Pinnacle Rock - Tenting
Southern Berg
16 – 17 July 2011

Report & Photos courtesy of Dave Sclanders

Pinnacle Rock in the Cobham area of the Southern Berg has always held a special feeling for me. We have had lunch at this spot on many occasions when we have hiked in this are. The rock stands tall on the flat plateau of the area. It is to me a quiet, mysterious, and tranquil spot, and for a long time I have wanted to spend a night here. Winter is as good a time as any to go, so 4 of us headed out to spend a night tenting in the area It was a great morning to hike , the huge “Giants Cup’ or also known as “Hodgson’s Peaks” towered high above us, snow covered a great part of the high berg, and a fresh breeze cooled us as we hiked

At midday we reached our goal, with the afternoon sun changing the colours of the rock as it settled into its afternoon glide path to the west. Lunch was had, our hiking hidden in the area, we went off on an exploration of the area.

On our way back , we passed a small mountain stream some way of from the rock, filled our overnight water packs, and headed back to enjoy a welcome cup of tea, and set up our tents. Once the sun had dropped below the mountains to our west, the temperature started to drop very quickly. An early supper was had , and by 18h30 we were well settled into our sleeping bags for the night.

The night temperature dropped significantly, and at 06h30 on Sunday morning when we awoke we found our tents well and truly “iced up” However with the right hiking gear we had spent a very comfortable night in the tents.

The call to get out of the warm tent to get some photos of the sunrise was strong , and we were greeted by a vast area of frozen grass, the early sunlight glittering on the ice covering the grass lands. Then Pinnacle Rock was bathed in a soft orange glow for a short time as the early sun’s rays touched the surrounding area.

We dismantled our tents, and spread them over the rocks to dry, enjoyed a slow breakfast, packed our gear and headed out to find a new route to get back to our car. One of the great things about looking for new routes is that you do not know what one may find on an exploration hike. We were very fortunate to see and Eland mother with a baby calf at foot. I don’t recall seeing a calf so early in the winter in the berg.

The views from the new route were spectacular, and many photos were taken

Rounding a corner high up on the side of the mountain , our path wondered very precariously along the side of the slope, as great valley dropped down below us.

Down in the valley, normal everyday farming activities carried on

When exploring in the mountains one does not know what one may find amongst the jumbled rocks

Lunch was had in a sheltered spot at the base of a huge rock, no wind, warm sunshine – a great lunch spot

Then, the crossing of the last river crossing, and we were back at our start point.

Thanks to my hiking companions for a long wanted and planned tenting week end in the Cobham area. Normally we go to one of the many caves in the area. However, this tenting trip turned out to be a memorable trip in many ways.