The Crag Lizard Trail – Camdeboo National Park
The Crag Lizard Trail
Duration: 45 minutes
Difficulty: For all ages
Cost: Entrance Fee to National Park / Free with a Wildcard
Starts at the Valley of Desolation parking area and extends for about 1.5km via the Valley viewpoints. There is an information board along the path between the parking lot and the first viewpoint which details the proclamation of the Valley as a National Monument and includes a map to show the layout of trail paths. The trail is marked with the Crag Lizard logo. The Valley of Desolation is a National Monument and the premier tourist attraction of the Camdeboo National Park.
From the parking lot hikers follow a cobbled pathway to the first Valley viewpoint, where there is an information panel that interprets the geological and paleontological history of the Karoo. Black eagles are often seen at close range and the high-speed maneuvers of the alpine swift, hold many a visitor spellbound! From here hikers progress to the second viewpoint which offers a breathtaking view of piled dolerite columns against the backdrop of the plains of Camdeboo and a timeless sense of wonder at a landscape said to be the product of the volcanic and erosive forces of nature, over a period of 100 million years. After the second viewpoint there is an option for a quick return to the car park, or to continue with the trail along the rim of the cliff edge, which provides even more impressive views of the rock formations. There are numerous precipices and crevasses along this section of the trail and due care needs to be taken especially if there are children in the group.
From the beacon at the extreme western edge of the cliff, the route winds back to the parking lot through moist mountain-top shrublands which abound with birdlife. Mountain reedbuck and kudu are frequently sighted by hikers along this section of the trail while cape mountain zebra are also occasionally seen. This is an easy route that does not require any particular skills and is suited to people of all ages.
- Mount Camdeboo National Park