Day 4: 9th November, 2016
BIKE: Albertinia to Honeywood – 95km
This is the tough, long day with rolling hills through the farming town of Riversdale and some steep climbs before barrelling down the valley to the Big Monster – a 5km relentless climb up to the Grootvadersbosch Nature Conservancy, where John & Miranda Moody of Honeywood Farm are our most hospitable hosts.They are descendants of the first British settlers to put down roots in this part of the world.
‘Day 4 was a tough 10 hours day where we rode 100km! The first half of the day was relatively easy compared to what was waiting for us towards the end of the ride. Until the 50km mark we enjoyed some long stretches of tar road and even had a stop at a cafe where I recharged my batteries with chocolate milkshake and chips.
The second half was alot tougher, no tar roads and alot of steep hills that at times made me wish I didnt have that milkshake. But as we conquered each hill we were rewarded with a great view and a sense of achievement.
After overcoming the last challenge which was a long painful ride uphill, we were rewarded with cold beers and a delicious homemade meal.
In the end Day 4 made all the previous days look easy but everyone completed the challenge and are now looking forward to some resting before Day 5.’
Phillipe Majuri De Barros, Woodside, Biker
HIKE: Grootvadersbosch – 10km
Shuttle to Honeywood farm and walk begin walk in the Grootvadersbosch Nature Reserve. This 250 ha of preserved forest is the nest remaining cover of indigenous forest in the southwestern Cape. There is an excellent hiking trail and paths which provide easy access to the forest. The early settlers in the Overberg managed to satisfy the huge demand for hardwoods at the turn of the 20th century throughout South Africa, but in doing so almost totally destroyed the unique forests in the Cape. Grootvadersbosch was established to preserve the area and restore it to its former beauty. Between 1896 and 1913 alien trees such as ash, bluegum, Californian redwood, Australian blackwood and camphor were planted on the slopes which had been cleared of indigenous forest. Efforts are now being made to reclaim these areas. The wilderness areas remain untouched and this is re ected in the richness of wildlife and birdlife one encounters while walking here. There is a good chance of seeing the shy bushbuck in the forest.
‘We left Miranda and John the owners of Honeywood farm at 8am to begin to walk to the Grootvadersbosch forest. This was a good chance to see the unique forest in the Cape which was once home of only indigenous trees. It is now being preserved to restore it to its past beauty.
The walk look easy to start with but as the hike progressed it became clear that it was going to be a challenging walk with some steep hills to get through.
We came prepared with compeed pads to cover our blisters when we stopped for energy snacks and a light lunch in the woods next to a lovely small river.
Towards the end of this long hard walk four hikers run up a hill as fast as we could to test our stamina whilst we waited for those with injuries on their feet. We were such troopers!
Then after some rest, we took Daytrippers minibus to Simon Town stopping in a cafe along the road where we coincided with the bikers and shared our experiences of the day.
Seeing everyone together felt like a happy family!!’
Libertad West, Cripps Sears, Hiker
‘Today we left the beautiful Garden Route Lodge and made our way to Karoo.
We had planned to walk through the Groot Vaders Bos Reserve but unfortunately it was closed for public use. Luckily for us the Honeywood Farm we are staying in had long rolling hills which we were able to do a 5 hour hike around.
On our route we were faced with bulls and baboons. Both of which we had no knowledge of in terms of our safety so we made slow and steady movements to get passed.
We made our way back to the farm for a tradition braai (BBQ to us) and after the long activities of the day, we all made our way to bed early.’
Anna Davies, Cripps Sears, Hiker