Latest News! 12th April, 2018

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Scenery in the Kareekloof Conservancy near the start of the route Scenery in the Kareekloof Conservancy near the start of the route - Photo: Robin De Cauver

In the path of the old sheep trekkers.

This week we introduce you to a remote gravel pass that was probably once a sheep trekking route as far back as the 1700's. It parallels the Hottentotskloof and Theronsberg passes north of Ceres in the Western Cape and offers a slow but exceptionally scenic drive along a long kloof, where you will see wild animals, spectacular scenery and quite possibly a pair of black eagles that roost in the lofty crags.

The route involves opening and closing farm gates and in the winter season, there will be many stream crossings across low drifts without any bridges. The route traverses several farms, one of which has been abandoned and stands forlornly alone without human occupation - a stark reminder of just how tough farming can be. (More lower down)

Eastern Cape Highlands update

In our last news release we reported storm damage to both Lundin's Nek and Jouberts passes. The latest reports trickling in appear to indicate that a local taxi operator in the Telle bridge area has forged a way through the rockfalls on Lundin's Nek and created a semblance of a driveable road through the northern sector. A number of vehicles have also driven over Jouberts Pass, but not without some difficulties and some vehicles have got stuck to the point of requiring assistance. If you are heading that way to do the Ben 10 Eco Challenge, please approach these two passes with due diligence and preferably not alone.

 

Into the mountains

Our featured pass this week is the Droelandskloof Pass, which we originally filmed back in 2014 on a gloomy winter's day with lots of water crossings and mud around, but our newest rendition of this exceptionally enjoyable route was filmed on a blue sky summers day with a not a drop of water in sight and in very much in line with the current drought in the Western Cape.

Our new three piece video set covers everything you need to know about driving this remote gravel pass. From avoiding being stampeded by the resident herd of bufallo to the tricky return route back to civilization - we cover it all. Why not make a full day of it and include a brace of passes in the area, which could include Swaarmoed, Theronsberg, Hottentotskloof, Bo-Swaarmoed and Gydo passes. You can do your trip planning on our Master Map, which is the ideal tool for ensuring a well planned excursion.

Mpumalanga

By the time this news release hits cyberspace, we will be off on our next pass filming expedition. As mentioned earlier, we will be making use of dual filming vehicles covering different areas daily, then getting together each evening to download footage and compare notes. Thirty seven passes are on our schedule to be completed in 4 days and weather permitting, we will be producing a range of new and upgraded videos over the the coming months. At this stage the weather forecasts are looking good.

Take the hyperlink below and enjoy the wild west as we tackle the impressive drive through the Droelandskloof. In fair weather this road is doable in a normal car, but ground clearance could be an issue. Watch the videos and decide for yourself.



* * * * *   D R O E L A N D S K L O O F   * * * * *

 

Upgraded videos added this week:

Akkedisberg Pass (R326) - An easy scenic pass offering loads of attractions (near Stanford, Overberg)

Katberg Pass (P351) - A tough gravel pass only suitable for 4x4 vehicles (2013 footage with new narration)

Devils Bellows Pass (P351) - An extension of the Katberg pass (4x4 only - 2013 footage with new narration)

Kwaaimans Pass - a scenic gravel pass in the heart of the old Transkei near Cala

 


Trygve Roberts

Editor

Thought for the day: "Don’t watch the clock; do what it does. Keep going.” ~ Sam Levenson 

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Our website is 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.

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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.
 

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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.

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