Groot Drakenstein

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Hann
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Groot Drakenstein

Post by Hann » Thu Sep 20, 2012 3:18 pm

I'm looking for any info, routes or hikes in the Groot Drakenstein Mountains outside Franschhoek:

Specifically between the town of Pniel and the Bergrivier Dam, on the North facing slopes of the Groot Drakenstein.

Does anybody know if climbers have been in there?

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Nic Le Maitre
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Re: Groot Drakenstein

Post by Nic Le Maitre » Thu Sep 20, 2012 3:31 pm

Rust never sleeps (AdK and Ed) goes up Hugenot Buttress. There is a bunch of stuff in the Duiwelskloof Amphitheater. Ask Ulli :D
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Nic

Hilton
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Re: Groot Drakenstein

Post by Hilton » Tue Sep 25, 2012 5:03 pm

Hann,

Rust never sleeps and Hallucination are on Dragoon's Buttress around the corner to the right. Also in that area is the fantastic Volstruiskloof kloofing/abseiling adventure which is just brilliant.

Directly behind Pniel is the 1,000 foot deep canyon called Duiwelskloof. There are many routes in the kloof - Preamble, Bezerker, Duiwels Direct, Lucifer, Dinosaur Revival, Fire Escape, Hell's Angel and Styx. Maybe more.

Further round towards Franschhoek you find the massive Hutchinson's Buttress overlooking Boschendal. The main wall has two routes - Wanker and Jerker. (Kak names, I know). There are easier routes to the sides, but I can't remember names.

I've done Duiwels Direct twice (first with Dave Cheesmond and my brother Dave in about '78 when we did the FFA, and then with Chris Lomax in '84 when we were home in Cape Town for late tea, but Guy Robbins and Daniel Bottomley got home in the early hours). I remember Duiwels as a lekker route but I'm not so sure that it really is. I recently did Pisa Wall Direct with Dark Horse and found it absolutely shite. I think our quality standards may have been raised in the last couple of decades. I've also done Fire Escape and a new route (that we won't write up) and found them kak.

I did Jerker with Chris and my brothers David and John in about '83 and we thought it was fantastic. But again, maybe our quality standards were really low and our desire for adventure really high (but that part hasn't changed!).

Further round towards Franschhoek is a big waterfall where that Norwegian billionaire, ex-husband of Diana Ross and Everest summiteer died a few years ago. He didn't know much about climbing but wanted to show his friend Johann Rupert what a main oke he was. As he leaned back to start his abseil he pulled the ab cord over the top of the little pillar and that was the end of it.

Anyway, there is a lot of lekker stuff around there and I would really recommend Dragoon's especially. Also the walk up Duiwelskloof and across the top is superb, and to combine that with a descent of Volstruiskloof is awesome. A climber in Stellenbosch gave Eric Maguire and I the beta and loaned us his big static ropes. I don't recall his name but he worked for the Cape Town planning department in the city.

Most of the route RDs will be in old MCSA journals.

Hope you find good adventures there..!

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Hann
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Re: Groot Drakenstein

Post by Hann » Tue Sep 25, 2012 7:25 pm

Thanks Hilton.

I discovered an old typed RD which includes a couple of photos of the area.

It is scanned as a PDF, but about 9MB in size.

So, those interested in a copy, and can accept that size via email, let me know....

TheBulgarian
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Re: Groot Drakenstein

Post by TheBulgarian » Thu Oct 12, 2017 9:34 am

Hi Hann, please can you email the topos you found to my address. ilievteodor@yahoo.com will be most grateful. Im looking into climbing some of those long lines out there real soon. Duiwels Direct etc. And thanks for the info Hilton.

Regards Teo

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Justin
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Re: Groot Drakenstein

Post by Justin » Thu Oct 12, 2017 9:40 am

Hann,
If you mail the topo to me, I will bring the size down and put it in the Wiki.
Climb ZA - Administrator
justin@climbing.co.za

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