Attendees: Greg & Cheryl Devine,  Tony & Evie Bowen, Alan & Elaine Smith, Dave & Margie Barnes, Clive & Sandy Louw, Werner & Jeanette Nisi, Alice Jager & Henry Greyling, Maretha Alant, Joan Lourens, Karin van Niekerk,   Wendy Thompson, Tannjie Strauss and Douggie Fourie (22 members) with his 24 yrs old grandson Mauritz (guest).

The party gathered with clouds and rain threatening at the Jones home as arranged for a 9.30 departure.

image001    image003

The going was easy at first, along the edge of the Sedgefield Lagoon to the first crossing.

Not too difficult a crossing, but chilly as a strong westerly got up quite suddenly.  Then through the Swartvlei Caravan Park, base for the South Cape National Camp two years ago, and onto the hard sand of Swartvlei beach at low tide and then on towards the river mouth with wind on our backs.

image005  image007

At the river mouth, cold and with rain threatening, a select bail-out was allowed, as Fay had parked her car across the river and had volunteered to drive back to base to start the braai-fires.  She could squeeze three into her Golf.   But it proved to be a serious swim for the bail-out party, with a strong in-coming tide and cold water.  Not for the faint-hearted !

The bulk of the party continued through flood debris on the west shore of the estuary back towards base and their promised braai, with a final long, neck deep wade across the river.   ( 11 hikers)

image009

Along the way, brave/foolish party of 8 left the main party and scaled the high dune overlooking the estuary, using a recent land slip which was fairly clear of vegetation.

image011     image013

 

They all reached the top where the vegetation looked promising,  but they soon changed their minds when reality proved otherwise.

image015     image017

Some time later the dense, thorny vegetation did clear a bit and the crest-line became reasonably passable, allowing a suitable summit to be reached which the party all agreed was “enough”.

image019  image021

(Summit Party.  Photo taken by Maretha Alant – official photographer.)

All stupid enough to take their turn in the lead had scars to prove it had been quite a trip and the final river crossing swim to catch up with the main party was badly needed by some.

As was the beer and braai back at base where the rain mercifully held off until everybody had time to feed, drink,recover and even have a hot shower if desired.

image022

Thanks to all who braved the trip to enjoy hospitality at the Jones home and for many contributions   at the bring-and-braai like snacks,  Evie’s cake/salad and Fay’s salad and black-pot potatoes.

(Founder Members found it all quite nostalgic as many similar get-togethers were held when the South Cape Section was in its founding phase, now 10 + years ago.)

Report by Dave Jones.        Photographs by Maretha Alant.

 

Advertisements