2017 Route

The new, more exciting & adventurous route has been announced.
Days
7
Total Distance
553KM
Total Ascent
11370M

You’re in for a treat. Already known for the quality of its route, the Cape Pioneer Trek has stepped it up a level yet again. The ninth edition of the race sees significant changes, including a point-to-point format, a coastal start in Mossel Bay and back-to-back ascents of the formidable Swartberg Pass.

All the old favourites are back (though you’ve never seen them like this before), mixing it up with some brand-new innovations that will get the heart pumping and the adrenalin flowing.

Never content to rest, the Dryland route design team continue to raise the bar for international mountain bike stage racing, right here on the tip of Africa. Take a tour through each stage below for a taste of what’s in store for 2017.

CapePioneer-RouteClimateGraph

Stage 1

#GondwanaGlory

Stage 2

#DiazDelight

Stage 3

#OuteniquaOdyssey

Stage 4

#SaasveldSingletrack

Stage 5

#MontaguMettle

Stage 6

#SwartbergShowdown

Stage 7

#ChandelierChampagne
"Have you ever thought about riding your mountain bike through the most beautiful terrain in the Southern Cape with a super backup team looking after your every possible need and being surrounded by like-minded people from all over the world? I think Dryland pioneered that thought into one of the best races in the country but preserved that all-important mountain biking spirit while doing it! A really big thumbs up from me!! I will definitely be back for many years to come."
Hannes Hanekom, South Africa
"I love the Cape Pioneer, because here I can feel the spirit of nature and racing. Even for a semi-pro it is always a new experience. One week at the Pioneer is a more effective recovery for your soul than two months of holiday, but perhaps not for your body! I have never made so many good friends."
Max Friedrich, Germany
"What strikes me most about the Cape Pioneer is the authentic atmosphere in the race village. The crew offered tonnes of support over the week and even when it rained I only saw smiling faces. As far as the race goes, the route is simply magnificent and my memories on and off the bike will stay with me forever. In total, I was so overwhelmed by the Cape Pioneer that I have never regretted more having to get back onto the plane home."
Robby De Bock, Belgium
"My friends were always talking about the Pioneer because of the amazing trails, stunning landscapes, great friendships and perfect organisation. Finally, this year, as a reporter for MTB Magazine and Bike Channel 1 in Italy, I entered the race. I can tell you that in the end, you forget the pain and suffering and only the best moments come to mind, especially the atmosphere. I felt totally at home. The route was amazing, different every day with magical landscapes. This is what made for an unforgettable mountain bike race"
Niccolò Violati, Italy
"For me, the defining features of the Cape Pioneer Trek are the people and the route. Very few races can boast such rich diversity with which to spoil its participants. Arid desert to lush forests, this is one event which never ceases to surprise and inspire. Yes it’s tough and yes, it’s a massive challenge but all efforts are rewarded with stunning scenery and the sheer joy of riding where few will ever have the opportunity. The people of the Karoo are the glue that binds the route together and their generosity and hospitality are hallmarks of the race which gives it a very gracious personality. I adore being part of this event and can highly recommend it to anyone with a taste for adventure and a lust for life."
BEN MELT SWANEPOEL, SOUTH AFRICA
"Cape Pioneer takes riders through places that not anyone gets to see unless they follow that adventurous soul within them.. and there is no better way to experience it than on a mountain bike alongside 500 other adventurous pioneers. Having the local communities involved at the event also adds to the hospitable atmosphere. Racing at the sharp end is fierce, but the spirit of the pioneer always brings out the good sportsmanship among top athletes. Definitely the ultimate race with soul!"
PHILIP BUYS, SOUTH AFRICA