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Outeniqua Trail – 6-13 December 2014

This trail is located in the heart of the Outeniqua Mountains, from and including George to beyond Knysna in the South Eastern Cape. This 108km, 7 day trail makes its way over mountains, along historical rivers and through enchanted forests, where one can overnight in well kitted out huts located just far enough to ensure one gets through enough mileage to complete the trail in the days required as well as rest the weary legs from long days out on the trail.

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This Tale tells our journey as recorded exactly how we experienced it each after each day’s speed hike leg.

6 December – arrived at Beervlei Hut

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Nice hut!

 

7 December – Beervlei Hut to Windmeulnek Hut, 17km

Departed at 6:50am, 5 hours 40 mins. Lovely single track at times, did a bit of running. Backpacks nice and light and work well! Nice tea break at river, broke lots of spider webs. Saw Leopard tracking traps. Got burnt today. Windmeulnek Hut really nice on a saddle of two mountains – lovely views and great coffee!

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8 December – Windmeulnek Hut to Platbos Hut, 16km:

Departed 7:30amish, 8 hours 20 mins. Tough single mountain track, 13kms of it! Lovely flowers and lots of water. Nice lunch at swimming spot. The first descent we were warned by a baboon’s bark which enabled/forced us to run about 3kms. Lots of uphill today with very hot weather. Otherwise it was a beautiful day of speed hiking – good to be alive! Almost like the trail ‘took us along’ it was so nice and such an incredible trail!

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9 December – Platbos Hut to Millwood Hut, 16.3km:

A lot of Jeeptrack, quick walking and a nice Homtini River to cross. Did some running and went past the old mining area of Millwood along the river (Jubilee Creek). Had burgers at Mother Holly’s. Lots of water on the trail and great experiences. Thankful to be here and experience the trail. Trail very well marked – very impressed!

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10 December – Millwood Hut to Rondebossie Hut, 14.8km:

Day started off misty and rainy and soon rained quite a lot. A lot of jeep track hiking (+-50 % of day). Crossed the Knysna River and had coffee and tea there in the rain – a highlight for both of us! Otherwise nice single track through beautiful forest with amazing moss and mushroom formations. The section after the river was tough, slippery and technical (but nothing we couldn’t handle!). Starting to feel it today – legs, feet and hips sore and stiff – this is what 65kms over 4 days does to one – a challenging multi-day trail, but one we are up for!

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11 December – Rondebossie Hut to Diepwalle Hut, 13.3km:

Nice big hill, lots of single track with a bit of running. Lovely flowers and views, clear sky, except for sore feet. Saw Knysna Heads from the top of the Jonkersberg hill. Walked through amazing forest and saw fresh elephant dung! A lot of areas remind us of Fiela se Kind book at school. Interesting historical facts about wood-cutters and woodcutting in the area.

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12 December – Diepwalle Hut to Fisantehoek Hut, 14.2km:

Reasonably flat today, however we are both sore and somewhat tired. Lovely Fynbos and single track forest and did some more running today. Heard Woodpecker and an owl. Making our way to the finish now.

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13 December – Fisantehoek Hut to Harkerville Hut, 12.7km:

Nice flat trail that crossed the N2. Did a lot of running – probably the most of the entire hike! Lovely forest basically the whole way and to hear sounds of the forest. Nice Harkerville Hut which we did not stay at. Nice pancakes at the finish at the Coral Tree Café and hamburgers at Mother Holly’s.

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