We answer your most common questions about the trail.
A great deal of the charm of this untamed coastline lies in its rugged and wild nature, and hiking it is therefore not a mere "stroll in the park". It is however achievable by people of all ages who have maintained a good level of fitness and agility, and an active lifestyle. The hike does traverse a few steep climbs which some may find challenging but many walkers who would be discouraged by the need to carry a heavy pack are now able to take the challenge and enjoy what is a strenuous but attainable hike through some of South Africa's most beautiful scenery.
Due to the nature of the trail we regret that we do not accept bookings for children under the age of 12 years. No upper age limit has been set as it is determined purely by the fitness of the individual. We have had fit hikers in their 70's who have come through with flying colours!
Although a First Aid kit is carried by the guides, please ensure that any special prescribed medication is carried on your person and that the guides are made aware of any pre-existing conditions prior to embarking on the hike.
All your meals are included with the hike, including snacks, water and lunches on the actual hiking days. (Your guides will carry these and picnics will be waiting for you mid-hike). When making your booking, please advise reservations of any special dietary requirements. A cash bar is available at all venues.
We recommend the following:
Cell phone reception (of varying strengths) can be found at the GRNP - Tsitsikamma Section, Misty Mountain Reserve and The Fernery. While on the trail itself there is often no reception but the guides do have radio contact with Management at all times.
Forest mammals are notoriously elusive, but those that may be seen in the Park and on the hike include bushbuck, blue duiker, bushpig and hyrax (dassies). Vervet monkeys and the Chacma baboon are also present in the forests. While along the shore you may well spot the following:
Cape clawless otters range from light greyish brown to very dark brown, with white face and chest. They are seldom seen as they are mainly nocturnal and very shy. Found in scrub and forest in the vicinity of fresh water their potential longevity is 16 years.
The most common seal along our coast is the Cape Fur Seal. Rich brown in colour and covered in thick fur, they are perfectly adapted to water dwelling. They feed mainly on anchovies, pilchards and squid and have been protected in our waters since 1893. Their numbers have recovered well and in SA consume upward of 2 million tons of fish per year.
Common, Bottlenose and Indo Pacific Humpbacked Dolphins weigh between 175 and 250kg. The Common dolphin is the smallest and found in groups of up to 1000 feeding on squid, octopus and small shoaling fish. The Bottlenose are often in groups of more than 100 and are known to hunt cooperatively using ultrasonic sounds.
The Humpback whale at 13m and 40 tons is a seasonal visitor moving through our seas between feeding grounds in the cold Antarctic and the warm Mozambican waters. The Southern Right whale is larger, weighing up to 65 tons. They breed in our waters and from June to November are found in small groups playing, courting and nursing their newborn calves. Distinguishing features are callositic growths on the head, and the lack of a dorsal fin. Bryde’s whale, a year round resident with a prominent dorsal fin, is a loner and weighs only 14 tons.
Along the coast look out for Black Oystercatcher, Black winged Seagulls and Cormorants. The Knysna Turaco (Loerie), Narina Trogon, Rameron Pigeon, Cinnamon Dove, Chorister and Starred Robin, Knysna Warbler and many other forest birds can be seen en route though many of them are shy and difficult to spot.
Yes - here it is - and you also receive an A3 map and information booklet after you have booked.