Mahai to Witsieshoek / Sentinal Car Park

03 Sep 2009 09:39 #629 by DeonS
Is there any other way up to the Amphitheatre from RNNP exept from Sentinal car park side? Was told there might be a way up but I don't seem to find to much info exept that you end up at Witsieshoek.

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04 Sep 2009 02:29 #632 by intrepid
Historically, the way up from Royal Natal was via Basuto Gate, where Witzieshoek Resort is, or via The Neck (which is now closed to allow the trail to rehabilitate). This then brings you onto the Sentinel Car Park road.

In the days of Rydal Mount Hotel, the way up was via Namahadi Pass. The pass is still used by the locals, as well as another pass closer to the Chain Ladders. Both are accessed from the Fika Patso side.

Other than that the Amphitheatre Frontal climbing route, and it's variations, is approached via the Tugela Gorge. This is of course a climb, not a hike. :)

Someone also once described to me a scramble down the Inner Tower Gully, with an abseil needed at one or two points. Also not something which one would call a regular access point.

Take nothing but litter, leave nothing but a cleaner Drakensberg.

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04 Sep 2009 12:25 #634 by gollum
How about Beacon Buttres Gully?

Btw, is it North or South of the Buttress itself?

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04 Sep 2009 19:15 #635 by intrepid
Yep, there's that too, though it's approach is the same as the Chain Ladders. It lies directly North of the actual summit of Beacon Buttress, but it's part of an extension to the buttress. A very viable alternative to the Chain Ladders and an ascent can be part of a day loop to the Falls and back down via the Ladders.

Take nothing but litter, leave nothing but a cleaner Drakensberg.

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07 Sep 2009 11:03 #638 by fatshark
Gollum, the gully is imo the best way to summit the Amphitheatre. Esp if you have folks in your party that freeze on the ladders. They will find the gully a whole lot more manageable.

Plus when you summit you are right on the top of Beacon Buttress with that incredible view across to Eastern Buttress and Devils Tooth,

Its a bit more strenuous than the ladders, though, but well worth the effort.

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06 Feb 2015 15:11 #62781 by GuyP
Hi Guys

I was wondering if anyone could tell me what the quickest/shortest walking route is from Mahi camp sight to the Sentinal car park? If anyone has a GPS track that would be ideal. I downloaded the Royal Natal Hiking tracks off here but the route they have seems to break out almost South and then East and back Norht again.On Google Earth it looks like you can approach the car park fairly directly. Also any idea of the quality of the path and steepness?

Cheers

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06 Feb 2015 19:32 #62783 by supertramp
Hi GuyP

To my knowledge there is no access path from Mahai directly to Sentinel Car Park. The only way I know is from the campsite via Gudu Pass to Witsieshoek Resort from where one can use the road going up to the car park (this would however be quite a slog).

Cheers

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07 Feb 2015 10:43 #62784 by ghaznavid
I have done the RNNP to the top and back again route before. We used the Basutho Gate route. It is very gentle, easy to follow with a very well worn trail.

The walk to Witsieshoek is long (scenic, but it does get a bit boring at times). I have always hitch-hiked the road section, it is very long and not particularly interesting - although I have walked the first and last 1km of the road section.

Getting to the top is nothing, the way you do it is everything – Royal Robins

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07 Feb 2015 11:34 #62785 by intrepid
There is a very old track heading up to The Neck approaching from Mahai Cave. This is however closed (and even sign-posted a such) since it is under rehabilitation from over-use. The way to go on trails is via Witsieshoek as mentioned.

Take nothing but litter, leave nothing but a cleaner Drakensberg.

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10 Apr 2015 09:37 #63355 by GuyP
Thanks for the info - So I figure I will go up to Witsies Mountain Resort from Mahai. Is the consensus that the route via Gudu pass is the best? any idea on how long that would take?

Cheers

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