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Author Topic: Richterveld & Kgalagadi with White Stripes & Merrycan  (Read 47007 times)
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White Stripes
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« Reply #20 on: December 28, 2009, 10:30:34 PM »

Hier is 'n paar los foto's terwyl ons wag.

Hierdie "berg" met sy eenoog gesig het die aandag getrek.



Nog 'n gesig.



Nog.



Ons het met 'n baie mooi pad parallel met die N-7 Noord gery tot by Leliefontein. Dis 'n pad wat ek al in paaiemente gery het, maar nog nooit van Suid af nie en ook nog nooit heel nie. Ek het in my "Politieke dae" 'n aktivis geken wat predikant op Leliefontien was, maar self nog nooit daar gekom nie. Was effe teleurgesteld. Was mooi, maar te verwesters. Nie dat 'n mens seker anders kan verwag nie.

Nogtans, mooi wêreld.















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« Reply #21 on: December 29, 2009, 10:48:01 AM »

Vir 'n Bike trip deur die Richterveld, hoeveel dae moet mens uitsit en sal die TA dit kan doen?
« Last Edit: December 29, 2009, 03:39:06 PM by Trailrider » Logged

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« Reply #22 on: December 29, 2009, 02:18:57 PM »

Bikes not permitted in the park as far as I know.  Road Eksteenfontein to Vioolsdrif OK for TA.  Just one place to take it really carefully.  But get others opinions.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Birds

My camera really is not up to the job of taking adequate photos of birds.  This is just a record of some of what we saw.


Francolin in Rictersveld.


Pale Chanting Goshawk.  The Kgalagadi is stuffed full of them.  Handsome birds.


Secretary birds.  These are two males with two long feathers in their tail.  There are many Secretary birds in Kgalagadi.  At Poletsi waterhole they seemed to congregate.  I was surprised to see so many of them as they seem to be in decline elsewhere.

They have a distinctive way of walking – I smiled when I saw them walking as we used to have a neighbour who walked just like that.  The only bird of prey that hunts for its food on foot.


White Backed Vulture.


Lappet Faced Vultures.  They are not very common.


Immature Bateleur eagle.  .  My camera is at full 5x optical zoom plus digital zoom to 20x – it is not the right tool for this job.  Merrycan has a fabulous camera so i look forward to her bird photos.

"Bateleur" is French for "tight-rope walker". This name describes the bird’s characteristic habit of tipping the ends of its wings when flying, as if catching its balance.

Quote
A female will lay a single egg in the nest that sits in a large tree that offers protection. Mother incubates the egg while father collects food and sticks for the nest. Sometimes the father incubates. After an incubation period of 50-60 days the baby Bateleur eagle hatches. 110 days later, the hatchling will leave the nest, but will continue to receive food from its parents for another 100 days. Only a small percentage of chicks make it to adulthood (+/-2%)
*source*

We saw five immature ones together at Poletsi.  It would appear that they are doing well in Kgalagdi compared to the 2% average survival rate.  Notice that it is about 250 days from being laid as an egg until they are on their own – a very  long time.

-------------------------------------------------------------

We also saw a Crimson Breasted Shrike but I failed to get a decent photo.  So too for the lovely Tawny Eagle we saw.

« Last Edit: December 29, 2009, 04:41:32 PM by tok-tokkie » Logged
White Stripes
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« Reply #23 on: December 29, 2009, 03:48:44 PM »


Voëlfoto's.

 


Gompou







Blouvalk



Oom Volla



Byvanger



Spreeu



Baba Berghaan







Brandkop Korhaan









Patryse







Crimson Breasted Shrike



Hansgat Fisant



Hele kolonie Sekretarisvoëls.
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« Reply #24 on: December 29, 2009, 05:25:26 PM »

Thank you. A very special report about a very special and unique part of our country.
 Wink
 Wink
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« Reply #25 on: January 01, 2010, 03:30:36 PM »

Day 7      Friday.       Ghargab to Nossob.        164km



To get back to the Nossob valley you have to go on the continuation of the one way loop over the dunes.  Here there were more trees.  It is not teeming with wild life.


It is pretty flat so there are no panoramas of the countryside.

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« Reply #26 on: January 01, 2010, 03:38:19 PM »

Plants



On Wilderperdehoek Pass. It is not in my Namaqualand flower book.


Unknown flowering low succulent on Namaqua Eco Trail.


Those red plants are Aloe pearsonii; they are confined to this small area, the Helskloof Pass inside the Richterveld Transfrontier Park.





Botterboom.  White Stripes told us that as a child he used to toboggan down the sides of koppies on these – but unlike a real toboggan he fell on hot hard stones instead of cold soft snow.


Boesman kersie?  Break off a dried piece & it burns like a smoky candle.


This was someone significant but I have forgotten who it is.  White Stripes?


Gemsbok cucumber apparently they love them.

Also saw some tsamma melons but have no pictures.  Reading that Wiki entry I see it is probably the origin of the watermelon.


Gifbol.  They usually only flower after fire.  Bulb is really poisonous (also to cattle).  The link shows the attractive fan of leaves it has which are just starting in my picture.


One of the absolute highlights of the trip for me was this plant = Hoodia.


Here is what the BBC said in 2005

Quote
Imagine this: an organic pill that kills the appetite and attacks obesity.

It has no known side-effects, and contains a molecule that fools your brain into believing you are full.
Deep inside the African Kalahari desert, grows an ugly cactus-like plant called the Hoodia. It thrives in extremely high temperatures, and takes years to mature.

The San Bushmen of the Kalahari, one of the world's oldest and most primitive tribes, had been eating the Hoodia for thousands of years, to stave off hunger during long hunting trips.

When South African scientists were routinely testing it, they discovered the plant contained a previously unknown molecule, which has since been christened P 57.

The license was sold to a Cambridgeshire bio-pharmaceutical company, Phytopharm, who in turn sold the development and marketing rights to the giant Pfizer Corporation.

Fortune cactus

When I travelled to the Kalahari, I met families of the San bushmen.

It is a sad, impoverished and displaced tribe, still unaware they are sitting on top of a goldmine.

But if the Hoodia works, the 100,000 San strung along the edge of the Kalahari will become overnight millionaires on royalties negotiated by their South African lawyer Roger Chennells.

And they will need all the help they can to secure the money.

Currently, many bushmen smoke large quantities of marijuana, suffer from alcoholism, and have neither possessions nor any sense of the value of money.

The truth is no-one has fully grasped what the magic molecule means for their counterparts in the developed world.

Blood sugar

According to the British Heart Foundation 17% of men and 21% of women are obese, while 46% of men and 32% of women are overweight.

So the drug's marketing potential speaks for itself.

Phytopharm's Dr Richard Dixey explained how P.57 actually works:

"There is a part of your brain, the hypothalamus. Within that mid-brain there are nerve cells that sense glucose sugar.
"When you eat, blood sugar goes up because of the food, these cells start firing and now you are full.
"What the Hoodia seems to contain is a molecule that is about 10,000 times as active as glucose.
"It goes to the mid-brain and actually makes those nerve cells fire as if you were full. But you have not eaten. Nor do you want to."

Clinical trials

Dixey organised the first animal trials for Hoodia. Rats, a species that will eat literally anything, stopped eating completely.
When the first human clinical trial was conducted, a morbidly obese group of people were placed in a "phase 1 unit", a place as close to prison as it gets.

All the volunteers could do all day was read papers, watch television, and eat.

Half were given Hoodia, half placebo. Fifteen days later, the Hoodia group had reduced their calorie intake by 1000 a day.
It was a stunning success.

The cactus test

In order to see for ourselves, we drove into the desert, four hours north of Cape Town in search of the cactus.

Once there, we found an unattractive plant which sprouts about 10 tentacles, and is the size of a long cucumber.

Each tentacle is covered in spikes which need to be carefully peeled.

Inside is a slightly unpleasant-tasting, fleshy plant.

At about 1800hrs I ate about half a banana size - and later so did my cameraman.

Soon after, we began the four hour drive back to Cape Town.

The plant is said to have a feel-good almost aphrodisiac quality, and I have to say, we felt good.

But more significantly, we did not even think about food. Our brains really were telling us we were full. It was a magnificent deception.

Dinner time came and went. We reached our hotel at about midnight and went to bed without food. And the next day, neither of us wanted nor ate breakfast.

I ate lunch but without appetite and very little pleasure. Partial then full appetite returned slowly after 24 hours.

The future

Mr Chennells is ecstatic:

"The San will finally throw off thousands of years of oppression, poverty, social isolation and discrimination.
"We will create trust funds with their Hoodia royalties and the children will join South Africa's middle classes in our lifetime.
"I envisage Hoodia cafes in London and New York, salads will be served and the Hoodia cut like cucumber on to the salad.
"It will need flavouring to counter its unpleasant taste, but if it has no side effects and no cumulative side-effects."

Unfortunately for the overweight, Hoodia will not be around for several years, the clinical trials still have several years to run.

Do not travel to the Kalahari to steal the plant as it is hard to find and illegal to export.

And beware internet sites offering Hoodia "pills" from the US as we tested the leading brand and discovered it has no discernible Hoodia in it.

So just be patient. Help is at hand.
*Source*

I believe it is still not on the market though rip-off products are.  Here is a short reference to the legal & commercial process that has been through as at January 2008
http://www.streetdirectory.com/travel_guide/46895/lose_weight/a_brief_history__of_the_hoodia_gordonii_cactus_plant.html

Antonia found them for sale at a nursery in Cape Town after our return.  R200 for one in flower, we did not buy.
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« Reply #27 on: January 01, 2010, 03:42:12 PM »


Halfmens.  There are actually lots of Halfmens plants in this photo.  We did not get up close to one to get a good picture.  On the Namaqua Eco Trail. Pachypodium namaquanum


Here is one that lost its head but then, like a gorgon, grew some new ones.

We have one growing in our garden but it is from Madagascar as the local one is protected.  Local has red flowers and crinkly leaves whereas the Madagascar one we have has white flowers and smooth leaves.  It is very happy in our garden.


There are three varieties of Kokerboom.  This is the smallest Aloe ramosissima, the Nooienskokerboom (Maidens Quiver tree).


This is the famous Aloe dichotoma , the Kokerboom (Quiver tree).  We have one growing very happily in our garden – but I had to move it from where it was in morning shade which it did not like at all.


This is Aloe pillansii the Basterkokerboom (Bastard Quiver tree).



A Witgat tree.  This one has particularly large roots running above ground.  Some of these trees are really beautiful but I failed to get a good photo of one like that. Boscia albitrunca, Shepherds tree.


Namaqua Fig = Rotsbreker (rocksplitter). There is a famous on in the Heerenlogement cave. Ficus cordata
It is not clear in this photo but a huge square block has been split off by the roots – look closely & you will see that the trunk/root above our heads is flat.


Kameeldoring.  Some, like this one, are very handsome. Acacia erioloba



Grey camel thorn Acacia haemotoxylon.  I did part of the Burchell route with TR & LGF.  Here is what he wrote about this gracefull tree ‘a beautiful species of Acacia with a hoary complexion.’


Ebony.  I was very surprised when White Stripes named it as I thought ebony was a tropical tree – so I have looked it up in Wiki & find that it is Diospyros  of which many grow in SA including D mespiliformis which is one of the true ebony trees – in the Lowveld.  But many other trees with similar wood are also called Ebony & this is one of those Euclea pseudebenus.  Look at the botanical name; it is called pseudo ebony.


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« Reply #28 on: January 01, 2010, 04:01:30 PM »

Thanks again TT.

As a child I also did the "Botterboom" sliding thing. Great fun.

That Witgatboom, is it the one one the way to De Hoop ?
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« Reply #29 on: January 03, 2010, 06:45:08 PM »

Day 8      Saturday.        Nossob to outside Kakamas via Riemvasmaak.       600km


This was a long day.  We went across  to the other river valley, the Auob River.  There are two roads between the two rivers, we used the longer northern one.  Then down to Upington on tarred roads.  Down along the northern bank of the Gariep past Kakamas and into Riemvasmaak.  White Stripes would have liked to go through and cross the Gariep at Blouputs and circle back to Augrabies on the southern side but the roads in Riemvasmaak are pretty poor and we did not have time so we went to see the hot spring then returned towards Kakamas camping at Khamkirri resort nearby.

Just outside the Kgalagadi is Hakskeen Pan.  It is going to be used for an attempt at the world landspeed record in 2011.  I knew a bit about it but it was only on our return that I read that it was going to be on Hakskeen Pan and where it is.  If I had known I would have liked to have had a look.  Here is a picture of a model of the car.  It has a jet engine to get it going & then a rocket to get it up to full speed.  The target is 1000 MPH = 1600 kph.  The team leader is Richard Nobel and his team currently hold the record at 1220 kph which is faster than the speed of sound in a previous car.  Antonia had a flat in London & one of the girls married Richard so Antonia knew him then.  They have since divorced – she was unhappy about the money he was spending on this obsession Antonia believes (please note ’believes’ not ‘knows’).  Antonia has lost touch with the ex-wife.



This site gives a Google image of Hakskeen Pan and describes it fully.
This site has a good write up of the whole project.

We went through Upington where we joined up with White Stripe’s ‘son’ Lekang for coffee. Here is White Stripe’s thread about how he came to adopt Lekang.  Nice young man, I was very pleased to put a face to a name & story.


Riemvasmaak.  The road towards the hot spring.

Quote
Riemvasmaak is an isolated area 56 kilometers from Kakamas bordering the Orange River to the south and Namibia to the west. Amongst other things, it is known for its hot spring and the stark dramatic beauty of the red, stony mountains surrounding it.

Its history dates from the turn of the twentieth century, specifically 1933, when permission was given to settle on Riemvasmaak.

Different ethnic groups formed (and still forms) the Riemvasmaak community, namely Xhosas, the people from Damara, Nama and Herero origin, as well as coloured pastoralists.

They all lived in harmony and spoke Afrikaans as their lingua franca and in many cases, as their home language.

In terms of the apartheid policy of the former SA government the people of Riemvasmaak were forcibly removed in 1973 and 1974. Those of Xhosa origin were moved to the former Ciskei; those of Damara, Nama and Herero origin were moved to Namibia.

The removals were brutal as their houses were torched to assure there was nothing for them to return to.

In Namibia and the Ciskei the people were treated with open hostility by the communities already living there. They suffered many other hardships including illness due to different climatic conditions and their livestock being eaten by wild animals.

In February 1994, the government decided to give Riemvasmaak back to its original residents. As one of the first land restitution projects under the democratic dispensation, it was launched as a presidential project and had a high political profile.

But the removals left bitter memories, especially under the older members, and the community had to start from scratch.
*source*



Locals in the spring.  This is a natural pool.  


There is also a small swimming pool right where the hottest water comes out of the ground.


Five of the locals, some with original hairstyles.


On the way back towards Kakamas.  Riemvasmaak is all in those hills and mountains.  It is a place I will go back to.

Quote
The history of the people of Riemvasmaak is a rich but sad one. In terms of the apartheid policies of the previous government the people of Riemvasmaak were forcefully removed in 1973/74 to Namibia and the Eastern Cape. The peaceful existence of the various groups – Xhosa, Nama and Coloured – under the leadership of a Nama chief and representatives of the various groups.

Between 1973 and the landmark date in 1994 when the transtion to a democratic government in South Africa came about, the South African Defence Force utilized Riemvasmaak as a training ground. The section known as Melkbosrand was incorporated into the Augrabies National Park. The South African National Park ran a breeding program for the Namibian black rhino on the 4000ha.

Efforts to bring the people of Riemvasmaak back to their land got momentum in 1993. The decision to give the whole 74 000ha back to the people was taken in February 1994.

As one of the first land resititution projects in the New South Africa, Riemvasmaak was registered as a Presidential Launch Project. As a result it had a very high political profile.

Most of the original residents were back on their land at the end of 1995.

About two thirds of the people of Riemvasmaak belong to the Nama culture and live at the mission station. The Xhosa grouping live at the Vredesvallei settlement on the banks of the Orange River.

In 2002 the people of Riemvasmaak get the deeds to the plots they live on – a milestone for those who were landless for so long.
*source*

« Last Edit: January 04, 2010, 06:10:37 PM by tok-tokkie » Logged
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« Reply #30 on: January 04, 2010, 10:32:40 AM »

Riemvasmaak is 'n hartseer plek. Ek ken heelwat mense wat daar bly of gebly het. Omdat ek in die area opgegroei het, ken ek die mense se maniere en probleme. Ek was op 'n stadium betrokke as raadslid by die Distriksmunisipaliteit wie se verantwoordelikheid Riemvasmaak is. Dit het my verder in aanraking met mense gebring wie my dieper laat delf het in die wel en wee van die mense. Een van die mense by wie ek baie geleer het is Mike Booysen. Hy was 'n raadslid saam met my en het in Riemvasmaak gebly. Hy is nou Speaker in die munisipaliteit. Hy is 'n oud-onderwyser en het die hele storie meegemaak, van wegtrek tot terugkom. Hy het my baie stories vertel, iets wat ek geweldig geniet het en bevoorreg is om te kon deel. Hy is 'n meester storieverteller. Hy geniet dit om stories te vertel en het 'n uitstekende sin vir humor. Slim ook.

Die storie oor hoe hulle getrek het vanaf Riemvasmaak na Khorigas in Nam is geweldig interessant. Hartseer, snaaks en nogmaals hartseer. Hulle het van Riemvasmaak af getrek met diere, kinders, huisraad ens na Lutzputs, waar hulle die trein sou kry Namibia toe. Daar gekom was daar 'n spanner in die works en moes hulle weer terugtrek, net om later weer te kom. Lutzputs is omtrent 70-80 km weg, so om te trek met diere en al is nie kinderspeletjies nie. Dis nou nadat jy getrek het van waar jy gebly het in Riemvasmaak tot by die plek waar jou huisraad ens op die vragmotor gelaai is. Vee en diere moes met die voet getrek word. Onthou dat die vee voer en water moes kry, so dit was 'n hele operasie.

Op die trein was dit ook nie maklik nie. Dit was veetrokke en vragtrokke, nie gerieflike voorstedelike treine nie. Elke kort-kort moes daar gestop word om die vee kos en water te gee. Aflaai, kosgee, diere deurkyk en weer oplaai. Pap maak, kinders versorg ens. Weer alles op sleeptou kry, alle pad Khorigas toe.

Daar gekom is hulle afgelaai en gegroet. Niks huise, boumateriaal, niks. 'n Paar army tente en seile totdat hulle op hul eie weer iets tot stand kon bring. Geen skool, hospitaal, kerk, niks. Hulle is volgens my kennis finansieel ondersteun/vergoed, maar dit maak nie die proses veel makliker nie.

Ek wou baie graag vir Tok-tokkie en Antonia aan hierdie mense voorstel. Ek het inteendeel met van hulle gereël vir 'n kuier en om daar te slaap, maar ons het net eenvoudig nie genoeg tyd gehad nie. Ek wil baie graag weer gaan en langer tyd spandeer op elke plek. Ons het saamgestem dat hierdie trip eintlik net 'n verkenning was. So daar lê nog 'n paar reise voor.....
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« Reply #31 on: January 04, 2010, 11:45:51 AM »

WS en TT.........................dankie vir julle moeite met hierdie posts  A1

Dit was ongelooflik "nice" om saam met julle op hierdie reis te kon gaan...........al is dit maar
net via die forum.  A1
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« Reply #32 on: January 05, 2010, 06:22:44 PM »

Another great ride report. No photos of GrootMelkboom.  innocent
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« Reply #33 on: January 08, 2010, 06:36:28 PM »

Another great ride report. No photos of GrootMelkboom.  innocent
I have not heard of it.  Will look it up.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

More than four legs.



Richterveld.  A tok-tokkie.  Its legs are a bit longer than our local ones but the ones in the Namib have even longer ones which hold the body away from the hot sand.


This is a local one from Signal Hill.


This is a Namib one.


A different tok-tokkie, smaller but with longer legs and a little white marking. A very fast runner so Antonia caught it so I could get a photo.


Riemvasmaak.  Similar to the last one but the white colouring is not the same – down the side of the face here but above the ‘ears’ on the previous one.


In Kgalagadi.  A Koringkriek.  Close family of the Parkhurst Prawns that scare many people in northern Johannesburg.


A seriously large and dangerous scorpion.  The small pincers & large tail are the distinguishing feature.  White Stripes warned us about scorpions at night in the Kgalagadi & I was particularly aware having seen this one.

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« Reply #34 on: January 13, 2010, 08:13:00 AM »

Thanks for sharing your trip with us, much appreciated.
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« Reply #35 on: January 17, 2010, 11:34:05 AM »

Buildings



Nuwerus.  I am a great admirer of our indigenous gable style and seeing ones like this give me great pleasure.  This is a lovely variation and it is unusual because it is over the door which is on the corner of the building.  That telegraph pole is a violent intrusion on the scene.

I did a long thread about the many different gables along Church Street in Tulbagh *here*.


That is a very different interpretation of the classic hol bol gable.  I rather like it – as long as it is just on this house or is the local style – I don’t want to see it all over the place as it really is not well proportioned (too wide compared to the height in my opinion).


Leliefontein church.   I wrote about the establishment of this mission in Day 1 of this thread.

Quote
Leliefontein
•   Leliefontein Methodist Church and Parsonage - National Monument. This Methodist mission was established on 23 October 1815 with the arrival of Rev Barnabas Shaw of the Wesleyan Methodist Missionary Society. This mission station became a major stop over of travellers into the hinterland e.g.. G.Thompson 1823,
•   It is at this church that the biggest atrocity happened during the ABW. The Boer forces under Gen. Manie Maritz massacred 35 Leliefontein inhabitants on 13 January 1902. A plaque commemorating the massacred hangs in the Leliefontein Church.
*source*

Pmdb posted about the Boer War massacre in Leliefontein:
http://trailrider.route42.co.za/index.php?topic=5843.msg74378#msg74378


In the Kgalagadi Transfrontier park is this building above the Nossob river bed.  The authorities had wanted to establish farms in the area after WW1 – this is a remnant of that.  In fact the conditions were so marginal that anyone attempting to farm here was committed to a very hard marginal life.


The building has been restored as a museum.  A modest little building made from local calcrete blocks.  Here is a fuller version of the history:

Quote
Before Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park's inception and following the end of World War 1, the park area as well as the area to the south-west presently known as the Mier, was surveyed by Scottish born Rodger "Malkop" Jackson subdivided the region into boreholes after landmarks in homeland Scotland. In order to keep these boreholes in good repair, several white farmers settled as were maintained in working order.

However, due to the harsh environment, many of the farmers struggled to make a comfortable living. Life in the Kalahari was highly dependent upon supportive neighbors and these social links, even in a desolate place, were key to survival. Furthermore, if not for the tsamma melons, an essential plant providing the principle source of water. Many of the farmers took to hunting, destroying the balance of nature denuding the game. The idea of a park was initiated in the early 1900's and proclaimed in 1931, due to the concern of locals over this increasing slaughter of wild animals. Any farmer that had not already abandoned the area was bought off the land.

Although there was only a brief time of inhabitation by farmers within the Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park, it was an important period of Kalahari history, giving an insight into the lonely and harsh existence that pioneers faced. For this reason, as the remains of one of the farmhouses of the original borehole caretakers was still present in the Park, it was decided to renovate it to its former state. The site was known as Auchterlonie and previously occupied by the Human family between approximately 1913 and 1935, where they maintained a borehole and farmed using kraals. Auchterlonie has now been developed as a cultural exhibit; offering visitors a glimpse of history and chance to feel what it would be like to live in the Kalahari. Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park constructed Auchterlonie as a combination of a picnic spot, a house museum and walking trail which includes a well, blacksmith shop, two kraals, and the pathway linking them, visitors to the park can therefore walk through the house, see the kraals and survey the land-using all these visual clues to gain a sense of the past in this isolated farm.

Auchterlonie was opened to the public as a cultural information center in October 2004.
*Source*


Goodhouse. Remains of the hotel.


Goodhouse.  Remains of Weidner’s shop.

Two buildings at Goodhouse on the Gariep.  I uploaded the pictures for the Day 4 post and this is what I wrote:

Quote
It was founded in 1913 by an eccentric, Carl Weidner who built a pont across the river, established a shop and planted citrus trees.  This became the route to Namibia.  Prior to the pont they used to ford across the river here.  The cable of the pont is still in place (just to the right of this picture).  Weidner died in 1949 and the settlement more or less died with him though the bridge at Vioolsdrif, built in 1956, put the final nail in the coffin of this dump.


Pofadder   DRC church.  Antonia says it is devoid of any merit but to me it looks like an English church.  Anyway that seems to me what the architect had in mind when drawing it – but why?  Why for the DRC and why in Pofadder?  I also have an interest in clocks – this one has a really good face in my opinion; one that you can easily read from a very long way off (I dislike roman numerals ).  The two clock dials show very different times!


Riemvasmaak.  This is interesting because it consists of three different materials: on the right is a reed walled room, in the center are two corrugated iron rooms and on the left is RDP style cement bricks.  One of the corrugated iron rooms has been op gekleid on the outside.


Riemvasmaak.  I like this one made out of ungalvanised steel.  The red/brown rust colour blends in beautifully with the hill behind.
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« Reply #36 on: January 17, 2010, 11:44:25 AM »

Matjieshuise.


This was the usual dwelling originally in Leliefontein and the Richterveld; in the 60s it was still common.  I have seen a 1978 survey of the buildings of Leliefontein and they were almost all matjieshuise.  Steinkopf used to be similar; White Stripes can remember it like that.

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Ideal for the nomadic Nama life of the past, the matjieshuis is still part of the Richtersvelders’ lives today. In fact, this is the last place where we can still find them in significant numbers - a testimony to their suitability to the harsh climate, as well as to the strength of cultural traditions in this remote mountain desert. In today’s villages in the Richtersveld, matjieshuise are used for storage, cooking, as an additional place to sleep, or even to provide accommodation for the more curious tourists.

These huts, called  haru oms in Nama language, are made of beautifully woven reed mats in a beehive shape. It really is a dwelling for all seasons - cool and well ventilated in the hot summer, naturally insulated by the grass mats in winter, and protected from the rain by the porous stalks that swell up with the water. Because all materials are organic and not over-harvested, this is a dwelling that respects the environment. Women and men participate in harvesting the materials, preparing the mats, and assembling the hut, in a careful and meticulous process that has remained a true Nama art.
matjieshuis[/i]_a_true_nama_art/] *source*


The source includes this interesting photo of the inside of a matjieshuis.  Before showing pictures of the ones we saw I would like to give the historical context of them.


Here they are shown at Blaauwberg in 1711.  Notice the elephants.


This engraving by Thomas Bowen in 1777 was probably based on a picture by Peter Kolb of 1715.  Notice the matjieshuise where the Bo-Kaap is today.  The point being that they were the original houses in what is now Cape Town and they co-existed in the early years..


(The description of this picture states that Kolb left the Cape before 1713 whereas the previous picture is attributed to him with a date later than that – possibly when his book came out). Notice how closely they packed their huts so they formed a kraal for the sheep.


I was pleased to find this picture of the Sak River Mission station as I wrote about the Sak River & had not seen it.  Here there is a circle of matjieshuise on the left and another on the right.  It seems to be their preferred layout for the community.


Here is the one that I did use in that ride report.  Notice the matjieshuise.  It seems like the three smaller straight sided buildings are hartbeeshuise.  I add a little about them at the end of this post.


Here they are in the days of photography with the beginning of their eclipse by brick built box buildings on record.




Here is a photo from that Sak River RR showing a trekboer matjieshuis.  What is a matjieshuis if it is not a tent made of local materials?  Of course it was obvious to the trekboers that it was an entirely appropriate shelter to use.


Leliefontein.  


Leliefontein.  I don’t know what the story here is.  Three matjieshuis frames but new buildings coming with concrete blocks – to replace them? Or is it some tourist thing?


Leliefontein.  A good matjieshuis giving the context of the surroundings.


Leliefontein.  Still in use inside the village with a tarpaulin used for better weather protection (and simpler to get).  Note the bakoond in the background.


Leliefontein.  Modern materials being pressed into use here. For animals?


Leliefontein.  There is the frame to a matjieshuis on the left.  I also collect pictures of corrugated iron buildings so here I have a photo showing a matjieshuis and a corrugated iron house that is supplanting it and also a corrugated iron long drop. All in context with the naked rocky koppie behind.


Steinkopf.  Two maitjieshuise still to be seen with a kookskerm in the foreground.  These maitjieshuise are covered with woven plastic(?) sacking.


Larger picture of one of the Steinkopf matjieshuis.


Leliefontein.  Another variation of the matjieshuis.  The one behind is covered with bushes.


Leliefontein.  Showing the brush covering.  This leads to hartbeeshuise.


Here is a mission station with matjieshuise and also hartbeeshuise.  I posted about hartbeeshuise in my Moedverloer ride report.  The hartbeeshuise use bushes as the covering over a frame of branches so here we have a matjieshuis that is borrowing from the hartbeeshuis method.  I have shown how modern materials such as corrugated iron, woven sacking and plastic sheeting has recently been used – here we have yet another variation.

EDIT: Antonia has informed me that her friend Lita who did the survey of Leliefontein in the 70's explained that what has happened here is a male has built this hut by himself.  The women make the reed mat coverings so he has had to improvise & has chosen to use bushes instead of reed mats.





Two photos of the riethuise  at Heerenlogement from another ride report of mine http://trailrider.route42.co.za/index.php?topic=3643.0.  A riethuis is a variation on a hartbeeshuis which has walls and roof as different pieces whereas a hartbeeshuis has walls that curl over to form the roof as a single continuous piece.  The roof of these riethuise are covered in brush similar to the matjieshuis in Leliefontein.

I was delighted to see the few matjieshuise that still remain.  They are the last remnants of what was the local building method and style.  The remnants of part of our local heritage and culture that is almost lost.

‘-------------------------------------------------------------------------


Here is a completely different type of shelter.  The San (Bushmen) used rock overhangs and  caves when they were available; when they had to make their own shelters this is their building style.  We saw several on the way between Upington and the Kgalagadi but they were all aimed at tourists so I skipped them hoping to find better ones & ended up with no photos of them at all (this is a photo from the web).  When I wrote my Sak River ride report I found a nice drawing of a mission station with both this style of hut & also Khoi matjieshuise but the site where I found it has been closed & I can’t find another copy of it.  The caption explained the significance of the two styles of shelter.
« Last Edit: January 18, 2010, 10:23:08 PM by tok-tokkie » Logged
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« Reply #37 on: January 18, 2010, 06:41:46 PM »

TT and WS - what a TRULY outstanding report and GREAT pics!  A1 A1 A1
Many thanks to both of you for sharing this remarkable trip with us.
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« Reply #38 on: January 19, 2010, 10:30:53 PM »

Nog 'n paar foto's met kommentaar.

Uiteraard is dit 'n baie groot voorreg en plesier om saam met Tok-tokkie en Antonia te reis. Ons het dit voorheen ervaar en hierdie keer was net soveel beter. Sonder om TT tot 'n traan te dryf, dit is duidelik uit hoe hy hierdie verslag aanbied, dat hy besonder moeite doen om 'n geleentheid ten volle te benut. Hy doen moeite om die inligting reg aan te bied en stel werklik opreg belang in wat om hom gebeur. Antonia is geensins anders nie en is 'n mynveld van inligting, spesifiek waar dit oor argeologie gaan.

Ons het werklik lekker gekuier oor onderwerpe wat vir ons almal interessant is. Oor hierdie "graf" het ek en Antonia 'n lewendige debat gehad. Ek glo dis 'n klug en sy glo dis outentiek. Let op die klippe wat gebruik is. Dis nie ingebed in die grond nie. As dit lank terug daar geplaas is, sou dit ingebed gewees het en selfs onder die grond toegewaai gewees het. Verder is dit in 'n droë loop gedoen. Vir my onwaarskynlik. Daar is ook geen gras of plante tussen die klippe nie. Gewoonlik groei plante maklik tussen die klippe omdat daar 'n goeie vatplek vir sade is. Maar dit doodskoot is dat daar 'n "Rivercamp" net om di edraai is en ek weet dat my twee nefies onlangs daar as gidse opgetree het. Die twee bliksempies is tot enige ding in staat. (Ek het dit van Antonia weerhou)



My Oupa was 'n Polisieman in Namakwaland en het ook in die Kalahari diens gedoen. Daar het hy o.a. met kamele patrollie gery. Paar baie goeie stories daaroor gehad. Ek het soos enige klein kind aan sy lippe gehang en alles soos soetkoek opgevreet. Hy was 'n bobaas verteller en ook 'n regte platjie. Hy het graag jou siel uitgetrek en kameel drolle vir vye aan jou verkoop. Hy was egter ook 'n groot bron van inligting omdat hy wyd belang gestel het. Hy het vetplante geken en 'n uitgebreide rotstuin by die huis gehad. Hy kon jou elke plante se naam gee. Hy was ook 'n amateur juwelier en het sy eie klippe en gesteentes bymekaar gemaak, gesny, geslyp en geset in ringe, hangertjies ens. Ek het weereens toe ons deur Namakwaland ry en goed sien en beleef, besef hoeveel ek by hom geleer het as 'n klein kind terwyl ons opsigtelik niks gedoen het nie.

Die blom van die !Xhobba, (ghaab of hoedia), stink soos vrot vleis en word dus deur vlieë bestuif.
 


TT het oor die kwaliteite van die plante gepraat. Oupa het my dit laat eet. Dorinkies met die knipmes afgesny en dan in skyfies gesny. Vir hulle was dit 'n bron van water en nie soseer 'n eetlusdemper nie. Dis altans hoe ek dit nog altyd onthou het.



'n Kennis in Kakamas se omgewing het hektare van die goed geplant op versoek van een of ander groot farmaseutiese maatskappy in Europa. Toe hulle begin dink aan oes kom die nuus dat daar nie genoeg aktiewe bestandeel in is om die koste te regverdig nie. Projek gestop. Hulle is darem uitbetaal vir hul koste.


Nog foto's uit Kgalagadi.









Witkwasmuishond in Nossop.









Ek het op 'n stadium een van hierdie grootgemaak toe dit tydens 'n jakkalsjag gered is. Ek was nie baie gewild by die skaapboere nie, maar ek kon die dingetjie nie doodmaak nie.



Ek is steeds verbaas oor die koedoes. Hulle is nie regtig veronderstel om hier voor te kom nie. Hulle moes van Noord af gekom het. Kalahari is nie hulle wêreld nie.

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« Reply #39 on: January 20, 2010, 11:13:22 AM »

Baie nice foto's.  A1 Clap
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