More often than not you come across people that get startled by you mentioning hiking and Johannesburg in the same sentence. Honestly, I also was shocked at the discovery that there is more that 6 hiking trails found with within the 50km radius of Johannesburg. Below is the list of all the that I have visited so far. I get to hike these every Saturday because hiking has now become my way of living. Take a look and see which one to take on first. First in line is the spectacular:

 

Hennops Hiking Trail

The Hennops hiking trail consists of three trails setting out from Hadeda Camp. This is by far the most interesting hike of the lot because of its unique features. This trail has two river crossings – a suspension bridge and a cable car. Funniest thing ever is watching people struggling to cross the bridge because of the fear of falling into the water. There are also interesting historical sites along the trail, amongst others is an old field hospital used in the Anglo Boer war.

Apart from the nine mammal species in the game camp, Kudu thrives in this area and may be seen all over the farm. Hennops has Dassie, Zebra and Crokodilberg trails that many hikers come to explore and most of the time are defeated by. This hiking trail can be mistaken as an easy trail until you keep getting surprise hills out of nowhere. The trail is clearly marked and one cannot easily get lost.

Opening Times:

September – April: 07:00 – 18:00

May – August: 07:00 – 18:00

Location: Pretoria/ Hartbeesport

Difficulty: Moderate

Admission Fees: R72

Groenkloof Nature Reserve

The reserve is a particularly popular destination for hiking events with each trail offering a varying degree of difficulty. Groenkloof’s hiking trails are well marked and cater for people of all endurance levels, ranging from casual hikers to those who prefer proper hiking adventures. The 4km White Trail, 3.5km Red Trail and 10.5km Yellow Trail snake around the grassy slopes of the reserve and through the indigenous woodlands. Though the trail is clearly marked you still come across people that are lost,  mainly because they miss the last turn that will lead you back to where you started. Therefore people are advised to be vigilant and take note of the land marks.

Groenkloof also has a very healthy bird life and an array of interesting game. These include an Impala, Kudu, Blue Wildebeest, Ostrich, Zebra, Giraffe, Red Hartebeest, Jackal, Duiker, Blesbuck and Sable. Overnight facilities which sleeps 12 people are available. On site there is also Bamber Youth Camp, for youth groups of up to 60 persons, available for your enjoyment.

The Nature Reserve offers a variety of activities for nature lovers such as horse riding , day/ night drives, Mountain biking, 4×4 driving and a picnic area.(Please bring your own braai wood).

Opening Times:

September – April:  06:00 – 17:00

May – August: 07:00 – 17:00

Location: Pretoria

Difficulty: Moderate

Admission Fees: R43

Kliepriviersberg Nature Reserve

The Klipriviersberg Nature Reserve is conveniently situated 10 km from the centre of Johannesburg. This 700 ha nature reserve is home to 650 species of indigenous plants and trees, 230 bird species and is one of the largest nature reserves in the Johannesburg metropolitan area.

There is a wide variety of fauna in the reserve including larger game such as Zebra, Black Wildebeest, Blesbok, Springbok and Duiker. Some of the smaller animals found in the reserve are Porcupine, Hedgehog, Slender and Yellow Mongoose, Tree Squirrel, Dassie (Rock Hyrax), Black Backed Jackal, Cape Fox, African Civet and the Cape Spotted Otter. The reserve boasts a surprising diversity of interests ranging from botanical, geological, archaeological, historical and cultural interest and other protected species.

However, hiking is the main activity in the Reserve. It boasts a network of criscrossing trails that will take you from a short 2.5km to a 16km long hike. It is one of the longest hikes around and is deemed to be a bit difficult because of the length and the very steep hill that can be experienced at the beginning of the blue trail.

Opening Times:

Summer ( September – April): 07:00 – 17:30

Winter ( May – August): 07:00 – 17:30

Location: Omondeor

Difficulty: Moderate

Admission Fees: Free

Faerie Glen Nature Reserve

This area is known as a prime hiking and birding destination with a view of Pretoria East from Rhenosterkop. This nature reserve boasts the following hiking trails: Hadeda (2,3km), Acacia (3,2km) and Kiepersol (4,2km). Although the smaller mammals such as Mongoose, Hedgehogs, Hares, Porcupines, Cape Clawless Otter, Bush Babies and Small Spotted Genets are difficult to spot, there is evidence that they are present.

 

If you’re not fit enough this hiking trail can surprise you. It is short, however it is a bit challenging. It keeps you on your toes, as the terrain changes in each and every turn.

Opening Times

September – April: 06:00 – 18:00

May – August: 06:00 – 18:00

Location: Pretoria

Difficulty: Easy

Admission Fees

Adults 13 years and older per person: R22

Schoolchildren 7 – 12 years per person: R6.00

Pre-schoolchildren 0 – 6 years per person: Free

Pensioners 60 years and older per person R5.00

Season tickets valid for 6 months

Modderfontein Nature Reserve

The Modderfontein Nature Reserve boasts a varied landscape that includes rolling green hills, tranquil dams and savannahs that stretch far into the distance. This makes it the habitat of choice for a number of the local species such as the Black-backed Jackal, Cape clawless Otter, four different kinds of Mongoose and the elusive Duiker, amongst others. The Spotted-necked Otter can also be found here. There are more than 250 recorded species on this reserve, Fish Eagle, Black Swan, Jackal Buzzard, Sacred Ibis, Little Grebe, Crimson-breasted Schrike, various Herons, Verreaux’s Eagle, Long-crested Eagle, African Spoonbill, Fiery-necked Nightjar, Barn Owl, Goshawk, Marsh Owl, Blue Crane, and plenty of other exciting species.

The various trails through this nature reserve invite you to explore the region on foot (hiking) or in the saddle (cycling). This is a haven for off-road cyclists and where a lot if cycling events are held.

Opening Times:

September – April: 07:00 – 17:00

May – August: 07:00 – 17:00

Location: Moderfontein

Difficulty: Easy

Admission Fees: Free

Lonehill Koppie

This very chilled hike, is located right in the middle of Lonehill. The easily noticeable natural features are a small pond and big rocks. The Nature Reserve consists of fauna and flora though they are both not in large numbers as compared to other reserves.

Opening Times:

September – April: 06:00 – 18:00

May – August: 06:00 – 18:00

Location: Lonehill

Difficulty: Easy

Admission Fees: Free

 

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