This week we head back into the Western Cape and into the beautiful Cederberg region, which is a place once visited, you will return again and again. The area has spawned a large number of mostly gravel passes which attract adventure motor cyclists, 4WD enthusiasts, rock climbers, hikers, spelunkers, bird watchers and nature lovers in their droves.
Our featured pass has given our camera crew a tough time - evading good footage time and time again and it now holds the official MPSA record of having been filmed 15 times over a 4 year period before we finally achieved success. We nailed it about two weeks ago in perfect light and at the right time of day. Previous attempts were bedevilled by dust, corrugations, wind, corrupt CD cards, flat camera batteries, rain, cloud, mist and over-exposed or under-exposed footage. We cracked a bottle of champagne once we reviewed the footage!
We know you'll love this pass.
Today's featured pass ranks amongst the finest gravel passes we have ever filmed. This is one of the Eastern Cape's Big 8 and justifiably deserves any accolades it receives. It is also arguably the least recognized of the Big 8 and that is no doubt due to the fact that is located on a road that very few people travel over.
As we trace the hairpins, stunning sandstone formations and mind boggling views of the Maloti Mountains close to the Lesotho border, we will take you over this amazing pass via a quadruple set of videos as we uncover the contrasting features from fabulous waterfalls to police officers patrolling the area for stock theft.
The Big 8 include the following passes: Barkly Pass (tar), Otto du Plessis, Baster Voetslaan, Naude's Nek, Jouberts Pass, Carlisleshoekspruit, Volunteershoek and Lundin's Nek. Each one is unique and offers an adventurous drive.
This week we do the long trek up into the far northern corner of South Africa and more spefically into Limpopo's game reserve zone. Here, in the higher altitude, malaria-free climate there is game aplenty and weekends stays offer a fabulous retreat for weary city dwellers.
Connecting all these game reserves is a network of roads, of which many form passes and poorts. Our focus today falls on a gravel pass that most people have not even heard of. Join us for a few moments as we whisk you away into the dusty plains of Limpopo to discover one of the wonderful passes in this beautiful part of our country.
This week we head up into the Northern Cape and since this is officially the time of year of the spring flowers in Namaqualand, we've decided to introduce you to a big altitude gaining gravel pass between Leliefontein and Garies, that runs along the valley to the west of the Langkloof Pass, which we featured a few weeks ago.
Our featured pass is generally maintained to a good standard and can be driven in almost any vehicle. Besides the hundreds of acres of wild flowers on offer, there are granite smothered mountains that glisten in the sunlight, set against the bluest of skies that one only finds in Namaqualand.
All around you the ridges and rivers pulse with life as the winter comes to an end for a brief, but spellbinding few weeks as nature explodes into a frenzy of blossoms.
Week after week we dig into our treasure chest of mountain passes and take you into every corner of our beautiful and diverse country, as we introduce you to remote or forgotten passes and at other times we reawaken your interest in a well known or famous pass, where no matter how many times you travel it, it remains an absolute joy.
Our featured this week, is one of the latter. It was originally built by Thomas Bain and ranks as one of his best passes in terms of technical ingenuity. We recently refilmed this exceptionally lovely pass and bring it back to you today as fresh as a Namaqualand daisy in HD in a three part video set, covering every aspect of the pass, from technical engineering to history to tourism information.
We rate this pass amongst the Top 10 passes in the Western Cape and in the Top 20 nationally.
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.
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.