When going on a hike please ensure you have a map which can be purchased from most of the Ezemvelo KZN Wildlife regional reserves or at the head office in Pietermaritzburg.
This guide to Hiking in the Drakensberg may alsobe of assistance especially if your first hike. A list of the caves and phone numbers that can be booked is available hereand an example of the Mountain Rescue Register can be downloaded here.
Maliba Lower Trail To Black Pool Grade in Tsehlanyane National Park is a 3.1km (1.9 miles), a gentle walk will take about 1 hour 20 minutes to Black Pool. This route follows the Hlotse River and is almost the same distance as the Upper route but has fewer climbs making it enjoyable for all age groups.
The Lower trail starts from the junction about 140m north of the lodge veranda, accessed off the gravel road leading to the nursery. The trail is a clearly marked path with markers showing the distance covered in meters.
The start of the trail at the lodge is at 2030 meters above sea level. From here it descends gently to 1993m where you meet a t-junction. You turn left and follow the river in a northeasterly direction. A right turn will take you to the river pool and the River Chalets about 1.2km away.
This path passes through the riverine forest allowing for a shady walk with numerous birds twittering away. This path leads to the “Lets’a-Lets’o” the Black Lake, which is at 2080 meters above sea-level.
Look out for a variety of birds and plants. The vegetation consists mostly of riverine trees and shrubs. You will also find tracks of bushbuck and duiker along the way. Shortly after passing the junction of the Upper trail on your left, you will reach Black Pool. This is a good place to enjoy a snack and liquid refreshment.