Hike #28: The Dark Side Gorge

The idea for this blog was born on a hike up Dark Gorge at the end of 2016. So, it seemed like a good idea to include Dark Gorge in the blog at some point. However, this was apparently not that point. Although Alison had done the hike less than a year ago, she managed to take the wrong turning and led Ted and Rich up a gorge a few metres to the right of Dark Gorge. Despite Alison’s best attempts to climb a very steep, slippery, moist, moss-covered rock wall at the top, it turned out to be a dead end (although she didn’t die). Since it doesn’t seem to have a name, we took the liberty of naming it. It’s all yours, Darth.

HIKE DETAILS (not recorded cos Martin wasn’t with us)

Distance: Not a clue. More than 2 kilometres and less than 10.

Duration: Wasn’t paying attention to this either. 3 hours?

Parking: Rhodes Memorial – the lower parking lot just outside the bottom gate. Because Newlands Forest parking lot is a bunfight in summer.

Trail directions we used: Alison’s (faulty) nose. From the gate of Rhodes Mem, walk to the left up the mountain biking single track (taking care not to be run over by mountain bikes) until you reach Newlands Forest. Find a vague trail through the forest that peters out and then resort to bundu bashing straight up the hill until you hit the contour path. Then mosey around until you find a likely looking gorge to climb up. Then come back down without breaking any limbs and follow the contour path back to Rhodes Mem. This is not a recommended route, and is included in this blog for record-keeping purposes only.

Post hike eating place: Rhodes Memorial Tea Room for Caryn’s crazy bee-attracting birthday cake and piles of platters of meaty cheesy things.


  • Chinkerinchees in bloom
  • Tree fungi in spore
  • Finally locating the gorge we’d intended to climb after walking past it twice and going up and down the wrong one. (We only walked past it a third time and found it because Alison gets stubborn about these things and refused to go to Caryn’s birthday party until we found it.)


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