View from the Perdekop trail across to the Franschhoek Pass
Mont Rochelle Nature Reserve (1759 hectares) was proclaimed in 1982. It forms part of the Boland Biosphere Reserve, a UNESCO declared World Heritage Site. The highest peak within its boundaries is Perdekop (1575 m); other prominent peaks are DuToitskop (1418m) and Middagkrans (1029 m).
The reserve offers a number of beautiful hikes on very well maintained trails which are mainly accessed by the security gate at the park entrance where entry permits can be obtained.
For each of the following hikes I have provided a small amount of relevant information in this web page with more information (including a ‘. gpx’ file and a ‘kml’ file which in layman’s language gives a track) in an associated Route Page (see below). I have also written a post for each trail along the lines of a personal narrative with photos. Finally I hope that you enjoy exploring this area as much as we have.
Parking is available on the access road to the reserve at the security gate
Permits This link MtRochelle site provides background information on Reserve, the permit system in operation and other useful information. Note that the park is not part of SAN Parks and wild card holders still have to pay a permit fee
Note that for the hikes we have done and described below we have often combined hikes to have a longer day out.
Water Availability depends on the hike and season. The only reliable places we have found top up our water bottles is on the path from Breakfast Rock to the Uitkyk Outlook and at the base of the Perdekop outcrop. I have marked these places on the maps.
Trail types The trails are well maintained and are easy to follow. Some trails are more rugged than others.
Maps I have usually included a GPX file and a KML file for any given hike in the associated Route section. Please feel free to use this.
List of hikes we have done
- Perdekop Trail – Hike link length 16km, total ascent 1046m, max elevation 1549m. This is the hardest hike in the park up to a peak with stunning views in all directions. We prefer to do it anti-clockwise but it can be done in either direction.
- Uitkyk Trail via Vista Point – Hike link length 9km, total ascent 641m, max elevation 1123m. This trail is a hike up to a saddle overlooking the Wemmershoek Dam with great views of surrounding mountain ranges.
- DuToitskop Trail, via Uitkyk– Hike Link length 12km, total ascent 807m, max elevation 1480m. The trail is a circular loop taking in the Du Toitskop peak with good views south to Table Mountain on a clear day. The reserve has only recently opened the Manganese trail which links Du Toitskop peak with the Uitkyk trail. We prefer to do it anti-clockwise but it can be done in either direction. The hike to Du Toitskop can also be done as a there and back trail.
- Wemmershoek Peak Trail, via Perdekop Hike Link. This is an off trail extension to the Perdekop trail up to the summit of Wemmershoek Peak. I would not want to do this trail in wet, very windy or in low cloud conditions when visibility is not good. The hike extension is about 10km with an additional climb of 773m reaching a high point of 1,726m
- Cats Path trail – not yet mapped. There is detailed information on the Mt Rochelle web site (see link above)
Maps of Hikes
Please click on each trail-path to take you to the associated route page where you can obtain more information on the trail, including an elevation profile, and a download of the map.