(SIMON's CAVE) 29/01/2006
Report by Teresa Whitefield

After the usual adjusting, putting on plaster, sunscreen and any other vital rituals before the start of a hike we set off to find our ‘lost’ cave. Unfortunately, 500m down the track our wise leader decided much to the relief of all in the party, that the waist deep Bushman’s River was too dangerous to cross.

So we did a smart U-turn and headed off in the opposite direction. Now we were going to find another ‘lost’ cave. We had a lovely morning walking in the shadow of the Giant along rapidly disappearing paths.

At lunch time the rain came down so we decided to set up camp and the rain rather accommodatingly stopped for a brief while so that we could get our tents up before the real deluge started. By that time we were sipping tea from the comfort and dryness of our tents.

Later in the afternoon we did some exploratory walking while trying to orientate ourselves and the possible location of our cave. The rain was not as accommodating but since our tents were up and dry inside we did not mind too much.

Early in the evening the gals had a delightful bath in the nearby stream while the gentlemen of the party kept a careful eye on the Giant. Then it was time for sundowners and dinner.

The next morning we set off to find our cave. Dave decided to guard the packs while resting his ankle and the rest of us headed off down into the next river valley. After a couple of false starts, Margaret spotted a possible cave and Keith bravely headed uphill to ‘check it out’. We were in luck because this was our elusive cave but the biggest excitement was the family of porcupines that fled on our approach.

Simons Cave was used by game guards many, many years ago but is rarely visited nowadays. Then it was time to head up the very steep hill to pick up our packs and head for home.

Once again we had a wonderful weekend of hiking and thanks to the leaders who are prepared to take us to these special places.