Adventure Events

Num Num Trail Challenge 2014

The Num-Num Trail Challenge is in it’s 4th year and an event that should be on top of your bucket list!

Date: 2 August 2014

Cost: R975 per person (includes goodie bag, water tables, medical services and prize giving braai) – same entry fee for both distances.

Categories: The Num-Num Challenge (36km) or Rough It (15km)

Format: Solo knee-breaker. There are steep up hills, down hills, swing bridges and ladders

Terrain: Explore the hidden gems of the Highveld Escarpment. Gorges, kloofs, indigenous forests, sandstone labyrinths, open grasslands, waterfalls, game and birds

Where: R541 between Machadodorp and Badplaas, Mpumalanga. See below for GPS co-ordinates. Directions will be sent to runners who are confirmed

Contact: 083 294 5260


There will be no refunds for cancellations. Ypu will have the option to pay via credit / debit cared or EFT. If you choose the EFT option, you will have 48 hours to make payment. After the 48 hours, the entry system will automatically delete unpaid entries and pass it on to the next person on the waiting list. Substitutions can be made up to 15 June 2013.

You can stay at one of the Num-Num hiking camps on a self-catering basis. Please email Num-Num directly for accommodation bookings at A list of accommodation in the area will be sent to all people whose entries are confirmed.

Registration desk will be open from 5:00pm – 7.30pm at the Pongola Express Camp on Friday, 1 August. Otherwise you must arrive at least half an hour before your allocated start time to register, sign the indemnity form and collect your race tag.

There will be a staggered start of groups of 20 people from 6.30am. Your start time will be sent  to your at least a week before the race. The 36km experienced runners will start first.

You must ensure that you collect your ‘race tag’ from the RaceTime Team.

There will not be a group briefing. You will be sent a briefing pack, please read this carefully, and there will be an ‘Information Stand’ at the race start.

The Num-Num Trail Challenge is situated midway between Machadodorp and Badplaas. This is the lip of the Drakensburg Escarpment with natural wonders hidden in kloofs and gorges.

The 36km runners will change altitude by about 462m four times in one day. Both race categories go through twisty forest areas, sandstone rock formations, open grasslands, steep climbs and descents and waterfalls galore. There is only 4km of farm road running; the rest is single track trails.

Hikers walk the trail in five days so the trail is divided into 5 parts (note that this is NOT a staged race):

Die Bergbas Roete (7.5km) – A 460m climb from Pongola Express Camp to Aloe Kaya camp. You go through indigenous forests, past red shale cliffs and over sandstone rock formations.

The Bladdernut Track (9.5km) – This is the toughest part of the trail. A steep descent into Hells Kloof with beautiful indigenous forests. A steep climb out of the kloof for views across to Swaziland. There is a 4km detour around the sandstone labyrinths and then a steep descent into the Bankspruit Gorge. The end is a 1.5km uphill on lose stones to Bermanzi camp.

The Milkplum Path (6.2km) – A steep 2km descent into the Bankspruit Gorge through ‘Lord of the Rings’ forests and a scramble through rocks. The rest of this route is a gentle run along single track criss-crossing up the Bankspruit river to the Uitkomst Falls. Swing bridges abound. There is a 1km gentle climb to Candlewood Camp where lunch packs await.

The Pom-Pon Way (6.3km) – A steep descent with ladders into a small kloof and then open run uphill. Most of the route is a descent through twisty forest areas down the Skurwerand to Wathaba Camp. Quad power required!

Die Kokoboom Pad (7km) – A beautiful end past numerous pretty waterfalls. A gentle climb halfway up the Skurwerberg before a zig-zag descent into the Schoonspruit Gorge and the Mac Falls. A final cruel 100 meter climb to Pongola Express. The 15km route is not be underestimated either and covers some of the most technical parts of the trail. It follows Die Bergbas Roete and an open grassland connection to the Pom-Pon Way.


1st prize (men and women) – R5000

2nd prize (men and women) – R2500

3rd prize (men & women) – R1250

You are responsible for your own food and energy supplements before and during the race (we will supply water tables and food tables but it is ultimately your own responsibility to make sure you have enough food and supplements during the race). All camps are equiped with the basics to prepare your own food like a stove, kettle and fridge. Water is safe to drink on the trail and from taps – obviously don’t fill up at stagnant pools.

Included in the price of the race is:

On race day you will get:

Starter table – tea, coffee and muffins

Water tables – There will be 5 water tables at each of the hiking camps. Water tables as a minimum will have oatmeal biscuits, water, orange juice, bananas and salt. Sponsors may provide additional energy drinks and snacks at their tables.

Finishing table – A cold energy or soda drink to refresh you after the long haul

Prize Giving Braai – There will be a braai at the Pongola Express Camp from 7pm on 3 August. Hearty country fare including lots of meat (spitbraai, boerewors, lamb chops and chicken), mix of fresh salads and desert. There will be vegetarian options. Nora’s shabeen will be open to buy drinks but you are also welcome to bring your own.

All runners are required to have on them during the trail race:
A cell phone (please have the following number programmed in – 072 889 9284)
A minimum of 1 liter of water carrying capacity,
Emergency nutrition
Some basic first aid e.g. plasters and antiseptic. There will be paramedics available.
Appropriate weather gear (if it is cold and raining you must have a waterproof jacket, not                 just a wind-breaker)

The Num-Num trail is 2.5 hours from Hyde Park in Johannesburg. Follow the N12 past OR Tambo airport towards Benoni and eMalahleni (previously Witbank). It turns into the N4 at eMalahleni. At Machadodorp take the R541 towards Badplaas. The GPS co-ordinates for each of the camps are listed below. Pongola Express camp will be the main hub – start and finish, registration and prize giving braai.

Pongola Express  25° 47’ 49.3” S
(Num-Num)          30° 22’ 25.2” E

Waterbessie  25° 47’ 49” S
(Wathaba)     30° 22’ 25” E

Aloe Kaya            25° 49’ 04.1” S
(Five Assegais)    30° 22’ 44.5” E

Die Stalle     25° 49’ 35” S
(Bermanzi)   30° 20’ 35” E

Candlewood        25° 48’ 32.3” S
(Five Assegais)  30° 21’ 29.1” E

At Pongola Express Camp there will be limited parking inside the camp. A staff member will be on site to look after cars parked on the R541 and local police will be present. Where possible please share cars to the start and finish of the race. All cars are parked at the owners own risk. Please remove all valuables from your car. The area has a low crime rate and so far we have not had any security issues but please be vigilant. Parking is free.

To find out how the 2013 Num-Num Trail went please go to:

You must be over 17 to do the 36km and 15km races
If under the age of 21, your Parent/Guardian must sign the indemnity.
You must have your ‘Race Tag’ on you at the start and finish. It is the responsibility of each runner to ensure that your ‘Race Tag’ is scanned.
All race numbers must be worn on the front of your t-shirt and be visible at all times.
The race cut off time will be 6.30pm. Marshalls will start to detour people from Wathaba from 4.30pm if we think you will not complete before dark.
The Entry Fee includes goodie bag, race, water tables and prize giving braai. It does not include transport to and from the start, alcohol and additional nutrition or energizers.
You are responsible for your own wellbeing on the trail. If you have a heart condition or other medical issue, consult your doctor before booking and let us know in advance.
Paramedics will be on site. Costs for any medicals supplies is liable to the runner (e.g. bandages, pain killers)
There will be watering stations at the camps, but you are expected to be self-sufficient on the trail. It is safe to drink the water on the estates but do not drink from stagnant pools.
The race route is marked. Do not take short cuts. If you do, you will be DSQ! Ensure you know the route, read the briefing pack and ask questions at the information stands.
Seconding is only allowed at the camps and is not encouraged.
You are required to take a cell phone, a minimum of 1 litre of water carrying capacity, emergency nutrition and appropriate weather gear (if it is cold and raining you must have a rain coat, not just a wind-breaker)
Save this cell number on your phone: 072 889 9284 for emergency use only.
Each individual is responsible for carrying their own litter off the trail. Absolutely no litter will be tolerated. There are bins at all the water tables.
Fire is a hazard. Only light fires in the designated areas.
Participants indicate acceptance of the rules of The Num Num Trail Challenge, by their signature / tick on the entry form.
Sorry, no dogs on the run or the camps.
Please do not pick wild flowers, chip rocks or gather any other artefacts or trophies. Take photos, leave footprints.
No refunds once you have entered. Substitutions are allowed until 10 June 2012. Arrange transfer of funds between each other and inform us in writing to
Prize Giving will be at approximately 7.00pm on 2 August. Be there to claim your prize. The judge’s decision is final. You have to be at prize giving to claim your prize!

There is a high risk of veld fires in August. Please only make fires in the designated areas at each camp. If there is a fire: Please call or sms 072 889 9284 and make us aware of your position

You cannot out run a veld fire. It will go faster up ill than downhill. Make your way to a road, river or camp but please stick to the path. Get rid of any flammable materials and if possible wet your person

Put a cloth of natural material over your nose and mouth. If you are surrounded by fire get behind a rock or river bank. Stay close to the ground where there will be more air.

Please note that the Num-Num Trail owners accept NO RESPONSIBLITY OR LIABILITY for Death, injury or illness sustained or suffered by any person. Theft, loss or damage to any property. Any item left behind at our facilities.
Last update on this event: 23/07/2014
Event added: 23/07/2014
General Event Details
Saturday, 02 August 2014