Hiking is a great way to stay fit and get some fresh air, here is a list of the three most popular hiking trails in the George area:
Sanpark Groeneweide Hiking Trail
This is a trail through pristine indigenous forest which is well hidden. There are three well-marked circular route day hike trail options (13km; 11km & 9km). This trail is right on our doorstep, which makes it perfect for an early morning activity with the family.
Cradock Peak Trail
Have you been wanting to explore the beautiful Outeniqua Mountains, which forms the backdrop of Pine Lodge? This trail is situated at 1578m above sea level and is the highest peak in the Outeniqua Mountain range. George (1337m) and Cradock peak are part of the same mountain massif and for the most part, is reached by the same trail. The trail starts at Witfontein Forestry station and follows forest roads through the pine plantations to the base of the Outeniqua Mountains. The view from the summit is incredible, you can see to Mossel Bay, the Swartberg Mountains, George, Knysna and to Peak Formosa a 115km away. Return to the forestry station via the same trail.
Half Collared Kingfisher Trail
This trail is a great experience for small kids and the elderly, it is a lovely shady walk through the forest that is very well-maintained. The waterfall at the end is just amazing, with the pontoon crossing. You are likely to see most of our birds e.g. the Knysna Loerie, Giant Kingfisher and the Fish Eagle. You will also see the Yellow Wood Trees. Trail distance = 7.2km with the trail time of 3-4hrs.
Hiking is a fun and healthy activity that many people enjoy as South Africa’s hiking trails cover some of the most beautiful natural spots in our country. Take these 5 precautions to stay safe when hiking:
1. Never hike alone - It’s always good to have a map of your route and to make sure that you understand it. Make sure that your phone is fully charged and that you have all relevant contact details of the hiking site with you as this can save time in case you get lost. A map can help you determine where you are and the best route you can take to reach another location. You should never, under any circumstances embark on a hike alone.
2. Tell someone that you’re going on a hike - No matter how short the hike is, make sure that you tell someone at the hiking site that you are going on a hike so that they are aware of your location. Also, tell them which hike you will be doing so that they know approximately how long your hike will take.
3. Physical health - One needs to be relatively fit and healthy to go on a hike. Hiking can take an extreme toll on your body if you are not fit – even a short three km hike. Carry a first aid kit with you as you can’t plan for every instance and sometimes, accidents happen. Everyone’s first aid kit will vary depending on each person’s medical conditions. If you take any chronic medication, make sure that you take your medicine with you. You also need to make sure that you have medical aid in case something happens and you need serious medical assistance. If you become sore, take time to relax and massage the uncomfortable areas. Always start small, don’t go on long hikes that are beyond your physical abilities. The worst thing that you can do is to push yourself too hard and get into a bad situation. As soon as you feel tired, take a break, drink water and rest. If you are obese or have any serious medical conditions, you need to get a doctors approval that states that you are fit to go on a hike.
4. Hydrate - With regards to health and safety, not drinking enough water is one of the biggest mistakes made by
hikers. The importance of staying hydrated when hiking can’t be overstated. Dehydration occurs when you don’t drink enough water – irrespective of the weather conditions or altitude. Drink water when you wake up in the morning, before the hike and also when you are on the hiking trail. Most natural water sources have bacteria that can make you sick so it’s better to bring your own water.
5. Know your environment - It’s important to know your environment when hiking because there is a chance of injury when people are exposed to the forces of nature. Find out which plants and animals should be avoided and also do some weather research before you go on the hike. Doing some research on the hiking trail that you will be embarking on will help you know and understand what you’ll be dealing with.
6. Try to avoid taking expensive equipment with you on the hike.
Pine Lodge is situated close to all of these hiking trails, which makes it the perfect spot to book your next family vacation! To book a room visit our website: https://www.pinelodgegeorge.co.za/enquire/