The 2017 Route – Kings, cannibals and climbs

The route launch is finally here and man, are we excited! It's been a long time coming with a lot of hard work behind the scenes to finalise this brand-new route. The 2017 Lesotho Sky stage race will be a race steeped in African history...

Claudi Calouri, Kevin Landry and Isaac Molapo during Following the horsemen. Photo by Dan Milner

Following the horsemen

“My name is Michael Ramashamole. Chief of Ha Simeone. I will show you the past. Before trucks and busses. We only had our trails. The soft passing of foot and hoof. These paths allow the mountains to breath. They are our communication. They are our economy. They are our veins.”   These haunting, poetic words echo...

Need altitude training? Come and make a weekend of it.

They say training needs the right attitude, but for a grueling stage race high up in the Lesotho mountains, it needs altitude.  Every year, we get the same requests from riders who want to come for a few days to get used to the altitude before...

Pump For Peace – One of kind pump track at Roma

We took hands with Velosolutions and Have A Good One to bring you the first Pump For Peace project in Africa - a one of its kind pump track in Roma. The mountain bike kingdom has recently opened its first pump track in Roma and it kicks...

Although for since the very first Lesotho Sky, we have given the GPS route to our riders to use as reference, the route was always marked. This year however we are moving to GPS route all together. As such it is important that all riders know what is going on and have some sort of GPS device that works for them. So I am going to do my best to explain what works best for me, when following GPS tracks in Lesotho. We will send you the official GPS route prior to the start of the vent. It is important that you load and test these tracks onto your GPS prior to the start of the event. 1. Simplify your device: Maps and information is nice to have but will complicate your display a lot. Following the track is much easier if you turn off everything extra and just show the track in question. If your device has a high contrast mode, this will help greatly in seeing the route. 2. Set your zoom distance: I like to use the GPS set on 80m zoom. Some people like to use 2 devises: one zoomed in to 25 and one at 120m to give you a better overall feeling. 3. Set your device to “Track up”: Most devices are set this way but in the case that your device is set to “North Up” navigate to map settings and set it to “track up”. This will make sure that the map will orientate itself. 4. Recommended devices: Cyclist in general already have a GPS device that they use for every ride. And nearly all of them have the ability for you to navigate a track. I have used the following with great success Garmin edge 750 Garmin edge 800 Garmin edge 810 Garmin edge 25 Garmin trex 20 Garmin etrex 10 My Samsung galaxy S4 with STRAVA If you want something that will work really well, at the best possible price. Have a look at the Garmin Etrex 10, make sure you buy the bike mount with it. This GPS is as simple as it gets, no base map, just a track to follow and it has a black and white high contrast display that is easy to read in direct sunlight. Go and practice… Download a route to your device (Strava does this really well). Load a GPS trail from where you train and see how the system you use works and what works for you. Go out and ride, get the feel of following the GPS. This practice will go a long way when you face a choice of 3 different tracks all going a similar direction on the Lesotho Sky race. Ultimately the bets GPS setup is one that you are used to and comfortable with. The only way of doing this is to practice. I hope all of this helps, there will be big fines for anyone getting lost on the trail this year. See you all in the #MountainBikeKingdom, Darol

GPS navigation in 3 simple steps

MTB race advice by Darol Howes. Since the first Lesotho Sky, we have given the GPS route to our riders to use as reference, although the route was always marked out. In 2016 however, we moved to a fully GPS navigation for the race. This my best advice...

Lesotho Sky 2016: Done and dusted

The 6th edition of the Lesotho Sky is done and dusted. What started in 2011 with a handful of passionate mountain bikers grew into one of Africa’s most spectacular and toughest stage races. The Lesotho Sky 2016 race, with its 392km of mostly single tracks,...

Lesotho Sky 2016 Race Report: Day 5

Welcome to Lesotho Sky 2016 Day 5. There’s something special about the people who come to ride the Lesotho Sky. Throughout the week the Afrikaans word gees came up in conversation. Gees is something you have or experience. It literally means spirit, but it can also...

Lesotho Sky 2016 Race Report: Day 4

Lesotho Sky 2016 race report day 4 Today was another awesome day as Phetetso Monese celebrated his 32nd birthday and took the stage win with teammate Stuart Marais for team Vodacom Lesotho. Daniel Gathof rode over a ploughed field and had to down a beer as...

Lesotho Sky 2016 Race Report: Day 3

All photos: Wayne Reiche This stage is probably among the toughest stages in any official mountain bike race in southern Africa. It is 86km of pure grind and grit. For the first half of the stage, riders had tricky river crossings to deal with, and battled...

Lesotho Sky 2016 Race Report: Day 2

Lesotho Sky 2016 Race Report Day 2: The Malealea Loop took riders on the same route as the legendary Lesotho race, The Malealea monster.  52 km the route is a perfect blend of fast flowing single tracks, gnarly downhill switchbacks and endless climbs. Due to the...