DarkFEST Week 2 – Things are ramping up

February 2nd, 2017

By Andrew Dodd in Features

DarkFEST Week 2 Рthings are getting silly

The Pure Darkness and Fest Series crew are in their second¬†week of building for DarkFEST – some of the most ridiculously big jumps you’ll ever see.

Here’s an update on DarkFest Week 2…

DarkFEST Week 2

DarkFEST Week 2 – the jumps are getting ridiculous! Photo | Eric Palmer

The end of last week saw the birth of the 82ft long and low, that goes over the berm leading to the step up. Nico Vink was on duty on that right line and spent the week dialling it in – and making another slightly shorter set up jump for a massive booter at the bottom.

The local yacht club invited us to a braai off. It’s a South African BBQ cook off essentially – where you bring the finest steak you can find, braai it over the coals and add your special touch & technique to make it as tasty as possible. Everyone involved tries a bit of each steak and votes for their favourite at the end of the evening. Needless to say we all devoured tonnes of the most delicious meat until we couldn’t move. To help the digestion we went to a very interesting club that resembled a psychedelic curry house and sampled some of the local DB&C’s.

DarkFEST Week 2

DarkFEST Week 2 was hit with bad weather – but plenty of meat at classic South African Braai BBQ’s kept the guys motivated for building… Photo | Eric Palmer

Saturday was a slow start as rain rolled in again and was quite heavy during the evening & the next afternoon and made things a bit too wet to work with, but luckily the boys made such good progress that they were planning to take the weekend off.

DarkFEST Week 2

It wasn’t all work on DarkFEST Week 2 – the crew had a good dirt session to remind them why they were spending such a long time on the build. Photo | Eric Palmer

DarkFEST Week 2

DarkFEST Week 2 saw more features added – making the most of the 65ft tall roll in ramp! Photo | Eric Palmer

Monday was back to work, after the rain drainage was needed desperately, so Clemens and Sam got some pipes and got to making dirt funnels while Nico piled the dirt for the last lip in the long & low line. The shark fin was worrying Sam with the DH bikes, so they decided to have a little test to put their minds at ease and it worked like a dream!

Sam went on and tested the 2nd jump and that was also working perfectly. The step down wasn’t 100% ready and groomed, but he decided to give her a go anyway and came up a bit short, cased 50/50, got thrown over the bars and slammed hard. Luckily he came out with only a sprained wrist and is still good to go!

Nico was getting used to things and warmed up on the first 2, getting more and more smooth with every run. Clemens hit the line for the first time and cleared the shark fin nicely, but when he went for the 2nd jump he had to eject, his bike’s suspension was too soft and absorbed the lip too much.

DarkFEST Week 2

DarkFEST Week 2 Photo | Eric Palmer

DarkFEST Week 2

Photo | Eric Palmer

DarkFEST Week 2

Photo | Eric Palmer

Tuesday was another solid day of digging. With the digger hours coming to an end it was time to get some rakes out to smooth everything out and move the last two lips after getting the tape measure out. We all went down to town to meet MacDuff and Louis and have supper at a local restaurant for a bit of scenery change.
With an even bigger crew now everyone grabbed a rake or spade & things were getting manicured before your eyes. Final touches to the last lip in the long & low line with the digger and more measuring to make sure the gaps were right for the speed you would carry. After a good morning beauty treatment and some lunch we headed down to the river to cool off.
Everything is coming together nicely here, the lines are almost all done and ready for proper testing with a week to really dial things in. All the other guys are here this time next week and the madness begins! Can’t wait to see what unfolds on these mountains!

We’re looking forward to the guys getting stuck in to riding – with the size of the jumps DarkFEST looks like it’s going to be nuts!





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