Saturday, January 19, 2013

Drakensberg & Ardmore


Over labor day weekend, we returned to the Drakensberg area.  We were getting away for the weekend, but we were also going to go zip-lining again.  We stayed at Ardmore Guest Farm, where our lodging was a well-appointed rondavel.



Complete with a fire place.


In the distance, we could see the Drakensberg Mountains.



Closer by, we could see our new car.  Our last was stolen while we were in Johannesburg.  So we bought a VW Golf online.  I think this was our first major road trip with it.


But back to the views.


Our rondavel had its own deck, from which we could gaze out over the grounds toward the mountains.



Or just stand and reflect on our peaceful surroundings.


We took some time just to enjoy those surroundings, reading in the sunlight.


Meals were enjoyed in this room, with its wonderful light.


We took some time during our first day to explore the area.


Along with the surroundings, we admired the farm itself.




We hiked up a hill to investigate the view, and we were not disappointed.






Eventually, we turned back toward the farm.



But then came the time for a different type of adventure at the Drakensberg Canopy Tour.  First, though, we had to sign the standard forms proclaiming that if we died it was nobody's fault but our own.



Here, we are posing with our guides and a young South African couple who had also signed up to go zip-lining that day.


We bounced up to high ground in a truck.


Then we were shown the grave of someone whose climbing had not ended well.  Not sure that was necessary.


Then the fun began.


We received some instruction.


Then we began zipping down the mountain valley, over rocks, water and trees.



We learned something about the local flora along the way, including about the moss hanging from this tree like an "old man's beard" (which it is called).  We were told that it is not found near big cities because it needs clean air.  Makes me feel good about breathing city air...


This foot bridge bounced as we crossed it.  What fun!


Kathy is amazing.


Our guides were great, and - as on all our other zip-lining adventures - genuinely seemed to be having a blast.


As was I.


Indeed, I think we all were.

video

It feels much faster when you are doing it!  Some day, I want to try this trick, demonstrated by one of our guides:


As always, our getaway was romantic and adventurous and over too soon...





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