Baviaanskloof Pass and Nature Reserve

Baviaanskloof Pass and Nature Reserve

This east west dirt road between Patensie and Willomore was built between 1880 and 1890 by South Africa  road engineer, Thomas Bain.  The road is 197 kilometers between the two towns of which 173 kilometers in the park, wilderness area and farmlands to the west.  Smitskraal is 44 kilometers from the eastern gate.

Even in good weather a full day should be set aside to navigate the two major winding passes, and is recommended for 4 wheel drive in the wet season, to navigate flooded roads and low level bridges and even rivers.

After entering the park at  Komdomo, and signing in, the road winds for 10km through the Grootrivier Poort.

The first pass is Combrinck’s Pass which is a winding steep road to the top, and there you are met with grasslands, and then the Holgat Pass, in the vicinity of the Kouga Dam and wilderness area.

You are now approaching the Grassneck Pass, and majestic views of the Baviaans Range peaking at 1626 meters are possible.
After the pass is another crossing of the Baviaanskloof River at Apieskloof, and the river becomes the road and the end of the nature reserve, and then follows the river bed.

The Campbell monument can be found further along to commemorate those that lost their lives in the 1916 flood  and was erected to commemorate the lives lost in the 1916 flood.

Passing through the western area is less steep and one passes graves belonging to members of the local farming community before emerging on to the road to Willomore.