West coast 4x4 eco trail





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  1. #1
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    Default West coast 4x4 eco trail

    Just come back from the west coast after camping with the family and friends. Was great
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  2. #2
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    Default Eco trail

    Hi Ianf

    Please tell me more about the trail. What route did you take and can you do it alone?
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  3. #3
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    Default

    Ianf,I read a trip report on the same trip and decided that this is what we are going to do on my July holiday. did you also hug the coastline on the sandy beach roads, and are there parts that are very difficult ,like loose, sandy+steep . I will be going with the Syncro camper which is usually loaded quit heavy and it will only be my wife and myself,one vehicle, so if the road condition are very bad I must considder going with the Pajero.
    All comments welcome please. (hope i`m not h/j your thread). B-)
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  4. #4
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    Default West Coast Trail

    Yes - publish details soon - be very interested to hear about this trail and where it starts ends etc !!!!

  5. #5
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    Hi Guys,

    It was the second time that we have been their and both times enjoyed it thoroughly.
    The whole trail can be seen on tracks for africa, when their it shows were you can ride on the beach ect. You can basically camp anywhere. You have to be self sufficient such as enough water, fuel etc as their are no facilities in the area. On our first trip we entered of the N7 to Garries and headed to the left side of the Spoegrivier caves, one can go to Hondeklip baai first.We found our first spot, camped their for 3 days then move further down past Groenrivier and stayed their for 4 days. We exited at the salt mine further down the trail.
    On our last trip in easter we turned of the N7 at Bitterfontein and headed to Kotzesrus. From their you can choose from 2 routes which can be found on google earth.
    Regarding the roads, their are some sandy bits but nothing serious, just deflate your tyres. We did however have to recover a 2x4, but his tyres were also not deflated. Just be careful were you park for the night in the syncro that is, as some of the spots to camp have soft sand. Just check before turning of the gravel road towards the beach to check if it is accessible.
    Their are no bins, so what eva you take with must come back with you(rubbish)
    Their is no serious 4x4ing except on the beach, watch the tides.
    We took our camping trailer, no problem.
    Hope that answers what you wanted to know.
    Any thing else feel free to ask
    Last edited by ianf; 2009/04/22 at 08:48 PM. Reason: more info
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  6. #6
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    Default

    Thanks Ianf, that sounds great. I have T4a and will go on that. :-}
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  7. #7
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    Default

    Hi Ian, glad you enjoyed the trip, did you traveled from Kotzesrus to Groenrivier via the "gates road". Would love to see more of your photos..
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  8. #8
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    Question Just came back from West Coast Eco Trail

    I just came back from doing the West Coast Eco Trail. Also used T4A maps. Took Garies-Hondeklipbaai gravel road and took the turn-off to Swartfontein (indicated as Bad Sand & Gravel Road on T4A).

    At Swartfontein we encountered a sign stating that we require a permit to enter the coastal zone. I attached the image (Swartfontein Sign). I tried my utmost best to find out if any permits are required for the West Coast Eco Trail, but found nothing. So... naughty naughty... we took a chance and entered anyway. If anyone knows anything about a permit, please post details.

    If you follow the Main Track of the West Coast Eco Trail listed on T4A maps and also have a look on Google Earth (works great if you are running dual monitors), you will see that in certain areas the main track runs directly on the beach. As far as I know, that is illegal. Sure, some parts of the T4A maps are clearly marked as being illegal, but there are grey areas. We weren't taking any more chances, so we avoided any beach driving. Again, if anyone knows if beach driving is actually permitted in those areas, please respond.

    Another problem was that the main track of the eco trail ran all the way down to "Gert Se Gat", but roughly adjacent to Skaapvlei, we came across another sign and a gate. This time from Namakwa Sands mining company. Have a look at "NamakwaSands Sign". We could not enter the gate and had to escape the main track and to take the road to Skaapvlei. Again, any info regarding this would be appreciated.

    I logged everything on my GPS, so I can post the coordinates of these signs if you are interested.
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  9. #9
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    From Hondeklipbaai did you go North or South?
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  10. #10
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    Hi ianf

    The turn-off is south. I know north of Hondeklipbaai you need a permit from De Beers. We did not have that much time, so we went south towards Swartfontein. The turn-off is marked Eagles Nest Guest House (photo attached), before you reach Hondeklipbaai.
    (GPS coordinates : S30 21.185 E17 25.571)
    Once you head down that road you will reach Swartfontein and the dreaded sign
    (GPS coordinates : S30 28.147 E17 25.301)
    A bit further you reach Spoegriver Caves.

    We went down along the coast all the way to Velddrif. Everything south of Koekenaap is basically gravel and tar, so easier driving. We took the Spoornet gravel roads.

    Just a tip: if you plan on driving between Doringbaai and Lamberts Bay, take the Spoornet roads. It is worth the R30. The stretch of gravel road along the coast (past Donkins Bay) is absolutely terrible. My one shock overheated badly and the seals broke, spilling all the oil. It was then we decided to take the Spoornet roads instead.
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  11. #11
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    Default

    IanF, sorry. I see you've been there twice already! Got a bit carried away with all the info. Perhaps it will benefit someone else though!

  12. #12
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by ianf View Post
    Hi Guys,

    It was the second time that we have been their and both times enjoyed it thoroughly.
    The whole trail can be seen on tracks for africa, when their it shows were you can ride on the beach ect. You can basically camp anywhere. You have to be self sufficient such as enough water, fuel etc as their are no facilities in the area. On our first trip we entered of the N7 to Garries and headed to the left side of the Spoegrivier caves, one can go to Hondeklip baai first.We found our first spot, camped their for 3 days then move further down past Groenrivier and stayed their for 4 days. We exited at the salt mine further down the trail.
    On our last trip in easter we turned of the N7 at Bitterfontein and headed to Kotzesrus. From their you can choose from 2 routes which can be found on google earth.
    Regarding the roads, their are some sandy bits but nothing serious, just deflate your tyres. We did however have to recover a 2x4, but his tyres were also not deflated. Just be careful were you park for the night in the syncro that is, as some of the spots to camp have soft sand. Just check before turning of the gravel road towards the beach to check if it is accessible.
    Their are no bins, so what eva you take with must come back with you(rubbish)
    Their is no serious 4x4ing except on the beach, watch the tides.
    We took our camping trailer, no problem.
    Hope that answers what you wanted to know.
    Any thing else feel free to ask
    Can I view The whole trail can be seen on tracks for africa on my Pc in MapSource ,ore is it something that you buy seperate

    Baie dankie Willie

  13. #13
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    Default Re: West coast 4x4 eco trail

    I Know this is an Old Thread, but Starting to do some Research about doing a Wildcoast Trip.
    It Seems like there is not That much available via the Goolge Oracle about this route, only little bits and pieces.. that does not contain allot of info.

    Does this West Coast 4x4 eco trail still exist, and has anyone been there in the Last year?

    Do we still need to use Tracks for Africa to do this Route?

  14. #14
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    Default Re: West coast 4x4 eco trail

    West Coast is well known for scorpions - a camper recently found six under their tents.
    What was your experience?

    Love the pic of the kids!

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  15. #15
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    Default Re: West coast 4x4 eco trail

    If you are referring to the track that runs from Lutzville to Hondeklipbaai and beyond, T4A will be useful but not always necessary. When in the West Coast, you can still ask for directions, the people will be more than willing to help, like in the "old SA". It runs threw Namaqua Coast NP and basically follows the coastline. I did the southern section from Lutzville up to Hondeklipbaai and Koingnaas...

    Check this travel mapbook from MapStudio, it also comes with a CD and waypoints...
    http://www.mapstudio.co.za/product/4...n-africa-epdf/
    See: Chapter 2 – The West Coast – !Kwha ttu to Hondeklipbaai and beyond and
    Chapter 6 – The Namaqua Eco-Trail – an Orange River odyssey
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