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May 26

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Lower Tokai Park

Lower Tokai Park

Lower Tokai Park

This has to be one of our favourite walks. Situated centrally, with ample parking on either side of the park, Lower Tokai Park is popular with cyclists, runners, horse riders and dog walkers.

This does mean that your dog needs to be well socialised to other dogs, horses, pedestrians and cyclists. Lower Tokai Park forms part of the TMNP so you need an activity card to make use of the area.

The full circular route is 4 kilometers but it’s really easy to vary the distance and route as there are many paths that criss-cross the park. Always interesting, never boring and on days when we have a little extra free time it’s easy to tag on an extra half an hour of walking. We’ve never seen any but apparently there are snakes in the area so if your dogs tend to charge off into the bush do take care during the summer months.

We generally park on Dennendal Avenue and start walking on the forest side. As we near the bottom corner of the forest, Daks picks up speed to go and paddle in the stream, often finding a willing playmate to bow to and run around with. Always a bonus as it helps to burn off some of that beagle energy.

 

The Forest at Lower Tokai Park

The Forest at Lower Tokai Park

The park is well maintained and consists of a nicely compacted cycling path that alternates with a boardwalk and sandy paths, depending on where you are walking. Early summer mornings will see you being spoilt by the sounds of the world waking up. The roosters can be heard crowing in the distance and the the birds are wide awake. The little squirrels are also still busy, busy, busy scampering across the forest floor. We’ve been lucky enough to see a blue crane several times as well as some owls.

The Stream That Runs Through Lower Tokai Park

The Stream That Runs Through Lower Tokai Park

In winter there’s loads of water around and usually some in the summer months. I do generally carry some water with us in case as all you need are a few days with temperatures in the 30’s and the fresh water can dry up.

Lower Tokai Park Boardwalk

Lower Tokai Park Boardwalk

For some reason, this section of the boardwalk is always fun. Daks leaps off here and in winter he barrels through the mud and in summer, through the sand, running as fast as his legs can carry him. When he gets to the turn in the road he stops and waits for his slow human to catch up. Always looking very chuffed with himself and life in general.

Pool of Water to Slosh Around In

Pool of Water to Slosh Around In

This largish pool is always a great hit with the ‘water dogs’. You always see them running and splashing around. One of the cutest things I’ve seen was the young golden who leopard crawled his way along the stream.

Lower Tokai Park Fynbos

Lower Tokai Park Fynbos

The section of fynbos shown above is where we generally see the blue crane so keep an eye open for him. He stands so very still it’s easy to look past him when you’re daydreaming.

I’ve tried to select photo’s that highlight the variety offered by this walk and have included some from both summer and winter but to really appreciate what’s there you need to experience it for yourself.

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