Aurora mountain biking trail runs from the quiet little West Coast village tucked away on the edge of the Piketberg mountains up to Kapteinskop over 1000 meters above. This mountain bike trail is a long and steady climb. It is steep in places with spectacular growing views of the whole west coast region. After taking in the views from the Atlantic ocean to the inland mountains of the Cederberg and Winterberg there is a long and fast descent back into town.
This is an intermediate to advanced trail with loose rocky surface making climbing and descending tricky. Requires high fitness as the climb is very steep in places. Distance is 35km from Aurora, there and back route, 85 % jeep track, 15 % gravel/sand road, Ascent 900m. No entry fees, its a public access road, but respect land owners land on the mountain. Be careful of heat in summer, snakes – especially Sept – Mar and cars at the hairpin bends.
Aurora Mountain Bike Trail Description
Aurora meaning “dawning of a new day” sits on the western edge of the Piketberg. Surrounded by Sandveld the contrast of the mountain is striking and provides a perfect environment for fynbos and Proteas. The trail is challenging, climbing about 800m in less than 15km, but the amazing vistas and views all the way up the mountain make this a unique cycling experience. From the top there is only one way and that is down the long flowing downhill back into the town.
Climb forever and descend forever
The total distance is just under 40km with half going up and the other half coming down. Head out of town towards Redelinghuis and then take the Sun Mountain Farm turn off to the right and start the real climb. A gradual uphill out of town is ideal for warming up the legs before the main climb. With just 2km into the main climb you will be wondering if you will make the rest of the 15km. This steep loose rocky section requires balance and power. Midway it levels out and reaches the alpine like shady oasis of Sun Mountain Guest Farm, perfect for a rest stop.
The second half of the climb is more gradual continuing along the narrow dirt road winding its way up the western edge of the mountain. With the summit in sight the final section is a mountain top retreat with breathtaking views, this is private property so best check with the owners for access. The cool crisp mountain air is refreshing compared to the pressing heat down below. The descent is long and winding with some fast and tricky sections. The final section tests brakes and strength as concentration is required to stay in control.
Looking for other trails, check out MTB Trails on the Cape West Coast.