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Cederberg Crossing
 

Tankwa Karoo to Sandveld
 

7 - 17 MAY 2020

 

TANKWA TO SANDVELD VIA CEDERBERG

During this 11-day trip we will explore an area known as the Greater Cederberg – biodiversity Corridor with Graafwater in the north, Kagga Kamma in the south, Atlantic Ocean in the west and the R355 gravel road to the east as the area’s borders. We shall travel through 3 biomes, i.e. Karoo Succulent Biome, Cederberg fynbos and the Sandveld biome. The Cederberg stretches for about 50km south-north and 20km west-east. The mountain takes its name from the endangered Clanwilliam Cedar tree. This tree as well as the snow protea is endemic to the area. Mediterranean fynbos is the dominant vegetation of the area.

Felids leopard and caracal are the apex predators of the area. The rock hyrax or "dassie", meerkats and other mongooses’. Larger antelopes e.g. bontebok, gemsbok, Oryx, the vulnerable Cape mountain zebra, and chacma baboons are some of the mammals one will find in the Cederberg. There are also many birds species, small mammals, reptiles and insects. Other threatened species found in the Cederberg Wilderness Area include the Clanwilliam yellow fish, Clanwilliam redfin and sawfin fish.

San rock art and evidence of the earliest human inhabitants can be found in many caves and rock overhangs throughout the area of which the Stadsaalgrotte probably are the most well-known. The settlement Europeans brought forestry and some agriculture and led to massive destruction of the local cedar trees, with thousands felled for telephone poles, furniture and housing. The European arrival also led to the elimination of the San population. In the north, the old Moravian mission station of Wupperthal still remains, the heart of a small subsistence farming community, and home to a local industry producing velskoene, traditional soft leather shoes

 

Due to the altitude, the dry climate, and the rocky terrain, few farms exist. Rooibos tea is the area's most famous export, though fruit and tobacco are also harvested on some farms. The Cederberg area includes one winery, the highest in South Africa.  Around the Wupperthal area there are several subsistence farms. Some commercial pine plantations remain around the Algeria forest station. Proteas and other fynbos plants are also grown. Several of the farms have become predominantly guest farms catering for the local and international tourist market.

The Cederberg is a big favourite with hikers, mountain climbers, birders, botanists and wilderness holiday makers. The route we shall follow has a lot of history to it and we shall visit villages like Wuppertal and Eselbank. Historic sites like Kagga Kamma, Truitjieskraal interpretive trail, Stadsaalgrotte are all part of our, to do list. We shall also arrange a wine tasting at Dwarsrivier farm, which is the highest wine producing farm above sea level and the farm has delivered many award-winning wines in the past. We shall also visit a restaurant that serves traditional South African dishes.

The geology of the area is very important as it creates the different conditions for the diversity of plant species to flourish. The Cederberg rises from sea-level to over 2000m at “Sneeukop” and it lifts the cold damp sea air up the mountain that causes rain and fog on the mountain. The height of the mountain blocks the rain and fog from the east of the mountain causing this area to be very dry. The Tankwa Karoo has an average rainfall of between 50 – 70 mm per year.
 

IMPORTANT INFORMATION


All information supplied in the agenda is given in good faith by Cederberg 4x4 and compiled from the latest information available at the time.  The activity times, as indicated on the agenda, are subject to change without notice and at the sole discretion of the guide.

Vehicles : Only vehicles with low range capabilities can be accommodated.
Trailers  : Small Trailers & small Off-road Caravans CAN be accommodated on this excursion.
Grading  : Trail grading is between a 1 and 3.
Nearest Town :  Clanwilliam.
Guide     :  Aubrey Penderis. 

RENDEZVOUS


PLACE :  CERES VALLEY DUTCH REFORMED CHURCH PARKING AREA, HAMLET STREET CERES.

DATE :  THURSDAY, 7 MAY 2020.

TIME :  09H30 SHARP.  PLEASE RESPECT YOUR FELLOW PARTICIPANTS AND BE ON TIME.

DIRECTIONS TO RENDEZVOUS


The rendezvous will be at the Ceres Valley Dutch Reformed Church on the R303. Coming from Cape Town with the R46 and enter Ceres arriving in the main Road. Follow Main Rd and turn left onto the R303 towards Prince Alfred Hamlet. The church will be on your left. Stop in the parking area behind the church.

DESTINATION 1 – (Arrive Thursday 7 May 2020 – Depart Saturday 9 May (2 x nights)


Our first destination is Swartrug campsite at Kagga Kamma. We travel from Ceres via the Gydo Pass to the town of Op-die-Berg. Just past the town we turn right and drive the Katbakkies pass. Beautiful rock formations will be encountered en-route. Look out for the sewing machine in the rock formations.

DESTINATION 2 – (Arrive Saturday 9 May 2020 – Depart Monday 11 May 2020 (2 x nights)


After an early breakfast we travel to the Biedouw Valley via the Old Post Route and Karretjies Pass. We will do a possible water crossing of the Doring River on the water level in the river. We will set camp on the farm Mertenshof for the next two nights. En-route and on the farm, we will experience some great rock formation and river pools for swimming. The farm has a 4x4 route that can be driven as an optional extra.

DESTINATION 3 – (Arrive Monday 11 May 2020 – Depart Wednesday 13 May 2020 (2 x nights)


Today we travel to Dwarsrivier farm Via Wupperthal and the Eselbank Pass. Along the way we will stop in Wuppertal and Truitjieskraal. Here enough time will be on hand to visit the Stadsaalgrotte, partake in a wine tasting session and swim in the natural rock pools in the river.

DESTINATION 4 – (Arrive Wednesday 13 May 2020 – Depart Friday 15 May 2020  (2 x nights)


After spending 4 days in the Cederberg we will drive to Lambert’s Bay. Our route takes us along the banks of the Olifants River and the Clanwilliam dam. We will stop at Clanwilliam to replenish our groceries, fill up with fuel and inflate our tyres. From here it is tar road to Lambert’s Bay. A scrumptious dinner (own account) can be enjoyed at Bosduifklip, one of the well-known eateries in Lambert’s Bay. Please take note that Bosduifklip does not have card facilities. We will also visit Bird Island and if we are lucky, we just might spot the Sishen - Saldanha train.
 
DESTINATION 5 – (Arrive Friday 15 May 2020 – Depart Sunday 17 May 2020  (2 x nights)


From Lambert’s Bay we travel inland to our last stop at Marcuskraal, close to the N7, between Citrusdal and Clanwilliam. This is a very relaxing stay-over and as an optional activity we could drive the 4x4 trail on the farm. Sections of the trail are technical and difficult, but you can enjoy peace of mind as there are by-pass routes at all the difficult sections. It is here where the trip officially ends and we say our good-byes before heading home.

FUEL STOPS EN-ROUTE


Ensure that your vehicle is refuelled at the rendezvous point PRIOR to the start of the briefing.  Sufficient fuel stops will be made en-route eliminating the necessity to carry additional fuel.

CATERING


Everyone must be totally self-sufficient for the duration of this trip. 

GENERAL


• Please remember that no alcohol may be consumed by either the driver or passenger(s) whilst driving at any time. Please respect your guides and your fellow participants and save the alcoholic beverages until we return to the camp each day. 
• WATER - Water is available at the campsite, but always advisable to bring own drinking water on excursions
• WOOD – Each vehicle to bring along 5 bags of braai wood.
• ICE – Ensure you have sufficient ice.
• Electricity power points are available in the camps except at Kagga Kamma. Extension leads required.
• A communal braai area will be determined on arrival at the campsite. 
• Only one fire permitted for the group.
• It is advisable to use Portable braais in the communal braai area.
• Bring braai grid, braai stand, tongs and other cooking/eating utensils.
• Supply your own light.  Remember spare batteries.
• Bring Black bags (what we take in, we take out).
• The days could be warm and the nights cooler. Pack clothing accordingly.
• Remember to bring your sun block and hat.
• Remember to bring your cameras, video cameras and spare batteries and extra memory cards.
• Remember your table and chairs.
• Always consider the possibility of rain. Pack clothing accordingly. 
• Always advisable to wear comfortable closed shoes or boots.
• Advisable to have a broad rim hat and sun block on hand.
• It is advisable to always have an umbrella or awning available.
• Use tie-down straps to secure all items packed as loose items can become missiles.
• No generators permitted on trips.

VEHICLE REQUIREMENTS


• All vehicles and Off-road trailers must be in sound mechanical condition.
• Always have your spare keys with you.
• Recovery points fitted to the front and rear on your vehicle are a prerequisite.
• Your own Kinetic/recovery strap will be advisable.
• A tyre pump and tyre pressure gauge will be required to deflate/inflate tyres.
• Carry a fire extinguisher, which is easily accessible in the event of an emergency.   
• Always carry your personal medical kit. Pack where accessible.
• All other recovery equipment will be supplied.

29MHz TWO WAY RADIOS


Communication between participating vehicles on any 4x4 excursion is important for many reasons.  It ensures the safety of drivers, passengers and vehicles while on a 4x4 trail, where drivers can communicate with one another as regards to their location and situation, not to mention the interesting information that is shared with participants.  The fun part is the many interesting stories that are shared among participants taking the boredom out of the long distances we need to travel to enjoy the great outdoors.

We suggest all 4x4 vehicles that don’t have a 29MHz two-way radio, HIRE one from us at a nominal fee of R350-00 for this excursion, especially if you are planning to drive the 4x4 Trails on the farm.

Should you be hiring a 29MHz radio, please ensure that your lighter socket is working.  If you intend running more than one item from the lighter socket, ensure to have a double adapter and spare fuses on hand.     

Should you wish to make a once-off investment and purchase a 29MHz radio, we have negotiated a special deal for all Cederberg 4x4 participants.  For more information, contact Marina on 021 910 1363.  

If your vehicle is fitted with a 29MHz radio, please make sure that channels 1, 14 and 23 are open and working for this excursion.  

COST
Use the table below to calculate your personal cost for the trip

                                                                                                                    COST          Nr. Participants       Nights      TOTAL
Kagga Kamma Swartrug camp entry fee R209-00pv   R209-00
Swartrug - camping adults ..................................................................  R145-00pppn                                        2 
Swartrug - camping children 2 – 12yrs .................................................    R72-50pppn                                        2 
Biedouw 4X4 Trail - Optional ...............................................................  R200-00   
Biedouw – Camping adults  .................................................................  R100-00pppn                                        2 
Biedouw – Camping children 7-16yrs ....................................................    R80-00pppn                                        2 
Biedouw – Camping children 0-6yrs ......................................................       FREE                                                          FREE
Sanddrif – Camping ............................................................................    R85-00pppn                                        2 
Lambert’s Bay per site for 4 people .......................................................  R217-00pspn                                        2 
Lambert’s Bay extra person (Max 6 people per site) ................................    R30-00pppn                                        2 
Marcuskraal 4X4 Trail - Optional ...........................................................  R250-00   
Marcuskraal - Camping adults ..............................................................  R140-00pppn                                        2 
Marcuskraal – Camping children 2 – 11yrs .............................................  R100-00pppn                                        2 
Marcuskraal – Camping children under 2 ...............................................      FREE                                                            FREE
Cederberg 4x4 facilitating, coordinating & guide fees .............................. R2200-00pv                                                   R2200-00
Radio hire should your vehicle not be fitted with a 29MHz two-way radio ...   R350-00   
                                                                                                                                                                         TOTAL  

 
BOOKING AND PAYMENT CONDITIONS


Should you wish to join us on this excursion, please contact Marina immediately on 021 910 1363 to obtain the booking form for this excursion.

• We can only accommodate a maximum of 12 vehicles on this weekend. 
• All Cederberg 4x4 excursions are subject to a minimum of 8 x vehicles.
• All bookings are made on a first-come-first-serve basis.
• To secure your place, contact Marina for a Cederberg 4x4 booking form.
• Your booking will only be confirmed upon receipt of your completed and signed booking form.
• A 50% deposit is required upon booking.
• The balance is payable on or before Wednesday 29 April 2020.
• Should you intend being part of this tour but cannot pay the deposit now, please contact the office in this regard to make alternative arrangements.
• Your completed and signed booking form binds you to all conditions on page one and two of the booking form.
• Should you wish to cancel or withdraw after booking for this trip, you will be required to find other people to take your place before any refunds will be considered.

PLEASE NOTE:  NO PETS ALLOWED

FOR MORE INFORMATION CONTACT MARINA on 021 910 1363

 

All information supplied remains the intellectual property of Cederberg 4x4.