Drakensberg Mountains

Copyright: MCSA-KZN 1998 ©

Rock Climbs of the Drakensberg

These RDs were compiled by various climbers, mainly the opening ascentionists, over a period of almost a century. Most of them have been published in the Journal of the Mountain Club of South Africa (MCSA) which is the primary reference for these pages. In some cases the RDs have been taken verbatim from the original text. In other cases the original RDs have been modified to a greater or lesser extent for a variety of reasons.

Since few climbers have access to a full set of MCSA Journals, it was decided to try and collect the various RDs into a single reference volume. This work was begun by Peter Angus-Leppan and Gordon Bulter. After languishing in the MCSA archives for many years the work was completed by Steve Salmon with the assistance of Graham Smith. In 1993 this work resulted in the MCSA (KZN Section) publishing a 100 page booklet titled "Rock Climbs of the Drakensberg". Several other club members contributed to this booklet via constructive criticism.

In 1997 Gavin Raubenheimer and Gavin Peckham and some input from others, added a substantial addendum to the book. The addendum consisted of a section of general information on climbing in the 'Berg, RDs for various ice and snow routes, RDs for new rock routes and sketches and topos for some of the routes.

Copies of the book and its addendum are extremely limited and are not widely available. It is not certain when, or even if, reprints will become available. For this reason it was decided to publish the 'Berg RDs on the Internet in the hope that its availability would be of interest to climbers and would generate new interest in climbing in the Drakensberg. This work was undertaken by Gavin Peckham who researched and reviewed all the currently available information. This resulted in the significantly updated information that is presented in the following web pages.

Update: In 2002 a new, revised edition of "Rock Climbs of the Drakensberg" was published by the MCSA - KZN Section. It was based almost exclusively on the updated information prepared by Gavin Peckham and contained in the following pages. It is available from the MCSA-KZN Section or from 'Bush & Bundu' in Pietermaritzburg - phone 033-394 5112 and ask for Cesar.

  1. General information
  2. Hazards, precautions and rescue
  3. Maps and guides
  4. Photo selection
  5. Route Descriptions - By Region
  6. Route Descriptions - Alphabetical
  7. Route Descriptions - Geographical (North to South)

Appeal: These pages are in a developmental stage. Please Help ! "Somewhere out there" is a wealth of unrecorded knowledge about many of these routes. Each time you climb one of them we would be grateful for feed-back and suggestions. Even if an RD is adequate and accurate then we would like to hear this - it will mean that we don't have to worry about future improvements. Please put something back into climbing by making a constructive contribution to these pages wherever you can. I would be particularly grateful for relevant photos, sketches and topos that may be used to enhance these pages. GIF or JPG format is preferable but 'hard copy' colour prints are also welcome. Any information, suggestions, or corrections may be sent to Gavin Peckham at: gavin.peckham@gmail.com.