ladies. In that order, however in different and un-ratio-ed quantities, the 2015 rally was celebrated.

 

Our re-registration rate sits at a comfortable 74% rate (Vet to still confirm with a certificate). So with great word-of-mouth publicity the event grows year on year.

 

For us the dwellers of the Principality of Post Retief it as been an absolute honour to host our adventuring friends from Flowers, Tromps, East (L), Port (E), Stellen, Oyster, Bofolo, Lord Charles, Sir John Cradock, Humanstown, Fickstown, Sir George (Cathcart), Tarkatown and Queens Parlour.

 

Our music making masters, all of the way from Komgatown and East London village were stupendous.   Horrifically sweet on the deep-seated ear drums melodiously received by battered, tattered, leathered and unplugged orifi !!!! John and Leon (brothers of Deere) did us well! Great guys and their spouses bloomed the 60s music and flowered the rest for all of us!!!

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Sunday breakfast saw all of our friends depart for their homes – the buzzing beehive emptied, nectar depleted, the buzzzz of the biking bees stilled, till 2016. Au revoir!!!

 

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