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 Post subject: Re: Otter Trail
Unread postPosted: Wed Feb 04, 2009 3:20 pm 
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Joined: Thu Mar 06, 2008 3:04 pm
Posts: 14
Location: Secunda
We got up at 3am and started hiking at 3h30 (with headlamps)....great experience try it at least once in your life...lol

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 Post subject: Re: Otter Trail
Unread postPosted: Tue Feb 24, 2009 12:53 pm 
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Joined: Tue Feb 24, 2009 12:37 pm
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Hi there,
We finished the Otter Trail about 3-weeks ago and I'd like to share a few things:

1. Take Water Purification drops. The water at Huts 2 and 3 was discoloured so you feel safer with the drops (plus there is a huge drought on at the moment so the water at the huts is old).

2. Whatever you hear, TAKE PROPER SURVIVAL BAGS FOR THE BLOUKRANS CROSSING. We only had two bags in our group and the Bloukrans Crossing was hectic. We got there 20-minutes BEFORE low tide and our first crossing at the exact time of low-tide was neck deep and then we had to swim for all our other crossings. I have heard that the floods have changed the shape of the rivers down there (not sure how true this is), but I pooh-poohed the Bloukrans crossing and reading this forum just a few days before the trail, I thought some of the posts were exaggerated. They are not. You MUST take the crossing seriously. Have a plan in your group of how you're going to do it. When you get to the other side (Option B) you will be on a rockface and you cannot tread water while trying to push your bag up onto the rocks. You will need a point person retrieving the bags at that end, and you will need to float your bags over. On our crossing we had several sand sharks cruising around us, (I have heard that there are Zambi's at the river mouths because of the drought situation...not sure why this would make them congregate there??!) which can cause some panic. Our group was made up of calm, very fit and seasoned hikers, and we were all panicking and yelling towards the end of our crossing. Make sure you have a plan A and a plan B.

3. Do the Otter tradition of swimming in each and every body of water that you can safely swim in! We did and it made the days longer, but I'm so glad we did....it was awesome! We had two snorkels and masks in our group which was fab. We snorkeled in the bay at Hut 3 and saw so much there. Really lovely.

4. Oh check that your bags for the crossing do not have holes in them BEFORE you leave. One of our bags had a hole in it.

5. Stargaze. The last hut has a rocky bay and there is a huge flat rock in-front of hut B which is lovely to lie on after sunset to stargaze. We saw some amazing things. The light pollution from Plett isn't great, but this flat rock on the ocean is such a stunning place to stargaze.

Hope this helps...
Susan.


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 Post subject: Otter Trail: Surviving the river crossing
Unread postPosted: Sat Mar 21, 2009 7:23 pm 
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Joined: Sat Mar 21, 2009 7:03 pm
Posts: 1
We did the Otter Trail at the end of February 2009 and despite some rain on a couple days, the conditions were great overall. I flew in from Los Angeles for the hike knowing very little about the trail or how difficult it was. As a non-athletic type I suffered a lot but felt all the more satisfied when we reached the end. Memories that will last a lifetime! And don't throw away your boots at the end of the trail like I did because there is a special tree you can hang them from at the bar where you get your certificate and do your shot of "Otter's A**hole"

The story of our river crossing on Day 4 is a bit long to post here but can be found at:
http://unrulytravels.blogspot.com/2009/03/floating-backpack-across-river-judgment.html


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 Post subject: Re: Otter Trail
Unread postPosted: Tue May 12, 2009 10:44 pm 
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Joined: Mon May 11, 2009 10:46 pm
Posts: 1
Location: UK
Hey guys,

I have a blog article about the otter trail, I walked it last August. If anyone is interested it is at...

http://laurassouthafricanadventure.blog ... trail.html


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 Post subject: Re: Otter Trail
Unread postPosted: Mon May 18, 2009 12:03 pm 
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Joined: Thu Mar 06, 2008 3:04 pm
Posts: 14
Location: Secunda
:D Hi me again.

It is time to plan on the Otter again :clap:

We completed the Otter in January 2009 and have booked it again for February 2010 (That is how much we enjoyed the trail)

If anybody is hiking the same time as us (24Feb 2010 till 28 Feb) lets discuss transport arrangements.

What is the best web site for the tides, the site I enter nl. www.satides.co.za shows that our Bloukrans crossing is at 08h45. Can this be? That obviously mean that we would have to start hiking at 3 am.

We have done it previously, can do it again.

What is the possibility of hot water on the hike? :huh:
OK just asking...lol

Regards
Frik

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 Post subject: Re: Otter Trail
Unread postPosted: Mon May 18, 2009 12:23 pm 
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Senior Virtual Ranger
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Joined: Mon Dec 11, 2006 1:45 pm
Posts: 4955
Location: southern gauteng
There are now showers at the huts ?

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KNP is sacred. I am opposed to the modernisation of Kruger and from the depths of my soul long for the Kruger of yesteryear! 1000+km on foot in KNP incl 56 wild trails.200+ nights in the wildernessndloti-indigenous name for serval.


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 Post subject: Re: Otter Trail
Unread postPosted: Mon May 18, 2009 12:31 pm 
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Joined: Thu Mar 06, 2008 3:04 pm
Posts: 14
Location: Secunda
:roll: Correct but only cold water available at all the showers. Freezing but nice. :rtm:

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 Post subject: Re: Otter Trail
Unread postPosted: Mon May 18, 2009 1:01 pm 
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Joined: Thu Mar 06, 2008 3:04 pm
Posts: 14
Location: Secunda
:shock: Afraid it is not possible as the crossing will be at 20h45 and then to hike the remaining 3.8km after dark. no can do. Where can I find out about the tides? In January we had a situation where the Low tide was not low tide at all (completed crossing at neck height) Still enjoyed it though. :roll:

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 Post subject: Re: Otter Trail
Unread postPosted: Mon Jun 22, 2009 2:54 pm 
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Joined: Fri Feb 04, 2005 11:31 pm
Posts: 1
Location: australia
Hi,
I am a newbie and have made a request for reservation for the Otter in June 2010. Would anyone on this forum be able to tell me what my chances are to get allocation for a group of 12? And is there anything I still need or could do to procure the booking? See; I don't want to be caught out if there is anything I need to know that will help. As far as I know now my request has gone to reservations and it would seem that I have to wait to hear from the office. Is that correct?Hopefully I will hear from them soon.
cheers

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kazel


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 Post subject: Re: Otter Trail
Unread postPosted: Mon Jul 20, 2009 10:31 am 
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Joined: Mon Jul 06, 2009 5:30 pm
Posts: 1
prinslft wrote:
:D Hi me again.

It is time to plan on the Otter again :clap:

We completed the Otter in January 2009 and have booked it again for February 2010 (That is how much we enjoyed the trail)

If anybody is hiking the same time as us (24Feb 2010 till 28 Feb) lets discuss transport arrangements.

What is the best web site for the tides, the site I enter nl. http://www.satides.co.za shows that our Bloukrans crossing is at 08h45. Can this be? That obviously mean that we would have to start hiking at 3 am.

We have done it previously, can do it again.

What is the possibility of hot water on the hike? :huh:
OK just asking...lol

Regards
Frik


Hi Frik

We have recently booked the Otter Trail for the 24/02/10 - 28/02/10 (OMG!), and a night at Storms River Mouth on 23/02/10. Have no idea what else we're doing and how we're getting around. We will start looking at that soon.

We're Australian, currently living in Angola, and have just moved a few days ago from Luanda (the capital) to Soyo (a charming town in the north of Angola).

Apart from passing through Johannesburg Airport, next February will be our first trip to South Africa. Can't wait!! :D

Mish


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 Post subject: Re: Otter Trail
Unread postPosted: Mon Jul 27, 2009 1:04 pm 
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Joined: Thu Mar 06, 2008 3:04 pm
Posts: 14
Location: Secunda
Hi Mish

Glad to see your response. We are a group of 9 persons from Secunda, South Africa that is hiking the Otter on the same dates as you.

The information I can provide is that you will land on O.R.Tambo, and from there, book a flight with Kulula or One Time (Much cheaper than SAA) to George (GRJ).

The transport from George to Stormsriver mouth is quite a rip off, choose wisely. My advise to you is, do not part with your money too easily. The cost could range from R5000 to R80,00 per person, hence my advise choose wisely.

I have more information if you are interested. Ask me specific questions and I will answer them accordingly.

Regards
Frik.

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 Post subject: Re: Otter Trail
Unread postPosted: Fri Aug 21, 2009 6:59 pm 
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Joined: Sat Jun 14, 2008 3:03 pm
Posts: 169
Hi guys

I will be walking the Otter trail from 23-27 August 2009
Will post a trip report with a few pictures after the hike.

Thats if I survive ;-)

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He will "bring to ruin those ruining the earth" I look forward to that day. You have been warned!

Kruger: 27 April - 30 May 2012


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 Post subject: Re: Otter Trail
Unread postPosted: Thu Sep 10, 2009 9:44 am 
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Joined: Sat Jun 14, 2008 3:03 pm
Posts: 169
Oki I did survive the hike, just been a bit busy, will try to put something together soon. Lets see how the week goes..

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He will "bring to ruin those ruining the earth" I look forward to that day. You have been warned!

Kruger: 27 April - 30 May 2012


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 Post subject: Re: Otter Trail
Unread postPosted: Thu Sep 10, 2009 10:17 am 
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Joined: Mon Dec 11, 2006 1:45 pm
Posts: 4955
Location: southern gauteng
Please do !
Would like to see pics and read your perspective - was last there 29(?) Dec 1999 - 2 Jan 2000 , also May 1996 .

_________________
KNP is sacred. I am opposed to the modernisation of Kruger and from the depths of my soul long for the Kruger of yesteryear! 1000+km on foot in KNP incl 56 wild trails.200+ nights in the wildernessndloti-indigenous name for serval.


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 Post subject: Detailed Otter Trail Blog - Start to Finish with Photos
Unread postPosted: Thu Oct 01, 2009 7:41 am 
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Joined: Thu Oct 01, 2009 7:35 am
Posts: 3
Hi, Our group on the Otter decided to blog the entire adventure. It was a great experience we wanted to share with everyone.

Here is the link.

http://www.theotterodyssey.blogspot.com/


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