31st July 2011
July 31st, saw 7 hikers set off from the Lodge in the Highover Nature Reserve. The weather was perfect for hiking. It was a crisp and clear Sunday morning, especially so after the plentiful rains and snow we experienced.
We hiked along the right hand side bank of the Mkomazi River. We were promised to eventually have lunch at the beautiful Sowda Falls. Wrong, we only had a small glimpse of the Falls.
Tea was had at the small crossing of the Sowda River. Once refreshed we set off again along a gentle upward, well defined path, thru natural bush interspersed here and there with Aloes.
We hiked steadily for some time, then we took a right hand turn through the thick bush towards Sowda Falls, which were still quite a distance away. We reached the river crossing in good time. Unfortunately this trail has been neglected for some time with the result that the path was extremely overgrown. The men, always ready to show their worth, set off to cut thru the bush with their walking sticks. Somehow Brian had “stolen” the bottom section of my walking pole for this purpose. I carried on walking, totally unaware of the fact that the one pole was lots shorter than the other.
Eventually our male hikers found the path, although Pat had a very good idea of where it was. The river was crossed again in order to get to the waterfall. Here somebody (I will not mention his name) slipped on the slippery rocks and was given welcome support by John. I refused to cross this section and I stayed on the opposite side and made use of my higher vantage point to observe my fellow hikers, especially the one with the wet shirt and pants!
Thanks to Pat for deciding that it was a waste of time to carry on and lunch was enjoyed right there on the rocks.
A skeleton of a large animal was found on our way back and somebody with cannibalistic tendencies sampled a few dry bones. You can take her nowhere!!
Good time was made going back and we did not even notice the slight uphill at the end of the hike. A distance of 12.4 km was achieved.
Thank you Bushy for leading a most enjoyable hike. Also thank you to my fellow hikers, Brian, Pat, Dave, Mark and John.