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Monday, 2 May 2011

Kamberg Nature Reserve.

As for the name Kamberg, I almost got it right. The mountain is said to look like a roosters comb, hence the name Kamberg.

Took a trip to Kamberg nature reserve today, about 85km from home, only the last +- 10km on good gravel road, the rest tar.

Kamberg valley was home to the Bushmen until about the 1850's. Due to the encroachment by black and white settlers the game that the Bushmen depended on became scarce. The Bushman's way of hunting was quiet and did not drive the game away. Black hunters used dogs and lots of men. White hunters used guns with more devastating effect. Busmen turned to raiding White and Black settlers cattle and sheep, which made them the enemy of both. Soon there were no Bushmen left in the Kamberg valley, after thousands of years.

The Kamberg Nature Reserve has a Bushman art museum.

Click on photos to enlarge.

The Mooi River just outside the little village of Rosetta. A broad tranquil stream, my destination 45km further  almost the head waters of the Mooi River.

The narrow, one way bridge, crossing the Mooi River at Rosetta.

Waterfall can just be seen in the middle of the picture, above the waterfall is what is known as scheduled water. This means that the river upstream of here basically to it's source is closed from the end of May to the 1st of September to fishing, to allow trout to breed unhindered.

Drakensberg can be seen in the distance. The Kamberg valley being so high, can get very cold in the winter. It often snows, heavy frosts occur, and temperatures of -15 degrees Celsius are common.

One winters morning I decided to go fishing at one of my favourite still waters, Grantchester. Got there just as the sun peeped over the horizon, tackled up and started fishing, after two casts the line was frozen in the guides. Had to wait until almost 9 before I could start fishing.

The Kamberg in the distance.

The Mooi River at Riverside Farm. These are Natal Fly Fishers Club waters, so I have unrestricted access to 7km of river on this farm. This is about 5km from Kamberg.

Still Riverside farm, beautiful river.

Clarity of the water, taken from the bridge at Riverside farm. Depth of water +-  one and a half metres.

Entrance to Kamberg Nature Reserve. The reserve was established in 1951, and is made up of two farms expropriated by the government, Stille Rust, (Quiet Rest) and Gladstone's nose.

View up the Kamberg Valley, Mooi river in the middle distance.

One of the still waters at Kamberg, Eland's dam. As I said in my previous post the word dam includes the water behind the dam wall. Eland the largest antelope in Africa and very common in this area. Eland were revered by the Bushmen and occur frequently in their paintings.

The Mooi River is home to Brown trout which were planted here in 1899. The original ova came from Loch Levin in Scotland. In South Africa Brown and Rainbow trout never occur in the same river or stream, although both types were seeded in the rivers. South African fly fishers consider Brown trout the fish to catch due to the difficulty of catching Brown trout.

Rainbow trout in South Africa came originally from the Kamloops area in Canada. This strain has adapted so well that it survives temperatures of 24 degrees Celsius, almost 80 degrees Farenheit. If you should catch one at this temperature though, the chances are you would not be able to revive it and it would die.

Tomorrow I will tell you more of my Kamberg experience.


Shoreman said...

Very nice.


Gorges Smythe said...

Very pretty country!

Joel said...

Lovely country you got there, Phillip. My kind of place. Just not enough of it over my neck of the woods!

Pat Tillett said...

What a beautiful place! Many of the native people in my country, met with much the same fate.

Joyful said...

Wow! Rainbow trout from Kamloops area? That is where my mom lives. Amazing how the trout have adapted.