Barkly Pass is a high mountain pass at an elevation of 2,018m (6,620 ft) above the sea level, located in the Eastern Cape, South Africa.
The road over the pass is called R58. It’s asphalted. It links Elliot and Barkly East. The pass was named after Sir Henry Barkly, governor of the Cape Colony from 1870 to 1877.
A quick glance at the map, at its sheer drops and serpentine twists and turns, confirms that this is no hype. The pass starts a few kilometers outside Elliot at 1,473 m above sea level and ascends moderately steep at a gradient of 1:22 attaining an elevation gain of 626 m in a distance of 12 km. After a few sharp hairpin bends it reaches an elevation of 2,018 m at the summit.
Conditions can change quickly and be harsh. Road closures can be frequent, so check conditions before traveling to this area. The pass is subject to frequent winter snow closures.Extremely caution should be exercised on this pass, as there have been many fatal accidents, due to the very cold weather that can be experienced on the pass, where snow and ice on the roadway during winter is common. Obey the speed limits and you will be OK. You can expect to close around the beginning of winter when the first snowfalls begin, overnight as they tend to do, making the road that links Barkly East village and Elliot more than a little hazardous.