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A wild ride

Fancy a ride on the wild side? We rather like the idea of these three day cycling adventures through big five territory.

A proper treat for mountain biking enthusiasts, these Biking In The Bush getaways at Shamwari Private Game Reserve include a bit of luxury … and who doesn’t want that after three or four hours in the saddle.

The idea is to enjoy a guided cycle every morning, with afternoon game drives and guided walks, and then luxury all the way in the gorgeous Bayethe Lodge.

Andrew Kearney, ranger manager at Shamwari and a keen rider himself, says the rides are suitable for people who cycle regularly and are reasonably fit, and assures it’s absolutely not a race but rather about the experience of cycling through the bush and chance encounters with a variety of wildlife. The aim, he says, is to count time in the saddle rather than the kilometres ridden.

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He stresses safety is a priority and cyclists receive a detailed briefing before each ride. Two experienced guides accompany each group and one guide will wait with anyone who needs to stop, with a sweeper vehicle picking up anyone who is unable to continue the ride.

The rides vary depending on game sightings, animal movements, the weather and fitness of the groups. All take place in the wilder wilderness area in the north of the reserve, where there are no other people or vehicles.

It’s a fabulous weekend for a group of friends (minimum of six, max of eight, all need to be 16 or older, with those 65-plus asked to provide confirmation of their fitness). If you’re more of an e-biker … they’re permitted, but they, along with faster riders, do have to stay with the group. Dates coming up are March 3 to 6, March 17 to 20, March 31 to April 3 and May 5 to 8. Rates are R4950 per person, sharing, which include accommodation, all guided rides, guided walks, game drives, meals, visits to the Wildlife Rehabilitation Centre and Born Free Big Cat Rescue Centre, pre-game drive refreshments and game drive drinks and snacks.
Details: Bookings via [email protected] or 042-203-1111.

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