Awaking at a more leisurely hour to another day promising sunny winter day and temperatures above 8 degrees. Off we go driving to Boskloof along all the back roads from our farm very slowly in my Polo which is definitely not made to do anything other than city driving.
We stop off at the local Padstal called Van Brakkelstoor to load up with some delicious locally made bread and other delights. It has been decided that no matter how attractive the idea is of making the Padstal a stop along the way, it just made getting to the next farm too long. It’s almost a relief as the route now becomes easier to find and means we don’t have to walk over currently worked fields or venture over any fences. So the decision is that the shuttle will stop off on the way back from Platbos so Pilgrims can buy their delicacies to take home with them. They can even purchase Thys’ well -researched book, which I believe is a must read.
(Photograph by Isabella Smal)
My friend and I arrive at the Boskloof farm-house, to check in with the farmer once more and now, I have to ask him how he feels about us having to spend the night on his farm as I have discovered the distance to our next stop is way too far. I don’t want any of the days to be overwhelmingly long as I’ve experienced myself with other walks I’ve done like this. I’m warmly greeted, but to be honest, I get the feeling that this farmer is very weary of me and makes his point quite clear that he is open to us walking through his farm once or twice, but that neither he nor his wife would like to lose their privacy.
(photograph by Liza Karp)
He is also quite adamant that he doesn’t want the Pilgrims to stop on his farm, so the dilemma now is where we stay on the third night. I will now have to consult with my friend Sam from Hillside and ask his advice. Possibly he could speak to the farmer for me and ask him how he would feel if we camped further down the river away from his farmhouse and out of view.
The more the farmer speaks, the more he touches on all the magnificent Botanical surprises there are along the way and about some hidden secrets he might consider sharing with us. He mentions certain names of people who he believes should assist me in this project of whom, most I had already contacted. I’m wondering if he will bend a little once he sees that my intentions are authentic. I guess only time will tell…
(Photograph by Liza Karp)
After having spent a few hours chatting, the farmer finally indicates the way we are to walk, so off we go into the noon day sun to find ourselves within an hour in the most surreal of worlds, on one side the mono-cultured wheat lands and canola crops, and on the other side pristine fynbos, of such splendour rendering more species per capita than anywhere on earth. My heart feels as though it is exploding with joy as we walk deeper and deeper into the mountain. After a few hours, having climbed about 500m, the icy chill of a cold front comes in and we decide to turn around and head back. I feel as though I have a better idea of the lay of the land, which one can never understand by just using google earth and contour maps. By the time we have reached home, I have discovered another universe, another Tafelberg, which I could never ever have imagined ….