News Article

Hayterdale Classic Mountains

Hayterdale Classic a window into greatest of outdoor arenas

Aug 19, 2023 | News

Once a year, the BDO Hayterdale Classic MTB Race and Trail Run opens up the unspoilt beauty of the Zuurberg and Greater Addo to adventure seekers.

Trail runners of all abilities will get their opportunity to sample the greatest of outdoor arenas on Saturday, August 26, while mountain bikers will be under starter’s orders the following day.

Even though the weekend was originally conceived as a corporate event, the new-look Hayterdale Classic is open to the public; the idea being to add single-day races to the organisation’s stable of boutique multiday events.

“It’s a unique event in a unique environment,” Hayter said.

The format allows non-corporate entrants to take part in both events and turn it into a family weekend.

The accommodation at Hayterdale Trails has been allocated to sponsors of the corporate element but those interested in staying for the weekend can request to join the waiting list and will be contacted should a tent become available.

In addition, Hayter said, there were several other establishments in the area that provided first-class accommodation.

The mountain bike race and trail run both start and finish at Hayterdale Trails, a commercial farm from yesteryear transformed into a network of purpose-built trails along the southern slopes of the Zuurberg mountains.

These have become a port-of-call for all-comers looking to express themselves over swathes of breath-taking terrain.

Many professionals who have raced the Great Zuurberg Trek and South African cross-country championships here have credited it as some of the finest trails in the country.

Importantly, no one is denied the BDO Hayterdale Classic experience simply because their fitness may not be as sharp as it once was.

To this end, there are 25km and 40km options for old-school mountain bikers and a 40km race for e-bikers.

Feature race entrants are in for a treat as several sections from stage three of this year’s GZT have been included.

They will face a daunting 950m of vertical ascent, but the reward is singletrack on more than a third of the course.

The shorter route offers somewhat less climbing – 550m – with two-thirds of the distance either jeep or singletrack.

Runners can choose between 6km, 12km and 18km courses depending on their energy levels. The three options offer between 200 and 400m of climbing.

“Hayterdale lies on terrain where you can find four of South Africa’s seven biomes,” Hayter said. “It offers great views, great birding opportunities and the fauna and flora enthusiasts will go away smiling.”

BDO has signed up as title sponsor for the second year running, with the accounting group’s Siya Mthembu saying it aligned perfectly with its advocacy for wellness and mental health.

“It provides us with a rare opportunity to interact with our stakeholders in a wholesome and fun environment. This was especially beneficial for me since I had joined the BDO family shortly before the 2022 Classic.”

On that occasion, Mthembu took one for the team when he signed up for the 25km MTB race. He found it “quite challenging and exciting at the same time”.

While the terrain tested him to the limit, it was also what made the experience unforgettable; so much so that he took up mountain biking as a sport.

“I would highly recommend it to anyone wanting a break from the city and looking to keep active,” he said, confirming that he will be one of the competitors in the 40km this time around.

Hayter said partners like BDO saw value in the intimate networking opportunity of a boutique event and those attending had a common love for being active in nature.

“It is all about having a good time and breaking free from the day-to-day grind.”

Visit to enter by Wednesday, August 23, or for a list of accommodation options.

To stay at Hayterdale Trails, email to add your name to the waiting list.