Sunday, October 28, 2007

Montagu Pass

On Friday SCP and I decided to unwind from a hectic week with ‘n quick trip up Montagu Pass. We each bought a beer and set off for Grogdraai.

Grogdraai is a spot on Montagu Pass where Oxen were rested. Here they could drink from a clear mountain spring while some travelers quenched their thirst here with “grog”. Grin For some reason I always wanted to go and have a drink there. Wink

On the way up we stopped at the old Smithy.

It was a slow leisurely ride – just the way I like it! Eventually we reached Grogdraai and had a beer. Can any venue for a Friday beer better than this? Grin

I have ridden Montagu pass so many times, but each time you cross it you’re on your way to somewhere else. When I woke to a beautiful Saturday morning I decided to go to Montagu Pass again. I did not want to ride it, I wanted to visit it. It turned out to be one of the better rides I’ve ever had.

It’s the first Solo ride I’ve done in a long time. There is something to be said for riding solo. Freedom! Stop when you want, as much as you want for as long as you want. No-one else to consider.

I’ve always wanted to stop here. Today I did.

On the way up I saw this road. I’ve always wondered where it goes.

It seems to be an Eskom road that winds it’s way to Outeniqua Pass and it ends next to the tarred road at a locked gate. Now I know. Nice side of the gate to be on! Grin

I had my Montugu Pass historical book with me and I wanted to visit all the sights and places depicted on the historic photos.

The opening ceremony of the Montagu Pass was held here on 19 January 1848.

This is also one of the sites that's supposedly haunted. Next full moon we'll have to do a night ride!

The pass is well restored and being looked after. There are signs at the historic spots and the weeds and Black wattle trees are being removed. It’s such a pity that some humans have to vandalize our heritage. Already some of the signs are removed or broken and almost all are shot. Who are these idiots? Angry Despite this it remains one of the most beautiful passes! Grin

Moertjiesklip is a huge boulder that rolled down the mountain during the building of the pass and came to rest on an unfortunate "bandiet" (convict). It's a tragic event, but the Afrikaans/Dutch name suggests that the powers that be found it quite amusing.

To this day the stone serves as the unfortunate bandiet's headstone.

This should be called a “Stop report” rather than a “Ride Report”. The whole ride was 25km and took just over 2 hours. I took 153 photos! Shocked Grin

“Bobbejane en Ape skryf hul name op mure en glase” – C.J. Langenhoven

Pikkie is 'n Bobbejaan en Estie is 'n Aap!

By the time I reached the top the cold front had arrived, but I did not mind.

Today Montagu pass was not a route, it was my destination.


1 comment:

Wim said...

Thank you for this contibution. I have never been there but now it will become a "destination" for me as well...

Wim Botha