Gaika's Kop

Gaika's Kop is a isolated dolerite outcrop in the Amatola mountain range in the Eastern Cape. With an altitude of 1960 m, it is the highest peak in this range. It is situated above the well known mountain resort of Hogsback. It is named after a famous African chief who was head of the Xhosa nation in the late 1700s. The northern and eastern slopes are privately owned by local farmers, and are well managed and well conserved and used primarily for grazing livestock. The steep cooler and moister southern and western slope fall within the Department of Forestry Reserve and are managed by the the local Forest Company who keeps the peak clear of aliens and undertake periodic fire management, essential for the maintenance of the mountain grassland ecosystem. These slopes are dominated by Protea subvestita (pictured below) thickets and patches of mountain Bamboo (Thamnocalamus tesselatus). Having been well preserved, they are exceedingly rich in biodiversity with a wide range of interesting and rare mountain species, some of which are endemic. The steep cliffs near the summit are home to many cliff species like Cyrtanthus huttonii and other cliff dwelling plants.

Gaika's Kop, Cameron McMasterProtea subvestita, Gaika's Kop, Cameron McMasterview of Gaika's Kop top, Bob Rutemoellerhabitat, lower Gaika's Kop, Mary Sue Ittnerhabitat, lower Gaika's Kop, Mary Sue Ittner

The summit is in the form of a shallow basin about 3 hectares in extent with a stream draining to the north. The vegetation on the summit is dominated by Protea subvestita and Watsonia pillansii with many ericas, geophytes and beautiful orchids, notably populations of beautiful Disa crassicornis, Disa chrysostachya and Disa pulchra.

Summit, Rachel and Rod Saunders, Cameron McMaster, Gaika's Kop, Bob RutemoellerSummit, Gaika's Kop, Bob RutemoellerSummit, Gaika's Kop, Bob RutemoellerView from summit, Christopher Whitehouse

Gaika's Kop is favourite destination for hikers, botanists and other naturalists. Text furnished by Cameron McMaster. Photos were mostly taken January 17 2010 when a number of friends led by Cameron McMaster spent the morning exploring. The area had burned the year before. One group went to the summit and the other group explored the lower areas of the mountain. To see the photos click on the links to the pages or to a species listed in the table.

Wiki map Click for map


To see photos of the plants found in this region look at the plants arranged alphabetically on the pages listed below.


Gaika's Kop A-D - Gaika's Kop E-N - Gaika's Kop O-Z


Information about the specific plant can be found by clicking on the name in the table. That will take you to the wiki page that has information and photos of that species. By holding the shift or control key down and clicking on the thumbnail that image in the table can be enlarged and then if you hold your mouse over the top left or right side of the photo an arrow will appear that will allow you to view the photos in the table in sequence.


Gaika's Kop species
Albuca sp., Gaika's Kop, Mary Sue Ittner [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Albuca sp.
Agapanthus praecox, Gaika's Kop, Mary Sue Ittner [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Agapanthus praecox
Bulbine abyssinica, Gaika's Kop, Bob Rutemoeller [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Bulbine abyssinica
Corycium dracomontanum, Gaika's Kop, Christopher Whitehouse [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Corycium dracomontanum
Cyrtanthus huttonii, Gaika's Kop, Bob Rutemoeller [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Cyrtanthus huttonii
Dierama pulcherrimum, Gaika's Kop, Mary Sue Ittner [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Dierama pulcherrimum
Disa chrysostachya, Gaika's Kop, Cameron McMaster [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Disa chrysostachya
Disa sagittalis, Gaika's Kop, Cameron McMaster [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Disa sagittalis
Eulophia aculeata ssp. aculeata, Gaika's Kop, Christopher Whitehouse [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Eulophia aculeata
Eucomis autumnalis, Gaika's Kop, Cameron McMaster [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Eucomis autumnalis
Hesperantha pulchra, Gaika's Kop, Bob Rutemoeller [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Hesperantha pulchra
Hypoxis argentea, Gaika's Kop, Mary Sue Ittner [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Hypoxis argentea
Ixia orientalis, Gaika's Kop, Cameron McMaster [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Ixia orientalis
Kniphofia northiae, Gaika's Kop, Mary Sue Ittner [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Kniphofia northiae
Kniphofia triangularis, Gaika's Kop,Mary Sue Ittner [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Kniphofia triangularis
Kniphofia uvaria, Gaika's Kop, Cameron McMaster [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Kniphofia uvaria
Moraea elliotii, Gaika's Kop, Bob Rutemoeller [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea elliotii
Moraea muddii, Gaika's Kop, Cameron McMaster [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Moraea muddii
Ornithogalum juncifolium, Gaika's Kop, Mary Sue Ittner [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Ornithogalum juncifolium
Oxalis smithiana, Gaika's Kop, Bob Rutemoeller [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Oxalis smithiana
Oxalis sp., Gaika's Kop, Mary Sue Ittner [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Oxalis spp.
Satyrium bracteatum, Gaika's Kop, Cameron McMaster [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Satyrium bracteatum
Satyrium longicauda, Gaika's Kop, Christopher Whitehouse [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Satyrium longicauda
Schizocarphus nervosus, Gaika's Kop, Mary Sue Ittner [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Schizocarphus nervosus
Schizochilus zeyheri, Gaika's Kop, Cameron McMaster [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Schizochilus zeyheri
Tritonia disticha, Gaika's Kop, Bob Rutemoeller [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Tritonia disticha
Watsonia pillansii hybrid, Gaika's Kop, Mary Sue Ittner [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Watsonia hybrids
Watsonia knysnana or hybrid, Gaika's Kop, Mary Sue Ittner [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Watsonia knysnana
Watsonia pillansii or hybrid, Gaika's Kop, Mary Sue Ittner [Shift+click to enlarge, Click to go to wiki entry]
Watsonia pillansii

Return to the PBS wiki Places in South Africa page
Page last modified on October 29, 2014, at 06:39 AM