SHORT HIKING TRIPS IN AND AROUND MEIRINGSKLOOF
The main trail starts at the ablution facilities (on the Ladies side) and most of the other trails branch off from it. There is a notice board at the ablution block showing the trails inside the Meiringskloof area itself. Some of the trails continue outside of the Meiringskloof area up into the Didibeng Mountain Park. A map of Didibeng is available at the office / person on duty at the gate.
Trails inside Meiringskloof area
1.The “Moon Veil” trail branches off from the main trail to the left very close to the start of the main trail. It is a steep but short climb of about 5 minutes to reach the open cave. Add 10 minutes to enjoy the view and rock-formations and 5 minutes back to the main trail.
Round trip: 20 min
2.The “Holkrans” trail (if you only do one hike – do this one!) is followed by starting at the ablution block and staying on the main trail. Follow the main trail over the small bridge to cross the Meiringskloof Spruit, ignore all trails branching left and right and proceed until you reach the “Holkrans” – quite a large hollow cave of about 100 m in length and approximately 30 m deep. Well worth the visit.
Ideally carry on through the cave, exit on the far end, follow the path until you reach the chain ladder with which you can climb out to the top of the cliff.
The first part of the trail up to the small bridge is easy walking. The rest varies between a steady incline and short stretches of steep incline.
Round trip: 1 hour to 1 hour 20 min depending on level of fitness and rests undertaken
3.“Bushmen Cave” of “Boesmansgrot” can be reached via one of two trails – it is an enjoyable circle route to go up one way and come down the other – both routes have different points of interest along the way.
Way 1 – Follow the main trail over the small bridge – look out for the turn-off to the right. Boesmangrot or Bushmen Cave. The trail from there to the cave is fairly steep but not very long. Proceed through the cave and exit on the other side – follow the trail down to the Swallows Nest & go past it, over the wooden bridge over Meiringskloof Spruit until you reach the main trail again. Turn left and proceed down to the camping site.
Way 2 – Follow the main trail and take the Swallows Nest / Swaeltjienes turn off to the right. Go over the Meiringskloof Spruit with the wooden bridge, pass the Swallows Nest / Swaeltjienes and continue following the trail to the right until you get to the Bushmen Cave. Proceed through the cave, exit on the other side and follow the trail down to the main trail. Turn left, cross the small bridge and proceed down to the camping area.
The cave has a shower-waterfall down the front – the result of a fountain at the top. Careful – the rocks under the waterfall can be slippery. There are quite a few bushmen paintings – to the left better preserved. Unfortunately graffiti has spoiled most – but that also tells a story. The cave has interesting stalagmites and “brand-netels” plants – careful, if you touch them they burn your skin!
Round trip: 30 minutes of more depending on time spent
4. Spruitroete 2 – follow the main trail, turn off to Swaeltjienes on the right, go over the
Meiringskloof Spruit with the wooden bridge, turn right onto the footpath and follow it all along the creek. Turn right at the next wooden bridge and hike back up to the camping site, or carry on with Spruitroete 1.
5. Spruitroete 1 - take the footpath between K16 and K19 and hike down to the spruit.
Turn right and follow the path all the way down to the end – hike up and exit between the swimming pool and the office.
Longer trails up into Didibeng
1.“Water Tunnels” or “Tonnelroete” via Holkrans - follow the main trail through the Holkrans (see 2) and on until you get to the chain ladder (20-30 min). Carefully climb up the chain ladder to the top of the cliff (or take Jacob se Trap / Jacob’s Ladder, which is about 30 m before the chain ladder on the left hand side, to the top of the cliff). Turn to your right and proceed over the flat sandstone until you reach the municipal dam. Be careful on the edges of the steep ravines – especially at places where water marks the sandstone black. It can be very slippery when wet. (5-10 min)
Keep on the right side of the dam – follow the edge of the dam until you get to the sandstone outcrop with the white-washed rock-pile - or keep to the 4x4 road until you see the turn-off to the left “Water Tunnels”. Follow the track road until you get to the sandstone outcrop with the whitewashed rock-pile. Look for the white arrows on the sandstone and climb down to the dam’s feeder stream – turn right and follow the stream until you get to the very interesting tunnels carved by water into the sandstone.
Return the same way – back up, turn right go past the dam, follow the cliffs until you find the chain ladder, climb down, hike through the Holkrans all the way back the way you came.
Round trip: 2 to 3 hours depending on time spent on the way.
2. For more serious hiking ask for a map of Didibeng at the office; you could
-climb to the top of Ventersberg via Maluti view, or
-walk all the way up to Ouhout Camp, stop at the Waterfall on the way
Ouhout Camp is good place to stop for lunch or sleep-over on longer hikes
- there are toilets, tapped fountain water and close by a built rock pool “swemgat”.
On a hot day come cool off in our swimming pool or make a day of it and have a braai or pick nick by the swimming pool area. There is a small children's pool and a large pool.