Gamkaskloof - Die Hel, Western Cape

Gamkaskloof, popularly known as Die Hel, is a valley hidden in the Swartberg Mountains where a group of trekboers settled in the 1830s. This community of self-sufficient farmers lived here for more than 130 years, isolated from the outside world but for five footpaths, which they used to reach Prince Albert and Calitzdorp. They traded dried fruit and beans for cloth, sugar, tools and their main luxury item, coffee.

A road was finally bulldozed into the Gamkaskloof between 1962 1nd 1963, linking up with the Swartberg Pass in the east.

(Whitehead 2018:121)

List of references:

Fransen, Hans. 2004. The old buildings of the Cape. A survey of extant architecture from before c1910 in the area of Cape Town - Calvinia - Colesberg - Uitenhage. Johannesburg & Cape Town: Jonathan Ball Publishers. pp 499-501
Schoeman, Chris. 2013. Historical Karoo, The : Traces of the past in South Africa's arid interior. Cape Town: Zebra Press. pp 77-83
Whitehead, Marion . 2018. South Africa's Favourite Passes + Poorts. Maitland: Map Studio. pp 121

List of structures:

Drying racks and lye-tubs: c1930s.
Gamkaskloof Pass: 1962-1963.
Koot Cordier House: 1962.
Lenie Marais House: 1928.
Marais Graveyard: n.d..
Sankie Marais House: n.d..