Western Cape Part 2. January - March 2013 - Cederberg

We were last in the Cederberg 10 years ago and wanted to return to see more of the area. When I was doing the bookings for Christmas and the New Year back in July I found that several places were already fully booked so we knew that it would be busy but thought that the coast would be even worse!

We spent 8 days based at Algeria campsite and although it was full we, luckily, had the pitch right at the top of the site, away from the busy area near the river and with lovely views over the surrounding mountains.

We did 3 walks from the camp, the longest was to the mountain hut (6 hours there and back). We started early to get to the top before it got too hot..

From the top of the Pass we had wonderful views down into the valley and over the surrounding mountains.

 

The Mountain hut is in a lovely location but it is very basic - literally just 4 walls and a door and grass on the floor for sleeping on!

On another walk we followed the Uitkyk River upstream to these cascades where we had a swim before returning along the other bank.

Although past the main flower season there were still quite a lot of flowering plants.

We visited the Stadsaal Caves and Rock Art. It's free if you have a Wild Card but you need to get a code for the lock before you go.

There's one main piece of rock art - elephants and people.

The largest of the caves has lots of pillars

You can walk around the Caves site where there are good views of the surrounding land.

We spent another week in the Driehoek Valley. The Sanddrif campsite was VERY full so we moved to the 'overflow' site at Kliphuis - much better for us!

We did the Wolfberg Cracks walk from sanddrif (R50 each from Dwarsrivier Farm). It was a great walk which involves some scrambling, crawling and 'chimney' climbing in the 'Narrow' Crack.

The Wolfberg Cracks at the top of the hill in the early morning sun.

As we climbed to the base of the Cracks we had a good view of the Sanddrif Vineyards in the valley below.

After an hour's uphill walking we got to the base of the Cracks and had a last look back down the valley.

We clambered onto and along a ledge and then got to the start of the Narrow Crack.

Kevin on his back sliding through a narrow tunnel.

Michelle climbing up after negotiating the tunnel.

It took us an hour or so to get though all the obstacles in the Narrow Crack, taking our time and enjoying the challenge. Once out at the top there's a wonderful view. It's possible to continue on to the Wolfberg Arch (an extra R30) but would have taken about another 3 hours so we were glad that we'd just decided to do the 'Cracks' as it meant that we could take our time. We went back down the 'Wide' Crack which still involved some scrambling and made you realise just how far it is from the bottom to the top of the Cracks.

The Kliphuis campsite is amongst these large trees in the Driehoek valley - excellent shade and lovely views.

We did several short walks from the campsite, along the river and following paths on the opposite hillside.

A 10 minute walk from the campsite were some cascades and a lovely pool for swimming.

It was nice to have plenty of time at Kliphuis. I practised taking photos of the insects around the campsite.

We'd hoped to do the Maltese Cross walk but couldn't as there'd been a fire recently in that valley, however we did take a short drive so that we could walk to Lots Wife and the Window Rocks. The walk took a couple of hours and passed through some amazing rock formations.

Lot's Wife.


The Window Rocks - with Kevin there to give a idea of the size of the rocks.

 

1. Cederberg.

2. Cape Winelands.

3. Cape Peninsula and West Coast.

4. Wilderness & Knysna, Garden Route.

 

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How much longer will this balancing rock survive!