Charity run hungry child   Camino de Santiago   Cape Agulhas   Charity
8 marathons in 8 days to feed a hungry child | Run For Hope Pilgrimage
In Aid Of
Ten Bate Van

Where's Christo?

Follow Christo’s Pilgrimage

Follow Christo's progress as he prepares for the big event. During the event, we will post daily updates so that you can follow him along the way.

Watch the live video stream (when activated: set your view on 1 hour and set the map to Satelite - High Res)

View the daily route and program

Watch the daily videos on You Tube

View the daily photo updates

Important dates to note

Wherever you are while Christo’s running his Pilgrimage, please try to take some time to do something special for the elderly folk in your life or community.

21.08.22: Senior Neighbour Day (Global)
27.09.22 to 04.10.22: Older Persons Week (South Africa)
25.10.22 to 31.10.22: Active Ageing Week (South Africa)

Run for Hope Route| Christo van der Berg|8 day Pilgrimage|bringing hope
Run for hope Training program|Christo van der Berg|

Training Programme

To be able to run The Pilgrimage of Hope (the equivalent of eight marathons) in eight days, Christo knew he needed a pro trainer. He was introduced to Cobus Fourie at C4 Coaching who’s a certified Iron Man coach. Coaching began in October 2020 and is progressing extremely well for Christo to achieve his goal.

As training progressed, Christo realised he needed more support for the physical demands of his training regime. He joined a pilates class, run by Natasha Wallendorff at My Gym, which continues to be a vital part of his weekly training.

Then, during a two-day trail run in Montagu, Christo didn't have the strength demanded by the  realised he needed to add strength training to his preparation. He was introduced to personal trainer, Andre Brand from Step Up Sport who also adding his ongoing expertise to Christo’s training team.

Daily Itinerary

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2022
Day 1 - Ashton to Arangies

Distance: 49km

Passes: Kogmanskloof and Burgers Pass, Arangieskop

The Route: Departing Ashton and passing Montagu. Following the R318 before turning off to run up and down Arangieskop. Overnighting at Protea Farm.

With the completion of the railway line from Worcester to the coastal regions in 1887, the trading post Roodewal, became a railway station. Shortly afterwards it was renamed Ashton, in honour of Job Ashton, director and railway engineer of the New Cape Central Railways (Ltd). For several years the settlement consisted of only a railway station, warehouse, hotel, post office, butchery, a little school, one shop and a few houses. During 1939 and 1940 extraordinary growth took place with the opening of the Langeberg Co-operative, resulting in the farmland being divided into plots. Development received a further boost with the establishment of a second canning factory in 1949. In 1956 Ashton gained municipal status.

Next to the Municipal Offices of the Langeberg Municipality in the Main Road of Ashton, the steam locomotive no 2010 class 14 CR, commissioned in 1919 and used on the Worcester-Mossel Bay rail section until 1983, still proudly
Day 2 - Arangies to N1

Distance: 51km

Total distance covered: 100km

Passes: Rooihoogte

The Route

ArangieskopThis spectacular and very steep pass is well known to many locals who have been up to the top of the mountain on the popular Protea Farm Tractor ride. This takes place on Wednesdays and Saturdays, but on any other day of the week, it's possible to book a self-drive trip up the mountain (at a fee).

The views are some of the best you will experience anywhere in the Western Cape, where from the summit you can look down on the town of Robertson and eastwards towards Worcester. The opposing view is over the Keisie Valley with its backdrop of tall mountains and neat orchards.

The road is mostly concrete strip paved, so traction is not a problem and it is possible to drive up in a normal car, but a reasonable level of ground clearance is important.

The statistics are impressive too. You will climb 540m over just 4.1 km which produces an average gradient of 1:8 but there are some sections which are as steep as 1:4

This road is not recommended for inexperienced drivers or acrophobia sufferers.

Arangieskop summit
Photo: Jacques Niemand
Day 3 - N1 to Bo-Swaarmoed

Distance: 44km

Total distance covered: 144km

Passes: Die Venster

The Route:

Die Venster translates into The Window. This is an easy pass with gentle curves and a fairly small altitude gain/loss. However, what it lacks in technical drama, it more than makes up for in terms of grand scenery. The road ascends gradually from the west through a curve to the left as it heads for the lowest point between two mountain ranges. From the summit, a vast landscape opens up featuring flat plains stretching as far as the eye can see with rugged mountains interrupting the Karooscape.

Donkeys on Bo-Swaarmoed Pass
Karoo donkeys sans Shrek
Photo: Andrzej Arminski
Day 4 - Bo-Swaarmoed to Prins Alfred

Distance: 46km

Total distance covered: 190km

Passes: Bo-Swaarmoed Pass

The Route:

The Bo-Swaarmoed Pass is located to the north of the much bigger Swaarmoed Pass, 3,5 km kilometers after the Matroosberg/ Erfdeel turn-off. It is a gravel road that connects the summit area of the Swaarmoed Pass with the farm Uitkomst (Matjiesrivier) in the lower valley to the north. The pass is also sometimes called the Uitkomst Pass and the Bloubank Pass by locals. This is a very old farm with old buildings, dry packed stone walls and a unique and completely intact slave bell dating back to the early 1700's.

Most of the passes around Ceres are tarred which tends to lull drivers into a false sense of security. When adding very steep gradients, sharp corners and several bends which have negative banking, this pass has the potential to become very dangerous and doubly so during snow or after heavy rain for unattentive drivers. Don't be fooled by the mild statistics or how easy it looks on the video. It is safer to ascend this pass than descend it. Speed needs to be drastically reduced if you have approached from the south via the Swaarmoed Pass.

Bo-Swaarmoed Pass
Old building on the Uitkomst farm (Matjiesrivier) at the foot of the pass
Photo: Trygve Roberts
Day 5 - Prins Alfred to Houdenbek

Distance: 49km

Total distance covered: 239km

Passes: Gydo Pass

The Route:

The Gydo Pass was built at the same time as Michells Pass by Andrew Geddes Bain and his team of convict labourers circa 1848. This important pass connected the Warm Bokkeveld with the higher altitude Koue Bokkeveld, as well as the remote, but fertile (and therefore lucrative) Witzenberg Valley a few kilometers west of the head of the pass.

Gydo Pass

Gydo Pass views
Photo: Trygve Roberts

Day 6 - Houdenbek to Grootriverhoogte

Distance: 43km

Total distance covered: 282km

Passes: Blinkberg Pass

The Route:

The Blinkberg Pass (translated as 'Glittering or Shining Mountain') is a fairly long pass, found on the much revered gravel road (the P1482) through the southern Cederberg. The Grootrivierhoogte Pass and Blinkberg Pass run concurrently for a distance of almost 20km through magnificent and rugged scenery.

The pass has an unusual vertical profile in that it has two false summits located approximately at the 1/3 and 2/3 points. Each of these is marked by a short tarred section to cope with the very steep gradients. At 11,8 km this a long pass and is peppered with corners, but most of these are fairly easy. There are however, some really nasty ones, which can catch unsuspecting drivers by surprise.

The road traverses spectacular Cederberg mountain scenery and follows a narrow kloof for most of its length. Earmark this one if you've never driven it, as it's one of the nicest gravel roads in South Africa.

Blinkberg Pass
Sneeukop (2070m) Cederberg
Photo: Trygve Roberts

Day 7 - Grootrivierhoogte to Driehoek Tourism Farm

Distance: 39km

Total distance covered: 321km

The Route:

Grootrivierhoogte forms part of the exceptionally beautiful route through the Southern Cederberg, connecting farms like Kromrivier, Matjiesrivier, Nuwerus and Mount Ceder, with the plateau of the Koue Bokkeveld. The road is made up of two major passes - the other being the Blinkberg Pass. Both offer stunning mountain scenery in crisp mountain air. The passes are seriously steep in some places - as steep as 1:5 !!!

Grootrivierhoogte is one of the steepest along this route and light front wheel cars will struggle on the final section near the summit in wet conditions, but for the vast majority of the year, this pass is doable in any vehicle. Take time to stop at the summit and allow the mesmerising mountain views to captivate your soul. From the summit one can look to the south and see part of the Blinkberg Pass, whilst the northern view includes Nuwerus, and Cederberg Oasis.

Grootriverhoogte
Low level bridge over the Groot River at Mount Ceder
Photo: Trygve Roberts
Day 8 - Driehoek to Clanwilliam

Distance: 39km

Total distance covered: 360km

Passes: Uitkyk Pass

The Route:

The 4.7 km Uitkyk Pass joins the northern and southern Cederberg Wilderness areas. Of medium length and fairly steep, this pass is true to its name, which translates as 'Look Out' or 'Viewpoint', providing endless vistas of the unique Cederberg mountains, with the Algeria Valley beckoning down below with it's beautiful grassed campsites and refreshing rock pools.

The pass is sometimes listed as the Cederberg Pass on older maps with the old pass (which runs up the eastern side of the ravine) which it replaced, being listed as the "Old Uitkyk Pass". Take your pick! There is another Uitkyk Pass in Mpumalanga, so 'Cederberg Pass' would have been a wiser choice. Some maps also show the Nieuwoudts Pass as the Cederberg Pass. There is another pass on the Wupperthal Road further to the north-east also called Uitkyk Pass on older maps, which has had a sensible name change to Hoek-se-berg Pass.

The much loved gravel pass was tarred in late 2019.

Uitkyk Pass

Uitkyk Pass near the summit
Photo: Jacques Niemand
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2021
Day 1 - Stellenbosch to Franschhoek

Distance: 33km

08:00 Start at the Communitas premises in Stellenbosch for the first 13km leg of the Pilgrimage

09:30 Anticipated arrival at the Congregational Church in Pniel

10:00 Depart from Pniel's Congregational Church for an 18km leg to Franschoek

11:57 Arrive at Franschhoek's NG Kerk

12:15 Leave Franschhoek for the final 5km stretch to the neck of Franschhoek on Day 1

12:55 End of Day 1.


Read today's blog

Day 2 - Franschhoek to Rusty Gate

Distance: 44km

08:00 Start at Mount Rochelle parking (Franschoek Pass Neck) for a 28km run

11:05 Arrive at Villiersdorp NG Church

11:35 Depart Villiersdorp NG Church for the day’s second leg (18km)

14:15 Arrive at the Helderstroom Junction, Rusty Gate to end Day 2.


Read today's blog

Day 3 - Rusty Gate to Wolfkraal

Distance: 50km

08:00 Start at the Helderstroom Junction for a 20km run to the Moravian Church in Genadendal 10:10 Arrive at the Moravian Church in Genadenal

10:35 Depart from the Moravian Church for a 30km stretch to Wolfkraal

13:55 Arrive at Wolfkraal and end Day 3.

Day 4 - Wolfkraal to Volmoed

Distance: 48km


08:00 Start at Wolfkraal for a 15km run over the Pass to Dassiesfontein, Volmoed.

09:40 Arrive at Dassiesfontein

10:10 Depart Dassiesfontein for a 26km leg to the Karwyderskraal Junction

11:15 Arrive Karwyderskraal Junction for Volmoed 

11:45 Depart Karwyderskraal Junction for Volmoed (7km) 

12:45 Arrive at Volmoed where Day 4 ends.

Day 5 - Volmoed to Gansbaai

Distance: 43km

08:00 Depart Volmoed for Hermanus High School (13km)

09:25 Arrive Hermanus High School and continue to Grotto and 10th Street (6km)

10:05 Arrive at Grotto & 10th Street

10:35 Continue on the beach to Normandi Street, Gansbaai for 18.5km

12:35 Arrive Normandi Street, Gansbaai

13:10 End Day 5 at Gansbaai NG Church after a final 5.5km leg.

 

Day 6 - Gansbaai to Elim

Distance: 41.5km

08:00 Beginning in Gansbaai, today’s one long stretch of 41.5km.

12:30 Arrive Elim to end Day 6.

Day 7 - Elim to Springfield

Distance: 28km 

08:00 Depart Elim and run 28km

11:05 End Day 7 in Springfield.

Day 8 - Springfield to Agulhas

Distance: 25km

08:00 Depart Springfield and run 12km to Aasfontein

09:20 Arrive Aasfontein

09:35 Depart Aasfontein and continue running along the beach for 12.5km to Suiderstrand.

11:50 After 5km, arrive at the southern-most tip of Africa in Agulhas after crossing the cove.

Pilgrimage of Hope
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