why it was built in the first place, but let's be eternally thankful to those responsible as this pass is an out and out gem. We travel a lot of passes, as you can imagine, but this pass knocked our socks off. Verdant green hills, crystal clear trout filled streams, tall towering mountains, and a winding gravel road ascending some 700 meters around butresses and crags with waterfalls mixed into the menu. It has all the magical elements combined to make for a truly marvellous drive - one you will remember for a lifetime. We rate this as the No.1 Eastern Cape pass (and the competition is ferocious!)
We suggest a few days in this mountain wilderness of the Eastern Cape. Base yourself in Rhodes and drive two passes a day, taking in the Big 8. Baster Voetslaan, Carlisleshoekspruit, Volunteershoek/Bidstone, Naudes Nek, Barclay, Pitseng, Lundins nek and Pot River Passes. There are more if you want - like Lehanas, Moodenaarsnek, Killians, Greylings and Jouberts Passes.
Decide for yourself. Here is a preview of what you can experience on the Otto du Plessis Pass which was built between 1959 and 1961 and named after Dr. Otto du Plessis. You will find his name in several other locations in the Cape including schools and nursing homes. There is a major suburban road in Tableview, Cape Town carrying his name as well as the beautiful Gamkaskloof Road in the Swartberg (commonly known as Die Hel). This causes some confusion as some references incorrectly list the Otto du Plessis Pass as being in the Swartberg. That road is called the Otto du Plessis Road.
Otto du Plessis Pass (Part 1)
Otto du Plessis Pass (Part 2)
We also completed a video on the relatively minor Perdepoort Pass on the N9 between Graaff-Reinet and Middelburg.
During October we visited the lovely Penwarn Country Lodge, an equine and trout centre near Underberg in KZN and produced a short video clip for them.
All that remains is for me to wish all of you safe driving during the festive season whether it be real or cyber.