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Browsing: Western Cape

The Witblitz Route Just off the R62, at the top of Huisrivier Pass, a gravel road turns left down to Bennie and Selma Nel’s Matjiesvlei Guest Farm, where one can drive the Bojaankop 4×4 trail, among other attractions Story & pictures Richard van Ryneveld I wager there isn’t a place in Africa where SA4x4’s blue Isuzu D-Max could feel more at home than at Bennie and Selma Nel’s Matjievlei Guest Farm up near Calitzdorp. Why, you might ask? Because Bennie Nel – the fifth generation to farm this land, high up in the foothills of the towering Swartberg Mountains –

If you need a short trail to put your low-range 4×4 to a mild test, and you are based in the Cape, then Sneeukop 4×4 near Rawsonville may be just the thing. It’s ideal for those who are pressed for time and want to fit in a few other activities (from mountain biking to wine tasting) into their weekend visit, or have family members who are not too keen on spending the entire weekend bumping over rough ground. Whatever the case, as 4×4 trails go, Sneeukop is short and sweet. We used the trail as  a quick shake-down test for

Part of the allure of the Karoo National Park is its expansive network of 4×4 trails which take capable visitors out to the far-flung corners of the reserve. There, in the most remote places, remarkable sightings are often made. The park does quite a bit to market the refurbished Klipspringer Pass, a sedan-friendly climb to a plateau that serves as the final exit point from the rest camp area. Yes, it’s a beautiful drive, but it won’t get your blood pumping. TRAIL INFO Price: R280 per vehicle Terrain: Gravel with large rocks and hard clay, changing to shale and rock

After getting the shivers again from too much city time, the Cederberg began calling my name this month. A spot of webtrawling and phoning-about soon offered up a solution to the blues: just two-and-a-bit hours from Cape town is Koningskop, which would match my needs – a good campsite and a trail that wouldn’t damage a shiny new test car. While camping, I usually avoid human contact like one should avoid cheap Indian food, but on this particular long weekend the site was packed. There are 50 grassy, mostly shaded sites, though, so it wasn’t a problem… and the little

I’m sorely embarrassed to say that, since having bought my new-to-me ’96 Disco last month, I hadn’t aimed it at any serious off-road obstacles. As cool as I thought I was when driving over kerbs at the mall, I needed to drive through some scratchy bushes in an attempt to scrape away some of the British Racing Green paint-job. Having thoroughly explored most of the Cederberg’s 4×4 trails, I thought we’d covered the area, but Boegoeberg had somehow escaped my radar. The 4×4 Trails Situated on the upper eastern side of the Cederberg, or ‘Engelsman se Berg’, the working farm

Located just outside the picturesque little farming town of Bot River, the Honingklip trail is a paradise for any nature lover, and especially for one driving a 4×4. As it traverses part of the majestic Kogelberg mountain complex, the picturesque trail offers everything from brutal axletwisting mayhem to leisurely exploration. Set in and around the Ruwami Nature Reserve, the trail offers eagle-eye views of the lush valley and ocean far below. The main trail stretches over about 28km of intersecting tracks, and explores the top of the mountain’s large plateau at its furthest reaches. It’s generally a leisurely drive with

Rushing to get things done is never good, and when our freelance journo in KZN was minus a vehicle to do a trail review, the task was dumped on my desk. “Find somewhere beautiful you’ve never been to before, and have fun.” That was my brief. Yeah. Life is tough. I have been burned before, though − driven hundreds of kilometres, only to find a place that’s no more than a few gravel roads masquerading as a 4×4 destination, or one somewhere with terrible accommodation. This time, though, luck was on my side: after five or six phone calls, I

When it comes to strong vehicles, nothing really compares to a Nissan Patrol; so, when one such brute gargled up into our driveway two years back, twin tanks full, I needed a place to test it properly. The obvious nearby 4×4 trails surrounding Cape Town came to mind, but a seemingly overlooked spot between Touwsrivier and Montagu cropped up on my mud hunt – Wagon Wheel 4×4, or Karoo Adventures, as it’s also known.Words Andrew Middelton Upon my arrival, the rain had turned to ice, sheeting down like gravel dumped from a plane and easily defeating the Patrol’s feeble wipers.

Wanting to follow in the footsteps of adventurers past is an often-used excuse for modern explorers to leave the house. And when you consider the Ox Wagon Trail, its name alone conjures up the spirit of adventure.Words & Images Andrew Middleton & Kayla Cloete Historically in use by westerners since the 1600s, and before that by elephants and Khoi San people, the route is of important historical and ecological significance to the Attaquaskloof and Outeniqua regions. The Trail itself stretches around 450km, and follows exactly the same path that trekboere, hunters, traders and military personnel used for centuries. Had the

With the kids chewing gum wiped all over your leather, and ‘are we there yet’ ringing in from the back seat, you know you need a break, but where? Your wagon is full of kit and there’s a long road ahead but you’re keen on some adventure and respite from the noise. Touwsberg certainly offers the latter, but what about the former – adventure? Well, on a recent trip deeper into the Karoo, we stopped in to check it out. Located just off Route 62, past ‘Ronnie’s Sex Shop’ between Barrydale and Ladismith, and four hours out of Cape Town,

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