Equipment list for Drakensberg hike

Equipment list for Drakensberg hike

Equipment list for Drakensberg Hike

Oi…what you doing on this page? Looking for an equipment list for Drakensberg hike? I’m a busy man. I have hikes to sell, fat to chew, and many different men to see about many different dogs, so if I am not rushing you…

” Slow down” you say? “When in Rome you say?” But I am not in Rome sunshine. I am in a rush. Okay. Okay. Let’s all calm down before this gets messy. I will give you the information you seek.

Although hiking in the Drakensberg mountains is super incredible, you must still consider the equipment requirements in order to survive.  We have been involved in hiking tours into the Drakensberg for over 15 years. And yes, we have seen it all. We have had people literally rocking up for a hike in jeans and takkies. What part of hiking did they not understand? The Drakensberg is not a shopping mall. But alas, we understand that making sure you have packed the correct equipment list  for the Drakensberg hike can sometimes be a bit of a challenge. How much weight should I carry? What size backpack do I need? What type of sleeping bag do I need? Will I need the extra pair of panties? There’s no space in my backpack. No Space? You could land a jumbo ***ing jet in there. The point is-You are not alone. The majority of hikers have these questions leading up to a Drakensberg hiking adventure. And don’t try and pull the wool over our eyes. We love our pre-hike backpack inspection. It is amazing what comes out of those bags sometimes. I mean we are heading into the mountains to brave the elements and endure whatever nature throws at us- right? Well yes…. right. Or so we thought. When we uncover the true contents of our clients bags, we are inclined to think we have got our itineraries messed up. Maybe  they were expecting us to take them on a tropical spa day experience. Okay, so maybe we are exaggerating a little bit for dramatic effect. To alleviate any undue pre hiking stress and ensure our clients are adequately prepared and know exactly what the best trekking equipment for the Drakensberg Mountains are, we have compiled a comprehensive list and description of what is needed on the tour.

 

Environmental requirements

Hiking in the Drakensberg is South Africa’s numero uno trekking destination by a very long shot. Sorry Cape Town people☹ but yes, they are way more beautiful than your mountains.  These incredible mountain formations and spires of basalt and sandstone have been the source of many dreams and magical hiking experiences over the years.  And like all mountains they are not to be underestimated. Volatile weather conditions including severe cold as well as severe heat need to be taken into account. Are you looking at hiking in the summer? Or do you prefer the colder winter months. Our London visitors are a lot more apt to these wintery conditions. London? Yes, London. You know- Fish, Chips, Cup o’ tea, bad food, worse weather, Mary ****ing Poppins, London!

 

Nutritional requirements

Weight of your backpack is always going to be an issue when hiking in the Drakensberg. Not only are some of the passes pretty steep with gradients sometimes 40 degrees with an elevation gain of over 1000m in places, it’s the compounding effect of fatigue that you need to also consider. So maybe look at leaving the heavy tins of baked beans behind and substitute them with high energy snacks like trail mix, dried meat and protein bars.

 

Layering

The system known as ‘layering’ is vital for your survival in the Drakensberg. The reason for this is that there are so many temperature variations on the mountain that hikers will be required to either add or remove items of clothing as the need arises. During the day and at lower altitudes the temperatures can be warm and sunny but quickly change to freezing in the night and the higher up you climb.

 

The layering system consists of:

Base Layer – Moisture wicking properties that fir close to the body and are quick drying
Mid Layer – a combination of 100 and 300 series fleece jackets.
Outer layer – breathable waterproof and windproof jacket and trousers usually consisting of Goretex
Extra Warm Layer – Although not essential, a down jacket can help with the cold
Accessories: The layering system is  then supplemented with gloves, beenies and buffs  that you can take on and off quickly to regulate body temperature

Trekking equipment list for winter months

Below is our suggestion for packing when embarking on a winter trek in the Drakensberg based on a typical 3 day/2 night hike).

  • 1x 75L backpack
  • Waterproof cover
  • 1x sleeping bag that can handle at least -5 degrees Celsius
  • 1 waterproof bag for your sleeping bag
  • 1 pair of hiking boots
  • 1 pair of Gaitors ( to keep snow or rain or moisture from grass out of your boots)
  • 3 pairs of liner socks ( keeps your feet dry by wicking moisture away from the skin)
  • 3 pairs of trekking socks
  • 346 pairs of panties
  • 1 pair of trekking pants ( you can take 2 if you are worried about dirty pants)
  • 1 pair of outer waterproof pants ( can be worn as second pair of pants I need be)
  • 1 x windproof Jacket
  • 1x raincoat or poncho
  • 1x piecost. (what is a piecost? About R15)
  • 3 hiking shirts ( no cotton as they will not dry)
  • 1x balaclava for the wind and sun
  • 1 pair of inner gloves
  • 1 pair of outer gloves ( waterproof and windproof)
  • 1 thick polar fleece
  • 1 thinner polar fleece.
  • Ix beanie
  • 1x water proof bag for your clothing, ( also helps as an awesome pillow)
  • 1x headlight with spare batteries
  • 2x 1 liter water bottles
  • Powdered Water
  • Sunglasses
  • Sun screen
  • Toiletries
  • Flip flops/sandals for walking around camp ( give your feet rest)
  • Walking poles

Trekking equipment list for summer months

Below is our suggestion for packing when embarking on a winter trek in the Drakensberg based on a typical 3 day/2 night hike). When hiking always follow the principles of layering.

And no…..you cannot hike like this:

We prefer you to rather use this list please:

  • 1x 75L backpack
  • Waterproof cover
  • 1x sleeping bag rated from +5 degrees Celsius
  • 1 waterproof bag for your sleeping bag
  • 1 pair of hiking boots
  • 1 x windproof Jacket
  • 1x raincoat or poncho
  • 1 pair of Gaitors ( to keep snow or rain or moisture from grass out of your boots)
  • 3 pairs of liner socks ( keeps your feet dry by wicking moisture away from the skin)
  • 3 pairs of trekking socks
  • 1 pair of trekking pants ( you can take 2 if you are worried about dirty pants)
  • 1 pair of outer waterproof pants ( can be worn as second pair of pants I need be)
  • 3 hiking shirts ( no cotton as they will not dry)
  • 1x balaclava for the wind and sun
  • 1 thin polar fleece.
  • 1x water proof bag for your clothing, ( also helps as an awesome pillow)
  • 1x headlight with spare batteries
  • 2x 1 liter water bottles
  • Sunglasses
  • Sun screen
  • Toiletries
  • Flip flops/sandals for walking around camp ( give your feet rest)
  • Walking poles
  • 3x ping pong balls named Dave

 

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