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Thread: Sani pass

  1. #41
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    Default Re: Sani pass

    I noticed a few posts regarding how to "grade Sani pass". It's not possible as the weather pays a massive factor. I've done Sani many times over the years.

    It is a breeze on a good day and you wonder what the hype is.

    Catch it in bad weather and you understand why it has the reputation it has.

    Even worse: catch it on a good day, albeit several days after serious weather when all the snow has melted and formed ice in the switch-backs in the shady sections of the pass, and you will have marks in your seat covers driving up and down. For me, driving down in those conditions were the worst. You can only control the slide and hope you've got enough traction to make it around the bends on the way down.
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  3. #42
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    Default Re: Sani pass

    Quote Originally Posted by kippie2 View Post
    Generally Sani Pass is a grade 2....however......at this time of year it can degerate quite quickly to a 3.....maybe..... and if there is snow it can easily become undriveable so to apply a blanket grading is expremely difficult.
    Most of the time it is no problem in a standard 4x4 with low range.
    Even the ice in winter on that one corner can get your eyes on high beam quite smartly.

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  5. #43
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    Default Re: Sani pass

    We drove up and down Sani in mid-December.

    Although the weather was not great that day I found the drive much easier than before (last time they hadn't tarred the lower section to the border), road seemed to be in reasonable condition.

    I was also caught out with the R50 p/p (we were 7) to go into the hotel, and I didn't have that much cash with me. The guard was happy to let us in provided that we were having lunch - which was our intention anyway. A surprise but at least they didn't turn us away.

    On a related note, the hotel/pub has gone down quite a bit since the last time I was there - they had very little stock of anything - and even the Maluti beer was not available. (Ironically the shabeen next to the border had plenty of Maluti...)

    But definitely a drive still worth doing!
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  6. #44
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    Default Re: Sani pass

    I am actually glad the Chinese did not tar the road, I like it the way it is..........

  7. #45
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    Default Re: Sani pass

    Quote Originally Posted by CraigWatt View Post
    Quite. Anyone know what 4x4 grade Sani is rated? I haven't been able to find it online.

    I know it isn't a very accurate measurement, but would be interested to know as a general guide. I would like to do it later this year.
    Its not really that bad, depends how experienced a 4x4 driver you are. I did it last year with my Isuzu Bakkie and Aloe caravan. You just need to take it steady and use your gears, not your brakes. The biggest problem is the idiots that try to drive it at Dakar speed. I would grade it a 2
    Last edited by Bats; 2024/02/19 at 09:06 AM.

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  9. #46
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    Default Re: Sani pass

    We often went up Sani and found the road in good to bad conditions - used to stay in Pinetown so was not far from us.
    We are "old 4x4" people and only once when they had very bad rains we battled a bit and one day with snow we had to turn around at Icy Corner.

    Spending border crossing cost is nothing, SWA, Bots, Swazi and where ever you pay.
    R50 to go to Sani top, no issue we spend hours there in the morning and then drive to black mountain or ski resort.
    On return we stop again for a cold one and then down to Himeville for overnight.
    Have not been to the Arm's for about 6/7 years, used to have nice food and fire going in the winter - does it still exists?

    We are considering a trip there end 2024 or early 2025.
    Either stay over or use our Bush Lapa and camp.
    Danie & Marinda - die wiele is rond, dus moet hulle hardloop - afgetree nou leef ons net.
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  11. #47
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    Default Re: Sani pass

    Quote Originally Posted by My4x4 View Post
    My post was to add my opinion to the condition of the road, but as usual, one gets blasted for raising an opinion. I have never had to pay to cross a border into a different country, and frankly, keeping up the condition of their roads is their responsibility. As to the forceful payment to go to the edge of the cliff, yes, it should be an option, and we probably would have spent more money if we were not forced to pay in the first place.
    Then it's time for you to visit Namibia, Zambia, not sure of Botswana as I live here. But they do the road tax thing ever since.
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  12. #48
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    Default Re: Sani pass

    Quote Originally Posted by Kalahari Safari View Post
    Then it's time for you to visit Namibia, Zambia, not sure of Botswana as I live here. But they do the road tax thing ever since.
    @ KS (OP):
    Surely you're not serious?
    It is common to pay border crossing fees of some sort or another?
    What am I misunderstanding here?
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  13. #49
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    Default Re: Sani pass

    Quote Originally Posted by Therackermann View Post
    Anyone here have experience towing a trailer or caravan up Sani Pass?
    Done 4 times over a string of years, starting back in 2005 and last time in 2017 in different seasons.

    Not a problem but had to stop half-ways to let engine cool for a bit, but that also applied in tarred road passes inside Lesotho.

    Good thing when your vehicle tells you to stop for some photo shoot.
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  15. #50
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    Default Re: Sani pass

    Quote Originally Posted by Peter1949 View Post
    @ KS (OP):
    Surely you're not serious?
    It is common to pay border crossing fees of some sort or another?
    What am I misunderstanding here?

    That's what I imply here, you pay when you enter.

    But as said, that for BW I am not aware as I reside here so it doesn't apply to me.
    Walter Rene Gygax
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  17. #51
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    Default Re: Sani pass

    Quote Originally Posted by CraigWatt View Post
    Quite. Anyone know what 4x4 grade Sani is rated? I haven't been able to find it online.

    I know it isn't a very accurate measurement, but would be interested to know as a general guide. I would like to do it later this year.
    It will be meaningless to rate Sani. I've been up and down many times and in my experience, Sani can be breeze or impassable.
    All depends about when last it had heavy rain/snow and/or when last it was maintained.
    My advice - prepare for the worst and enjoy the adventure. You may be "lucky" and it may be in a non-event condition when you go.

  18. #52
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    Default Re: Sani pass

    I went up the Sani Pass for the 1st time in the mid 90s. Got to the border, on a lovely sunny day and the pass was dry. In front of mw was a young couple in their Golf Caddy bakkie with a canopy. The cops let them through although the Golf was not 4 Wheel Drive as the cop said: "Today is an easy day."

    I followed the Golf in my Nissan Sani 3.0 V6 with 4x4. Both of us made it, I never even used 4 Wheel Drive either, I just had to slip the clutch a bit around that first tight corner with the loose ricks. The Golf amazed me, I thought he would battle with wheel spin in the tight corners, but he was OK.
    Last edited by mvcoller; Yesterday at 04:19 PM.
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