This pass is one of the more difficult passes in the Cathedral Peak area but is still used quite often. This is probably due to the fact that it is the most direct route to the escarpment from the hotel, has a large and comfortable cave at it s top (Twins cave) and is often used as the third day of a popular weekend route between Mlambonja Pass and Organ Pipes Pass.
edit: Trip reports
Re the approach to Mlambonja Pass: is there a route that follows the river up from the hotel? I have done One Tree Hill and the Neptune Pools route before, but I see what may be a trail in one of my photos. It looks overgrown in places, so if there isn't a decent trail, the routes on either side will probably be quicker.
Thanks in advance!
Hike report to follow. To be titled "Mist-taken Elephants".
Poem by JRR Tolkien "Oliphaunt" - kind of relevant here...
Grey as a mouse,
Big as a house,
Nose like a snake,
I make the earth shake,
As I tramp through the grass;
Trees crack as I pass.
With horns in my mouth
I walk in the South,
Flapping big ears.
Beyond count of years
I stump round and round,
Never lie on the ground,
Not even to die.
Oliphaunt am I,
Biggest of all,
Huge, old, and tall.
If ever you'd met me
You wouldn't forget me.
If you never do,
You won't think I'm true;
But old Oliphaunt am I,
And I never lie.
Can you spot Cathkin Peak, Champagne Castle and Monks Cowl in this photo...
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The plan is to take two collegues from work along who have never hiked in the Berg before. They are reasonably fit and have hiked before, just not in the Berg.
With the above in mind,I need advise on both routes. Just looking at the maps it looks like the Northern route could be the better one going up (you climb up to the lower Berg fairly quickly so get a big climb out of the way while it's not yet too hot, then you walk on around 2000 - 2100m for about 7km's till the lower path joins up with this one). Doesn't look like there is much water around though, that seems to be available only closer to the pass itself. The views from here should also be nice as you quickly gain ground.
The lower path will probably have more water but also probably more bundu bashing. Easy initial start then after about 4km's you climb up to the middle berg when the sun is already high in the sky.
Any advice and possibly photos will be much appreciated.
I have a track for Mlambonja Pass, that I will send you later, when I'm at home. Not sure which route that would be though. Its the path more used.
I did the Bell Traverse last weekend and the Berg is very dry. There was no water at Twins cave or anywhere close by. The closest water is over the escarpment in the river.
Not sure how far down Mlambonja the last water is as we went down the Camel.
There should be water until about half way up the pass, to maybe 2400m.
This thread will also be helpful www.vertical-endeavour.com/forum/drakensberg-trips/55659-didima-day-hiking.html
Views on the One Tree Hill option are very nice for the Inner and Outer Horns. But if you want classic options looking all the way up Mlambonja Pass, once again the C5 route is better.
Take nothing but litter, leave nothing but a cleaner Drakensberg.
I was wondering, at the point where the path turns around and starts descending, is it possible to keep going straight up along this river? (see my red line indicating the proposed route) The terrain doesn't look too difficult on the map, and at the top you link up with the Bell Traverse route. Right at the top there seems to be a path (game or human?) going in the same direction.
Anyone done this route before?