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South Africa :: Eastern Cape
Category: Scenic Routes :: Mountain Pass
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Michel's Pass from Hogsback village to Seymour was named after Colonel Michel who was in charge of the troops in Fort Beaufort in the 1850's.
Michel's Pass is located in the Eastern Cape between Hogsback in the east and Seymour in the west. The 6,5 km gravel pass is in a sub standard condition and subject to severe thunderstorms in summer and snowfalls in winter with a summit altitude of 1442m ASL. The track is strictly for 4WD vehicles with high ground clearance and low range. There is a point where the road washes away regularly. It is best to check with local businesses and B&B's in Hogsback whether the road is passable or not. Latest news in (March, 2017) is that the rockfall has been cleared and that the pass can now be driven by high clearance 4x4's and adventure m/cycles.
Cautionary: Only serious offroad drivers in high clearance 4x4's with low range should attempt this pass. Recovery equipment is essential. Don't drive it alone. (Source: Mountain Passes South Africa).
This pass is the equivalent of Van Zyl pass in Namibia, and possibly even more of a serious 4x4. On the Hogsback approach there is no warning that it is serious 4x4, on the Seymour side you do find a warning. There has been no road maintenance for a long time and the road seems to get worse after each rain storm. (Jun-2017).
Travellers reported that on previous trips there were large stones in the pass, and had to turn around. (Sep-16).
“This pass is the equivalent of Van Zyl pass in Namibia possibly even more serious 4x4. On the Hogsback approach there is no warning that it is serious 4x4, on the Seymour side you do find a warning. There have been no road maintenance for a long time and the road seems to get worse after each rain storm. ” - Leonico Erasmus, 2017/06/13
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