During breakfast I looked up at the angle of our ascent and realized getting to the top of Turret Peak was going to be a lot more than causal climb.
Don’t let the pink flowers fool you —this Roridula dentata is deadly. But its thirst for blood is only half the reason why it’s special.
Once we left the Cederberg and started off into the Kouebokkeveld, the footpaths vanished and it was time to find out own way. Rather, it was time to create our own way through the mountains.
How close are you willing to get to feed your curiosity?
The Rim of Africa can be a 400-mile walking safari if you want it to be. The mountains and lowlands you wander through are teaming with wildlife
Darkness falls, stars appear, and my eyes lazily wander, lost in the fire. As my eyes rest, my other senses are set alight.
I went in search for a perch to journal from, but what I found was a landscape too radical to pen.
The straw-covered, dusty floor of the Boontjieskloof Hut reminds me of a barn, but tonight it will be home…
As I stand in the morning light, sipping my instant coffee, I am an awe. “Up here” is a whole different world. The sun shines brighter, the cold bites harder, the quiet echoes…
No perfect wilderness area could go on forever, which meant on Day 7 we walked off the beautiful trails of the Cederberg and wandered off-path into the wondrous Kouebokkeveld.
No, I never woke up to the soft sounds of a large cat outside my tent. If I could have wished it possible, I might have — once I figured out what I would do when face-to-face with a 75-lb (34kg) wild cat.
I held my breath as I raised my hand to a print on the cave wall. There was a familiar symmetry when my hand and a burnt-orange handprint were seen next to each other, and with it I spanned thousands of years of existence to recreate a signature distinct to humanity.
I talk about flora a lot, referring to all the plant life I experienced while walking on the Rim of Africa, and for good reason— it is hands-down my favorite part of walking in the mountains of the Western Cape.
Whew – we made it through our solo journey. And we didn’t even have any run-ins with Cape Leopard, get lost, or argue until we walk off in separate ways (which would be likely to combine all my fears at once)! How?
I realized something while walking on the Rim of Africa: if you spot a unique flower out of the corner of your eye but don’t stop right then to photograph it, it’s likely you will never see it again.
Ricardo Philander and I had four days to get to know each other before we would be walking alone in the Cederberg wilderness. I only knew two things about him: he was 24 like me, but unlike my years of experience camping and mountaineering, he had never been camping before.
Here are my favorite shots from the Cederberg, during my first week out walking the Rim of Africa.
NOTHING prepares you for witnessing the southern sky in its full glory for the first time.