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Page Revision: 2008/10/02 10:18

The Hogsback area is a mixture of indigenous forest, plantation and other exotic vegetation (with brambles prominent), and montane grassland. There is bare rock on the peaks; streams and waterfalls in the valley.


The contour path early in the morning is a good route for forest birds, which may include Knysna Turaco, Olive Woodpecker, Grey Cuckooshrike, Terrestrial Brownbul, Chorister Robin-Chat, Yellow-throated Woodland-Warbler, Olive Bush-Shrike, Dark-backed Weaver and Forest Canary. Mountain Wagtail are found along the streams; Lemon Dove flush from the paths, seldom providing a good view.

Cape Parrot are now very uncommon, only seen flying overhead at dawn and dusk; raptors include Forest Buzzard and African Crowned Eagle. Bush Blackcap, Brown Scrub-Robin and White-starred Robin, and in summer African Emerald Cuckoo can be found, while Orange Ground-Thrush are seen occasionally.

Barratt's Warbler favours the bramble thickets, and may be found in the gardens of some of the hotels. On the grassy slopes Ground Woodpecker, Cape Grassbird, Cape Longclaw and Yellow Bishop are regular, with Jackal Buzzard and Alpine Swift overhead.

Monkeys in the forest are Samango monkeys, at the southern limit of their range.


The mountain village of Hogsback is about an hour's drive from Grahamstown. Take the Kingwilliamstown road out of town, then turn north to Fort Beaufort. Go through Fort Beaufort and head east to Alice, from Alice continue east towards Kingwilliamstown and take the turnoff to Hogsback a short way out of town.

At Hogsback there is accommodation in hotels and other guest houses; the forest camp site is no longer operating. Snowfalls may occur in winter. Walking trails are marked with hogs of different colours; a map is available from the shop or at the guest houses. There are also horse trails, primarily for experienced riders.

Hogsback Wesite or Hogsback Community Website

Adrian Craig 2001.

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