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Stage 3: Onward to the Cape


The magical island, two tiny lands, and Good Hope




Stage 3 Actual Route

Stage 3 Route Map


On this, and all other route maps, the blue lines represent travel by ship, red by airplane (Booo!), and green by bicycle.

Madagascar: Returning for More

One of my most anticipated sections of the Stage was my return to the island of Madagascar.  My first tour there (described Here) was rough, slow, shorter than I wanted, but a great experience.  Since I did not get a chance to see all of the places I had hoped the first time, I wanted to do so this time around.  Once again, I did not have time to go everywhere I wanted, which was pretty frustrating, but any time on the island is good.  This time I stared in the capital, Antananarivo, and road south tehorugh the central highlands along one of the better roads in the country.  Along the way, I passed the charismatic towns of Antsirabe, Ambositra, and Ambalavoa, and visited Ranomafana and Andringitra National Parks.  The first of these was a great place to see lemurs, and the latter had some great mountain scenery.  Beyond, I slowly dropped out of the highlands to the little town of Ranohira and Isalo National Park, and then backtracked a little in order to head to the southeastern tip of the island.  In order to get there, I had to leave the nice road behind, and take a few days to cross the sandy, dry areas leading to the Spiny Forest.  To do so meant another tough section of bad, often sandy roads, but fortunately, this was not quite as bad as what I experienced the first time.  Despite that, I managed to reach my final destination, Toalagnaro, also known by its old colonial name, Fort Dauphin without too much difficulty.  In fact the whole section of the Stage on Madagascar went off without a single mishap or breakdown a rare occurrence for the Stage.


The beautiful island is discussed in this post: ~HERE~



Lac Anosy

Lac Anosy and the Angely Mainty in Antananarivo


Route National 7

Route National 7 traverses the Southern Highlands


Red-Fronted Brown Lemur

A Red-Fronted Brown Lemur in Ranomafana National Park


Homes in Ambalavao

Homes in Ambalavao


Andringitra National Park

Andringitra National Park


Isalo National Park

A Natural Pool in Isalo National Park


Spiny Forest

A tall variety of Elephant-Foot Plant in the Spiny Forest


Villagers

People in a small southern village


Swaziland & Lesotho: Landlocked Lands

The two small countries of Swaziland and Lesotho were also places that I was very interested in seeing.  However, given their small sizes, it was not easy to spend a very long time in either.  Despite that, I did enjoy both of my visits.  Swaziland was first, and I entered the country at its western edge, visited the two main cities of Mbabane and Manzini, and then rode out across the southeastern border with South Africa.  My visit to Lesotho was a little longer, which was a good thing as the terrain in that country is much more intense with the highest point on my route lying at an elevation of 2,450 meters.  Once again, I entered at the western border, rode though the capital, Maseru, and then along the relatively low gentle hills around the southern edge of the country.  After that I turned north and rode into the highlands, where there was some great scenery, visiting the small town of Quthing, and then returning to South Africa at the little border town of Qacha’s Nek


Two small countires; one post: ~HERE~



Mbabane

Mbabane, the capital of Swaziland


Manzini Market

A woman at the Manzini Market


Donkeys in Lesotho

Donkeys in Lesotho


Girls in Mafeteng

Girls in Mafeteng


Senqu River

The Senqu River in the Lesotho Hghlands


South Africa: Land of Contrasts

South Africa dominated the second half of the Stage, as I entered the country on five separate occasions.  The facilities relevant to touring there are quite good, though often the similarities with Western nations translated into heavy, fast moving traffic, which is a little unfortunate.  On the other hand, many sections of the country have an exceedingly pleasant climate and a pretty environment.  Additionally, I found that despite some rather odd perceptions about crime and security in the years since democracy came to the country, everyone was very friendly towards me, and I felt safe the entire time.  

My first section in the RSA was a short one, from the Botswanan border at Mashatu to Pretoria, in order to make my air transfer to Madagascar.  The second came after my return from the Island, also to Pretoria, then wandered around quite a bit on the way to Swaziland.  After seeing that country, I returned near the Indian Ocean coastline, in KwaZulu Natal, then rode south for a while before turning inland towards Lesotho.  This was perhaps my favorite part of the country, as the green hills were quite beautiful, and the people in the countryside were open and friendly.  After Lesotho, the final section in the country, and of the entire Stage was a ride from the border at Qacha’s Nek, to East London, and then straight along the coast to Cape Town, passing along the famous Garden Route

During these five visits I was able, more or less, to see all of the World Heritage sites in the country, Mapungubwe Historic area, Sterkfontein Caves, Vredefort Dome, St Lucia Wetland Park, uKhalamba-Drakensberg Park, Robben Isalnd, and the Cape Floral Zone.  Seeing Mapungubwe was a little annoying since I was not allowed to bike within the site itself.  Instead I had to look at it from the highway, and then see the artifacts from there on display at a museum in Pretoria.  

Ending in Cape Town was a nice plus, and one that I did not expect to be able to do.  However, my sailng plans were thrown into chaos weeks before when the ship I was supposed to use was cancelled.  So, I managed to get there after all, which was nice.  And, for the first time, I was able to actually bike into the town at the actual end of the Stage in order to catch my next ship.  That was a big improvement over the first two Stages.


Several visits contained in one post: ~HERE~



Pretoria City Hall

Pretoria City Hall


Cathedral Peak

Cathedral Peak in uKhalamba-Drakensberg National Park


San Rock Art

San Rock Art in uKhalamba-Drakensberg National Park


Greater Double-Collared Sunbird

Greater Double-Collared Sunbird


Golden Gate Highlands

Golden Gate Highlands National Park


Ostrich Ranch

An Ostrich Ranch in the Western Cape Province


African Penguins

African Penguins at Boulders Beach


Fynbos Flower

A beautiful Fynbos Flower


Cape Town

Table Mountain and Cape Town


Dates and Distances


Start: July 07, 02006
Finish: December 14, 02007
 
Actual Distance: 14,281 km
 
Ride days: 97
Rest days: 65

Highest Point


3,370 meters: T'Aramber Pass, Ethiopia






Stage 3 Log
(continued)


For a description of terms and symbols look: ~HERE~

October 11, 02006


Mashatu Game Reserve to 20 km S. of Alldays, South Africa
Distance: 124 km
Terrain: Light to moderate rolling, with gradual elevation gain
Max. Elevation: 860 m
Roads: R521
Max. Temp: 34 C
Weather: Sunny; light to moderate winds, becoming occasional, various directions
Accommodation:

Comment: Short day due to late border opening and many flat repair stops; visited Mapungubwe N.P., but was not allowed to see very much

October 12


20 km S. of Alldays to Polokwane
Distance: 133 km
Terrain: Light rolling with gradual elevation gain
Max. Elevation: 1,235 m
Roads: R521
Max. Temp: 31 C
Weather: Sunny; moderate crosswinds
Accommodation:

Comment: Fairly short day, rode straight through to do errands; transfer to Stage 4 now in disarray

October 13


Polokwane
Accommodation:
Comment: Rest/repairs day in Polokwane

October 14


Polokwane to Radium
Distance: 201 km
Terrain: Light rolling to flat; very gradual 300-m climb/descent; flat
Max. Elevation: 1,535 m
Roads: R101
Max. Temp: 34 C
Weather: Sunny; light to mild tail/crosswinds
Accommodation:

Comment: Long, but easy and fairly pleasant day

October 15


Radium to Pretoria
Distance: 86 km
Terrain: Flat to light rolling
Max. Elevation: 1,350 m
Roads: R101
Max. Temp: 32 C
Weather: Sunny
Accommodation:

Comment: Fast half day to rest/chores/transfer break in Pretoria

October 16


Pretoria
Accommodation:
Comment: Rest/errands day in Pretoria; did not get much accomplished

October 17


Pretoria
Accommodation:
Comment: Rest/errands day in Pretoria; applied for Brazil visa and visited Mapungubwe museum

October 18


Antananarivo, Madagascar
Distance: 20.8 km
Accommodation:
Comment: Air transfer to Madagascar

October 19


Antananarivo
Accommodation:
Comment: Rest/sightseeing day in Tana

October 20


Antananarivo to Antsirabe
Distance: 174 km
Terrain: Moderate to heavy rolling, with gradual 500-m elevation gain; light rolling to flat
Max. Elevation: 1,760 m
Roads: R.N. 7
Max. Temp: 20 C
Weather: Mostly sunny through morning; occasional mild tailwinds; cloudy in afternoon with two moderate showers
Accommodation:

Comment: A very pleasant day, except for rain; decided to continue into town due to weather and lack of good campsites

October 21


Antsirabe
Accommodation:
Comment: Rest day in Antsirabe, mostly pleasant

October 22


Antsirabe to Ambarafitorahana
Distance: 153 km
Terrain: Light rolling with a few small hills; moderate to heavy rolling
Max. Elevation: 1,690 m
Roads: R.N.7
Max. Temp: 28 C
Weather: Mostly sunny; becoming partly to mostly cloudy with occasional light winds in afternoon
Accommodation:

Comment: One of the nicest days in a long time, great conditions all around

October 23


Ambarafitorahana to Ranomafana
Distance: 92 km
Terrain: Moderate rolling; 300-m climb; 500-m descent
Max. Elevation: 1,435 m
Roads: R.N. 7, R.N. 25 (25 km moderate dirt/gravel, 5 km rough pavement, final 13 km smooth)
Max. Temp: 29 C
Weather: Sunny, increasing clouds in afternoon
Accommodation:

Comment: A nice half day to rest break in Ranomafana

October 24


Ranomafana
Accommodation:
Comment: Rest/sightseeing day in Ranomafana; visited Ranomafana N.P.; saw many lemurs

October 25


Ranomafana to Ambalavao
Distance: 132 km
Terrain: 500-m climb; moderate rolling; one small climb; 300-m descent
Max. Elevation: 1,296 m
Roads: R.N. 25, R.N. 45 (recently chip-sealed), R.N.7
Max. Temp: 28 C
Weather: Mist/drizzle through early morning, mostly sunny; light tailwinds, stronger and from various directions in evening
Accommodation:

Comment: A fairly light, pleasant day

October 26


Ambalavao
Accommodation:
Comment: Sightseeing day in Ambalavao; visited Andringitra N.P.

October 27


Ambalavao to 24 km S. of Ihosy
Distance: 164 km
Terrain: Moderate rolling; one small climb; 300-m descent; 400-m climb
Max. Elevation: 1,196 m
Roads: R.N. 7
Max. Temp: 35 C
Weather: Mostly sunny; light morning tailwinds, very strong afternoon crosswinds
Accommodation:

Comment: A slightly late start, but a fairly easy day

October 28


24 km S. of Ihosy to Ranohira
Distance: 66 km
Terrain: Flat to light rolling, with slow elevation loss
Max. Elevation: 1,140 m
Roads: R.N. 7
Max. Temp: 32 C
Weather: Mostly sunny; strong tailwinds
Accommodation:

Comment: A short, fast half day to a rest break at Ranohira

October 29


Ranohira
Accommodation:
Comment: Sightseeing day in Ranohira; visited Isalo N.P.

October 30


Ranohira to 50 km N. of Betroka
Distance: 142 km
Terrain: Flat to light rolling, with slow elevation gain; light to moderate rolling
Max. Elevation: 1,190 m
Roads: R.N. 7, R.N. 13 (moderate to poor dirt, several sandy/corrugated/rough sections)
Max. Temp: 34 C
Weather: Sunny; light headwinds in morning, light to moderate crosswinds in afternoon
Accommodation:

Comment: Reverse of previous day's ride, then began final rough section; would have preferred a smoother road, but reached desired distance

October 31


50 km N. of Betroka to 15 km N. of Isoanala
Distance: 119 km
Terrain: Light to heavy rolling
Max. Elevation: 1,160 m
Roads: R.N. 13 (moderate to good dirt, south of Betroka being upgraded, excellent condition, possibly to be paved)
Max. Temp: 33 C
Weather: Sunny; strong crosswinds through morning, cross/headwinds in afternoon
Accommodation:

Comment: A reasonably good day, road better than expected, fairly good food in Betroka

November 1


15 km N. of Isoanala to Antanimora
Distance: 136 km
Terrain: Moderate to light rolling
Max. Elevation: 790 m
Roads: R.N. 13 (good dirt, south of Beraketa poor to moderate)
Max. Temp: 39 C
Weather: Sunny; only moderate cross/headwinds lare in afternoon
Accommodation:

Comment: A hot, dusty, but productive day, went just slightly farther than planned

November 2


Antanimora to Ambovombe
Distance: 80 km
Terrain: Light to moderate rolling
Max. Elevation: 420 m
Roads: R.N. 13 (poor dirt/sand, several short and a few long sections of deep sand)
Max. Temp: 40 C
Weather: Sunny; moderate headwinds beginning at midday
Accommodation:

Comment: A long, hot, and extremely tiring half day; had to walk through many sandy sections; planned to go farther, but chose to stop and cool down in town

November 3


Ambovombe to Toalagnaro
Distance: 113 km
Terrain: Light to moderate rolling, with a couple of small hills
Max. Elevation: 390 m
Roads: R.N. 13 (first 5 km sand/pavement, remainder alternating good pavement and heavily potholed
sections)
Max. Temp: 42 C
Weather: Sunny; occasional light winds from various directions
Accommodation:

Comment: A short final day of section to Fort Dauphin, but heat made progress very slow; visited Spiny Forest at local village reserve

November 4


Toalagnaro
Distance: 6 km
Accommodation:
Comment: Rest day in Fort Dauphin; evening air transfer back to Tana

November 5


Antananarivo/Pretoria, South Africa
Accommodation:
Comment: Sightseeing day in Tana; visited Royal Hill at Ambohimanga; evening air transfer to Pretoria

November 6


Pretoria
Accommodation:
Comment: Rest/errands day in Pretoria

November 7


Pretoria
Accommodation:
Comment: Rest day in Pretoria; worked on new Stage 4 transit plan

November 8


Pretoria to Krugersdorp
Distance: 176 km
Terrain: Light to moderate rolling with a few small hills
Max. Elevation: 1,685 m
Roads: R104, R512, R560, R563
Max. Temp: 33 C
Weather: Sunny; light winds in morning, various directions
Accommodation:

Comment: A very frustrating day; extra 80 km due to wrong turn and difficulty locating accomodation

November 9


Krugersdorp
Distance: 48 km
Accommodation:
Comment: Sightseeing/errands day in Krugersdorp area; visited Serkfontein Cave Early Homonid Fossil Site

November 10


Krugersdorp to Parys
Distance: 149 km
Terrain: Light to moderate rolling with a few small hills
Max. Elevation: 1,645 m
Roads: Local Road, N14, R500, R59
Max. Temp: 33 C
Weather: Partly sunny, 1 short, windy thunderstorm in afternoon
Accommodation:

Comment: Slightly late start, but otherwise a fairly easy day; rode through Vredefort Dome, remains of ancient impact crater

November 11


Parys to Balfour
Distance: 160 km
Terrain: Light to moderate rolling with a few small hills
Max. Elevation: 1,715 m
Roads: R59 (long section under construction), R42 (section closed for construction, detoured onto R551), R23
Max. Temp: 31 C
Weather: Sunny; strong to moderate tailwinds in afternoon
Accommodation:

Comment: Planned route became gravel 5 km out of Parys, turned back and used shorter, but busier route instead; extra 9 km included in distance; too much and too fast traffic in several areas

November 12


Balfour to Morgenzon
Distance: 145 km
Terrain: Light to moderate rolling
Max. Elevation: 1,710 m
Roads: R23, R39
Max. Temp: 27 C
Weather: Cloudy, late afternoon thunderstorm with strong winds and hail
Accommodation:

Comment: Wanted to go a little father but stopped due to storm

November 13


Morgenzon to Sandlane, Swaziland
Distance: 140 km
Terrain: Moderate rolling;rolling 500-m descent; a few small hills
Max. Elevation: 1,812 m
Roads: R39, N17, R65, MR19 (Swaziland)
Max. Temp: 25 C
Weather: Drizzle through early morning, then cloudy with strong tailwind; clearing at late evening
Accommodation:

Comment: A bleak morning after heavy overnight rains; easier conditions after midday

November 14


Sandlane to Mbabane
Distance: 73 km
Terrain: Hilly; 550-m descent; 480-m climb; rolling 300-m descent
Max. Elevation: 1,565 m
Roads: MR19
Max. Temp: 27 C
Weather: Sunny
Accommodation:

Comment: A very pleasant half day to rest break in Mbabane

November 15


Mbabane
Accommodation:
Comment: Rest day in Mbabane

November 16


Mbabane to Big Bend
Distance: 130 km
Terrain: 400-m descent; light rolling with gradual 600-m elevation loss
Max. Elevation: 1,230 m
Roads: MR3 (partly busy expressway), MR8
Max. Temp: 33 C
Weather: Mostly cloudy through midday, then mostly sunny; light headwinds, then crosswinds
Accommodation:

Comment: An easy day, but wanted to go a little farther

November 17


Big Bend to Hluhluwe, South Africa
Distance: 161 km
Terrain: Flat to light rolling; hilly; flat to light rolling
Max. Elevation: <300 m
Roads: MR8, Golela Rd (S Afr.) N2
Max. Temp: 35 C
Weather: Mostly sunny; occasional light tailwinds; big thunderstorm in late afternoon
Accommodation:

Comment: Arrived in town just before big storm; decided to visit St. Lucia Park from here instead of St. Lucia town

November 18


Hluhluwe
Distance: 33 km
Accommodation:
Comment: Rest/sightseeing day in Hluhluwe; visited St. Lucia Wetland Park

November 19


Hluhlulwe to Empangeni
Distance: 110 km
Terrain: Light rolling
Max. Elevation: <300 m
Roads: N2, R102
Max. Temp: 28 C
Weather: Mostly sunny; light headwinds
Accommodation:

Comment: Short day to try and do errands in Empamgeni, without much success

November 20


Empangeni to Fort Mtombeni
Distance: 150 km
Terrain: Moderate rolling; 600-m climb; hilly; 550-m climb
Max. Elevation: 1,000 m
Roads: R102, R74
Max. Temp: 30 C
Weather: Sunny through mid-afternoon, then cloudy/foggy; moderate to strong tailwinds, becoming crosswinds and diminishing in afternoon
Accommodation:

Comment: A reasonably easy day

November 21


Fort Mtombeni to Mooi River
Distance: 135 km
Terrain: Hilly; 450-m climb; hilly
Max. Elevation: 1,520 m
Roads: R74
Max. Temp: 22 C
Weather: Early morning drizzle/fog, then partly sunny, frequent showers after midday
Accommodation:

Comment: A rather tedious, damp day

November 22


Mooi River to Winterton
Distance: 76 km
Terrain: Hilly; gradual 400-m descent
Max. Elevation: 1,540 m
Roads: R103, R74
Max. Temp: 28 C
Weather: Partly sunny, increasing clouds with showers in vicinity in late afternoon; occasional light tailwinds
Accommodation:

Comment: A fairly easy half day

November 23


Cathedral Peak
Distance: 44 km

Accommodation:
Comment: Short ride to rest/sightseeing day in Cathedral Peak; visited uKhahlamba-Drakensberg National Park

November 24


Cathedral Peak to Sterkfontein Dam
Distance: 128 km
Terrain: rolling 400-m descent; hilly to heavy rolling; 700-m climb; moderate rolling
Max. Elevation: 1,800 m
Roads: Cathedral Peak Rd., Bergville Rd., R74, R712
Max. Temp: 33 C
Weather: Sunny; strong headwinds
Accommodation:

Comment: Shorter distance than hoped for, due to late start, bad wind, and longer climb than expected

November 25


Sterkfontein Dam to Maputsoe, Lesotho
Distance: 177 km
Terrain: Heavy rolling; 350-m climb; moderate rolling
Max. Elevation: 2,040 m
Roads: R712, R711, R26, Maputsoe Rd., A1
Max. Temp: 27 C
Weather: Partly to mostly sunny; moderate to strong tailwinds
Accommodation:

Comment: A much better day thanks to sudden reversal of winds; some great scenery in Golden Gate Highlands N.P.; missed turn to desired entry point into Lesotho, had to take next further south; difficult to find descent camp spot

November 26


Maputsoe to Maseru
Distance: 93 km
Terrain: Moderate rolling with a few small hills
Max. Elevation: 1,720
Roads: A1
Max. Temp: 26 C
Weather: Sunny, becoming partly cloudy in afternoon; moderate tailwinds
Accommodation:

Comment: An easy half day to a break in Maseru

November 27


Maseru
Accommodation:
Comment: Rest day in Maseru

November 28


Maseru to 25 km S. of Mohale's Hoek
Distance: 155 km
Terrain: Moderate to heavy rolling
Max. Elevation: 1,730 m
Roads: A2
Max. Temp: 33 C
Weather: Sunny; occasional mild crosswinds
Accommodation:

Comment: A nice, pleasant day with some good scenery

November 29


Quthing
Distance: 32 km

Accommodation:
Comment: Short ride to a rest day in Quthing

November 30


Quthing to Mphaki
Distance: 82 km
Terrain: Heavy rolling; 950-m climb, with a few very steep sections; 300-m descent; heavy rolling to hilly
Max. Elevation: 2,405 m
Roads: A4
Max. Temp: 27 C
Weather: Sunny through morning, thunderstorms from midafternoon
Accommodation:

Comment: A very beautiful ride; hoped to cross border, but had to shorten day due to storms

December 1


Mphaki to Matatiele, South Africa
Distance: 132 km
Terrain: Hilly to mountainous; 550-m descent, 300-m climb, 500-m descent (rough)
Max. Elevation: 2,280 m
Roads: A4, Matatiele Rd. (moderate to poor rocky gravel), R56
Max. Temp: 30 C
Weather: Sunny, two late afternoon storms, 1 with large hail, 1 with light rain
Accommodation:

Comment: Nice day, but harder terrain and longer distance than expected; wanter to go furthet, but delayed by conditions and storms

December 2


Matatiele to 15 km S. of Mt. Frere
Distance: 167 km
Terrain: Light to Moderate rolling; 300-m climb; 400-m descent; hilly, two 300-m descent/climbs
Max. Elevation: 1,660 m
Roads: R56, N2
Max. Temp: 23 C
Weather: Cloudy; occasional light cross/tailwinds, stronger gusts in afternoon
Accommodation:

Comment: A rather tiring, but productive day; too much traffic

December 3


15 km S. of Mt. Frere to Mbashe River
Distance: 149 km
Terrain: Hilly; heavy to moderate rolling with gradual descent
Max. Elevation: 1,130 m
Roads: N2
Max. Temp: 32 C
Weather: Sunny; very strong afternoon crosswinds
Accommodation:

Comment: Pleasant morning, but harder afternoon due to winds, would liked to have gone a little farther but slowed by wind and stopped early for a beautiful campsite

December 4


Mbashe River to 45 km N. of East London
Distance: 124 km
Terrain: Hilly; rolling 400-m climb; rolling 300-m descent; 400-m descent; 500-m climb
Max. Elevation: 805 m
Roads: N2
Max. Temp: 24 C
Weather: Mostly sunny through morning, mostly cloudy with two very light showers; very, very strong headwinds
Accommodation:

Comment: A hard day, wanted to reach East London but wind prevented that

December 5


East London
Distance: 55 km

Accommodation:
Comment: Short ride to a rather unrestful rest break in East London

December 6


East London to Kenton-on-Sea
Distance: 173 km
Terrain: Light to moderate rolling; hilly; moderate rolling
Max. Elevation: <300 m
Roads: R72
Max. Temp: 32 C
Weather: Sunny; moderate to strong tailwinds
Accommodation:

Comment: A much easier day thanks to tailwind

December 7


Kenton-on-Sea to Port Elizabeth
Distance: 138 km
Terrain: Light rolling to flat
Max. Elevation: 330 m
Roads: R72, N2 (last 25 km bad freeway), M4
Max. Temp: 27 C
Weather: Sunny; strong headwinds
Accommodation:

Comment: Another tough day thanks to winds

December 8


Port Elizabeth to 40 km W of Humansdorp
Distance: 138 km
Terrain: Light rolling to flat
Max. Elevation: <300 m
Roads: R102, N2, R102, N2
Max. Temp: 23 C
Weather: Cloudy, some mist and 1 light shower in afternoon; moderate to strong headwinds
Accommodation:

Comment: A fairly tedious day, but now have 1 extra day to reach Cape Town, due to ship schedule

December 9


40 km W of Humansdorp to Knysna
Distance: 143 km
Terrain: Light to moderate rolling
Max. Elevation: 300 m
Roads: N2
Max. Temp: 24 C
Weather: Cloudy; mild to light cross/tailwinds
Accommodation:

Comment: A reasonable day, new problem with upcoming transfer discovered

December 10


Knysna to Mossel Bay
Distance: 120 km
Terrain: Light to heavy rolling
Max. Elevation: <300 m
Roads: N2, N9, R102
Max. Temp: 25 C
Weather: Sunny, but cloudy in late morning; occasional mild cross/tailwinds
Accommodation:

Comment: A little dreary during morning, but nice later; planned on going a little farther, but decided to stop in pleasant beach town

December 11


Mossel Bay to Swellendam
Distance: 183 km
Terrain: Light rolling with one small descent/climb; moderate to heavy rolling
Max. Elevation: 310 m
Roads: N2
Max. Temp: 28 C
Weather: Sunny; moderate to strong tailwinds in afternoon
Accommodation:

Comment: A long but easy day; on track for arrival in Cape Town

December 12


Swellendam to Botrivier
Distance: 138 km
Terrain: Moderate to heavy rolling, with a few small climbs
Max. Elevation: 435 m
Roads: N2
Max. Temp: 30 C
Weather: Sunny; mild tailwinds, becoming strong headwinds in early evening
Accommodation:

Comment: Last full day of Stage 3; ready for a break

December 13


Botrivier to Cape Town
Distance: 97 km
Terrain: Heavy rolling; 400-m descent; flat
Max. Elevation: 450 m
Roads: N2, R102, M12, R102
Max. Temp: 30 C
Weather: Sunny; light to mild cross tailwinds
Accommodation:

Comment: Long half day to arrival in Cape Town!

December 14


Cape Town to Simon's
Town

Distance: 64 km
Terrain: Flat, hilly
Max. Elevation: <300 m
Roads: M6, M4
Max. Temp: 23 C
Weather: Cloudy; light headwinds
Accommodation:

Comment: End of Stage 3!; sightseeing ride towards Cape of Good Hope; visited bird sanctuary and Boulder's Beach penguin colony

December 15


Cape Town
Accommodation:
Comment: Sightseeing day in Cape Town; visited Robben Island and Table Mountain


Pre-Tour       Stage 1          Stage 2          Stage 3         Stage 4        Stage 5