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Arniston to Montagu - Day Four

Waenhuiskrans dunes - about 30 metres high, Arniston, South Africa. February 2012.Up early to take a walk to the Waenhuiskrans Grotto after which the town is named. Arniston is the name of an English ship that shipwrecked in the bay and the town has come to be known by that name in English, but Waenhuiskrans is the Afrikaans name which means a cave big enough to shelter a wagon. More then you ever cared to know, which perfectly describes our visit to the cave. An endless walk through the sand dunes under hot sun to reach a hollowed out grotto in the side of a seaside cliff that can only be reached at low tide. The description is as tiresome as the experience. Roadside fire, Montagu, South Africa. February 2012.Drove to Montagu today; again a continuous, changing variety of landscapes and terrain; great sweeping, cultivated rolling plains, one of which was being burned over to clear the stubble before it was all ploughed under and replanted. The fire was to burn over a field that was a couple of hundred hectares in size and is one of the many that we passed that had just been burned over. In this case the fire had escaped from the field and was burning all the vegetation along the side of the highway so we ran through a pall of smoke and flames for a 100 metres or so; sounds more problematic than it was. What’s interesting is what happens after the burned field cools down, as was the case in the field next to the burning one that we passed. It must have just cooled as it heavily populated with storks who seemed to be feasting on the unfortunate field creatures who were caught in the flames, as well as eagles and hawks who forgot their enmities as all shared the feast.Burned over field braai, Montagu, South Africa. February 2012. Burned over field braai, Montagu, South Africa. February 2012. Burned over farmers' fields, outside of Montagu, South Africa. March 2013. Original size 5616x2888px. (Gerald FitzGerald) Crossed over a pass and down into wine country again. Spectacularly beautiful, surrounded by mountains and lush green in the flats. Staying tonight at a charming guest house, Montagu Vines, where I think we will move slowly tomorrow and just chill out as the drive to Oudtshoorn on Thursday will be longest of the trip.

Montagu - Day Five

Arniston - Day Three