uBhejane adds new three-day ride option

2018-10-09 06:01
PHOTO: supplied The uBhejane Xtreme Mountain Bike Challenge is one of the toughest one-day rides in SA.

PHOTO: supplied The uBhejane Xtreme Mountain Bike Challenge is one of the toughest one-day rides in SA.

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THE uBhejane Xtreme Mountain Bike Challenge, from Hillcrest to Hilltop Camp, Hluhluwe in the height of KwaZulu-Natal’s summer and with a 16 hour cut-off time is arguably one of the toughest one-day MTB rides in South Africa.

This year they have expanded the expedition to include a three-day option (Thursday to Saturday, December 6 to December 8) while the famous one-day Long Horn and Short Horn options and the 100 km Baby Horn and 35 km Orphan rides will be ridden on Saturday, December 8.

Starting at 2pm, the 340 km Long Horn remains the ultimate endurance test while the “easier” 240 km Short Horn event offers a more fun ride that takes place at a more manageable pace but still remains a tough challenge not to be sniffed at.

It is essential to understand that this is not a race. It is a ride to be completed and as such each ride will have a Ride Captain who is authorised to set an appropriate pace for the ride and to ensure that all the riders stay together at that pace.It is also weather dependent, and should any extremes of weather be encountered we will adapt the ride accordingly.

The uBhejane Xtreme is a self-funded ride that does not have an entry but does require participants to cover their own expenses as well as raise a minimum of R5 000 to be donated to rhino conservation in the province.

Almost R500 000 was raised in 2017; over R170 000 was raised in 2015 and over R250 000 in total in the first two years as well as R254 000 in 2016.

All funds raised will be donated to the event’s official beneficiary, Project Rhino KZN, to be used for their various rhino protection programmes, such as maintaining the aerial support of the Zululand Anti-Poaching Wing (ZAP-Wing) to 26 game reserves in northern KZN, providing urgently needed anti-poaching training and other resources to field rangers and game reserves, and community-based education and awareness initiatives targeting primarily youth.

Support vehicles, courtesy of Land Rover, will be on hand to provide assistance to riders throughout both the Long and Short Horn events however, in order to ensure the group makes camp by daylight — and limit the risk of being eaten by a wild animal — stops are limited.

Upon completion of the uBhejane Xtreme MTB Challenge, all participants spend the night at the magnificent Hilltop Camp in Hluhluwe Game Reserve where they will enjoy a delicious dinner and a rare opportunity to listen to the renowned Kingsley Holgate before experiencing the uniqueness of waking up and enjoying breakfast in the spectacular African bushveld.

All-in-all this is a difficult yet hugely rewarding cycling challenge for a fantastic cause, and one that you will struggle to forget any time soon.

Those interested in taking part may apply to enter. Donations can be submitted and more information can be found via the event’s website at www.ubhejanex.co.za. - Supplied.

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