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verb (used without object), trekked, trek·king.
  1. to travel or migrate, especially slowly or with difficulty.
  2. South Africa. to travel by ox wagon.
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verb (used with object), trekked, trek·king.
  1. South Africa. (of a draft animal) to draw (a vehicle or load).
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  1. a journey or trip, especially one involving difficulty or hardship.
  2. South Africa. a migration or expedition, as by ox wagon.
  3. South Africa. a stage of a journey, especially by ox wagon, between one stopping place and the next.
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Origin of trek

1815–25; < Afrikaans < Dutch trek (noun), trekken (v.) to draw (a vehicle or load), migrate
Related formsun·trekked, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

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British Dictionary definitions for trekking


  1. a long and often difficult journey
  2. Southern African a journey or stage of a journey, esp a migration by ox wagon
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verb treks, trekking or trekked
  1. (intr) to make a trek
  2. (tr) Southern African (of an ox, etc) to draw (a load)
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Derived Formstrekker, noun

Word Origin

C19: from Afrikaans, from Middle Dutch trekken to travel; related to Old Frisian trekka
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for trekking


1849 (n.); 1850 (v.), "to travel or migrate by ox wagon," from Afrikaans trek, from Dutch trekken "to march, journey," originally "to draw, pull," from Middle Dutch trecken (cf. Middle Low German trecken, Old High German trechan "to draw"). Especially in reference to the Groot Trek (1835 and after) of more than 10,000 Boers, who, discontent with the English colonial authorities, left Cape Colony and went north and north-east.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper