Attakwaskloof Hiking Trail

Robinson Pass, Western Cape

 


Although officially closed, Western Cape Nature Conservation Board allow groups of hikers who have previously walked this trail to book it. The trail still has the problems that previously existed, namely the lack of safe parking and accommodation at the beginning, the fact that the days are long and need a high degree of fitness to walk them and the remoteness of the overnight hut and the ensuing problems in maintaining it to the high degree that Cape Nature insists. We wish to thank Cape Nature for allowing us to continue to use this trail and still hope that one day the Attakwaskloof Trail will once again regain its rightful place as one of the great trails open to all.

         
 

The trail starts close to the top of the Robinson Pass. There is a board marking the beginning point.

 
The start of the trail
 
         
 
 

The trail can be slippery when wet especially as one is confronted with a myriad of colour from the fynbos that surrounds you and distracts your attention

 
         
 

The flowers keep you in awe or the beauty of the floral kingdom

 
 
         
 
 

The Pincushion Protea make a beautiful clean impression

 
         
 

The flowers seem so delicate and soft that you almost expect to come across an Elf or similar creature.

 
 
         
 
 

There are beautiful, crystal clear mountain streams to cross......

 
         
  ....or tarry a while and dip those sore feet.  
 
         
 
 

More stunning flower and beautiful views.

 
         
 

The plaque near the overnight hut tells of the importance of Attakwaskloof to the early settlers who used the route on their trek inland from the coast for 150 years from the 1600's.

 
 
         
 
  More flowers to gaze at.  
         
 

A photographer has a problem in knowing which way to turn to take the next photograph!

 
 
         
   

Many of the flower appear to look back at the onlooker and smile.

 
         
 

There are also opportunities for swimming along the route.

 
 
         
 
 

A walk through Attakwaskloof makes one realize that there are so many aspects of nature, little things that we tend to take for granted but so desperately need our protection. As users of our pristine areas, we are really privileged to be able to use these paths at such a nominal cost. Is it not time for us, as hikers, to join hands with Nature Conservation to help maintain what is surely part of our rich heritage.

 

Conclusion

A beautiful trail closes (at least for normal bookings). If the hiking community is not proactive, this could  herald the beginning of the closures of some of our most treasured trails. It is not a time to apportion blame but a time to take stock of the situation. It is a time to see how we, as hikers, can work together with land owners so that at the end of the day we can preserve what we treasure so much, for the good of future generations.

The Attakwaskloof Nature Reserve through which the trail runs forms part of the Outeniqua Nature Reserve and is administered by Western Cape Nature Conservation Board

Any comments can be sent to me at tim@footprint.co.za


Footprint Hiking Club

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