CLOSEST TOWN/CITY: Pretoria
DESCRIPTION: Pretoria mountain bikers now have a new riding option with the establishment of Wolwespruit, a managed trail centre on private land to the east of the city. Located in Erasmuskloof, access to Wolwespruit is ridiculously convenient, with park’s entrance less than a kilometre from the Rigel Ave offramp from the N1 freeway.
Wolwespruit has a combination of low, flattish land alongside the Wolwespruit River and steady-to-steep gradient on the east half of the park. The guys at Tool-Up Cycles have built a network of largely singletrack trails that are marked using the IMBA system – colour-graded for difficulty levels and marked accordingly.
The trails cater for all skill levels of rider, with stronger, fitter, more skilled riders sure to be properly challenged on the eastern half with the steep, switchback climbs and long, sweeping descents with purpose-built berms to improve flow.
There’s a protea forest on the ridge towards the south of the park which offers a technical, stony descent that’s challenging for intermediate and experienced riders.
There’s about 15km in total of trails currently with more being built. It’s not a trail centre where you’ll go to train endurance; it’s for those with an hour or two to fit in a stimulating, challenging ride that requires your full concentration and good conditioning if you’re going to ride the Blue trail.
The park is fully fenced and security monitored. We felt safe at all times. It’s open all day on weekends and late afternoons/evenings during spring and summer with Tuesday’s the designated night-ride day, closing later.
*DISTANCE: Up to 15km with out repeating any trails. Two laps would be tough for most.
TYRES: There are a few sections with stones and rock, but mostly it’s predictable hardpack. A reinforced sidewall tubeless set-up is best with a square-edged front tyre too hook up well in the numerous tight turns.
BEST THING: The gradient! It’s challenging to climb and descend.
WORST THING: Nothing comes to mind here, seriously.
BEST SEASON: Because of the gradient, there’s very good drainage, so even rainy season is a good time to ride here…
GET THERE: From the N1 freeway, take the Rigel Ave offramp and head east on Delmas Road (R50). Turn left into Nossob Street and then left again into Jochemus Street. Head to the end where you’ll find the entrance to Wolwespruit Trail Park.
COST: R30 per ride
SECURE PARKING: Yes.
BE CAREFUL OF: Hedgehogs, especially in the evenings. They’re not dangerous, just too cute to injure/kill…
BE SURE TO: Get your weekday ride tickets from Tool-Up Cycles. No ticket, no ride…
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*Originally published in TREAD Soul Provider Issue 32, 2014 – All rights reserved