Boet Werrie June 14 Day 4: Masakala to Malekholonyane

Because I could only leave Masakala the next day at noon, I got my clothing washed the evening before.  The ladies wash the clothes in a cold water tub, then normally hang it out to dry, either outside or in front of a fire/stove.  For some reason the ladies wanted to iron my long sleeve shirt and accidently burned holes right thru the front and back.  From then onwards I was Ironman to my fellow riders.
The iron man shirt

I spent the rest of the morning eating, sleeping and going over the maps to see if I can make up any time to Malekholonyane.  It’s unbelievably frustrating to just sit around, knowing that all the riders are out there making progress.  When I eventually got going, I was in racing mode.  It took me 5 hours to get to Malek, normally it takes about 7 hours.  And it was done against a proper head wind.  I followed a “new route” thru the Knira Flats – stayed as low as possible.  Not sure if it worked, but it’s always fun going on a discovery ride…
Knira Flats
Queens Mercy
Mparane Ridgeline
Arriving at Malek before nightfall, I dropped the saddle bag and rucksack to recce the route off the ridge to Ongeluksnek.  It’s amazing to find out how much stronger you are on a bike without all the extra weight.  I literally flew up the ridge on my way back to the rondawels.  That evening, I said my final goodbyes to Tony & Caren.  My plan was to double up to Rhodes, theirs was to sleep over at Vuvu.  The friendly banter continued on if we’ll meet up again at Vuvu or not.

Due to the slowness of the forst 4 days of the race, I got into the healthy habit of stretching before my ride start and at the end of the day. This might also be part of the knees saving grace.  The other good thing was to get everything ready in my kit and on my bike the evening before I went to bed.  When you do get up the next morning, you’ll be on the bike within 30 min, and you don’t leave anything behind – like the 3 sweepers did at Masakala (tracker, amped & clothes that I brought thru to Malek).

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