Drakensberg Caves & Huts Database

Wonder Valley Cave


Injasuti Wilderness Area

Wonder Valley Cave can be reached from several directions, although the most popular route is from the Injasuti Hutted Camp via van Heyningen's Pass.  A more spectacular (but tougher) route in clear weather is from Monk's Cowl via Blind Man's Corner and the Eland fence.  This route affords excellent views of the escarpment from Giant's Castle in the south to the Devil's Tooth at the Amphitheatre in the far north.  Slingsby's map shows two Blind Man's corners, and the new map does not show the Eland fence, which is a key navigational feature in poor weather.  Wonder Valley Cave is not situated in Wonder Valley itself, but on a lower tributary to it.  Wonder Valley itself is a very prominent feature, and runs all the way up to the Blind Man's Corner on the contour path above Verkykerskop.  However, these upper reaches of the valley are very rugged and impassable, so the cave cannot be reached via this route.  For various reasons, the lower routes via the Maatschappij or the youth hostel near the Injasuti Hutted Camp are now closed.

Co-ordinates (WGS84 / dd mm.mmm):

S29 05.201 E29 25.594 at 1853 metres


Accommodation: 12

Wonder Valley Cave is perhaps one of the finest caves in the berg, with its only drawback being that running water is not conveniently close by.  There are actually two overhangs, the first one being the annex and the second, larger one being the main cave.  The floor of the latter is almost perfectly level, with several smaller, walled sleeping areas and one large one.


The sleeping areas of the main overhang are large and level, providing plenty of room to move about.  The annex provides a single, large sleeping area which is also very level.  Each overhang also offers a small, more sheltered nook which some hikers have found useful on cold, windy winter nights, although in summer they are both damp.


There is plenty of water in the valley below the cave, which can be reached by following a well-worn path from the far end of the main overhang.  However, reaching the stream involves a steep descent (with a steep ascent on the return trip!).


There is a very fine pool about 50 metres further on from the nearest water point in the stream, with plenty of bedrock to stretch out on above and below the waterfall which plunges into the pool.  The adventurous can also explore further downstream by walking along the stream bed.


The cave is north facing, and the overhang is sufficiently large to provide good protection from normal wet weather systems. However, in a driving summer thunderstorm the front of the cave may be a little exposed.


One of the best features of Wonder Valley Cave is the fine view it affords (on a clear day) of Champagne Castle, Monk's Cowl, Cathkin Peak, Sterkhorn and the Amphletts.  The view down the valley towards Wonder Valley itself is also pleasing, especially in summer when the proteas are in bloom.


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Last updated: 2009-08-21 10:11:28 | Report Listing Report Listing
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