Klipspringer Hiking Trail Augrabies NP

Start: Augrabies National Park, rest camp
Finish: rest camp (the trail is circular)
Duration: 39.5 km, 3 days
Fitness: fit, the trail is both demanding and hot.
Booking is essential.

Our tip: the terrain is rough and you will need a sturdy pair of hiking boots, insect repellent, warm sleeping bags and clothing (cold nights!), sunscreen, hats and plenty of water

Only open between the months of April and October, as it can get ridiculously hot in this part of the Northern Cape, the Klipspringer trail ranges through a dry, hot climate with views of plummeting gorges and the respite of rivers.

The environment is unusual and for those who have not hiked in amongst succulents, rodents and reptiles an exceptional experience. The Augrabies National Park is regarded as one of the country's most scenic national parks.

You will more than likely spot the hike's namesake – the klipspringer, or rock jumper, a little antelope that makes rock jumping effortless and is often seen standing sentinel on large rocks.

The circular hike's three days are divided into roughly equal distances – between 12.5 km and 14 km. Day one is regarded asa the longest of the three, day two (much of it spent along the banks of the Orange River) the hottest, and day three the most taxing.

The self-guided trail is on semi-arid terrain and as a result is sometimes difficult to follow. There are several trail signs, cairns and rock piles that serve as indicators.

Overnights are spent in rustic huts that contain bunk beds and mattresses, toilets and drinking water, fire wood and basic cooking utensils. There is no electricity, and no showers.

The highlights of the hike are: the granite rock sculptures, hewn by water, wind and extreme temperatures; the mighty Orange River; and the falls.

Reserve the Klipspringer Hiking trail in advance by calling SANParks Central Reservations. The hike takes a maximum of 12 people.

Your accommodation on the day preceding and after the hike will need to be arranged separately.