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A rider in action during Stage 1 of the Glacier Storms River Traverse. Photo by: Oakpics.com.

The stage was won by Etnard Louw and Hanco Kachelhoffer of Team NFB Altech Autopage, with Yolande de Villiers and Neill Ungerer finishing second to win the stage in the mixed category. The first women’s team across the line was the Cape Brewing Co pairing of Anja van Zyl and Gemma Grobbelaar. The focus of the Glacier Storms River Traverse though is firmly on the more social riders. The riders who spent more time on the beautiful route of Stage 1, than the winners did, were therefore the day’s undoubted victors.

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Sean McDonald leading a group of riders though the Tsitsikamma forest. Photo by Oakpics.com.

The largely non-technical route was ideal for riders new to mountain biking or experienced riders looking to slow it down and take it easy. With the notoriously fickle Tsitsikamma weather playing along it was the perfect day for a social ride through the forests, fields and plantations. Most riders formed small groups and could be heard chatting away the kilometres. The two water points on Stage 1 of the Glacier Storms River Traverse were particularly well appreciated, with riders lingering for longer than usual. With no time pressure riders could indulge in an extra date ball or succulent cube of perfectly braaied ostrich steak rather than just filling up their bottles with 32Gi and racing off as they usually would at a stage race.

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Karika and Dries Human sharing a mid-ride celebration during Stage 1 of the Glacier Storms River Traverse. Photo by: Oakpics.com.

For Stage 2 the Glacier Storms River Traverse once again descends into the Storms River Valley, but also takes in a jaunt to the Storms River Mouth before crossing under the N2 and exploring the northern reaches of the Tsitsikamma forest. The 43.2km route features 670m of climbing, stats which could come as a relief to the riders who get a little too caught up in Saturday night’s 80’s themed fancy dress party.

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Cape Brewing Co's assistant brewer Anja van Zyl and Gemma Grobbelaar riding to stage victory in the women’s category. Photo by Oakpics.com.

To view more photos from the 2016 Glacier Storms River Traverse like the Facebook page; Storms River Traverse or follow @SRTraverse on Twitter or follow drylandeventmanagement on Instagram. For all the results click here and to find out more about the Glacier Storms River Traverse visit www.stormsrivertraverse.co.za.

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Bernhard Schmidt and Heidi Stumpf pose for a photo at Water Point 1 on the cliffs above the Indian Ocean. Photo by: Oakpics.com.

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Johan Engelbrecht crosses the Storms River before starting the climb back to the race village at the Tsitsikamma Village Inn. Photo by: Oakpics.com.

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Leandri and Dirk Joubert celebrate finishing Stage 1 of the Glacier Storms River Traverse. Photo by: Oakpics.com.