tourist-climbing ;-)

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tourist-climbing ;-)

Postby Elyne » Mon Feb 03, 2014 10:39 pm


My friend and I will do a trip to South Africa this July. We we'll drive from Capetown over Durban to Johannesburg in 3 weeks and visiting the parks, hiking in the nature, sightseeing... being a tourist ;-). But we might do a climb as well. But were to start in a country we haven't been...? So I've go a few questions:
1) Any hint for one nice long bolted climbing route, around 7 ropelengts, maximum 6a (I don't know if you use this grade-rates...), on our route, not so hard to find the route as well as the start? We've go a rented car and our tent, so we're flexible.
2) As another option, we can go bouldering (if we decide not to take all the climbing equipment with us). Any bouldering spot we definitely must have been?
3) Were can we find the topo/guidebook?
4) Any other recommendation about climbing in South-Africa? Do you need permit, are there specific rules or preoccupations...?

And if you want to go climbing in Belgium our Europe, just ask ;-)


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Re: tourist-climbing ;-)

Postby Forket » Mon Feb 03, 2014 11:54 pm

In short, coz you gonna get a lot of replies:

1) DO Jacob's Ladder on Table Mountain in Capetown.
2) Go to Rocklands if you want to boulder followed by Oudshoorn, our only limestone crag
3) The RD's / Toto's can be found on the main page of this website under the TAB > wiki
4) Go to WATERVALBOVEN 2,5hours east of Johannesburg.

Cautions: Do not wave you valuables around and dont go to stupid places especially if its dark. Ask the climbers for the best sleeping locations as some places you may be taken advantage of. EVERYONE IN SOUTH AFRICA WANTS SOMETHING, you cannot help everyone, your generosity will be taken advantage of.

Enjoy the trip, this country is amazing

Ebert Nel

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Re: tourist-climbing ;-)

Postby Justin » Tue Feb 04, 2014 7:28 am

Bolted Multi pitch routes in Montagu - ... -buttress/

More topo's:

Grade Table: ... mparisons/

Permits: You will generally be asked to pay for then at the entrance
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Chris F
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Re: tourist-climbing ;-)

Postby Chris F » Tue Feb 04, 2014 10:59 am

Can you climb with trad gear?

If I was a sport climber travelling from Europe (home of a sea of bolted limestone) and climbing 6a or so I wouldn't bother with Oudshoorn.

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Re: tourist-climbing ;-)

Postby ccjoubert » Tue Feb 04, 2014 1:39 pm

For long bolted lines at that grade;

Long bolt to freedom 17, Swinburne
Magical Mystery Tour 18, Cogmans buttress in Montagu
Sands of time 17, Paarl

All the routes are on the wiki

July is a good time for bouldering in Rocklands


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Re: tourist-climbing ;-)

Postby Elyne » Tue Feb 04, 2014 5:27 pm

Wow, so many good ideas! I haven't got yet to time to check them all, but thank you!!


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Re: tourist-climbing ;-)

Postby Elyne » Wed Jun 04, 2014 7:10 pm


We decided that there's plenty to do in South-Africa, and taking our climbing equipment for one route will be to heavy... bot taking our climbing shoes is no problem... so we're checking the bouldering area's on our route.

- Someone mentioned 'oudtshoorn', but I can't find a guide for buildering, someone has it?

- what's the best spot for bouldering in Cape Town, Topside? Someone has a guide?

- If I see the guides on, I see several buildering area's we pass by, with one is definitly worth a visit? (we don't have crashpad, moderate level): Alicedale, Cape St. Francis and Lady's Slippers Boulders

Thanks for the help!



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Re: tourist-climbing ;-)

Postby Ghaznavid » Wed Jun 04, 2014 8:20 pm

There are many experts on climbing in SA on this site - but I am probably the furtherest from one :lol:

On the way from Durban to Jo'burg, make sure you hit the Drakensberg (SA's highest mountains - highest point of 3482m). Depending on your schedule you can get in anything from an awesome day hike to as long as you want. Plenty of caves to sleep in as well. If you want to, there are some climbing routes (including 1 sport route). If you are up for doing some hiking - let me know your fitness level and how long and I can give you some route ideas.
"There is something fundamentally wrong in treating the Earth as if it were a business in liquidation." Herman E Daly

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Re: tourist-climbing ;-)

Postby tygereye » Thu Jun 05, 2014 7:14 am

If you want to boulder, the first choice should be Rocklands.
You will feel like a child in a toy shop.
They also have crash pads for rent there, if remember correctly.

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Re: tourist-climbing ;-)

Postby zoed » Thu Jun 05, 2014 7:41 am

Definitely go to Rocklands - July is Rocklands season - the best time of year to be there.
You can rent pads, buy guides, camp, meet other boulderers etc at De Pakhuys:!bouldering/c2h9

There's also amazing bouldering in Cape Town: Echo Valley, Topside, Redhill, Coppermine - but July is pretty wet and rainy.
If you're in Cape Town I think you can rent pads from City Rock climbing gym.

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Re: tourist-climbing ;-)

Postby Warren G » Thu Jun 05, 2014 2:33 pm

Take a day out of your life and climb the chain ladder to the top of the berg. take 5 minutes out of your life and look at other threads on this topic on this site.

Basically there is more climbing in South Africa than can be done in a couple month road trip, and so most spit the country in two, but as you are wanting the road trip but not to carry all the gear I agree with a rocklands stop over, plus Harrismith/Swinburne for a little trip break, Drakensberg for the hike mentioned above. Its a shame you aren't bringing gear because you are driving past some great routes.

We get enough of these questions that you would think our "SA Ticklist" on the wiki isn't better trafficked.
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