Cycle CC adventure going strong

The cyclists take a break at the Pongola River sign.

IT has been more than a week since the Viljoen brothers graced the front page of the Vryheid Herald with the launch of their epic 6000km Cross Country Cycle adventure.

ALSO READ: Pedalling 6000km for abused children – The Viljoen brothers start their epic journey in Vryheid

The aim of this tour around the border of South Africa is to raise funds as well as awareness for the plight of abused children for the Child Witness Institute and Foundation.

The previous week, they embarked on this journey, starting at the Vryheid Round Table Clubhouse, and are still going strong, despite several setbacks.

“The day started with some technical issues which had to be addressed before the riders could start, this resulted in Carel having to ride with a 28 sprocket instead of the ideal 42 sprocket making the uphills a bit of a challenge,” says the update on

Carel and Deon Viljoen in Paulpietersburg.

Day 2 – Paulpietersburg to Piet Retief: “This was a tough day with lots of climbing and my 28 gearing didn’t help,” writes Carel. “I needed to change back to a sprocket with the correct gearing but this could only be done in Piet Retief. We enjoyed the hospitality of my niece who spoiled us with a great meal and lots of dessert.”

The bicycling brothers departed from Paulpietersburg at 8am and arrived safely in Piet Retief just after 3pm.

Day 3 – Piet Retief to Amsterdam: Day three saw them cover a distance of 50,31km after an early interview with a local paper and a quick sprocket repair.

“We are on our way and have a great, but tough, ride through the mountains with steep climbs. Deon`s bike starts to act out with slipping gears about 5km out, but we make it with enough time to get some maintenance done with the help of a local shop. The maintenance ends in catastrophe and my jockey is completely destroyed,” writes Carel.

“At this point there is nothing we can do, everything is closed and tomorrow is a new day. We settle in at the sponsored accommodation, with a hot shower and a delicious plate of food.”

Day 4 – Amsterdam to Warburton: “The day starts with a search for a replacement Jockey which was destroyed the previous day, with no success. The parts needed to be ‘imported’ from Vryheid, so I did not cycle today,” writes Carel. “Deon stayed true to our plans and finished the 72.37km leg between Amsterdam and Warburton in 5:19:55, total climbs for the day 1606m.

Day 5 – Warburton to Badplaas: “We were off at half past nine to Badplaas Forever Resorts. This is our first dirt road of the tour through the plantations. The road itself is not bad and we really rode well, but as it is a dirt road, the climbs are steeper than on a tarred road. Luckily there was only one climb we had to push and nothing beyond 500 meters,” writes Carel.

“The views over the mountains were really beautiful and we are privileged to enjoy it. I have seen cattle, but never cows with such horns. Called Ankole-Watusie, we would learn a bit later, what a sight to see.”

Deon and Carel managed to complete the 50km stretch in just under four hours.

“Luckily there was only one climb we had to push and nothing beyond 500 meters,” writes Carel about the Warburton to Badplaas stretch of dirt road.

Day 6 – Badplaas to Barberton: “We planned to get away early, as Barberton is a far stretch with massive climbs over the mountain pass,” writes Carel. “Eventually we only got away at 8.20am because of a flat tyre.”

“At 20km, we take our first break and and I notice that the welding on my trailer is starting to fail. Luckily the dirt road of the previous day put the welding through its paces and exposed the flaw, however this meant that the trailer needed repairs and we still had a long way to go.”

Deon takes a break on a rather demanding uphill.

“The guys from Round Table quickly made a plan. After a short wait on the side of the road, Anton arrived, picked up the trailer and did an amazing repair job. It feels like a simple thank you falls short for all the assistance and support we received from Anton.”

“At the end it was a blessing in disguise not having to haul the trailer over the pass towards Barberton, not to mention that the guest house was on the highest point of town. 50% of the 72km was uphill but after one more flat tyre we arrived in Barberton in 8h58m.”

To follow the progress of the cyclists and to find out how you can contribute to their cause, visit

Elaine Rodway

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