Trail Descriptions

 Trail Descriptions

The Kranztkloof Reserve Map, which provides detailed directions for each of the trails listed below, is available from both picnic sites. The guide also contains other  interesting information about Kranztkloof and the Flora and Fauna found here.

All trail descriptions begin from Kloof Falls Picnic Site (unless otherwise stated).

Trails will be either:

  • out & back – retrace your route back to the start
  • through – connecting one picnic site to another
  • linking – connecting one trail to another

The Makulu Loop – 11,8km ~ Difficult ~ 6–7hrs

Kloof Falls Picnic Site > Forest Trail > Molweni Trail > Pumula Trail > Uve Trail > Beacon Trail > Molweni Trail > Kloof Falls Picnic Site

As per the Northern Loop until you reach marker 12.

At 12 turn left up the Pumula Trail and head up a staircase of concrete slabs.

Continue on the trail until you reach 11 and then turn right onto the Uve Trail. Just before the Uve Entrance (10) turn right onto the Beacon trail and follow the trail (a long climb) past the Lingwood Trig Beacon and through the V-gate.

After a while you reach a split in the path – straight  #is a short, not to be missed, loop to a stunning view / climbing site know as Boothill (B).

Turning left takes you directly to the Windsor Road Gulley where you turn right at 9. Down the wooden ladder and continue until the intersection with the Molweni Trail (8A).

Turn left onto the Molweni Trail and shortly thereafter cross the Ronalds Kloof Weir (8) and continue on the path to the Kloof Falls Picnic Site (1).

The Northern Loop11,1km ~ Difficult ~ 5–6hrs

Kloof Falls Picnic Site > Forest Trail > Molweni Trail > Kloof Falls Picnic Site

Follow the Forest Trail from Kloof Falls Road to marker 15.

At 15 turn right and this will take you down a steep descent past 14 at The Wall until you reach the Molweni River. Cross the river (13) and head up a short climb to 12.

At 12 keep right and head upstream on the Molweni Trail. Cross the Uve Stream, then 22, then down a short wooden ladder and at 23 you cross the Molweni River.

Continue on the trail, up a short wooden ladder and onto the next river crossing at 24.

At this point you start the ascent out of the gorge past 8A, over the Ronalds Kloof Weir (8) and back to the Kloof Falls Picnic Site (1).

The Southern Loop – 8,9km ~ Difficult ~ 4–5hrs

Kloof Falls Picnic Site > Molweni Trail > Beacon Trail > Uve Trail > Pumula Trail > Molweni Trail > Kloof Falls Picnic Site

Take the Molweni Trail and head towards the gorge.

Cross the Ronalds Kloof Weir (marker 8) and at the fork shortly thereafter turn right onto the Beacon Trail (8A).

Stay on the Beacon Trail past the Windsor Road Gulley (wooden ladder) and turn left at 9, through the V-gate into the grasslands, past the Trig Beacon and continue until you reach the Uve Trail (10) near the Uve Road Entrance.

Turn left onto the Uve Trail. At 11 turn left onto the Pumula Trail and descend into the gorge to 12. At 12 turn left on the Molweni Trail heading upstream.

Cross the Uve Stream and pass 22. Descend a short wooden ladder and at 23 cross the Molweni River.

Continue on this path, climb a short wooden ladder and soon you will come to another crossing of the Molweni River where you cross the Molweni again (24).

At this point you start the ascent out of the gorge which will bring you back to the fork at 8A. Follow the trail over the Ronalds Kloof Weir (8) and back to the picnic site (1).

Beacon Trail2.4km ~ Moderate ~ 1-2hrs (each way)

Begins at marker 8A as a split from the Molweni Trail shortly after the Ronald’s Kloof Weir (8) and follows a contour line through a scarp forest.

At one point you ascend steeply at the Windsor Road Gulley where there is a short wooden ladder. At the T-junction (9) turn left.

Shortly you arrive at a deviation to the left taking you to a great view / climbing spot know as Boothill (B).

After leaving Boothill the trail exits the forest at a V-gate and then moves into a grassland area where you will reach the 2nd highest point in the reserve at the Lingwood Trig Beacon (500m).

At this point you can enjoy a 360 degree panorama and views out to sea. The trail then descends through a grassland which is home to a small herd of Burchell’s Plains Zebra.

Approximately 0,8km after the Trig Beacon there is a short cul-de-sac trail to the left to an amazing view spot and climbing site at The Cellar (C).

Return to the Beacon trail and descend to and cross the Uve Stream over a narrow wooden bridge and then ascend to the Uve Road Entrance
(10) where you can exit or retrace your steps back to your starting point or join the Southern Loop.

Forest Trail6.2km ~ Difficult ~ 3-4hrs (one way)

From Nkutu parking, enter the grass lands without crossing the river and follow the path as it winds along the western side of the valley, for approx 1.2km until Marker 15. Turn right and follow the path through the grasslands and over the hill before heading down to the iNgolube stream crossing at marker 18.

After a short, steep climb, enter the scarp forest and remain on the path as it winds its way through the canopy between the cliff face and the houses of Forest Hills. Pass marker 19 still in the forest and continue through the lush forest before exiting the trees a short distance from the notorious Nkonka Crack.

After descending the 2m wide crevice between the 2 rock faces, the path drops steeply to cross the Nkonka river at marker 20 before another short, steep climb to reach the wooden ladder. At the top of the ladder, the path follows the fenceline on its ascent towards the Watsonia grasslands, which is the highest point of the Reserve at 525m ASL.

At marker 20A, a path to the left takes you to the popular climbing site “The Boneyard”. After admiring the stunning views at this point, retrace your steps to the main path and continue to the grasslands at the summit. Follow the footpath past the emergency helipad, located in the grasslands, to the edge of the gorge and take in the breathtaking views over the valley before exiting the Reserve on Bridle Road, at marker 21.

At the exit, turn left and follow the tar road for 1.2km down the hill to the Klof Falls parking area.

This trail can be done as an extension of the Molweni trail, resulting in a full day hike of over 12km.

Kloof Falls Trail 1.1km (each way) ~ Moderate ~ 1hr (each way)

Starts at marker 24 on the Molweni Trail and heads upstream on the Molweni river until reaching the pool at the bottom of Kloof Falls (25).

The Ronald’s Kloof Stream and the Molweni have to be crossed once in each direction necessitating care during high water flows.

The trail will take approximately 1hr each way and is rated as moderate.

Please note that climbing of the cliff-face at the Kloof Falls is strictly prohibited.

Longshadow Trail2km (to marker 7) ~ Easy ~ 45-60 min (each way)

Starts as a split from the Mpithi Trail at the Molweni River Crossing (marker 4) and then follows the Molweni River upstream to the boundary of the reserve (7).

At the boundary the trail turns right across the Molweni River and after a short walk visitors arrive at the iNgungumbane Falls.

Retrace your steps back to the start. The walk is through a lovely riverine forest.

Molweni Trail6.3km (one way) ~ Difficult ~ 4-5hrs (one way)

This is the reserve’s signature trail and runs from Kloof Falls Picnic Site to the Nkutu Picnic Site. Hikers on this trail will experience all the biomes and main features of the reserve. This is not a circular trail. You must make arrangements to be picked up at the Nkutu Picnic Site or retrace your steps / combine with other trails to return to Kloof Falls Road.

Start at the Kloof Falls Picnic Site (marker 1) onto the Molweni Trail (signposted).

Continue on the trail over the Ronalds Kloof Weir (8) and shortly after crossing the weir keep left when the trail splits at 8A.

The trail descends steeply to the Molweni River (24). Cross over and follow the trail heading downstream.

Descend a short wooden ladder and a little while later cross the Molweni River again at 23. Continue downstream, ascend a short wooden ladder and pass 22 before arriving at 12.

Turn left at 12 and arrive at the river crossing (13) known as Ten Feet for the deep pool a few metres downstream. At 13 you will also notice a very large solitary sandstone rock on the river bed.

Cross the river and follow the trail up the notoriously difficult and steep section known as “The Wall” until you reach 14. At 14 you can turn right on a cul-de-sac path to a stunning viewpoint at Maliphonjwana.

Return to 14 and continue on the trail to 15, keep right and shortly after that you will arrive at the Nkutu Picnic Site (17).

Mphiti Trail – 1,9km ~ Moderate ~ 1–2hrs (full loop)

This is a loop and a very popular short walk in the reserve starting and finishing at the Kloof Falls Picnic Site.

Cross Kloof Falls Road at the Molweni Bridge (marker 2) and continue into the forest.

Keep left at the wooden bridge (marker 4) and follow the trail to a split which is the start of a loop (5).

Keep right and you will reach the top of the Mpithi Falls which you cross on a wooden bridge.

The trail descends steeply to the bottom of the Mpithi Falls (6). From the bottom of the falls follow the trail downstream until you climb back up to 5.

Retrace your steps back to the Kloof Falls Picnic Site (1).

Nkutu Trail2km (each way) ~ Moderate with steep sections ~ 2-3hrs (out & back)

Due to the isolated nature of this trail, it is advised that you explore in groups of 4 or more.

This is an out and back trail. From Nkutu picnic site cross the wooden bridge over the Nkutu River.

The trail crosses a grassland and after a short distance you arrive at the descent to the Upper Nkutu Falls (marker 16).

After visiting the falls return to 16 and turn right heading away from the picnic site.

The trail continues in the grasslands and through a short forest section before arriving at the descent to the Lower Nkutu Falls.

After visiting the falls and ascending back to the trail you can continue (turn right) to the end of the gorge where there is magnificent view of the Nkutu Gorge and the valley below.

Pumula Trail0.8km ~ Difficult & Steep ~ 20 mins (down) & 30 mins + (up)

This is a linking trail between markers 11 and 12, providing the descent to the Molweni River from the Uve Trail. It involves a steep rocky descent. At one point the trail turns sharply right – here there is a viewing spot where you can look back at the Uve Falls. Continue on the trail as it flattens out at first and then descends rapidly with some concrete steps to 12. Continuing right and down on the Molweni Trail will bring you to the Molweni river and Ten Feet Crossing (13).

Uve Trail1.1km (each way) ~ Easy ~ 45 mins – 1hr (out and back)

Starts at the Uve Road entrance and crosses the Ntombeni Grasslands before entering a small wooded section after which there is a stunning viewpoint at the popular climbing site known as Rumdoodle (D).

A small herd of Burchell’s Plains Zebra is often found grazing along this trail.