Welcome, Guest
Username: Password: Remember me
This image is hidden for guests. Please log in or register to see it. Write-ups on trips done to the Drakensberg.

TOPIC: Hike report: Giants Castle - Giants Pass

Hike report: Giants Castle - Giants Pass 28 Mar 2013 09:49 #56421

Hikers: myself, JonWells & Tots
Date: 8 to 10 March 2013

Our mission: 1st night Giants Ridge to contour path, 2nd day up Giants Pass & Giants Castle peak, 3rd day return to car same way

We arrived at the Giants Castle gates after 21:00, the guard was a little confused and kept saying we would need to camp at the resort for the night and hike in the morning, we told him we were leaving tonight, he was a bit confused but let us in.

We left the car park just before 10PM to a perfect night, around 15 degrees and no wind to speak of. Everything was locked so Tots wasnt able to fill up with water bottle (there must've been a tap somewhere though). Jon & Tots ended up having to go past the Giants Ridge turnoff to fill up at the river cos there was no guaranteed water on the ridge.

We arrived at the contour path at 01:15AM, found a nice spot to camp about 50m back along the ridge path. By the time we'd gone to fetch water we were in no mood to set up our tents for a few hours sleep so decided to just sleep on the path seeing as the weather was so good. We eventually settled in around 3AM for a few hours sleep before the sun woke us up!

This image is hidden for guests. Please log in or register to see it.



We finally had our first sight of the Giant in front of us


This image is hidden for guests. Please log in or register to see it.


We set off up Giants Pass as the mist started to roll in, we lost the path a couple times which made it a bit harder, negotiating a couple scree fields which we didn't really need to go up


This image is hidden for guests. Please log in or register to see it.


As we reached the head of the pass it started to rain, our plans to summit Giants Castle peak were abandoned and we headed down to the valley to find a camping spot. We had a few interested spectators while setting up our tents, they came within a few metres just staring at us as if we were mad.

This image is hidden for guests. Please log in or register to see it.



Jon & Tots had brought tarps which proved very handy in making a shelter in a dry river donga, the afternoon was spent trying to get dry & relaxing. The evening was spent in the shelter finishing a bottle of Vanilla & Coffee Bean flavoured Russian Bear vodka, after all we couldn't make Tots carry it down the pass! By now the dry river was starting to trickle from the constant drizzle.

We woke up to ice on our tents and a perfect view, we didn't realise that our camp was only 100m from the escarpment until morning. You can see the shelter on the left.

This image is hidden for guests. Please log in or register to see it.


This image is hidden for guests. Please log in or register to see it.


The couple waterfalls as I posted in the pic quiz thread

This image is hidden for guests. Please log in or register to see it.


This image is hidden for guests. Please log in or register to see it.
  • Smurfatefrog
  • Smurfatefrog's Avatar
  • OFFLINE
  • Platinum Participant
  • Posts: 424
  • Thank you received: 183
Last Edit: 28 Mar 2013 10:03 by Smurfatefrog.
The administrator has disabled public write access.
The following user(s) said Thank You: Bigsnake, ghaznavid

Hike report: Giants Castle - Giants Pass 28 Mar 2013 09:51 #56422

This image is hidden for guests. Please log in or register to see it.


This image is hidden for guests. Please log in or register to see it.


We set off down Giants Pass into the mist & light drizzle, hiking poles are really a must going down here, I slipped countless times, fell on my butt 4x & Tots went for a 5m tumble, he was lucky to grab onto a tuft of grass although he did send a boulder tumbling down the pass which narrowly missed myself & Jon.

This image is hidden for guests. Please log in or register to see it.



Unfortuntely we still didn't get a view from Giants Ridge, one way in the dark, back in the mist!
  • Smurfatefrog
  • Smurfatefrog's Avatar
  • OFFLINE
  • Platinum Participant
  • Posts: 424
  • Thank you received: 183
The administrator has disabled public write access.
The following user(s) said Thank You: intrepid, Stijn, brio, tonymarshall, Sabine, pfoj, DarkwingDave

Hike report: Giants Castle - Giants Pass 28 Mar 2013 14:02 #56424

Thought I'd throw in "Smurf & the Abyss" :whistle:


This image is hidden for guests. Please log in or register to see it.
  • JonWells
  • JonWells's Avatar
  • OFFLINE
  • Snow Watch Co-ordinator
  • Posts: 394
  • Thank you received: 230
Last Edit: 28 Mar 2013 14:05 by JonWells.
The administrator has disabled public write access.
The following user(s) said Thank You: Frosty Ice, Bigsnake, Smurfatefrog

Hike report: Giants Castle - Giants Pass 28 Oct 2013 10:41 #58902

I need to stop looking at photos around Giant's Castle peak - every little bit of mountain seems to have a possible "new" pass...
Smurfatefrog wrote:
This image is hidden for guests. Please log in or register to see it.

If you head through from the escarpment on the true right of the top, crossed the river just above the waterfall and hugged true left you could probably get to the bottom of the photo with a bit of exposure, but not huge difficulty (in theory anyway). I would need a photo from lower down to see the rest - one to check out for the future. On the bright side I have earmarked Lotheni as my next pass hunting ground once I am through with Giant's Castle - currently 8 passes done, 4 passes to go (Corner, N Jarding, S Jarding and Thumb), 4 possible passes to check out (Auditor, Popple or Gypaetus North Pass depending on how the approach goes, 007 and Katana). A possible 3rd Hlubi and South Thumb Pass have also come to light recently - but I need to do a bit more fieldwork before heading out on those :silly:
  • ghaznavid
  • ghaznavid's Avatar
  • OFFLINE
  • Platinum Participant
  • Posts: 2210
  • Thank you received: 632
“There is something fundamentally wrong in treating the Earth as if it were a business in liquidation.” ― Herman E. Daly
The administrator has disabled public write access.

Hike report: Giants Castle - Giants Pass 28 Oct 2013 11:53 #58903

ghaznavid wrote:
I need to stop looking at photos around Giant's Castle peak - every little bit of mountain seems to have a possible "new" pass...

You need to stop procrastinating and study!!! :laugh:
  • Viking
  • Viking's Avatar
  • OFFLINE
  • Gold Participant
  • Posts: 195
  • Thank you received: 80
The administrator has disabled public write access.

Hike report: Giants Castle - Giants Pass 28 Oct 2013 14:41 #58905

viking5 wrote:
You need to stop procrastinating and study!!! :laugh:

Study - hmmm, I'm not familiar with that word, can you use it in a sentence? :silly:

But yes, you are right - back to the [rather boring] auditing lecture :whistle:
  • ghaznavid
  • ghaznavid's Avatar
  • OFFLINE
  • Platinum Participant
  • Posts: 2210
  • Thank you received: 632
“There is something fundamentally wrong in treating the Earth as if it were a business in liquidation.” ― Herman E. Daly
The administrator has disabled public write access.

Hike report: Giants Castle - Giants Pass 28 Oct 2013 16:02 #58906

Ghaz, I'll email you a couple other high-res pics which might be helpful
  • Smurfatefrog
  • Smurfatefrog's Avatar
  • OFFLINE
  • Platinum Participant
  • Posts: 424
  • Thank you received: 183
The administrator has disabled public write access.
The following user(s) said Thank You: ghaznavid