Trans Drak 2017 205kmThe route for the main race
The Trans Drak has a new route for 2017. Based on the feedback we received from last year’s entrants we have made the route a circular one with start and finish at Appin Guest Farm. Another notable change is extensive brand new single track that has been added to the route.
Previous riders will recognise some of the route but this time we will be doing it in the reverse direction. The route is a total of 207km with an ascent of 2968m.
Click the download button above to download a gpx file of the route.
The route will start near Swinburne (Free State) at Appin Guest Farm close to the N3 highway and riders head towards Swinburne onto a railway service road of approximately 18km alongside the Wilge river. Please, use extreme caution as the railway line will be crossed 15 times.
A 250m steep concrete section, with a 24% gradient will be the 1st Trans Drak Challenge followed by a 1km climb at 6% gradient, just to stretch the muscles. Riders will then experience some single track next to the Wilge River followed by a river crossing towards Cliffort Estate Game Farm (owner and farmer Jan Harm Greyling) and arrive at Checkpoint 1 (27km).
From here riders will follow some district farm roads and jeep track, heading towards Bezuidenhout’s Pass. Where the Lost Valley starts in the Tintwa mountain region, Checkpoint 2 will be settled under a 100 year old oak tree at 62km.
Here, riders will experience real farmer’s hospitality before enjoying the fast Middledale Pass descent. Caution should be taken as speeds of up to 80km/h may be reached down Middledale Pass.
Riders will ride all the way past Geluksburg towards farm Kromelmboog which is owned by Hannes & Stefanie Bester, and Checkpoint 3 at 88km will be ticked off.
From here riders will follow a smooth district road (hopefully with the wind from behind their backs) towards Checkpoint 4 (114km) at the Biltong Padstal next to the N3 highway. Here riders will link up for the first time with their support, preparing for the big climb of the day. Slower riders may consider to gear up with their night equipment at this point.
After riding under a river bridge and under the N3, the big climb starts and links up to a railway service road. With a left turn off towards Msonti Caves, the short steep climb of 1km will have riders ticking “I’ve conquered Msonti” off on their bucket list. At 136km there is a well-deserved Waterpoint 1 at Msonti Caves, with some hot beverages to refuel before the last part of the climb up De Beers Pass. From the caves a 4km farm jeep track takes riders to de Beers Pass with a steep 500m climb on tar road followed by a 3km tar flat section before heading back onto district farm road.
At 151km, Waterpoint 2, close to Oaklands Country Manor, will be where riders can once again meet up with their supporters.
From here riders will head for Checkpoint 5 (177km) at farm Schneiders Clain, where Jacques & Erica van Niekerk will treat the riders to pancakes, “vetkoek” and coffee, with fires to keep them warm and to encourage them towards the finish.
Following farm and district roads riders will streak towards the finish. Just 5km before the finish they will meet up with their support at Waterpoint 3, Riverview Country Inn, with 200km behind them. Support vehicles will be allowed to escort cyclists to the finish if they wish to do so. Arriving at Appin Guest Farm the finish awaits riders with free hamburgers and coffee. Beer will also be available at the FINISH 205km.
Support vehicles are NOT allowed to support on the road during the event and can only support riders at the designated Checkpoints and Waterpoints. (On the road support, will result in riders being disqualified immediately). Supporters is not allowed to support at any other than, Checkpoint 4, Waterpoint 2 and at Waterpoint 3.
Click the download button above to see the GPS routes for support vehicles.
The same road will be used by the support vehicles for both the Trans Drak Main race and the Mini race.