Skurweburg

Skurweberg (Rough Mountain) is situated approximately 30km northwest of Vryheid towards Wakkerstroom. The mountain lies 1600m above sea level, and consists of rocky grassland and scattered bush clumps. A district road passes over the northern side of the mountain, and birding can be done from the roadside.

A number of interesting specials and endemics can be found on the mountain. Scan the rocky grasslands for Denham’s Bustard and Barrow’s Korhaan, the latter can be heard calling during the early morning. Bald Ibis are especially fond of any burnt firebreaks in the area, as are Long-billed and Plain-backed Pipits. Blue Crane breed on the mountain, and can often be seen near the cattle lick blocks on the southern side of the road. Eastern Long-billed Lark favors the large rocks next to the road, while Buff-streaked Chat occurs on any size rocks. Look out for Mountain Wheatear and Bokmakierie on or near any rocks too. Red-winged Francolins are heard during the summer months, although they are not always seen. Ground Woodpeckers are often seen close to the road; listen out for their harsh “chirr” calls. Alpine, Horus and African Black Swifts can be seen overhead.

Directions

Traveling from Vryheid, take the R33 towards Paulpietersburg. After about 20km, turn left at the signboard marked “Utrecht”. Proceed along this dirt road for about 10km. After a fairly steep incline, you will be on top of the mountain.