Taking a break in Ixopo.
In January 2008,me and my girlfriend Jillian decided to take a trip to Sani Pass and explore Lesotho a bit.At that stage we were on holiday with her mom at Shelly Beach.
We left early at about six to Sani Pass via the gravel St Faith Road.The St Faith Road was wet and a bit of a nightmare.The conditions was also misty and rain and the road was quite busy at that time of the day.Eventually we reach the tar road at Highflats.We took a left to Ixopo,and the weather started to clear up a bit.Took a break at the Spar in Ixopo.
From Ixopo it was tar road to Underberg where we had breakfast and then onwards to Sani Pass via Himeville. From Himeville we travel towards Sani Pass and pass through the South Arican Border Post at the bottom. From there the gravel road became more challenging-quite steep uphills with a lot of S-bends until we arrived at the Lesotho Border Post.What a beautiful pass to travel and surely a must for all bikers. The pass is in the process of being tarred and will take away a lot of the challenges it poses.
through the Lesotho Border Post and stop at The Highest Pub In Africa for some refreshments.While there studying our map and considering that it was still relatively early we decided to tackle Lesotho and push through to Maseru because the roads on the map is marked A14, A13 etc.-so we thought it must be major gravel or tar roads!! If we only know and found out later, that was definately not the case! No fast travel on these roads! A variety of gravel roads, circling through the mountains, around the villages, road works made for interested travel and time comsuming.We took forever to get to Thaba-Tseka where we hoped to get some petrol.Signposts are rare except the schools that are clearly named and marked and can give you some indication where you heading.
Eventually we reached Thaba-Tseka and no petrol was available.We started to worry now because now it was starting to get late and it seens that we are only halfway to Maseru and had no idea of how much petrol we had left.Some locals direct us to a village a bit further on where a friendly local pumped some petrol for us and we were on our
Lesotho Border Post
Be careful of taking photos of this.
way again to Maseru. Now it was getting late and Jillian must have been very uncomfortable on the back of the KLR. Not the most comfortable bike to ride pillion on. And we were still way of from Maseru where we were thinking of staying.
We starting getting heavy roadworks that made it more interesting and also some mean passes. I was just praying that we don't get any punctures at that stage, in the middle of nowhere. We had to stop over somewhere to start layering on warmer clothes because it was getting chilly and dark. Eventually we reach the tar road and carried on towards Maseru. Then we came across a pass called "God help me pass" and thats how I felt. When we reached Maseru at 21h00 we were just looking for accomodation but it seems that every place we tried was fully booked and by now it was getting very late. A friendly local advised us rather to go through to Ladybrand where it will be easier to find accomodation. He also advised us that the Maseru Border Post is open 24 hours and that we will be able to pass through to Ladybrand. We
From the Top
View from deck of "Highest Pub In Africa"
passed through easily and arrived very late In Ladybrand where we found accomodation at 22h30. We were exhausted and Jill's rear was sore, never again attempt to travel through Lesotho in one day without a proper plan and information. But it was an unbelievable experience.16 hours on an KLR is not to be repeated soon. Jillian will confirm that 16 hours on a KLR as a pillion is not fun.
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