The upcoming hikes thread

17 Oct 2017 11:41 #72263 by TheRealDave
Interested in another Southern Berg excursion...

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18 Oct 2017 06:16 #72264 by Papa Dragon

Interested in another Southern Berg excursion...


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24 Oct 2017 13:38 #72272 by DorkyHero
Replied by DorkyHero on topic The upcoming hikes thread
We were actually thinking of a trip to the Southern Berg same weekend. Any thoughts on itinerary etc? What’s the weather like this time of year in the Southern Berg?

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31 Oct 2017 10:50 #72300 by Bruere
Replied by Bruere on topic The upcoming hikes thread
Hi guys

Just a reminder. Our 4day/3night Mafadi Via Corner pass & down Leslies is still on.We start on the 23rd Nov - 26 Nov.We don't have space going down or back to Pretoria but if anyone is in the area and want to tag along, please feel free.This will be our first Drakensberg trip.
Pm me for my phone number if you want to chat.

The more the better.

Super excited I literally can't wait!!

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01 Nov 2017 11:21 #72307 by DorkyHero
Replied by DorkyHero on topic The upcoming hikes thread
Hey guys, need some solid advice for which route to take.

We are headed to the Berg weekend 10 Nov - 13 Nov for either a 2 or 3 night hike.

So, with that in mind, what are the best mountain pass hikes in the Berg (Anywhere in the berg) for 2 or 3 nights?

We are not shy of long or difficult routes but would prefer nothing that requires technical equipment (Scrambling / light climbing is fine though).

We have recently done:
  • Up Ifidi Pass - Down Mbundini Abbey (2 Nights / 2 1/2 days)
  • Up Mnweni Pass - Down Rockeries (2 Nights / 2 1/2 days)

All help, suggestions, planned itineraries, overnight stops and general advice welcome!

Thanks guys,

Matt

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08 Nov 2017 10:58 #72331 by Quentin
Replied by Quentin on topic The upcoming hikes thread
Hi guys.

I’m planning a 4-day hike for December in the Injisuti area, and would just like some feedback regarding our planned route. We are experienced hikers and reasonably fit, and I have done several backpacking trips in the Drakensberg, although never in this area.

I’m aware of the regular afternoon thunderstorms during December, so we’ll start hiking early each morning, and also have an extra day if need be (if we are delayed too long for whatever reason).

Day 1: Hike from Injisuthi Camp to Centenary Hut.
Day 2: Hike from Centenary Hut up to Upper Injisuti Cave, via Judges Pass (and summit Mafadi peak if time and weather allows).
Day 3: From Upper Injasuthi Cave, Summit Mafadi peak (if not done on Day 2) and hike north all the way to Vultures Retreat for a lunch stop. Then descend Grays Pass and camp at Keith’s Bush camp.
Day 4: From Keith’s bush camp, a long hike back to Injasuthi Camp around Sterkhorn (via Blindman’s Corner).

On my Drakensberg maps I did notice a shortcut to Cowl fork (heading between Champagne Castle peak and Monks Cowl peak I believe), but I’m not sure how doable this is? Has anyone followed this route, and would it really save us time, or would the slog up and over take just as long as around?

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08 Nov 2017 11:44 #72332 by Nicolaas
Replied by Nicolaas on topic The upcoming hikes thread
Hi Quentin, from my experience this detour is not recommended. The North slope is manageable with a mix of rock and grass, but the south-facing slope has a lot of scrambling, boulder hopping and bush whacking. There are also a few places you have to traverse rock slopes and during summer these might turn into waterfalls which could be dangerous.

For interest sake I would also like to read other people's opinions on this route.

Do you mind if someone also joins your hike, I've never been to mafadi and would like to join if it is possible.

Regards

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08 Nov 2017 20:56 #72333 by plouw
Replied by plouw on topic The upcoming hikes thread
First time in 3 years I've visited this site...:S and more than 4 years since I last hiked in the berg. :thumbsdown:
I like the improvements on the site!
Will be spending 5 nights at Royal Natal in late December. Doing day hikes and being lazy. I've heard about some recent incidents at the chain ladders on the way to sentinel. Is it still relatively safe for day hikes?

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09 Nov 2017 09:45 #72335 by Riaang
Replied by Riaang on topic The upcoming hikes thread
Hi Quentin,

Your Day 1 is an easy one, day 2 also easy. You can also go up Corner Pass (my favorite) either from the contour path as you would go for Judges, or you can do the Northern High Approach (ascend the hill directly in front of Centenary hut). Where the NHA enters the chimney for Corner pass you can also take the Around the Corner pass (the path that turns out to the left about 10m after the NHA path terminates in the Corner Pass gully) which will come out between Judges and Corner. These 2 passes will get you to the top the fastest.

Your day 3 is going to be a long one, from UIC to Leslies is a good 9km's or so (depending on the line you take - going via Mafadi will add a bit of distance), then from there to Ships another 9km's, and another 3km's to Grays. If you are fit it's very doable, just take note that you are in for a bit of distance (quite a bit more than on day 1 and 2) and then have to descend Grays pass as well. You can always tent at Vultures retreat if you are running late, not a hard stretch back to Moncs Cowl campsite the next day.

Why would you want to go over Moncs Cowl? It will be much faster getting on the contour path from Keith Bush Camp and around Hlathikulu Nek back to camp than to go over Moncs Cowl and then down to Cowl Fork. Am I misunderstanding your question perhaps? For Cowl Fork I would descend via Ships to Cowl Fork (lots of bundu bashing in the Ships riverbed) then onto Shada Ridge and back to camp.

All in all a very enjoyable 4 days hike, whichever variation you take. Enjoy!

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13 Nov 2017 09:58 #72349 by Quentin
Replied by Quentin on topic The upcoming hikes thread
@ Riaang & Nicolaas:
Thank you for your input, on day4 we will then definitely take the contour path from Keith’s Bush Camp around Hlathikulu Nek.

@ Nicolaas:
Unfortunately we won’t be doing this route in December anymore, as we are struggling to decide on dates that will suit all the members in our party. So will only do this route next year, in Feb/Mar perhaps. I will probably still be heading out for a 3day solo hike in the Cathedral Peak area, but will decide closer to the time.

Thanks for all the advice/input regardless.

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