West Rand, Magaliesberg, Hartbeespoort – half day (tar)

Near the Cradle of Humankind.

1. Total distance of route?


2. How long did it take to complete? Were you going fast or travelling leisurely?

3 hours. Leisurely.

3. Why are you recommending this route? What’s special about it?

One of the more scenic routes in Gauteng – a splendid quick trip for all riders on all types of bikes. This route is well known as a breakfast run. Depending on the mood and for some variation you could start the route from different directions. Since 2007 this area has expanded rapidly, the city now encroaching what used to be proper Highveld. This area should be experienced now, while there are still untouched and undeveloped areas to be seen. Consider this route a great escape from the madness of city life.

4. Please tell us how the route runs.

Take Hendrik Potgieter and head towards Krugersdorp. Keep on the M14, passing the turnoff to Krugersdorp. At this point you have a number of options – I chose the R540, then the R563, a delightful road with almost no traffic. This road takes you past the Cradle of Humankind. From there head to Magaliesberg and then on to Hartbeespoort Dam. Again, you have options here – keep going straight and it’s a longer ride, or turn right and go down the Bekker Skoole road as it known. This stretch of road is in a very good condition compared to some of the other roads in the area. At the end of this road, take a left and head towards Harties. This road eventually takes you around the dam, and not over the bridge that stretches across the actual body of water. From Harties, take the R511 back to the N1 and then to where you want to be.

5. What kind of motorcycle is the route suitable for?

I rode the excellent Kawasaki Z1000SX, compliments of KMSA. The route is suitable for all types of bikes. That said, I did spot a number of well graded dirt roads that would make the route even more interesting as they seem to lead to even more uncharted mountain roads.

6.  Please name significant POIs (Points Of Interest) along the way, e.g. eateries, supermarkets, accommodation.

The Cradle of Humankind is a definite point of interest. You will also pass through some scenic little villages. And then Hartebeespoort dam has it’s own attractions.

7. Are there petrol stations along the way? Do you know of any motorcycle repair shops along the route or in the area?

Fuel will probably not be an issue as it is a short route, but there are a number of petrol stations along the way.

8. Are there any dangers along the route, e.g. loose gravel, potholes, sharp bends, regular oil spills, wild animals or angry locals?

Pedestrians can be an issue on these roads, so keep an eye out for them. Also, animals have been known to roam due to unfenced areas. The road is tricky in places with a number of tight corners that can catch you out. Another feature of this route is the sudden arrival of T-junctions so be aware – roads end suddenly as some riders have found out the hard way. There are some potholes out in the north west area.

9. What did the trip cost in fuel, meals and accommodation?

Round trip cost of less than a tank of petrol, but priceless considering I had 3 hours of riding in the most amazing countryside in Southern Africa. Coffee and food cost me less than R50, and lunch stops are plentiful.

10. Did you use any special gear, e.g. fuel bags, that made your journey possible, easier or more enjoyable?

No special gear required.

11.  Any must-do activities on the route?

Ride the T1, T2 and T3 Magalies Meander!

12. Do you have any other comments or advice about the route?

The mid morning mid afternoon time slot is good for a leisurely ride. The road is busy in the morning with people going to the dam and in summer bikers are known to ride to the dam and be back before 9a.m.

13. Are there any doctors and/or hospitals in the area that you know of?

Best to keep an emergency number on your phone. All the Emergency services operators are available in this area.

The rider – Mukhtar Mukuddem. 

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