Things To Do in CullinanWindy Brow Hiking Trails
Where? Windy Brow Game Reserve, Elandsfontein farm, Cullinan, Gauteng
When? Booking is essential.
How? Call +27 (0)86 152-2262
How much? Price on request
Start: Windy Brow Game Reserve, Elandsfontein farm, Cullinan
Finish: Windy Brow farm base camp
Duration: a day hike; 3 hikes
Fitness: moderate, very few really steep hills (so good for the whole family and those after a non-taxing hike)
Our tip: need to book ahead through Jacana (0861Jacana), or the gate is not opened.
You will need to book for these hikes as word is out and they are fairly popular, mainly because Windy Brow Game Reserve lies only 27 km east of Pretoria, making it easily accessible. But the reserve also limits the number of daily visitors.
The reserve, besides having 14 species of game on the farm that include zebra, giraffe, gemsbok, kudu and hartebeest, a goodly number of trees, many of them identified and marked, and overnight facilities (in case you want to do the MTB trails the following day) has designed a series of hiking trails for visitors.
The farm used to belong to the De Beers but is now owned by a former manager of the Cullinan Diamond mine.
The trails have been aptly named – Archaeology Route, Ecology Route and Geology Route - designed to cover different aspects and parts of the farm so that hikers can really experience the full impact of the farm's hills, veld and animals.
The trails can be done as one as they're designed as three interlinked circuits all starting just beyond the communal picnic area.
Archaeological Route – 3.5 km – takes hikers up a slight hill and over a fairly rocky stretch before heading to a viewpoint over the plains below that makes the uphill worth it. The point of the circuit is the remains of an Iron Age site alongside the river to which one descends from the viewpoint, before slowly winding back to the start.
Geological Route – 3.2 km – heads up the same quartzite kopje with amazing views, but rather than head down to the river, it veers left to give you another equally good viewpoint over the Cullinan diamond mine and what is known as the second 'big hole' in South Africa (the first is in Kimberley). Despite the interference of the road between Pretoria and Cullinan, this route gives good access to game and heads in amongst trees before returning to the start.
Ecology Route – 5.9 km – heads off over the grassy plains with good animal viewing moments built in to the route, before going to the dam and the bird hide.
The trails are well marked.