Pace yourself outdoors. As the world searches for escapes from high pressure urban lifestyles, research is showing that a mere hour in nature on a daily basis has incredible therapeutic benefits on both physical health and mental well being. South Africans that do get out into nature on a regular basis have recently evolved into stopwatch addicts, racing the clock to raise their heart rate … Continue reading The Art of Sauntering in Nature
Puffadder : Bitis arietans. As the heat of summer settles in in the #GardenRoute, the snake population emerges from their winter shelters. The Puffadder is an ambush predator species, relying on it’s cytotoxic venom to rapidly take down its prey after a strike. Puffadders rely on cryptic disruptive camouflage to blend in and are reluctant to move when disturbed. Research has shown that in their … Continue reading Garden Route Snakes
‘Fiffty Dolla’ the voice barked from behind the counter. We looked at each other before Sue replied ‘The fees were paid in full’. ‘You want to hike, fiffty dolla!’ ‘But there are only 4 of us and the original booking was for 12 hikers and was paid in full’.’ You want to hike?’ The official behind the counter repeated. Heck, we had come all this … Continue reading Getting to Lost Bend in the Fish River Canyon.
After the recent mountain rescue on Table Mountain this weekend, it is important to share some salient safety measures when hiking on any mountain, irrespective of experience. • use official foot paths only • carry more that one operational cellphone in your hiking party • plan your intended route in a way that you are off the mountain before sunset • carry an accurate map … Continue reading Be Prepared to be Safe when hiking in South Africa.
Google Maps warned of a 9 minute delay on the N2 at the bottom of Sir Lowries Pass. After four hours on the road from the Garden Route, cresting the pass and seeing the gridlock traffic snaking down the pass was the last thing we wanted to see. But then, we did need to get to Cape Town and this was our only option. Gridlock … Continue reading 72 Hours in Cape Town.
In the past 6 months there have been over 10 whale carcasses washed up, including a rare Sperm Whale, in the Garden Route. Depending on where they washed up, their handling varied from leaving them in situ to burying them or removing the remains for disposal elsewhere. Where possible, sampling was performed for DNA profiling and parasite collection. Generally, with the carcasses there is a … Continue reading Whale Strandings – the harsh reality of nature.
One of the last true wilderness areas in South Africa is undisputedly the Baviaanskloof, a series of folded mountains, canyons and valleys between Willomore and Patensie in the Eastern Cape. It is a botanical wonderland that transforms from Karoo through Fynbos and into pockets of Afro-Montane forest with hints of Spekboom along an east west axis. The Baviaans is a landscape that begs to be … Continue reading Leopard Trail – Baviaankloof Hiking