Karoo Ridge is set in the Suurberg Mountain Range in the vast Great Karoo – An area of extreme beauty often described as “unique in the world”. The vast space offers huge diversity from its topographical range to its flora and fauna.
Karoo Ridge is owner run and managed by Helen and Pete – both with backgrounds in nature conservation, tourism and farming. They started exploring the Karoo 20 years ago and realised very quickly that the average traveler sees a disproportionately small picture of this area and what it has to offer. Completely dedicated to conservation, it is their dream and vision to protect a piece of Africa and to leave it in a much better place.
Guests are encouraged to experience the area through guided or self-guided walks, hikes and drives. They can learn more about the history of the area, visit bushman rock art and dive deeper into Karoo Ridge’s projects and goals. Guests are also able to get involved with the various conservation management projects which include game counts, vegetation monitoring, erosion control, working cattle or assisting nature conservation students in their research or simply experience the benefits of this conservation through exploring, swimming in the streams, climbing mountains, biking the trails and enjoying the wilderness.
Biodiversity conservation is at the core of everything Karoo Ridge do. Historically, the Karoo veld was exploited from as early as the 1700s when Trekboere began moving through the area. Areas were decimated of all vegetation before stock was moved off. Karoo Ridge has embraced the philosophy, “Farm for Biodiversity” where it is their mission to prove that farming alongside nature and protecting the natural environment is not only possible but also beneficial.
They operate on the basis that the greater the biodiversity of an area, the healthier the ecosystems and the better rewarded you will be as the land is able to produce more. Sustainable utilisation, carbon sequestration, rewilding, rehabilitation of the soils, vegetation and protecting the habitat are all part of the key function of Karoo Ridge.
The area is beautifully diverse, hosting numerous habitats from mountain tops and cliffs to dense riverine vegetation with undulating plains in between.
The team are also in the process of starting a greater Conservancy with neighbours whereby together, they can protect a larger. To achieve this, a big emphasis is placed on skill development and skill sharing of their staff.
In addition, Karoo Ridge has a strong affiliation with the Cape Peninsula University of Technology, Nature Conservation Department and embark to employ students and fund bursaries for Nature Conservation students. These students, in turn, run an environmental education programme for pupils at the Farm School on the property and so the circle of conservatioon continues.