Simonskloof Mountain Retreat offers 5 Short Hiking Trails starting right on the door step of your cottage and your campsite. Most are works in progress – one way trails leading to unique places with stunning views and same route back, others are circular and most start at the parking area next to the rondavel or at the old McCormick Tractor.
For our hardcore Hikers there’s also our two day Gecko Trail.
Time: 1½ hours – circular
Starting at the Rondavel or McCormick, this trail takes you past the Rock Paintings, then swinging west via the low saddle and meandering to the top of Buchu Koppie before you reach the “Space-Harley” rock formation. From here it descends west joining the trails at the main saddle and back down to the starting point. It’s a perfect late afternoon “mountain stroll” with plenty of medicinal herbs to spot along the route.
Time: 2½ hours – there and back
Starting at the rondavel, this trail will take you via the Saddle all the way up to 1113m a.s.l. Here you have a splendid view down into the Nuy River Gorge, over to Saw Edge Peak, to Keerom’s trout farm, and into the Breede river valley with Brandvlei dam in the far. The rippled valley stretching out towards Saw Edge Peak is Perdekloof… The return path is the same way back or if you are mountain wise, you may bundu-bash further via the ridge and back down to the saddle.
Time: 3 hours – there and back
This is a pretty straight forward trail; simply follow the narrow jeep track down the valley, past the two cottages. Halfway down to Keerom you’ll pass “Hemel Bome” junction which leads you up onto an old – now “bonsai” – pear orchard and a burnt out leopard trap. At the dam junction stay left and shortly after you’ll come to the inauguration plaques above the dam wall – built in 1954 and raised a further 3,5m in 1990 making up for the lost 1 million m3 due to siltation and keeping the capacity of the dam at 10 million.
Time: 3 hour – there and back
Starting at the Rondavel or McCormick and following the Buchu trail for a while, this trail takes you via the rock paintings, several little rock pools and inspiring rock formations all the way up to the Telkom-tower. From there – with a permit only – you can keep going along section B of the Gecko Trail all the way to Langdam Guest Farm.
Time: 2 hours – there and back
Starting at the Rondavel the trail goes up to the Saddle and down along the upper section of the Gecko Trail all the way to the “Nose” here it splits off to the right down to the waterfall. The left takes you into the Nuy River Gorge along the permit only Section A of the Gecko Trail. The pool can be dry in summer, but the views are awesome and worth the hike.