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Game Drives

Accompanied by guides, guests are likely to encounter the following wildlife at close range in our mini Serengeti. Black Wildebeest, Zebra, Springbuck, Bless Buck, Mountain Reedbuck, Steen Buck, Duiker, Fellow Deer, Red Hartebeest, Eland, Oryx, and Ostrich.

Night Drives

Under the beautiful Free State night sky you can experience the nightlife on the reserve such as Porcupine, Hare, Spring hare and Jackal etc. (Min of 4 people, 1-2 hours)

Panoramic Scenery  Routes

Enjoy the reserve in your own car in your own time.

4×4 Trails

‘Drive out’ magazine Roll of honour – Top 10 winner (2001, 2004, 2005, 2006).

Enjoy the Reserve in a 4×4 accompanied by a qualified driver or a guide on horseback.

There are 3 routes namely: Langesnek Route, Visierskerf / Kloof and Kiepersol Garden. These routes can comfortably be done over a weekend, showing different aspect of the reserve. Experience the sandstone splendour at its best. Recommended time of year, all year around. Minimum of 4 vehicles, maximum of 15, except for Lodge guests.

  • Visierskerf / Kloof 20 km, 4-5 hours.
    Passing under the Witteberg sandstone overhang, the track enters an area that was first explored in 1992. After viewing the greater valley area, with its sugarbush proteas and indigenous bush, the track crosses the Nature Reserve. Black Wildebeest, Zebra, Blesbuck, Ostrich, Steenbok, Duiker, Springbok, Eland, Red Hartebeest and Mountain Rhebuck can be seen. Further along the route, remnants of the old wagon trail, Fouriesburg is still visible. The return route offers some interesting kloofs before returning to base-camp. This trail is a bird watcher’s paradise.
  • Langesnek Route – 10 km, 2-3 hours.
    The Langesnek trail starts off by traversing a wetland area, over rock plates and then a short, steep, rough climb to the plateau, where panoramic views of the surrounding mountains can be seen. Alternating grasslands and rock plates lead through an almost lunar landscape, where drivers can pit their skills against the solid rock in preparation for the extremely steep decent, leading back to the flatter areas.
  • Kiepersol Garden – 8 km, 2-3 hours.
    Tracks over sandstone plates lead to the ‘Kiepersol Garden’, on a route that is arduous for both vehicle and driver. The reward is a view of the southern side of the range and the ‘Kiepersol Garden’, from which the route derived its name.

Feedback from a 4×4 club owner:

After discovery of the Moolmanshoek 4×4 trails on offer in the early 2000’s, we have returned several times over a near 10 year period. Not only is the 4×4 terrain magnificent, but the true Free State hospitality extended converts any visitor into a friend, after a mere weekend at the eco-farm. What drives us to come back? It is the ambiance of the 4×4 trails, led by guides on horseback. The magnificent sandstone mountain backdrops, towered over by the Visierskerf Peaks, keeping a watchful eye on the 4x4ers as the slowly, yet under expert guidance and control, climb higher into the range, unleashing a breathtaking beauty, for as far as one can cast the eye. Winter or Summer. Awesome, absolutely awesome!

The routes are not that technical in the dry, and the odd natural obstacle do challenge the driver at times, always under the watchful eye of the Moolmanshoek guides. In the wet, the large stone layers on the mountainside cause interesting lines to be taken, and concentration is key. Choose any of the 3 routes on the farm. Each one is as enjoyable as the next.

To round off the experience, the camping and lodge facilities are out of this world. Moolmanshoek also offers other interesting activities such as abseiling, the meerkat experience, horse outrides and other adrenalin pumping action, thereby allowing one to put together an extended 4×4 package for any number of days. To top the experience, the close knit Nel family runs the various aspects of the eco orientated Moolmanshoek operation, and they always have a smile and a willing hand to extend to make your stay an unforgettable one.

We have been there in the past, and will keep coming in the future. It remains one of the best 4×4 experiences in the South African outdoor market.

Alan Goodway – Owner – 4×4 Offroad Adventure Club (GP), Bridgestone Ambassador, CAPESTORM Ambassador

Hiking Trails

There are 2 hiking trails covering a total distance of 52 km in the reserve, all starting and finishing at the Langesnek Hikers’ House. These trails have been well planned to show hikers all the beauty and variety of the area.

  • Waterkloof Trail: 2 days or 3 days with basic overnight facilities for 20 hikers. Grading: Average
  • Sphinx Trail: 2 day trail with comfortable overnight facilities for 20 hikers. Grading: Average to somewhat easy.

For more information and reservations for the overnight trails, contact Jacana Marketing. Tel: (041) 366 2984 or bookings@jacanacollection.co.za

Day Walks

There are a number of marked short trails (day walks) in the reserve, mostly starting out from the Lodge. You can also take a ‘kierie’ and do a leisurely stroll on the vehicle tracks to view the abundant game in the “Serengeti” area. If you are more adventurous and fit, you can take on something more ambitious and climb one of the peaks in the reserve.

  • Langesnek Day Trail: A shorter and longer option for day hikers. Very good facilities at Langesnek Hikers’ House. Grading: Easy to average.
  • Aunt Mitchell’s High Tea Overhang: Walk to the sandstone overhang (with a stunning view) that was used as a regular “high tea” spot many years ago.
  • The Five Dams walk: Take an easy stroll through poplar groves, past five dams and enjoy the scenery and bird life near the lodge.
  • Sandstone Gorge: Take a longer walk to the Waterkloof ravine and enjoy the mountain streams and waterfalls of this beautiful gorge.
  • Peak climbing: Put on your boots and tackle one of the high peaks in the reserve, like Visierskerf (2407m), Sekonyella’s Hat (2312m) or the Pyramid (2167m) for a view you will remember!

Abseiling

Sandstone cliffs provides for a challenging abseil experience, from a mere 20m to a more demanding 40m. Minimum of 4 people.

Horseback Safari

Book your 7 day in the saddle horseback safari by contacting us.

Fly-fishing and fishing

Enjoy fishing in natural spring water. There are black bass and carp dams. Bring your own rod. Catch and release.

Horse riding

Come and experience horse riding as never before in the spectacular Eastern Free State Mountains. See breathtaking sights and large herds of game from horseback. Moolmanshoek breeds award-winning SA Boerperde and endurance horses. There are hundreds of horses on the reserve. It is an experience you will never forget!

Horse cart

We also offer horse cart rides through the game area, where up to eight people can enjoy this unique experience. Minimum of 4 people.

Mountain biking

Bring your mountain bike and explore the game reserve on the tracks and paths, or venture further on the gravel roads of our beautiful district.

High ropes

We have a high ropes course at our leadership centre. It is available for personal challenge and team building, or for the more adventurous. Minimum of 4 people.

Nearby attractions

Should you want to venture a bit further and experience more of the attractions in the near vicinity of Moolmanshoek, there are various options:

  • The annual Ficksburg Cherry festival in November.  www.cherryfestival.co.za
  • The small truly platteland town of Rosendal with its well-known theatre and shows.www.rosendalinfo.co.za
  • Asparagus farming around Ficksburg.
  • Cosmos flowers in the fields in April
  • The splendid sandstone architecture and museum in Ficksburg.  www.goficksburg.co.za
  • The scenic tourism town of Clarens. Clarens Info Tel 058 256 1542
  • The Mountain Kingdom, Lesotho, just across the border from Ficksburg, offering many interesting places and features for the tourist or adventurer, like the Afri-Ski Resort or the Katse Dam. www.golesotho.co.za
  • For stunning scenery and preservation of trains (including old steam-locomotives ) visit Sandstone Estate. –  www.sandstone-estates.com