104: 4x4 trail

Leisure Wheels (South Africa) - - CONTENTS -

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...

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