Sunday, 15 May 2016

Easy driving around Harrismith

On a beautiful day in the middle of May we did some easy driving.
We decided to have a brunch at Cafe Al Fresco in Bethlehem
Mum and Daughter team Maria and Michelle created a wonderful vibe and the food is always excellent
Always ready for a feast 
We then took the R712 towards Clarens 
We stopped at the Ash River Outfall 
We then head to Clarence and if you have left city live behind, due to all the hustle and bustle, the town was so over crowed that we just took the picture of the beautiful colors of autumn.
Autumn in Clarens
We head on and made use of the clouds and photo opportunities. 
The Golden Gate Highlands National Park nestles in the rolling foothills of the Maluti Mountains of the Eastern Free State. The park derives its name from the brilliant shades of gold cast by the sun on the Park's sandstone cliffs. 
It is a approximately 34000 hectare and it reveals a breathtaking tapestry of red, ochre, yellow and purple hues. 
Golden Gate refers to the sandstone cliffs. In 1875, a farmer called J.N.R. van Reenen and his wife stopped here as they travelled to their new farm in Vuurland. He named the location "Golden Gate" when he saw the last rays of the setting sun fall on the cliff
The Van Reenen family grave yard 
The colors of  Golden Gate Highlands
Little details in the Golden Gate 
The wild side of the park 
Thank you Marietjie Hayward for sharing this photo of the park 
It was then time to head further towards Witsieshoek and the Sentinel Peak. 
This the highest free standing peak in the Central Drakensberg. 
I suffer from vertigo and no guts syndrome so the chain ladder 
hike is not for me.  
Thanks to Brent and Monica for sharing their photo's 

We then turned back to the R712 and took a little turn off into the Sterkfontein nature reserve. 
We came across some interesting nests of Cape Weavers. 
Apparently the old people say that when a wet season is expected the weavers built their nests high up in the trees. Maybe because of the drought they built them low down. Maybe this was an inexperienced builders and the females weren't so dumb and didn't use them. 
Thanks to Marc and Tracy Roods for this information

The oak trees were originally part of Many Waters farm, apparently owned by Moolmans 
Hope to get more information about these beauties. 

Thank you for taking this road trip with us 
Till next time

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