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2020 Stage 2

Tuesday, March 17, 2020
Distance
94km
Climbing
2050m
Start Location
Ceres
Finish Location
Saronsberg
 

 

 

Forgive My Sins

The Witzenberg Valley is undoubtedly one of mountain biking’s most challenging playgrounds, making Stage 2 a fitting holder for the title of Queen Stage. Sheets of sandstone provide the ultimate testing ground for man, woman and of course, machine. No quarter is given by Mother Nature in this fertile valley. For those strong enough not to require one, there are rewards around every kink in the trail. First though you have to reach the fabled playground. Crossing the Ceres Valley is the first step on the journey. Then comes the Old Gydo Pass. On the Bokkeveld plateau the dual track climb gives way to singletrack. Snaking ever upward into the Witzenberg Mountains the trail becomes increasingly technical. As it starts to weave its way between sandstone outcrops the Land Rover Technical Terrain begins. It is far from the only technical section of the day’s route however. In the valley below, nearly 20 kilometres of virtually uninterrupted singletrack awaits. Only the day’s final climb brings an end to the singletrack. From the summit Table Mountain is visible on clear days, as is the stage finish, at Saronsberg. A final white-knuckle singletrack descent, along an old wagon trail, then drops from the heights of the Witzenberg to the Tulbagh Valley far below. 

Land Rover Technical Terrain: Skurfberg

Carved between sandstone massifs, the final 1.5 kilometres of the climb up into the Witzenberg Valley forms the day’s Land Rover Technical Terrain. Though not as taxingly steep as the consistent gradients lower down the climb, the brutal ramps on sandstone slick rock require savage bursts of power to conquer. Brief respite is offered from ramp to ramp, so keep an eye on your teammate to ensure the elastic does not snap between you.