12 September 2010

Cecilia Ridge Scramble

The Alpha is away for a bit on a perverse incentives trip to the south of France, so it was just us, the Food Lady and Pauline today. On our way we stopped on Klaasens Drive to have a look at this memorial plaque to Van Riebeeck's hedge. Luckily all the relevant paperwork had been remembered (for once!) and we were let in to Kirstenbosch without any pleading. We had to go on leads all the way up to the contour path which was a bit restricting as there were lots of smells. The Food Lady and Pauline got sidetracked by things in the garden like this Erica glauca var. glauca otherwise known as the Cup and Saucer Heath which comes from the Cederberg mountains. I thought this might spur them on to find a nice place for tea, but they were also interested in weeds, like this Larkspur Baroe (Cyphia bulbosa). With quite a lot of scrambling and a bit of help for us Scotties (we missed the capable hands of the Alpha Male at this point!) we made it up to Breakfast Rock ...where we had tea, rusks and date slices. There were some interesting smells for Dougal - and some rocks and caves for me - and some strange creeping and creepy plants for the humans - a Twining Baroe (Cyphia volubis) was twining around some restios, and some Devil's Tresses (Cassythia ciliolata) were strangling an Erica plukenetii plant. Even more weird - this parasitic, "false dodder" plant is a member of the Lauraceae family which includes sinkwood, avocado, camphor and cinnamon trees. These are its fruits. There were some normal plants like this Erica calycina and after a short scramble we were up on the top and on the Great Dog Highway where we were met by a Jack Russell. Then is was down the road with its welcome stream running along the side, past more people and a few dogs, and a carpenter bee doing some hectic flying tricks on this Fountain Bush (Psoralea aphylla), and this Cape Scabious (Scabiosa africana) too. You can tell that the Alpha Male wasn't here with all the photographing going on! Luckily there was lots of action for us. Look at these dogs having a mutual bum sniff. Typical males! This is the Food Lady's favourite Christmas Bauble Creeper, Asparagus scandens, all lit up and sparkiling and in flower.
Back in the Land Rover - very happy Dougal.


  1. The mutual bum sniffing looks very exciting! Sorry you missed Alpha to help you up the rocks but tea sounds good and, as usual, the pictures are just wonderful. Thanks.

  2. Thanks for the comment! Alpha back on Saturday so hopefully can help on next walk again. The dogs are totally lost without him.