Rhino Ride 2018

   25 August 2018


 Saturday, 25th & Sunday, 26th August

Entries are limited to 200 riders – to be added to our data base email us on


Join us for a festive weekend of Mountain Biking, held on our Reserve, home to the BIG 5!! Cyclists will be covering 70kms over the two days, cycling through pristine Zululand bushveld, enjoying breath taking views, magnificent scenery & wildlife up close and personal.

A secure camping village it set up in the Reserve, where cyclists and their families can relax and enjoy the peaceful sounds of the wild. All meals are included in your package and we offer an authentic bush menu (with a vegetarian option) enjoyed under the starry sky.

The Rhino Ride is a perfect opportunity for you & the family to leave the hustle and bustle of city behind you and enjoy nature at its finest

ONE THOUSAND TWO HUNDRED & FIFTEEN Rhinos were found poached in 2014, which is well over a 300% increase since 2010. By entering the Rhino Ride you are assisting us in the fight against Rhino poaching and in stopping the extinction of these prehistoric creatures.

With  a total of ONE MILLION EIGHT HUNDRED AND THIRTY SIX THOUSAND RAND being raised by the Rhino Ride in 4 years, we look forward to hosting a bigger and better event in 2017  with a total that will approach the R3 million rand mark – join us at the event and play your part in the fight against Rhino Poaching #stoprhinopoachingNOW

All proceeds from our ride go directly into the Zululand Conservation Trust.

– EVERY contribution made towards this foundation WILL make a difference to the lives of individuals & animals alike –


“Committed to the conservation of endangered species whilst establishing, maintaining and supporting partnerships with neighbouring communities”




The annual Rhino Ride is held on the magnificent Manyoni Private Game Reserve (MPGR), a 23 000 hectare proclaimed private nature reserve, home to over 70 mammal species including Africa’s BIG 5. All proceeds from the Rhino Ride go directly into the Zululand COnservation Trust who use the funds raised to assist the MPGR in critical Rhino conservation projects.

The 21st century brings with it a scourge of poaching, especially threatening our magnificent Rhino. The situation to date is so severe that an increasing number of privately owned game reserves are disposing of their Rhino, as they are considered too much of a risk in relation to the rising security costs of protecting these animals. Protected, favourable habitat for these splendid creatures is at a premium, and as we, the MPGR, are fortunate enough to have this at their disposal we are dedicated to expanding this, their range & their population.

During the weekend not only will you be treated to breath-taking views, magnificent Zululand scenery & the Big 5, but you will also gain an awareness of the challenges the MPGR & we all face in the fight against rhino poaching.

2016 Rhino Ride

Karen Holmes, Managing Director of the MPGR has this to say about keeping the cyclists safe among the BIG 5!

Day One

It was a truly wild ride this year and the behind the scenes coordination was challenging to say the least. By 7:30 am all marshals were on station and we were ready to roll, but of course the calm didn’t last long and soon after the last batch of riders left the start we had obstructions en route. Marshall station three reported a herd of Elephant on route, and as Murphy would have it, a few minutes later one of the big male lions decided to show up too, so a few riders had to wait while the hairy and scary creatures moved off.

To make life just a little more exciting for those of us responsible for the safety of the riders, the helicopter with the camera crew spooked the elephants and of course the herd then headed toward the route again, a few nail biting minutes passed and the elephants were moving away so we could continue uninterrupted. To avoid any more surprises from our inquisitive elephants I decided to call in the ZAPwing fixed wing aircraft to keep a close eye on them and their movements.

Riders absolutely loved the single track which required some skill to ride at pace, and  absolutely hated the big climb before the last water table, but their hard work was rewarded with a craft beer tasting close to the finish.

Day Two

A lioness and her cubs were seen in the riverbed near the track, and again I had to stop the riders at the water table under the big fig tree to allow the marshals to relocate the lions and ensure the route was safe.

The route along the fever tree forest that hugs the riverbed was surreal.

I was marshaling in the river where riders crossed through the river bed and was thoroughly entertained by the riders gearing down and peddling strong to get through the thick sand. Some made it and others faded in a heap.  All is well that ends well with a few minor injuries and big smiles.

2014 Rhino Ride

We were thrilled to have a full complement of 215 riders at the 2014 event – who arrived not only to brave the Zululand heat & hills but also our ever growing pride of lions! (What started with the introduction of 7 Lion in 2012, has rapidly grown to 15, and counting). It is through your support for our events that our conservation initiatives such as this succeed.

The 2014 Rhino Ride proved a great success with just over R330 000 being raised. These funds will go a long way to assist us in the on-going battle against Rhino poaching and to support us in ensuring the safety and security of our precious Rhino on the MPGR – a HUGE thank you to each & every one of you who contributed to make this possible.

A very big thank you & mention must go out to all sponsors that came on board at the 2014Rhino Ride, without whom the event would not be possible.

A special thank-you to Grindrod Bank our anchor sponsor for the 3rd year running, and it was great to hear on the Friday night that Grindrod Bank have recommitted their support of the event again in 2015. Further thanks go to Spar Mkuze Supatrade, Bayete Zulu, Polaris, Emma Gatland Photography, Republic South Africa (RSA), Fairfield Dairy, Mavela & Static Control, Racefood, Leopard Mountain Game Lodge, LT Printers, Sheena Arnott, African Spirit Game Lodge & Republic Umbrella.

2013 Rhino Ride

160 cyclists and supporters descended on the MPGR to enjoy the weekend of cycling, good food, cold beer, entertainment of course our magnificent Reserve

Our Second Annual Rhino Ride raised R195 000 – these funds were used for the following activities:

  • The continued monitoring and research of our Rhino, which is important for their ongoing protection.
  • To pay the operating costs and salary of Mfundise, one of our very important Rhino monitors on the reserve
  • Sponsoring of ongoing Rhino darts where ear notching & electronic identification is carried out.
  • The funding of a number of security exercises which have been instrumental in maintaining our clean sheet of Rhino Poaching on the MPGR.
  • A portion of the money raised is also being used to fund the final year of a young African student, S’bonelo studying for his Nature Conservation Diploma.

Our 2013 Sponsors included Grindrod Bank, Spar Mkuze Supatrade, Bayete Zulu, Exodus & Travel Vision, Subway Umhlanga, Polaris, Em Gatland Photography, Republic umbrella, Meditax, Rhino River Lodge, African Spirit, The Ghost Mountain Inn, Republic South Africa (RSA) & Powasol


Day 1

Point of interest 1:

7.5 kms in and you have just arrived at one of the main attractions of the rhino ride , the scenic winding trails along the Msunduze river under the canopies of shade providing fig trees. Offering a few kilometers of easy cycling before the ascent towards water table number 1, beware, the soft sand invites many near falls.

Point of interest 2:

Now 18.5kms in you will have begun to feel the signs of fatigue after riding through sloping hills and single track paths with the sun now bright and hot in the sky, luckily you have just arrived at breakfast! Be prepared for hot bacon and egg rolls and a short rest before beginning the toughest part of the ride. The tall hills to the west are your destination so eat hearty!

Point of interest 3:

29 kms in after conquering the toughest section of the ride, you are rewarded with a vista of hills from your high vantage point. Take a drink at the watertable and enjoy the view while you wait for the remainder of your group who are huffing and puffing their way up to you. What goes up must come down and the long steep coast down the hill is a great way to enter the final quarter of the ride.

Day 2

Point of interest 1:

10 kms into day 2, the more relaxed, game viewing orientated route, you might find a reason to work up a sweat. Our lions are very fond of the cool sand in the river so beware and keep your eyes peeled for twitching ears and flicking tails. Don’t worry too much though since our armed rangers are always close by and on guard. Beware of the tricky river crossing and cycle slowly around the waterhole - the smell of bacon should motivate you as the breakfast table is not far!


Proposed 2018 Itinerary

Friday, 24 August

  • 15h00                    Registration Opens
  • 18h15                    Welcome
  • 18h30                    Compulsory Race & Safety Briefing – Karen Odendaal
  • 19h00                    Dinner is served
  • 20h00                    Registration Closes
  • 22h00                    Bar Closes

Saturday, 26 August

  • 6h00                      Breakfast Opens
  • 7h30                      Race Briefing & Animal Safety Update
  • 8h00                      Start of 2018 Rhino Ride
  • 11h00                     Elephant Interaction
  • 12h30                    Lunch Opens
  • 14h00                    Game Drive (+- 2 ½ hours)
  • 15h00                    Elephant Interaction
  • 18h00                    Thank Yous’ & Lucky Draws
  • 19h00                    Dinner is served
  • 23h00                    Bar Closes

 Sunday, 27 August

  • 6h30                      Breakfast Opens
  • 8h00                      Race Briefing & Animal Safety Update
  • 8h30                      Start of Day

Useful Information



Camping & lodges

We highly recommend CAMPING, the experience of being out in the open with the BIG 5, as well as the magnificent scenery & great atmosphere is something that is very special at this event – for both cyclists and the whole family!

TENTS FOR HIRE – includes mattress, please be sure to bring your own bedding

One Man Tent - R250                                                                                                               

Two Man Tent – R400      

Back to basics is our motto in Zululand and so you can expect to enjoy the natural and rustic element of camping, with the following amenities provided

  • A secure camping village will be set up in an awesome setting in the middle of the bush.
  • Ablution stands will be provided – you just bring your tent, matress & bedding
  • Rustic outdoor showers – each rider will experience a fire heated drum shower.(Please Note:  Individual fires or braais are not permitted, as this is a protected area.  All fires and food will be provided for the riders by our trained staff.)
  •  There will be fantastic bush cuisine available which will be eaten around crackling log fires under a blanket of African stars                  

The camping is limited to 200 riders and a max of 60 non-riders and MUST be pre-booked before the race.

We encourage you to come and enjoy a great bush camping experience or luxurious lodging with us, either way the weekend will consist of  loads of adventure, fun and most of all mountain biking!!

For those of you not too keen on camping and fancy spoiling yourselves, accommodation can be found at a number of gorgeous lodges situated on the Manyoni Private Game Reserve...


For those of you not too keen on camping and fancy spoiling yourselves, accommodation can be found at a number of gorgeous lodges situated on The Manyoni Private Game Reserve:

African Spirit Game Lodge

Phone - +27 (0) 35 595 8255 / +27 (0) 72 791 9553
Mobile - +27 (0) 82 571 6555 / +27 (0) 82 642 1217
Website -

Bayete Private Camp
Phone - +27 (0) 35 595 8089
Mobile - +27 (0) 74 100 5221
Email -
Website -

Leopard Mountain Safari Lodge
Phone - +27 (0) 86 111 4789
International phone - +27 (0) 35 595 8536
Email -
Website -

Rhino River Lodge
Phone - +27 (0) 31 940 7013
Email -
Phone - +27 (0) 83 781 4924
Email -
Website -

Rhino Sands Safari Camp
Phone - +27 (0) 82 655 0927
Email -
Phone - +27 (0) 31 940 7014
Email -
Website -

Zebra Hills Safari Lodge
Email -
Website -


Ghost Mountain Inn – Tel 035 573 1025 –


Directions to Bayete Zulu on The Manyoni Private Game Reserve

From Durban:
 +-300km from Durban Airport

Travel north on the N2 from Durban, approximately 27 kms past the Hluhluwe town turnoff, turn left onto the P450, opposite the Baobab Inn. Travel a further 7kms on the dirt road where you will see on the right the clearly marked gate; Bayete Zulu

From Johannesburg

Travel South on the N2 from Pongola / Johannesburg, approximately 22kms past the turnoff  to Mkuze town, turn right onto the P450, opposite the Baobab Inn.  Travel a further 7kms on the dirt road where you will see on the right the clearly marked gate

For directions on Google maps you can use the following as your destination Bayete Zulu Boutique Lodge, Hluhluwe.

Should you have any problems on the journey please contact us on +27 82 600 9746


Entries will open on the 1st of May 2017 & are limited to 200 Riders

To be added to our waiting list email us on

Cycle, Camping & Meals R2 750

This includes your two days of cycling, entry into the Reserve, your race T-shirt & goodie bag, your camp site with toilet & shower facilities (excluding tent) and all meals (Friday dinner though to Sunday breakfast)

Camping Only & Meals R1 250

This includes your camp site with toilet & shower facilities and all meals (Friday dinner though to Sunday breakfast)

Included in the entry cost:

  • 2 nights camping facilities
  • Meals from Friday evening through to Sunday Breakfast
  • Conservation Levy
  • Race entry for the two-day stage race
  • Goodie Bags
  • 3 water tables on route

Excluded in the entry cost:

  • Tents and bedding for camping
  • Transportation to the event
  • Beverages, water
  • Personal energy supplements

Game drives at R350 per person

These will last approximately 2h30 on Saturday 8am & 3h30pm & Sunday 8am, the morning drives are prefect for the spectators, as these will meet the cycle route at various points.

Game drives will need to be booked in advance due to availability and space, so please specify the time on your entry.

Elephant Interaction at R200 per adult & R100 per child

This will be held on Saturday at 11am & 3pm and Sunday at 11am

Space is limited to 30 people per interaction so booking in advance is a must

Zululand RHINO Reserve Foundation Caps at R120 each

Protection from the HOT Zululand Sun!!

2018 Rhino Ride Photo Discs at R110 each



Many Thanks to GRINDROD BANK for agreeing to be the lead sponsor for the event for the 7th year running.

Grindrod Bank

On the 27th & 28th August the 5th annual Rhino Ride will be held within the Manyoni Private Game Reserve, our aim is to raise funds & increase awareness regarding endangered species & local community empowerment.  All funds received will be donated to the Zululand RHINO Reserve Foundation– the ZRRF set up with the aims to grow conservation, counteract poaching & establish & maintain a strong mutually beneficial partnership of empowerment for the neighbouring Zulu communities

We are currently looking for further sponsorship in order to host this event to its full potential.  If this is something that you or your company may be interested in assisting us with I would be more than happy to discuss what sponsorship may best suit you.  All sponsors are encouraged to display flag banners, hand out brochures and display a “mini stand” at event in order to maximize advertising.

Please note that the Trust is a registered NPO and all donations made are tax-deductible.

Every little bit counts!

Please contact Kelly on for further information