104: 4x4 trail
Camelroc 4x4 trail
The Camelroc Guest Farm is situated 9km from Fouriesburg, literally on the border between South Africa and Lesotho, next to the Caledonspoort post. Besides offering various adventure sport options, there is also a 6km 4x4 trail on the farm. It’s quite a rough and tough one, too.
The Camelroc Guest Farm earned its name courtesy of a specific rock formation, located in the Rooiberg Mountains. And yes, it looks just like the head of a camel. Amazingly, the more beer you drink, the more it looks like a camel.
The farm has various selfcatering accommodation options, with chalets of various sizes set in the shadows of the majestic mountains, boasting a grand setting.
There are numerous activities on offer, including two hiking trails. The longer 9km trail is a tough one, despite the relatively short distance. There are plenty of challenges along the way, including climbs with names such as Heartbreak Hill and Moedbreek Hoogte. The second trail is much shorter at 3km, and combines some mountain tracks with a riverine trail.
The mountain-bike route is a new addition on the farm. There are two options: a 10km route on the farm itself, and a 30km route that features a tough climb all the way to the mountain top.
Thankfully then, there’s also the 6km 4×4 trail, for adventurers who prefer the internal combustion method, instead of the pedal-power one. However, it is certainly not the type of track where a soft-roader will live to tell the tale. It’s rough and – following some heavy rains before our visit that washed some of it away – very, very tough.
The trail essentially takes you up the mountain, eventually to a lookout spot called Caesar’s View. It offers a view into Lesotho, and the Maloti mountains in the distance.
To get to that viewing spot though, you need to keep your 4×4 wits about you. As mentioned, when some of the tracks are washed away, and there’s still plenty of moisture in the slippery surface, the going can get extremely tricky. We completed the trail in two Toyota Land Cruiser pickups with chunky all-terrain tyres, front and rear differential lockers and trick suspensions – and even with these vehicles there were a few ‘ooooohhh crikey!’ moments.
A stock double cab bakkie with fancy side-steps and highway terrain tyres won’t be too happy on these tracks, there may be some bent bling along the way.
But once you’ve conquered all the ditches, rocks and slippery bits, after around an hour of driving, and you reach Caesar’s View... then it’s all worth it. It really is a beautiful part of the world.
So, next time you’re heading to Lesotho, need a beautiful place to stay overnight and feel like a bit of off-roading, Camelroc may be right up your alley.
Opposite page: Rocks, very steep gradients and mud can turn the Camelroc 4×4 trail into a really tough test. Above, clockwise from top left: The self-catering chalets are set among the shadows of the beautiful Rooiberg Mountains. You need a capable 4×4...