Protecting wilderness areas

Most of the areas where we hike enjoy some form of legal protection and conservation status. Is there any member of this forum who can help or advise on the following.

Next to Grahamstown is an exquisite area of wilderness called Featherstone Kloof. It has great natural beauty, indigenous forest and perennial tinkling streams of potable water. As a result of extensive work by Working for Water to eradicate aliens, parts of it now look like the Little Berg.

The Featherstone Kloof area is commonage and one can walk in and out at will. It is a recreational resource that is a huge asset to Grahamstown but it is understandably under threat. Major threats include off road motorbikes ridden across the open veld and along the footpaths of a lovely hiking trail, harvesting of plants and bark, hunting and snaring, grazing and potentially squatting.

So how can this area be protected and conserved for sustainable use before it is too late? Has anyone reading this been through the process and knows who to contact? Any advice welcome.


Hi Richard

  1. Who owns the land or is responsible for management ? Municipality maybe?
  2. Check in with EC Parks and find out if the land has some kind of Conservation Stewardship status. It may already be legislated as such. If not motivate for it.
  3. Having such status means it will get a conservation management plan and that will help regulate activities that take place there.
  4. Lastly mobilize your local community of user to form a group to drive this action.

Good luck - we need many such places taken care of more proactively by our communities around this beautiful country.


Thank you Galeo, your advice is very much appreciated.

Wishing you best of luck Richard! We are in desperate need of more people protecting the environment proactively.