Trail Daze | Tokai MTB Trails



The Trail Daze crew head out to explore the original and most iconic of all Cape Town mountain biking destinations, the Tokai MTB trails.

With more than a year and a half of reconstructing, felling and other such rehabilitation activities, the Tokai MTB Trails closure during 2015 left a massive hole in the lives of most Cape Town based mountain bikers. And with only a few alternative legal riding spots available during that time, the reopening of these trails were eagerly awaited (even if it meant riding on limited days). December 2016 finally saw the gates reopen, and the weekends-only trail period kicked off, during which Tokai MTB and SANparks have, and will continuously assess compliance and any environmental issues, to gauge whether the trails will be opened during the week also.


Seven months after the reopening, the Trail Daze crew saddled up to explore and sample everything on offer at the foot of the Constantiaberg mountains. Our aim was to ride trails specifically catered to longer travel trail bikes, typically used at the local Enduro events. Trials like Bridal Path, Cobra and DH 1 thru 3 seemed to fit the bill as it incorporated some properly tight corners, technical rock gardens and also high-speed flow sections. Even with 7 of the 21 trails currently still closed for maintenance or safety, there is still definitely more than enough riding to be done and something for everyone.


Starting things off at Bootleggers for the pre-ride caffeine fix and defrosting on a cold winters morning seems to be the tradition. It also serves as a safe parking spot, and the quick pedal along the tar road to the trails is perfect for getting the blood flowing before the main ascent.


R75 a pop for the Tokai trail permit is a bit more than what other places charge, but the TMNP permit includes Tokai (and all the other recently legalised trails around Table Mountain) and will only set you back about R600 annually.




So good to be riding Tokai again. Missing the tree cover that I enjoyed as a kid riding here, but there’s nothing we can do about this now and the trail builders have done an excellent job resurrecting Tokai from the ashes. Roman Kumpers




Here we are at arguably one of Cape Towns oldest trail systems. Tokia has seen so much devastation but also development over the duration of its lifespan, how awesome is it to be back and hitting the trails we all remember… from the Bridal Path, to the Snake trails, to the downhill! Whether it’s a quick Sunday blast or an all day session chasing mates down the hill, these trails always deliver... keeping you buzzing long after the pre ride coffees and post ride beers! Andrew Savage




Tokai, what a place, one of the original inner city forested MTB trails. We helped build these trails back in the 90’s and I won my first South African DH champs here back in 2000 so there is a lot of history here. We were gutted about the fires and trials being closed during the past couple years but we’re seriously impressed with what the guys have done rebuilding and now ride here at least once a week. Add to that Chris Nixon’s Bike Park as well as his future plans and we’re super amped about the future here! Mark Hopkins


Riding the Tokai MTB trails, you will inevitably encounter one or more of these fellas. They are synonymous with the greater Tokai area but other than being a nuisance do not pose any* threat to humans and usually get out the way very quickly.




This project is made possible by:




Tokai Forest GPS: 34°03'37.0"S 18°24'55.8"E

Riders : Mark Hopkins | Andrew Savage | Roman Kumpers



All images by Ewald Sadie

instagram: @ewaldsadie





Captain Fastbastard Mayhem, Jul 31 2017 08:36

Love that place.... 

capediver, Jul 31 2017 11:03

Great pics!!

Headshot, Jul 31 2017 11:41

Awesome article and pics!

splat, Jul 31 2017 11:55

Amazing shots !

(great gap in the Cape winter weather)

tubed, Jul 31 2017 12:16

Great write up and pics.


One critique - sorry to say the baboons aren't "a nuisance", its simply a docile troop of baboons trying desperately to survive amidst of us removing most of their habitat. Perhaps a different choice of words, certainly your pics depict them in a dignified way. 

Hairy, Jul 31 2017 01:06

Last pic made me hungry ... and I just finished lunch!

NicoBoshoff, Jul 31 2017 01:50

Hope the baboons' feelings weren't hurt when they read that...

Headshot, Jul 31 2017 03:16

Hope the baboons' feelings weren't hurt when they read that


Nah, they get it all the time. 

popcorn_skollie, Jul 31 2017 11:01

Can I please get a hires copy of this image?




marko35s, Jul 31 2017 11:23

Can I please get a hires copy of this image?




That is stunning isn't it.

Guest, Aug 01 2017 01:24

Many many good memories over the last 30 or so years ;)

Many good friends made ....

Jewbacca, Aug 01 2017 01:56

Some of those pictures make fairly mundane obstacles look so gnarly!


Like Bibi said, 30 years of goodness. I remember riding the old Elephants Eye hiking trails on my MB1 in the early 90's wondering if life could get any better.... the trails have and the current initiative is hopefully on track for amazingly awesome things to come. 

fusion01, Aug 02 2017 07:52

"R75 a pop for the Tokai trail permit is a bit more than what other places charge, but the TMNP permit includes Tokai (and all the other recently legalised trails around Table Mountain) and will only set you back about R600 annually."


Daylight robbery. And 'only' R600?!!? Thank the lord! Cheap as chips eh?! I beg to differ. Cost of living right about now is high, 'ain't NOTHING cheap and for R50 a pop I'd be singing praises but this leaves a bad taste in my mouth. We live to pay (high) taxes in SA, even when riding a bike! Signing off, The Grinch.

MTB-Troll, Sep 02 2017 07:18

Tokai is a very expensive, a bit of a rip off if you don't own a card... 

enduroist, Apr 24 2018 05:02

Where does one get a day pass?