SPOOKSPRUIT 4X4 TRAIL GUIDE & INFORMATION
Located in the Suikerbosrand hills in southern Gauteng, about an hour’s drive from Johannesburg.
Spookspruit is a challenging route that’s sure to test the most experienced driver and the most well-equipped 4x4. But it’s also a place with an interesting history. So, if you’re a history buff with a love for technical off-road driving, this one’s for you!
You’ll also find trails for hiking or mountain biking, but no motorcycles or quads are permitted.
All year round, but only on weekends. Bookings are mandatory. Some obstacles are closed during the wet season.
Spookspruit got its name from the river (or spruit), which forms part of the route. The word “spook” means ghost and refers to the wandering spirits supposedly found on the farm. During the Anglo Boer War, Boer commandos used the valleys in the area to evade the English soldiers. Boer womenfolk also sought refuge here after escaping the concentration camp at Heidelberg.
Twice a year, the owners host a night drive, aptly named the ‘Spookjag’ or ghost hunt. This is definitely something for the history buffs to diarise!
The venue has a rich history, one of the buildings at the house - the old school - dates back to the Anglo Boer War and there are graves on the farm that are as old as 1887. The farm was also the birthplace of the poet CM van den Heever; his poem, On the Highveld, is very descriptive of the area.
One can take a second meaning from the word spook, where, in Afrikaans it can also be used to describe a difficult task. Which is quite fitting, considering the difficulty of this trail!
Visitors meet at the lecture room at the beginning of the route to enjoy coffee and rusks. This guided trail (5-vehicle minimum) consists of a loop that offers some veld driving, a few manmade obstacles to judge experience levels, and the opportunity to drive in the spruit itself. You’ll also find a few quartz rock climbs that will test your ability to choose the correct line.
The spruit section has a number of escape routes; the farther you drive along this track, the tougher it gets! To date, only three vehicles have ever managed to drive the full route: Corne van Driel in a pipe car in the wet, Hansie Coetzee of TJM Pretoria East in his Hilux, and a 38" SWB Rubicon in the dry.
The trail ends at the camping area where you can have your braai and swop war stories.
Take the N3 to Heidelberg-Balfour Rd/R23
Take exit 59 from N3
Use the left 2 lanes to turn left onto the N17 to Springs
Take exit 103 to merge onto N3 toward Durban
Take exit 59 for R23 toward Heidelberg/Standerton
Take Lagerspoort Rd
3 - 5
TIME & DISTANCE
4 – 6 hours, about 6km
COST (Price correct at time of publication)
R250 per day for the 4x4 route.
The campsite has two ablutions, one has three toilets and a gas-heated shower, and the other has a toilet, three showers and a bath - donkey heated. There are a limited number of power points, but most sites have grass and shade. There’s a pool and jungle gym for the kids.
082 391 1402
FACEBOOK PAGE: https://www.facebook.com/spookspruit4x4/