This morning’s walk saw 12 Hurriers enjoying the Contour path above Voelklip in overcast, but exceptionally humid conditions. There was some chatter about the contours not being followed as there are some steep sections here and there, and we took the escape route down to 17th Avenue, rather than continuing to the end, but overall it was a good outing and one that stretched our bodies and pleased our eyes. We covered around 6,5 km.
If you go down to the Mossel today you are in for a big surprise.
Everyone should gather there because…
Todays the day you can once more walk along the path next to the river from the sea to the Three Dams. Frank Woodvine and his Malawian men together with some enthusiastic HBS members have hacked and pulled, slogged and cleared. On Wednesday 23 January 18 excited botanical walkers investigated what had been done.
Starting west of the river mouth, head north until you cross the river to resume walking north, now on the river east bank. A shady section of indigenous trees still shows signs of invading trees, mostly garden escapees from local houses. These will be removed. Just before you reach the bridge across the R 43 near the Voelklip circle, dense bush and rushing river made the path impassable.
But no more! You can now walk to…
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We had a wonderful party tonight to celebrate another year of walking and enjoying the company of like-minded walkers. We had great food provided by Bruce and his team, we were privileged to enjoy Kinki’s beautiful home and we had some great entertainment from the Thespian section of our group. Here they are in all their glory! I tried to add the video, but without success. It was so funny!
This morning Piet promised us an interesting walk – described by him as “The Amoeba” It was 5.4 km in length and it was most enjoyable, taking 15 Hurriers through a section of the burn and then around Lemoenkop and back to the Visitors’ Centre. Well done, Piet! We saw the first Fire Lilies in bloom and there will no doubt be hundreds of them in the next two weeks.
It was sad to see Geraldine’s bench – completely burnt, and also burnt sign posts, which will need to be replaced.
Margaret de Villiers’ beautiful botanical art is currently on show at the FynArts Gallery in Hermanus. This is a unique opprtunity for the public to see and enjoy this wonderful work by one of our best local artists and winner of countless awards, both local and international. Not only that, but these originals and art prints are available for purchase at reduced prices, so make the most of this chance to acquire some collectors’ pieces.
The pictures below show some of the display, as well as some close-ups of the actual paintings, demonstrating the incredible attention to detail that characterises Mags’ work.
Piet sent me this, which I am happy to copy for the Hurriers;
Hiking — “I don’t like either the word or the thing. People ought to saunter in the mountains — not hike! Do you know the origin of that word ‘saunter?’ It’s a beautiful word. Away back in the Middle Ages people used to go on pilgrimages to the Holy Land, and when people in the villages through which they passed asked where they were going, they would reply, “A la sainte terre,’ ‘To the Holy Land.’ And so they became known as sainte-terre-ers or saunterers. Now these mountains are our Holy Land, and we ought to saunter through them reverently, not ‘hike’ through them.”
This morning’s walk in Fernkloof took 15 hikers into the edge of the recent burn before turning back to walk along the front of Kanonkop and over Lemoenkop. It was interesting to see how the Phaenocoma prolifera (Cape Everlasting) appeared to have its flowers unscathed by the fire. Perhaps this plant has some chemical resistance to burning as the petals are certainly dry enough to catch at the first sign of fire. This is a protection method for its seeds, but I wonder how it works.
I attach some images of what the smoke was like in Prestwick Village as the inferno blazed above us on the mountain. It was pretty scary and our thoughts go out to all those who were badly affected and who lost so much.