Request : Info on huts

13 Apr 2011 10:33 #2695 by Mattalica
Hi all.I registered on this site today, and I must say this is a great site! I have been hiking in south africa since I was three years old and have been all around the country and seen alot of the berg. I am by no means an experienced hiker as these have all been family trips and I have only ever done one "overnight" hike (sani to bushmans nek)
I have recently been inspired after a few return trips to the berg with my friends and I would like to take up hiking again, but more seriously.So that brings me to my first question for the forum:)
A few friends and I would like to do a 2 day hike, and seeing we dont have tents and its gonna be a first time for some, we decided we would only like to stay in a hut, that has a toilet and if possible a shower (I'm sure that has a few laughing) The only huts that I know of are the ones along the Giants cup trail, but some of the guys are more keen on areas like monks cowl ect (or just Royal Natal in general)I have seen a few posts on huts but I didnt really get an idea of where exactly they are as I dont really know all the passes and special names related to the berg. So could you guys/gals please let me know where I can find a trail with these kind of huts,if they exist in Royal Natal. If not are the Giants cup huts still usuable and do they stil have toilets? I really think I would need to read "How to #$@% in the woods before I start roughing it:whistle: but after this hike, I think I might just have that read as I want to see it all !!!

Regards
Matt

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13 Apr 2011 17:49 #2697 by ghaznavid
Replied by ghaznavid on topic Request : Info on huts
Rofl, toilets and a shower... I believe that Swiman Hut and Poelela Hut on the Giants Cup Trail. Bannerman hut has a toilet and a large bottle, you walk 100m fill the bottle and use the water to fill the cistern of the toiled, take a portable shower if you must shower in the berg (a swim in a pool is just as good). Swiman hut is about 400m from the car park and I think Poelela hut is about the same. Maybe got to Garden Castle, spend the night at either the hotel or Swiman hut and then do Rhino Peak as a day hike (although Swiman Hut will add 400m to your hike, but atleast you can leave all your things in your car before climbing Rhino.

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14 Apr 2011 10:54 #2706 by Mattalica
Replied by Mattalica on topic Request : Info on huts
Great, thanks for the reply. I'm glad that giants cup is still an option.
Know of any huts like these in royal natal?

Matt

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14 Apr 2011 11:41 #2709 by ghaznavid
Replied by ghaznavid on topic Request : Info on huts
Outside of the hutted camps (Thendele etc) and hotel I think the only hut in royal natal is the one by the top of tugela falls, and if I am correct, that doesnt even have windows most of the time!

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14 Apr 2011 12:36 #2710 by kliktrak
Replied by kliktrak on topic Request : Info on huts
The height of luxury for a "berg hut", more of a luxurious cottage, but its a serious enough hike to get there from the SA side is Sehlabathebe Lodge - technicalluy falling within Lesotho (valid passport needed to be stamped at SA "border post") in the Southern Berg - start hiking from Bushmen's Nek.

From the luxury lounge suit, to the goose down duvet's and the fully gas powered geysers, fridge, freezer and the ceiling mounted lights, it was designed to be fit for the King of Lesotho when he visits!

for more info:
www.mountainbackpackers.co.za/details/sehlabathebe-lodge.html

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14 Apr 2011 12:55 #2712 by intrepid
Replied by intrepid on topic Request : Info on huts
Welcome Mattalica.

Other than the Giants Cup trail huts I dont think the uKhahalamba Drakensberg Park offers what you are looking for. There are huts but they are a lot more rustic, and the ones that did have abultions previously typically don't have them functioning anymore. You could try phoning Giants Castle and asking them about the state of Meander Hut - I think this may be run down now. Bannerman Hut is in good shape if you dont need toilets and showers.

Outside the park there are some options. Sehlabathebe mentioned above is a good option. There is also the Maluti Caves Trail in the QwaQwa Berg, just outside Phuthaditjhaba. They are pretty new huts and had great facilities when I used them (there are 3). Phone and check about their condition before you go though, since I'm not sure if the upkeep has been consistent. They used to have their own website, but here is a write-up on another site:
www.footprint.co.za/maluticaves.htm

Let us know how it goes.

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

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14 Apr 2011 19:37 #2715 by Mattalica
Replied by Mattalica on topic Request : Info on huts
AH great stuff, thanks to all for the replies, they are all 100% crystal clear. Now I can plan my trip. I'm only going to do this hike in June, but I am going up to the berg in May as well just to camp in my friends yard for a visit :) and to do some fly fishing. Maybe Drak Sun will have better fishing this time around....

Matt

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