Closest Town: Tulbagh
Grading: Schalkenbosch - Intermediate to difficult Saronsberg - Intermediate | Duration: Schalkenbosch - 90min - 4hrs Saronsberg - 1.5-2.5 hrs
Location (Area/Province): Central & Klein Karoo and Western Cape
Start Point: Schalkenbosch - Sagte Vlei, Schalkenbosch. Saronsberg - Saronsberg
Access: Permits available at the Shell Garage, Cape Dutch Quarters and the Tourism Bureau
Beware of: Erosion ditches, steep descents, farm traffic, narrow bridges and flooding streams
Facilities: None on route - all you need in Tulbach
Cell Reception: Intermittent
The village of Tulbagh, nestled in an unspoilt valley set in a bowl formed by the stunning Groot Winter Wilderness Area now also boasts excellent mountain bikinig trails thanks to the local mountain bikers’ hard work.
On your bike
The Bone or Schalkenbosch Trail (26km) cuts along the mountainside above Tulbagh. If you are not so fit, stick to the first 10.5km Fairy Loop, because lots of mostly single-track climbing (almost 800m) and switchbacks await as you head past Steinthal onto the mountain slopes. Watch out for technical sections around the river/raine crossings.
On the other side of town, the Saronsberg or 6 Farms Trail (16km) crosses 6 farms, mostly along farm trails with light climbs and descents and not a lot of single-track. This is a great trail for social and intermediate riders. The Welbedacht Nature Reserve section adds an additional loop of about 7km which includes a steep up and down; only recommended for experienced riders looking for a good workout and a stunning view over the whole valley.
Off the bike
Discover the historical village of Tulbagh embraced by the Witzenberg and Winterhoek Mountain ranges approximately one hour from Cape Town. Panoramic views, superior wines, gourmet foods and period architecture combine with a temperate climate to make this one of the Cape’s most scenic weekend destinations. Cascading waterfalls, emerald vineyards, picture-perfect orchards and snow-capped mountain peaks during the winter months make Tulbagh an irresistible haven for outdoor enthusiasts. The annual “Christmas in July” festival is not to be missed.
Tel: +27 (0)83 952 5448
GPS: Schalkenbosch – 33°17’49.8” South / 19°10’11.2” East
Saronsberg – 33°14’41.4” South / 19°06’53.8” East