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Berg River Dam to Jonkershoek traverse

Via Assegaaiboschkloof With Santie having proposed another springtime foray into Assegaaiboschkloof to view the blushing brides in bloom, I misguidedly proposed a refinement to the hike: why not start at the Berg River Dam and continue over Bergriviersnek to...

Blind Gully and Diagonal, Table Mountain

I was keen to hike Table Mountain again after an absence of more than two years. The suggestion that we ascend via Blind Gully sounded interesting, but I was simultaneously wary given the name of the route. I was concerned about exposed scrambling and negotiating...

HH Epic Trail

Hepic Trail for short. The Hepic is a private hiking trail that follows the route of the original Epic cycle trail above the railway line that snakes out of the Helderberg bowl. It is located north-east of the Gantouw Pass below Hanskop. Access has to be arranged...

Three Sisters and Perdeberg

Kogelberg Biosphere Reserve, Kleinmond I was expecting a stroll with a gradual climb to the Perdeberg lookout, something I have done a couple of times. But I was rapidly disabused of this notion when we veered up onto the Three Sisters ridge and proceeded to scale its...

Perdekop escape

While languishing in level 4 lockdown, we had been planning our escapes to the great outdoors where mega-social distancing is possible, and even desirable. Undeniably, outdoor exercise, fresh air and sunlight boost your immune system (along with other factors such as...

Eden to Addo Mega-Hike 2006

400kms, 17 days, 6 mountain ranges, many rivers, numerous veld types: 11 - 27 August 2006 The first time I saw the phrase "Eden to Addo" it spoke to me. Then when I saw it juxtaposed with "mega-hike" the synapses fired in my brain. The concept was so evocative I had...

Witels

I've long heard of it and I've always wanted to go there. Much of the area is owned by the UCT Mountain and Ski Club and the Mountain Club (MCSA) is able to obtain permits. I went with the Stellenbosch section of the MCSA. But be warned: be fit or be young... From...

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Klein River by kayak

The Klein River and Vlei near Hermanus can apparently claim that: at 80 km in length, the Klein River is the river with the shortest distance between its origin and its mouth in the world - 5 km as the crow flies (according to the Stanford Tourism Bureau) the bird...

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Baboons matter

On the Cape Peninsula there are few people who are neutral towards the local Chacma baboons: you either love them or hate them. The remnant troops of the Table Mountain National Park which now protects a large portion of the peninsula, range from the southern table of...

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Doring River rafting

The Doring drains the Tankwa Karoo through the Cederberg range into the Olifants River. It can only be rafted in the winter-rainfall months of July to September. Photos and a Google Earth file. The weather forecast for this weekend promised nothing good. Consecutive...

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A caracal in Stellenbosch

A few weeks ago, after the fires that charred the mountains in the Jonkershoek valley, I was cycling to work through the Jan Marais Nature Reserve which is located near the centre of town. As I rounded a corner I was stunned to see a beautiful big caracal standing in...

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Welcome to RalphPina.com

Thank you for visiting my outdoor blog. RalphPina.com documents my experiences over many years of appreciating, and adventuring in, Nature. It celebrates visual beauty, advocates minimal impact, reflects on humans’ relationship with our ecosphere, spans the planet but focuses on the wild diversity of southern Africa. Photos, videos and GPS maps of hiking, cycling, kayaking, abseiling, canoeing and windsurfing..

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