Vaalheuwel Pass

Read 50 times
Seen on the N7 on the way to the pass Seen on the N7 on the way to the pass - Photo: Fanie Gous

Vaalheuwel is an Afrikaans word, which translates into 'Dun Coloured Hills'. The pass is so named after the farm near the foot of the pass. It is particularly apt as the entire vista consists of a large mass of scattered hills which form a broken escarpment towards the west-coast near the diamond mining town of Kleinsee.

This is mining country and the vast bulk of the economic activity revolves around the extraction of minerals, and especially diamonds, from the earth. There is very little agricultural activity, due to the very low rainfall. When driving here on these back roads, be extremely aware of access restrictions near diamond mines as you could end up being in serious trouble if you ignore warning signs.

The pass is of average length at 4,2 km and has a steep average gradient of 1:13 which reaches 1:7 towards the western end of the pass. The steep average gradient is a result of an impressive altitude variance of 314m over a fairly short distance. Other than the usual gravel road precautionaries, be aware of loose gravel on the many corners of this pass and the biggest issue will invariably be corrugations, which is the most common reason drivers roll their vehicles.

The full content of this article is restricted to subscribers.

Subscribe for only R250 a year and get full access to our website (700+ mountain passes), including the videos, the full text of all mountain passes articles, fact-file, interactive map, directions and route files.

Subscribe Now (12 months)

For those who need to only use the website for a single trip or a short time frame, we now also offer a 6 month convenience subscription at R180.

Subscribe Now (6 months)

If you have already subscribed to our site, you can Log in to view the full article.

Log in


You will gain full access to the best parts of the website, which include:

  • the full content (non subscribers only see about 10% of the text) of 700+ mountain passes,
  • plus you get the video(s),
  • Fact File,
  • Interactive Map,
  • Directions
  • and the downloadable Route File.

You will also get our weekly newsletter packed with the latest interesting passes information delivered to your email each Thursday.

Paid subscribers qualify for 10% off any item on our online shop including the mountain pass tours.

Still not convinced?

You can visit five ‘Open’ pass pages on Mountain Passes South Africa to evaluate what you’ll be getting:

Subscribe to our Newsletter

Sign up to receive our weekly newsletter with News and Updates from Mountain Passes South Africa

Subscribe to our Site

Subscribe for only R250 a year (or R180 for 6 months), and get full access to our website including the videos, the full text of all mountain passes articles, fact-file, interactive map, directions and route files.

Register

 

Mountain Passes South Africa

Mountain Passes South Africa is a website dedicated to the research, documentation, photographing and filming of the mountain passes of South Africa.
 

Passes are classified according to provinces and feature a text description, Fact File including GPS data, a fully interactive dual-view map and a narrated YouTube video.
 

Master Orientation Map

Master Orientation Map We are as passionate about maps as we are about mountain passes. A good map is a thing of beauty that can transport you into the mists of time or get your sense of adventure churning. It is a place to make discoveries about deserts and seas, mountains and lakes; of roads leading into places you have not been before; a place to pore over holiday destinations or weekend camping trips. A map is your window to the world.

View Master Orientation Map...