If you’re in the Joburg area looking for a MTB Route close to home, Braamfontein Spruit should be the name that pops to mind.
This 60km + endurance ride runs from Melville Koppies in the South all the way down to Paulshof in the North and is also one of Joburg’s most prominent greenbelts, with The Spruit effectively being a path that runs alongside the Jukskei river.
Virtually single track all the way, the route predominantly follows the water course with minimal technical sections en route making this an ideal ride for beginner to intermediate riders, but with sufficient options and variety to be entertaining and challenging for the more advanced cyclists too.
There are various starting points that one can access this route along from Emmarentia Dam to Delta Park to Albert’s Farm with picnic spots along majority of the route which is also used by runners and aquatic athletes.
Users of the Braamfontein Spruit Route are advised never to ride the route alone for security reasons.
Groenkloof Nature Reserve is situated in the Fountains Valley which is just 5km outside of Pretoria and offers visitors the chance to get away from the hustle and bustle of busy city life by offering an array of outdoor activities which includes mountain biking.
The reserve itself was established by Paul Kruger in 1895 to protect game and wildlife from poachers and is South Africa’s first nature sanctuary.
All of the MTB trails are well marked, offering cyclists a unique ride on single and jeep track with a few technical points thanks to the overall rocky terrain, with riders being able to choose various route options on subsequent loops.
The terrain is a varying mix of single track, jeep track , bridge and river crossings, steep ascents and rocky climbs dependant on the riders choice of route and may include encounters with wildlife in the park.
Other activities visitors can choose to take part in at the reserve include horse, hiking and 4×4 trails as well as guided safaris through the park, picnic and braai areas.
Groenkloof Nature Reserve is open in the Summer months (Sep- Apr) from 5:30am to 7pm and during Winter (May-Aug) from 7am to 6pm and is located on the corner of Eeufees Road & Christina De Wit Ave in Pretoria.
Admission – R35 for adults; R20 for children aged 7 to 17 and R10 for children younger than 7.
Solomons Cycles specialises in the supply of cycles, parts and accessories for a variety of bikes.
Their store also boasts a fishing, angling and camping departments.
Trading Hours: Mon to Fri – 8 to 5; Sat – 8 to 1:30; Sun – open every last Sunday of the month.
Lynnwood Cyclery is based in the Willow Way Centre in Pretoria East and offers a diverse range of consumer services from an in house service centre to a variety of International and local products and accessories.
Be sure to also check out their riding club.
Business hours: Mon to Fri: 9 to 5:30; Sat: 9 to 2; selected Public Holidays: 9 to 12.
Boschkop MTB Park is situated just east of Silverlakes in Pretoria.
The Park offers over 15km of single track with technical features through rivers and over boardwalks and is suited for beginners & more advanced riders.
Entry is R20 per adult and R10 for children under 12.
Set in the Vredefort Dome just outside Parys is where you’ll find the Berakah Eco Trails.
The dome itself, originated from a meteorite which struck the earth and is a geological structure with a central core of granite-gneiss, surrounded by steep rock formations which forms the mountainous area.
The Berakah Eco Trails are famous for mainly 4×4 and quad bikes with some paths suitable for mountain bikes and trail running.
Distances vary with a choice of 6km to 14km routes set in jeep track and rocky terrain with maps available at reception.
Bookings are essential and fees are R30 per bicycle with accommodation available.
Open to the public for more than thirty seven years, the privately owned Mountain Sanctuary Park is nestled in the Magaliesberg Mountains.
There is a 12km bike trails for MTB enthusiasts to tackle, with this specific trail forming part of the Magalies Monster race and is not for the faint hearted.
Cyclists can also take advantage of some of the other dirt roads with terrain ranging from easy like the Barnardsvlei Road to seriously physical such as the Breed’s Neck Mountain Pass
Other attractions include a braai and picnic facility as well as nature walks and walking trails.
Day visitors are welcome but bookings are essential as there are a limited number of guests allowed in the park daily.
Day visitors entry fee: Per person – R100; Children under 12 – R60
This dirt road MTB trail which is the only road between Rustenburg and Hartbeespoort, is set in the magificent Magaliesberg countryside.
Cyclists can take advantage of a 50km plus distance ride starting from the Hekpoort Petrol Station or tryout the 10km trail from Sugarbush Hill Cottages.
The grading is intermediate to difficult, with riders choosing to use this route in training for the cycling events like the Magalies Monster – you can also pre plan your ride options by referring to the Automobile Association’s Magaliesberg Map.
Other attractions include Sugarbush Hill hiking trails and a multitude of restaurants and shops to browse through and relax in.