Situated on the outskirts of the town of George, the three Groeneweide Forest Hikes offer a fine selection of old Afromontane Forest trees.
Setting off from the Saasveld campus all three routes start with a gradual descent to the Kaaimans River before climbing to a contour path that offers spectacular views of towering Outeniqua Yellowoods and Ironwoods.
A series of clockwise routes, the paths for the Green (9km) and the Blue (11km) routes split of to the right, later meeting up with the Red route (13km) and returning to the Kaaimans River.
The highlight of these trails is walking on a contour path that traverses a series of steep slopes which places you at canopy level of some towering trees erupting from the forest floor below. In morning light the spreading and branches and drooping lichen in the dappled light of offer the enchantment of the Hobbit homerange.
On the Blue and Red routes the path crosses a dranage line with a series of boulders that the stream cascades down during wet times. As you pause here for water listen out for the Knysna Warbler.
Five highlights to look for on the Groeneweide Trails:
- Lush mosses on fallen trees.
- Large old Yellowoods and Ironwoods.
- Well developed buttress roots.
- Glade of tree ferns at river crossing.
- Various fungii in humid conditions
Five trees to look for :
- Outeniqua Yellowood - Podocarpus falcatus
- Cape Plane - Ochna arborea
- Forest Elder- Nuxia floribunda
- Hard Pear - Olinia ventsa
- Ironwood - Olea capensis
- Cost : R450.00/person exclusive of conservation fee, base rate of R850.00.
- Proximity : George East
- Meet at entrance to Saasveld Campus.
- Equipment Required : Daypack, sunhat, sunscreen and windbreaker/waterproof