Elandshoek Pass

24 Jul 2018 12:55 #73714 by Riaang
Replied by Riaang on topic Elandshoek Pass
Hi All,

We're planning on exploring the area around Giants Castle a bit this weekend. While looking at possible route variations my eye caught Elandshoek pass. Anyone been down it lately? And the contour path, how does it look?

It is definitely a bit further than any of the regular passes a bit to the north, but it is there, so I should attempt it some time or another :-)

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24 Jul 2018 15:38 #73723 by ghaznavid
Replied by ghaznavid on topic Elandshoek Pass
Please post how it goes - I am leading a hike that will be coming down that way in 2 weeks time.

"A common mistake that people make when trying to design something completely foolproof is to underestimate the ingenuity of complete fools." Douglas Adams

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25 Jul 2018 08:24 #73727 by AndrewP
Replied by AndrewP on topic Elandshoek Pass
I went up Elandshoek Pass a year ago.

It is really easy to find the top of the pass. Just get onto the highway cutting along the flat ground at south side of Giants.

The path is pretty easy to follow on pass itself. Once it flattens out a bit, look out for a feint trail breaking out left and heading towards the obvious saddle.

The contour path is sort of there, but you will not really get lost if not on it.

If you have a garmin, my map has the pass on it. If not, any osm based map will also work.

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25 Jul 2018 14:57 #73731 by Riaang
Replied by Riaang on topic Elandshoek Pass
Cool, thanks Andrew. Got your map (works great!), plotted the route as a descent option :-)

I'm taking a newbie along on this hike, and I promised my brother in law an easy hike for once, so depending on how the group feels on Sunday morning and how early I can get them out of their sleeping bags will determine our route back to Giants castle camp.

Last question - how is the water situation around Giants hut currently. 

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26 Jul 2018 07:21 - 26 Jul 2018 07:38 #73733 by tonymarshall
Replied by tonymarshall on topic Elandshoek Pass
On the Easter long weekend 2017, elinda, Richard Hunt, Thora,Papa Dragon, Single Speed and tonymarshall did a circuit at Lotheni, ascending
Elandshoek Pass and descending Lotheni Pass. 

On the first day we ascended Taylor’s  Pass from Lotheni Office, tenting between thetop of Taylor’s Pass and the base of Elandshoek Pass below the ridge of The Sisters peaks. In the late afternoon Single Speed and I went to the top of the South Sister peak, and had this view of the route of the path contouring around the lower slopes of South Ridge to the base of Elandshoek Pass. 

 

The path is difficult to make out in the photo above, so zoomingin the same photo, the path can be seen crossing in out of the foreground
ridges and valleys in the photo below. 

 

The next morning was overcast and misty, so we were fortunate wehad had this view the previous afternoon. We headed up the slope from our
campsite, soon finding the path again, and commencing our traverse in and out around the ridges and valleys. 

 

We had received some information that there were two pathsapproaching Elandshoek Pass along South Ridge, and that it was better to use
the upper one, so we were keeping a lookout for the split in the paths, which was difficult to spot. The entire group missed the split, but we fortunately
saw the upper path above us before we were too far past the split, and went back and got onto the upper path. Although generally the path generally contoured, it got quitesteep at some of the stream crossings, which became quite slippery in the damp and mud. 

 

 

After contouring for what seemed like forever, we reached thegully/stream at the base of Elandshoek Pass. An awkward rock ledge has to be
negotiated to get into the gully. 

 

Soon after entering the gully from the right (true left), thepath crosses to the left (true right), and continues to the top of the pass on
the true right. 

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Last edit: 26 Jul 2018 07:38 by tonymarshall.

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26 Jul 2018 07:34 - 26 Jul 2018 07:45 #73734 by tonymarshall
Replied by tonymarshall on topic Elandshoek Pass
By late morning we had ascended above the level of the mist. 

 

For the first time we could see what lay ahead. 

 

The cliffs of South Ridge protruding out of the mist was an impressive sight, and we frequently stopped to admire the view and take photos.

 

A view back down Elandshoek Pass 

 

There were a few rock bands to scramble through, but none of the scrambles were difficult and with the good trail the whole way navigation was
easy. 

 

We had a quick lunch near the top of the pass, where there was still water in the stream not far below the path. Looking up the pass, it
appeared as if we were heading into a dead end, surrounded by cliffs. 

 

Right at the top, a narrow grass ledge to the left appears, and this is the final stretch to the top of Elandshoek Pass. 

 

The group at the top of Elandshoek Pass, fltr Single Speed, Papa Dragon, Thora, Elinda, Richard and Tony. 

 

The view south from near the top of Elandshoek Pass. The highpoint on the left horizon is Redi, and at the centre of the photo below The
Hawk and The Tent are behind the mist, with Lotheni Pass in the cutback where the mist extends furthest to the right. 


That night we tented close to the summit of Giant’s Castle, on a small levelish spot with an awesome view of the escarpment to the north, and
the next day we descended Lotheni Pass.

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Last edit: 26 Jul 2018 07:45 by tonymarshall.
The following user(s) said Thank You: elinda, JonWells, ghaznavid, Richard Hunt, Riaang, Andreas, SingleSpeed

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