MIDLANDS HIKING CLUB FIXTURE LIST FOR PERIOD JULY to SEPTEMBER 2011
DATE TYPE APPROX. DIST. GRADE DESCRIPTION OF ACTIVITIES LEADER & CONTACT DETAILS APPROX. COST
19 Jul CLUB NIGHT     GREAT WALL OF CHINA - An interesting presentation by our members Debbie and Sven Jager on their hike along the Wilderness section of the Great 'Wild' Wall of China. Church of the Ascension hall, Brindy Road, Hilton at 7:30.    
23-24 July CAVE 12-14 km each day 3 BUSHMAN'S NEK - Backpacking to & overnight in Sherry Cave (New) - This is a new cave for MHC Members & the hike is a similar route to Whyte's Cave but we will do variations & also visit Bushmen's paintings. As access to the cave is along a ledge & there is a drop of several metres in front of the cave it is not suitable for children. Sleeping space is also limited. Combined hike with Mountain Backpackers. Keith Ashton - 033 239 5023 R45 pp inc entry fee & levies
Sun 31 Jul DAY HIKE 10 km 3 HIGHOVER NATURE RESERVE - On the banks of the Mkomazi river at Hella Hella some 20 km from Richmond. A day hike from the camp site to a beautiful waterfall. Note: This hike was postponed from 29 May. Bushy Kirby 083 757 2660  
Fri - Sun 5-7 Aug HUTS & CAMPING 10-15km 2 - 2+ GARDEN CASTLE NATURE RESERVE near Drakensberg Gardens Hotel - Stay in Swiman Hut or camp in lovely site & enjoy an exploration weekend with the Ashtons - lovely hikes from base. Swiman Hut has electricity, bunk beds with mattresses + hot water shower & bath + flush toilets + indoor fireplace & outdoor braai areas. Camp site (no elec.) about 1km from hut. - "Combined weekend with Mountain Backpackers" Keith Ashton - 033 239 5023 Swiman Hut - R75 pppn & camping R120 per site for 2 people
5-7 Aug WEEKEND HIKE 20 km 4 THABANA NTLENYANA in Lesotho - The highest mountain in Southern Africa (3482m). Drive up Sani Pass on Friday afternoon and stay overnight at Sani Top backpackers lodge. Drive to the wool shed, hike 10 km, pitch tents and stay overnight at the mountain. Return on Sunday. Something a bit more challenging so good winter gear is essential. Passports required. Teresa Whitfield - 0823741793 or tkc@hiltoncollege.com  
13-14 Aug CAMPING   1 and 2 LAKE ELAND at Oribi Gorge. Everybody thoroughly enjoyed themselves last time. Great scenery and lots to do. Bushy Kirby 083 757 2660  
16-Aug AGM     AGM - The AGM of the Midlands Hiking Club will take place in the Church of Ascension hall, Brindy Road, Hilton at 7:30.    
20-25 Aug TENTING 48 km 4 'MINI TRAVERSE' Sentinel to Madonna and back - A hike along the top of the berg with spectacular views of the rugged mountain range. Only very fit hikers with good kit will be considered. Limited places on offer. Interested hikers to contact me by end July 2011. Dave Sclanders 0824434287 or bergfree@absamail.co.za  
21-Aug DAY HIKE 15km 2 DURBAN BEACHFRONT - uShaka Marine World to Blue Lagoon and return. Meet at uShaka Marine World car park. Brian Henwood - 082 655 6359 or brian@hn.co.za  
Fri-Sun 26-28 Aug CAMPING / CHALETS 8-14 km each day 2 - 2+ DRAGON PEAKS MOUNTAIN RESORT in Champagne Valley - Unlimited range of day hikes from campsite - Good campsites with electric points + good ablutions inc hot showers - magnificent views of Champagne Castle, Cathkin Peak etc - children's playground - bar & restaurant on site - participate in the hikes or just chill out. Range of chalets available for those not wanting to camp. Combined w/e with Mountain Backpackers. Keith Ashton - 033 239 5023 Camping R95 pppn - 50% Pensioner discount (over 60) = R47.50 pppn
Sat 3 Sept DAY HIKE 16 km 2 PLEASANT PLACES at Lidgetton - A hike in the heartland of the Midlands Meander across picturesque farmlands, through indigenous forest and visiting some of the popular venues. Good quality accommodation also available. Mountain bikers welcome. Kevin Knox-Davies - 084 510 5702 R30 pp for the trails.
8-12 Sept TRAIL     HLUHLUWE MFOLOZI GAME RESERVE Wilderness Trail - Hiking through the game reserve with an armed guide and sleeping out under the stars. It doesn't get better than this! This is the primitive trail - sleep under the stars, carry all food and clothes, KZNWildlife supply all food and hiking kit if you do not have your own. price R2685.00, excluding transport cost to Imfolozi. For more info contact me . Trail needs 6 - 8 hikers to do. Trail will start on Thursday 8-Sept at 10h00 & finish on 12 Sept at 10h00. I need indication of interest by 30 June to confirm booking. Dave Sclanders 0824434287 or bergfree@absamail.co.za  
17-18 Sept CAVE 20 km 3 MC KENZIES CAVE at Mkhomazi. Hike from Mkhomazi Parks Board office, stay overnight in the cave and return along an alternative route. Dave Sclanders 0824434287 or bergfree@absamail.co.za  
18-Sep DAY HIKE 14km 2.5 MARE FALLS - Walking in the forest with scenic views. John Fourie 0820414565  
24-25 Sept CAMPING 13km 2 NHLOVINI MOUNTAIN (2026m) in the Cobham Nature Reserve. A hike to the top of the mountain reveals stunning views in all directions. Return via Pinnacle Rock or shorter route. John Fourie 0820414565 R 60 pppn for camping or R 25 for day visitors.
 
GRADINGS OF HIKES     SOME IMPORTANT NOTES ABOUT HIKING CLUB NIGHTS
Grade 1 Very easy - so minimal fitness required 1. Hikes are graded so that members can select the activity best suited to their own level of fitness and do not cause unreasonable delay to fellow hikers. Our Club nights are held on the third Tuesday of every second month in the Church of the Ascension Hall starting at 19:30. Tea & coffee served from 19:00. Come along early and meet your fellow members. Plenty of parking next to the hall, accessed from Brindy Road, Hilton. A R5 tip for the car guard would be very much appreciated.
Grade 2 Not too strenuous; moderate fitness desirable 2. Contact the leader of a day hike at least 3 days in advance of your intention to participate.
Grade 3 Moderate - Regular exercise advisable 3. Contact the leader of a camping weekend at least one week in advance of your intention to participate.
Grade 4 Strenuous - Physical fitness essential 4. If accommodation bookings are required please contact the leader at your earliest convenience to secure yourself a booking.
Grade 5 Very strenuous - A high level of physical fitness is essential. 5. Leaders have the prerogative to exclude a member if they doubt their health condition, physical fitness or suitability of their hiking gear for a particular activity.
  6. Advise the leader of any medical condition prior to any hike & carry the necessary medication - The leader will not administer First Aid.
        7. Carry your medical aid, doctor and close family friend contact details in your backpack at all times.