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Thread: Sani Pass

  1. #21
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    Default Re: Sani Pass

    That is doable.

    Leave very early on Friday, the trip is longer than you think and you will want to stop a few times to take photos. It's ok to arrive back home in the dark on Sunday, don't drive the gravel roads to the pass in the dark.

    The trick with Sani especially on a motorbike is to watch the other traffic going up and down and take the corners as wide as possible and don't stop on the corners.

    The inside of the corners is very sharp and steep compared to the outside and all the loose stuff is in the corners, due to the 4x4's action. (that's where the wheels of the 4x4's {with no centre diff or diff are locked on} wheels are fighting each other and it chews up the road.)

    You must judge to get to the corners when there is zero traffic. You must judge traffic to meet on the straight sections, even if you stop on the straight sections and wait. If you meet on a corner you are forced to take the space left over for you and it is very tight. AND stopping a bike on the corners is difficult for the bigger bikes to get going, due to the sharpness and all the loose stuff.

    many vehicles have forgotten the rule ascending vehicles have right of way.

    As this is a 4x4 forum, please give way to the bikes going up, (especially the big bikes) many 4x4 drivers are under the impression that bike only need a little space, we need the complete width of the road to safely and easily get to the top. The back wheel of a big bike spins easily, especially on the loose stuff. and many arguments have started due to no space given and a 4x4 getting sprayed with rocks not on purpose..
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  3. #22
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    Default Re: Sani Pass

    Quote Originally Posted by K-9 View Post
    That is doable.

    Leave very early on Friday, the trip is longer than you think and you will want to stop a few times to take photos. It's ok to arrive back home in the dark on Sunday, don't drive the gravel roads to the pass in the dark.

    The trick with Sani especially on a motorbike is to watch the other traffic going up and down and take the corners as wide as possible and don't stop on the corners.

    The inside of the corners is very sharp and steep compared to the outside and all the loose stuff is in the corners, due to the 4x4's action. (that's where the wheels of the 4x4's {with no centre diff or diff are locked on} wheels are fighting each other and it chews up the road.)

    You must judge to get to the corners when there is zero traffic. You must judge traffic to meet on the straight sections, even if you stop on the straight sections and wait. If you meet on a corner you are forced to take the space left over for you and it is very tight. AND stopping a bike on the corners is difficult for the bigger bikes to get going, due to the sharpness and all the loose stuff.

    many vehicles have forgotten the rule ascending vehicles have right of way.

    As this is a 4x4 forum, please give way to the bikes going up, (especially the big bikes) many 4x4 drivers are under the impression that bike only need a little space, we need the complete width of the road to safely and easily get to the top. The back wheel of a big bike spins easily, especially on the loose stuff. and many arguments have started due to no space given and a 4x4 getting sprayed with rocks not on purpose..
    Dankie baie, goeie advise
    ek het die naweek dit gaan toets op die grond paaie in die heuwels.
    SWAMBO gaan moet saam ry op die volgende toets voor ons die trip aanpak, die gewigs verspreiding op die motorfiets maak n groot verskil op die los grond
    There is always a way.

  4. #23
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    Default Re: Sani Pass

    Hi all. Quick Sani update. I went up on Saturday (10 Nov) in my Xtrail. 2.5 petrol 4x4 no low range. The road works at the beginning are progressing "well" and it should not be long till tarring starts. That's about 5km from where the tar currently ends. Work is happening along the rest of the route but seems as if they are only concentrating on the stream crossings.
    The pass is very rough at the moment, lots of rock and loose stuff. The left hand climb after the first "big" stream is brutally rough but managed in the Xtrail. Commented to the wife that if the switchbacks were that rough we may head back early. Before I new it we were at the switchbacks with no space to turn. Got to the top no problems, untill the chap in front decided to stop in the middle of the road and take a pic of the Sani Pass sign at the top. Had me then stopped on the last uphill, no LOW, rocky and had to slip a few kms off the clutch to get going. Went to the top of Black Mountain pass, and was a little concerned of brake (over) heating on the decent. Came down in 2nd. Descending the pass was rather easy. Go early, we were car number 5 for the day and on the way down we met all the touring companies on their way up. Drive safe and enjoy the moment.

  5. #24
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    Default Re: Sani Pass

    Quote Originally Posted by Plod View Post
    And yet these cars do it with little problems?
    I know you get a all wheel drive version of those Toyotas, probably one of them. That with a auto box should be a breeze.
    If Force is not the solution, not enough of it was applied....

  6. #25
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    Default Re: Sani Pass

    Quote Originally Posted by K-9 View Post
    That is doable.

    Leave very early on Friday, the trip is longer than you think and you will want to stop a few times to take photos. It's ok to arrive back home in the dark on Sunday, don't drive the gravel roads to the pass in the dark.

    The trick with Sani especially on a motorbike is to watch the other traffic going up and down and take the corners as wide as possible and don't stop on the corners.

    The inside of the corners is very sharp and steep compared to the outside and all the loose stuff is in the corners, due to the 4x4's action. (that's where the wheels of the 4x4's {with no centre diff or diff are locked on} wheels are fighting each other and it chews up the road.)

    You must judge to get to the corners when there is zero traffic. You must judge traffic to meet on the straight sections, even if you stop on the straight sections and wait. If you meet on a corner you are forced to take the space left over for you and it is very tight. AND stopping a bike on the corners is difficult for the bigger bikes to get going, due to the sharpness and all the loose stuff.

    many vehicles have forgotten the rule ascending vehicles have right of way.

    As this is a 4x4 forum, please give way to the bikes going up, (especially the big bikes) many 4x4 drivers are under the impression that bike only need a little space, we need the complete width of the road to safely and easily get to the top. The back wheel of a big bike spins easily, especially on the loose stuff. and many arguments have started due to no space given and a 4x4 getting sprayed with rocks not on purpose..
    WOW wat n verligting as jy onder by die SA border kom. Baie dankie K 9 vir die raad. Dit het verseker gehelp. Dis nie so maklik soos wat dit klink nie en daar was n paar voertuie wat moes omdraai en die n Grens pos bemaning het ook alle voertuie gestop wat nie "low range" het nie. N paar motorfietse het geval, gelukkig geen ernstig beserings nie. Ek haal my hoed vir die dame op die triump en haar metgesel wat met 3 motorfietse afgery het, stop en terug en gaan haal die ander bike en vorder stukkie vir stukkie. Die bestuurder van die ander motorfiets het afgeloop nie seker wat presies gebeur het nie. My raad aan almal moet nie n 1200gs opvat nie moet nie n passasier op vat nie. Ken jou voertuig. Gaan doen dit verseker ons sal weer gaan.
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    There is always a way.

  7. #26
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    Default Re: Sani Pass

    Quote Originally Posted by MariusFourie View Post
    Was up on Wednesday.

    If tar gets laid it will only get laid to the border post. And that is still some way off.

    The amount of work and money needed to tar the rest is astronomical. It wont happen in our life time.

    I'm uploading a 4 gig timelapse dashcam video of driving up and down for all to see what it's like at the moment.
    Do you think I would get up in a 2 wheel drive with diff lock.

  8. #27
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    Default Re: Sani Pass

    Quote Originally Posted by nigelgeast View Post
    Do you think I would get up in a 2 wheel drive with diff lock.
    If it's dry, then yes. But it's illegal to drive up in a vehicle that is not 4x4.

  9. #28
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    Default Re: Sani Pass

    Quote Originally Posted by nigelgeast View Post
    Do you think I would get up in a 2 wheel drive with diff lock.
    In the dry, yes

  10. #29
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    Default Re: Sani Pass

    Quote Originally Posted by MariusFourie View Post
    If it's dry, then yes. But it's illegal to drive up in a vehicle that is not 4x4.
    Is it really illegal? That I did not know

  11. #30
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    Default Re: Sani Pass

    Quote Originally Posted by Loki PAJERO View Post
    WOW wat n verligting as jy onder by die SA border kom. Baie dankie K 9 vir die raad. Dit het verseker gehelp. Dis nie so maklik soos wat dit klink nie en daar was n paar voertuie wat moes omdraai en die n Grens pos bemaning het ook alle voertuie gestop wat nie "low range" het nie. N paar motorfietse het geval, gelukkig geen ernstig beserings nie. Ek haal my hoed vir die dame op die triump en haar metgesel wat met 3 motorfietse afgery het, stop en terug en gaan haal die ander bike en vorder stukkie vir stukkie. Die bestuurder van die ander motorfiets het afgeloop nie seker wat presies gebeur het nie. My raad aan almal moet nie n 1200gs opvat nie moet nie n passasier op vat nie. Ken jou voertuig. Gaan doen dit verseker ons sal weer gaan.
    Nee man Loki, dit nie so erg op n 1200gs en pillion nie. Brand net so bietjie clutch, hou jou momentum en dit is so bietjie van n anti klimaks. Doen hom nog so 1 of 2 keer en jy gaan self iets rowwer gaan begin soek.Ai, eks nou sommer lus vir bike ry!

  12. #31
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  13. #32
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    Default Re: Sani Pass

    Quote Originally Posted by RPiet View Post
    In the dry, yes

    As mentioned in dry do-able, We went up +-4 years ago in 4x4 Navara. Going up was easy, weather did a bit of a quick change and I think if we stayed a bit longer and had rain it would have been quite a bit different.

  14. #33
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    Default Re: Sani Pass

    Quote Originally Posted by MariusFourie View Post
    Wow. Never seen that before. It makes sense, I wouldn't say it's ideal in a 2x4, but I didn't realise it was not allowed. Obviously need to pay more attention to the road signs.

    Did it with the freelander in a light drizzle about a week ago, going up, and it was really pretty straightforward. I was halfway up before realizing I hadn't selected an off road mode, and that we forgot to let the tires down.

    Have done it both ways on a motorbike and mountainbike before a few times, and once in a 2x4 Ford ranger. Never really had any hassles.

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  16. #34
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    Default Re: Sani Pass

    Quote Originally Posted by RPiet View Post
    Wow. Never seen that before. It makes sense, I wouldn't say it's ideal in a 2x4, but I didn't realise it was not allowed. Obviously need to pay more attention to the road signs.

    Did it with the freelander in a light drizzle about a week ago, going up, and it was really pretty straightforward. I was halfway up before realizing I hadn't selected an off road mode, and that we forgot to let the tires down.

    Have done it both ways on a motorbike and mountainbike before a few times, and once in a 2x4 Ford ranger. Never really had any hassles.
    Yeah. Not difficult in good conditions but conditions can change quickly and two wheel drives destroys steep gravel roads a lot quicker than 4wd.

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  18. #35
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    Default Re: Sani Pass

    Quote Originally Posted by MariusFourie View Post
    Yeah. Not difficult in good conditions but conditions can change quickly and two wheel drives destroys steep gravel roads a lot quicker than 4wd.
    Agreed. I hate when okes around the braai brag about how far they got before needing to engage 4x4. I often wonder if these guys have any experience maintaining jeep tracks and farm roads.

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  20. #36
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    Default Re: Sani Pass

    Quote Originally Posted by RPiet View Post
    Agreed. I hate when okes around the braai brag about how far they got before needing to engage 4x4. I often wonder if these guys have any experience maintaining jeep tracks and farm roads.
    I always think how far they are going to get before the rear diff let's go.

    Using 4x4 low range reduces the stress on everything unless you are gun ho.

  21. #37
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    Default Re: Sani Pass

    Quote Originally Posted by MariusFourie View Post
    I always think how far they are going to get before the rear diff let's go.

    Using 4x4 low range reduces the stress on everything unless you are gun ho.
    4x4 low range does reduce stress on vehicle and road, true.

    But unfortunately the rear diff on 4x2s can handle this pass with ease without problems. All you need is a bit of speed, clutch use and testosterone to make it up in 4x2. The pass does not even need to be in best nick. While diff lock will help, it's not necessary unless the pass degrades.

    But as others mentioned, 4x2 is not kind to the pass, even in experienced hands and when the pass is in good nick. There's a good reason for the 4x4 only sign.


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  23. #38
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    Default Re: Sani Pass

    Also, if you go up in a 4x2 and the weather changes suddenly, then you could be in some trouble. And sudden weather changes are pretty common in that region

  24. #39
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    Default Re: Sani Pass

    Quote Originally Posted by Swanny View Post
    Afternoon All

    I will be doing Sani in February next year. Would a Discovery Sport have any problems doing it?

    Regards
    Eric
    You might be stuck as you leave Sani Pass Hotel ( Last Tar road), it rains a lot in February in the Drakensberg. But you might be lucky

  25. #40
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    Default Re: Sani Pass

    Quote Originally Posted by kbkev View Post
    Hi all. Quick Sani update. I went up on Saturday (10 Nov) in my Xtrail. 2.5 petrol 4x4 no low range. The road works at the beginning are progressing "well" and it should not be long till tarring starts. That's about 5km from where the tar currently ends. Work is happening along the rest of the route but seems as if they are only concentrating on the stream crossings.
    The pass is very rough at the moment, lots of rock and loose stuff. The left hand climb after the first "big" stream is brutally rough but managed in the Xtrail. Commented to the wife that if the switchbacks were that rough we may head back early. Before I new it we were at the switchbacks with no space to turn. Got to the top no problems, untill the chap in front decided to stop in the middle of the road and take a pic of the Sani Pass sign at the top. Had me then stopped on the last uphill, no LOW, rocky and had to slip a few kms off the clutch to get going. Went to the top of Black Mountain pass, and was a little concerned of brake (over) heating on the decent. Came down in 2nd. Descending the pass was rather easy. Go early, we were car number 5 for the day and on the way down we met all the touring companies on their way up. Drive safe and enjoy the moment.
    The problem with AWD cars they cause too much damage on the Pass with all the spinning

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