Trail Daze | Best of 2017

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Looking back at the best of Trail Daze 2017, and the wrap of a three year long passion project.

After three amazing but challenging years of documenting South Africa's finest trails, the Trail Daze project has punched its final ticket.

 

From Cape Town to KZN, we've travelled the country to try and bring justice to the countless hours of physical labour and vision by trail builders and riders alike. Behind the scenes, it's a bumpy and sometimes messy process to produce each episode, but the ice cold beers, braais, banter, and good times afterwards always wins. Great friendships were formed and lots of lessons learnt, and without the support of the amazing sponsors and trail riders in South Africa, this project would never have been possible. For that, I'm incredibly grateful, and I hope that this project has inspired you to go out and shred some trails.

 

 

Trail Daze | Cape Town - Part 2

 

It’s absolutely amazing that these trails have been opened up recently. Being able to shoot out for a quick shred around Lions Head and the Glen to ride and test new product is a dream for us as a mountain bike company! Throw in some of the sharpest rocks in the region, rad turns in the Glen, a top-class sunset as well as your choice of restaurants/bars at the bottom of the hill, and you've got yourself a great place to ride. Mark Hopkins

 

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Get all the info and the full photo epic here.

 

Trail Daze | Witfontein

 

If you looked at a map of the trails around Witfontein, you'd probably give it a miss and go and ride elsewhere. You would certainly be making a mistake in doing so! They only cover a small area but every trail is an absolute gem. Multiple lined rock gardens, punchy corners, poppy roots, and beautifully shaped jumps will mean you'll want to ride all day long in this little patch of paradise. Daniel Dobinson | iRideAfrica

 

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Get all the info and the full photo epic here.

 

Trail Daze | Jungle fever in the Garden Route

 

The Garden Route Trail Park is definitely a must if you're going anywhere up the coast. I'm lucky enough to visit the park frequently and it's definitely on the favourites list. The trails vary from deep, dark, and dense forests with big bomb holes and tight branches, to open grasslands with amazingly flowy trails. I love riding here because of the natural forest that just makes you forget about the world for a few hours. And it's always nice to finish with a few pump track laps and a good coffee. Matt Lombardi

 

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Get all the info and the full photo epic here.

 

Trail Daze | Fatbiking the Garden Route

 

The South African coast is scattered with small interesting towns which are often missed when using a car, I can see this being one of many fat trekking trips to come in the future. A great way to spend three days. We were blessed with amazing weather and got to see some epic scenery along with lots of childish banter and post ride beer drinking. It was a real eye opener to see how easy it is to trek along our coastline taking only the bare necessities and a bank card. Dayle Holmes

 

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Get all the info and the full photo epic part 1 here.
Get all the info and the full photo epic part 2 here.

 

Trail Daze | Jonkershoek Revisited

 

I remember it started in 2012 with Fanie, Harry, and I on a ride in Karkloof. Fanie and I were sitting at the top of a road gap after descending some trail, quietly staring for some time at the view then he said, "I think you should come and build in Jonkers". They returned home to Stellenbosch and a few months later I was in conversation with Bobby and Bennet about coming down for a few weeks to build trails. Immediately I was drawn to this area - the natural features that stood out, the carves and textures of the land. That place has a powerful presence about it that humbles you very quickly. Jonkers is not a place you just pop into scratch a trail in and pop out. You have to take the time to walk and scout and really get a feel for where the trail is going because of the features, and also visually what the area offers and the feel it has. Like where there is a little stream flowing by with some incredible vegetation that attracts the sounds of the wild life. I often think of it, you probably wouldn't find yourself on this piece of the mountain if it wasn't for the trail taking you there. Hylton Turvey

 

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Get all the info and the full photo epic here.

 

Trail Daze | Karkloof Revisited

 

Karkloof is home for me. I was born and raised here and still live here today. I can remember from a young age going on adventures into the mountains with my parents. Having that wide open space to explore with no real boundaries and living on our small farm played a huge part in the creative side of mountain biking for me. We didn't have a trail or features to ride so we had to build it or you rode something raw as it lay. My friend and I rode BMX and my dad helped us push some soil on the farm to build jumps. Every day after school we would be building and just as the sun sets we would ride as the jumps faced into the sunset, that went on for a few years. I'd still join my dad on some of his outrides into the mountains with no real purpose-built trail at the time just exploring on bikes. Hylton Turvey

 

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Get all the info and the full photo epic here.

 

 

A massive thank you must go out to all the riders that have been involved over the years. Without you bringing the action, hitting a section 'just one more time', and enduring the rain, heat & wind, there wouldn't be any episodes today. In order of appearance, they are:

 

Daniel Dobinson

Matthieu Hamel

Rupert von Tutschek

Harry Millar

Rolfe van Breda

Mark Hopkins

Tyrone van Rooyen

Pieter Henning

Romain Belaud

Bennet Nel

Myles Kelsey

Matt Lombardi

Hayden Brown

Chris Pearton

Julien Louw

Kath Fourie

Tim Bentley

Mark Millar

Simone Futter

Joanna Dobinson

Rika Olivier

Andrew Neethling

Jonty Neethling

Dayle Holmes

Danie du Toit

Andrew Savage

Roman Kumpers

Hylton Turvey

Travis Browning

Sam Bull

 

 

All images by Ewald Sadie

www.esphotography.co.za

instagram: @ewaldsadie

 

 

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14 Comments

Robbie Stewart, Nov 28 2017 07:57

Jonkershoek for the win!

They're all great, but Jonkershoek is just in it's own league.

 

 

[edit] - Forgot to thank the Trail Daze team for increasing the drool factor, and really bringing home to those of us stuck in the 8-5 rut why MTB is just such an insanely good adventure to be a part of, and making the wait for the weekend just so worth it. Thanks for this series, it was awesome, and I really enjoyed the surprises that were revealed when I opened the latest article that got posted here.   :thumbup:

ewaldsadie, Nov 28 2017 08:45

Jonkershoek for the win!

They're all great, but Jonkershoek is just in it's own league.
 
 
[edit] - Forgot to thank the Trail Daze team for increasing the drool factor, and really bringing home to those of us stuck in the 8-5 rut why MTB is just such an insanely good adventure to be a part of, and making the wait for the weekend just so worth it. Thanks for this series, it was awesome, and I really enjoyed the surprises that were revealed when I opened the latest article that got posted here.   :thumbup:

 
Thanks for the kind words Robbie! Glad we could inspire you to get to get out and ride. And I'd have to agree on the bit about Jonkershoek :)

Shebeen, Nov 28 2017 10:29

You're an amazing photog, you are capable of making Dan Dob look good!

 

look forward to seeing more of your work in the future.

bologniusmaximus, Nov 28 2017 07:16

Karkloof man! You can get lost in that place with the amount of trails they have. And then just over the hill there's Howick as well. Not to mention how the trails move from plantations to open fields. It's just such a unique experience.

Simon123, Nov 29 2017 10:36

I've ridden pretty much every trail in this list, so I voted for the one that I have not purely because it looks like an amazing adventure:  The Fatbiking.

 

Damn MTB is amazing, and to have it shot so well, this is just winning.   We often get caught up in the fact that Zuma is busy destroying SA, crime etc is mad, the Rand is f*****, etc etc, but looking at these pics, reminds me why we're lucky to live here.   That Signal Hill loop is amazing to do after meetings, Jonkers on a Saturday whilst my GF hits the market, and then GRTP for a weekend away... just so freaking amazing.

Stevief, Nov 29 2017 12:23

Well done guys, your articles and photography have been off the charts.  I have thoroughly enjoyed all the work you've done.  You really have captured the essence of what MTB is all about.

ewaldsadie, Nov 30 2017 08:32

You're an amazing photog, you are capable of making Dan Dob look good!

 

look forward to seeing more of your work in the future.

Thanks dude! Hopefully much more to come soon! 

ewaldsadie, Nov 30 2017 08:34

Karkloof man! You can get lost in that place with the amount of trails they have. And then just over the hill there's Howick as well. Not to mention how the trails move from plantations to open fields. It's just such a unique experience.

Very true. I've visited that place 3 times now, and every time I realise how fast it is, and how much more there is to ride. Hylton and his crew have been very busy over the years and we're so lucky to have that sort of dedication.

ewaldsadie, Nov 30 2017 08:39

I've ridden pretty much every trail in this list, so I voted for the one that I have not purely because it looks like an amazing adventure:  The Fatbiking.

 

Damn MTB is amazing, and to have it shot so well, this is just winning.   We often get caught up in the fact that Zuma is busy destroying SA, crime etc is mad, the Rand is ******, etc etc, but looking at these pics, reminds me why we're lucky to live here.   That Signal Hill loop is amazing to do after meetings, Jonkers on a Saturday whilst my GF hits the market, and then GRTP for a weekend away... just so freaking amazing.

Unfortunately there's so much hate towards fatbiking, specially in SA, but it really works well on that sort of mission. And that stretch of coastline is just next level, so everything came together nicely on that trip :)

 

And **** Zuma.

ewaldsadie, Nov 30 2017 08:41

Well done guys, your articles and photography have been off the charts.  I have thoroughly enjoyed all the work you've done.  You really have captured the essence of what MTB is all about.

Thanks dude! Happy to hear the positive feedback!

PhilipV, Nov 30 2017 09:19

Kief. Looking forward to your next projects.
And thanks, the stoke provided by Trail Daze has always had me amped to ride. Success.

Super_mil, Nov 30 2017 10:12

Great job Ewald. You know I love your work  :thumbup:

And thanks for including me and our neck of the woods in your project. 

 

Voted, but you know I'm bias  :whistling:

timwightman, Nov 30 2017 11:08

Awesome job guys - I'm really going to miss this series!

Robbie Stewart, Dec 02 2017 09:10

 

And **** Zuma.

 

True dat...