Passes

This is a pass which suits the Mnweni area perfectly. Great views of the spires that jut out below the Mbundini Buttress, tricky route finding due to the absence of a path and a tough climb overall. It summits near the top of Stimela Peak with one of the best views of the Mnweni Cutback below you.

This is most probably the most difficult non-rock pass in the Drakensberg range. A very long river section, which involves boulder-hopping and bush-whacking, is followed by some incredibly steep and sustained grassy slopes in the upper reaches of the pass. It is not frequently used and the spectacular views are not much of a compensation for the frustrating river section.

Ifidi and Icidi passes are infamous for being two of the most difficult passes that the Berg has to offer. Don't let this put you off though. With enough experience and fitness, Ifidi is one of the most satisfying Berg passes to tackle with 400 vertical metres of a narrow rock gully to negotiate before topping out on the slopes of Thaba Ndanyazana.

Two hikers got stuck on a descent of what they thought was Tseketseke Pass and were safely airlifted from a snow-covered Drakensberg on August 10th.

KwaZulu-Natal Transport Department to pay damages for injuries sustained in Sani Pass accident.

 

A table presenting passes of the uKhahlamba Drakensberg Park. Provides information on route variations, whether the pass has a trail or not, or if it is a rock pass (Click here for a discussion on the ratings of rock passes) Also indicates of the extent to which the pass is used by the Basotho.

The RSA government (under the auspices of the Department of Transport) and the Lesotho Government have joined together in the application to tar Sani Pass. Although some feel that Sani may become the new highway link between Durban and Bloemfontein, most would agree that this notion is outrageous! The best reason for tarring the pass is to improve the tourism potential of the pass.

Anyone who has ventured onto the Drakensberg escarpment will know how difficult it can be at times to locate the summit of a particular pass. The use of a GPS can no longer seen as a high-tech toy. Rather it has become highly valuable in increasing the safety and quality of a trip to the Berg. A table listing GPS waypoints and altitudes for passes in the Ukhahlamba Drakensberg Park is hereby provided.

An aspect of the Berg that is a joy and challenge to hikers are the many passes leading up onto the escarpment. They may follow ridges or gulleys, some have paths, others are a formidable climb. The hiking maps indicate the popular and more known ones, though there are many more unmarked ones.