Children in the Wilderness (CITW), organisers of the acclaimed annual Nedbank Tour de Tuli mountain bike tour, has launched the cycle route for the 2014 event, which will see 350 mountain bikers travel across more than 250 km of challenging and remote terrain in Botswana, Zimbabwe and South Africa between 01 and 06 August.
The Nedbank Tour de Tuli attracts cyclists from across the globe and provides them with an unforgettable opportunity to follow ancient elephant paths and other wildlife trails in pristine, wilderness areas. Cyclists not only have the opportunity of seeing a parade of wildlife, but the route also includes magnificent scenery and cultural interactions with the local communities living on the boundaries of these protected areas.
Itinerary highlights include:
- Day 1:
The 68 km route from the Limpopo Valley Camp to Amphitheatre Bush Camp in Botswana will take cyclists through a range of wildlife-rich terrains, including grasslands, sandstone hills and a Croton Forest. Riders will also come across several points of interest such as rock art sites, the historical ruins and Rhodes’ Baobab.
- Day 2:
The 64 km route from Amphitheatre Bush Camp in Botswana to Fort Tuli Bush Camp in Zimbabwe comprises a combination of single track trails and several sandy river crossings. Aspiring ‘King of the Mountain’ contenders will enjoy a climb up to the summit of Beach Hill before crossing over into Zimbabwe.
- Day 3:
The route will travel through a few villages, giving cyclists a chance to interact with the local communities before heading back into expansive bushveld for the second half of the 65 km day. After a sandy and stony climb, the day’s riding ends at Fly Camp on Nottingham Estates, situated close to a magnificent natural rock-enclosed “Gladiator Ring” which regularly hosts herds of feeding eland, elephant and baboons.
- Day 4:
The final 60 km day of riding starts off with a steep single track descent into thick mopane bush and a tricky traverse across the sandy bed of the Pazhi River. After going through the final border crossing, riders will cross the Limpopo River into South Africa’s Mapungubwe National Park and after exploring this World Heritage Site, cyclists will cross the finish line.
“We are confident that our 10th tour will be the best one yet with an impressive route that combines old favourites with exciting new trails and territory”, said Dr Sue Snyman, CITW Programme Director. “For the first time, we’ve been given access to traverse more of the historical Mapungubwe National Park in South Africa, which means that the 2014 Nedbank Tour de Tuli participants will be the first to experience and enjoy this remarkable addition to the route”, she added.
All funds raised by the tour are channelled directly into CITW, a non-profit organisation that runs sustainable education programmes to bridge the divide between communities and the adjoining wildlife areas they live next to. Through Eco-Clubs and fun, educational camp programmes, rural children are inspired to respect their environment and to appreciate the long-term value of conservation, becoming the future custodians of Africa’s pristine wilderness areas.
For further information on the tour, please visit www.childreninthewilderness.com.
Click here to watch a short video on last year’s event.