Wild Dog Adventure Riding

Riding: Plan, Report and Racing => Ride Reports => Topic started by: tok-tokkie on October 15, 2009, 07:00:27 pm

Title: Sak River
Post by: tok-tokkie on October 15, 2009, 07:00:27 pm
Day 1  Calitzdorp 090923 Wednesday    430km  8h 25m

I read a book; The Forgotten Frontier by Nigel Penn.  It was about the contest for land between the trekboere and the San (Bushmen) and also the Khoikhoi (Hottentots).  The conflict with the Xhosa is well known and documented but this conflict is much less well known.  The final refuge of the San was beyond the Sak river.  I am interested in the Karoo and decided to ride across it from south to north following the Sak as closely as possible.  This is the report on that trip.  However I was already booked on an excursion to Prince Albert for the long weekend so I did that first and then went on to the start of the Sak river behind Beaufort West.

Book overview

Traditionally, the Eastern Cape frontier of South Africa has been regarded as the preeminent contact zone between colonists and the Khoi (“Hottentots”) and San (“Bushmen”). But there was an earlier frontier in which the conflict between Dutch colonists and these indigenous herders and hunters was in many ways more decisive in its outcome, more brutal and violent in its manner, and just as significant in its effects on later South African history. This was the frontier north of Cape Town, where Dutch settlers began advancing into the interior. By the end of the eighteenth century, the frontier had reached the Orange (Gariep) River. The indigenous Khoisan people, after initial resistance, had been defeated and absorbed as an underclass into the colonial world or else expelled beyond it, to regions where new creole communities emerged. Nigel Penn is a master storyteller who brings a novelist’s sensitivity to plot and character and a command of the archival record to bear in recovering this epic and forgotten story. Filled with extraordinary personalities and memorable episodes, and set in the often harsh landscape of the Western and Northern Cape, The Forgotten Frontier will appeal both to the general reader and to the student of history.

*Source* (http://www.ohioswallow.com/book/0821416820)

(https://i.imgur.com/EvnL2iP.jpg)
Setting off.

I did quite a bit to the bike. 

Single seat so that top box could be mounted low & forwards.  I tried all sorts of things, initially a hinged seat with 2 valve springs under it which took out the ‘noise’ of corrugations brilliantly but I did not like the disconnection from the bike (when leaning into a corner the seat was not attached to the bike properly & I did not like that).  I had a Freedom Air inflated cushion (similar to AirHawk but better in my opinion) sent from the US which I tried.  I made a plastic seat base like the old steel tractor seats & it was comfortable – especially with the Freedom Air but I ended up buying the foam from a Suzuki cruiser style delivery bike and making it wider and flatter.  Attached to front is an aluminium bayonet with the yellow Otter box you see.  In the Otter box is my camera so I can take photos conveniently & without taking my gloves off.  That box is dust & water proof.

Toolbox in front of engine for wheel spanners, tyre levers, foot tyre pump & a spare tube. 

Engine bash plate behind it.

16 litre Clarke fuel tank.  I chose the natural colour so I can see the fuel level.

Side toolbox on the left where the silencer is on the right.  It has my electric compressor & another spare tube.

Chain guide with homemade Loobman style chain oiler.

Martin Praetzold built me a special rear shock from the original and the one from my Dakar.  It uses the original progressive spring and housing but with the Dakar rod and internals customised by Martin.  The external tank was modified so I now have compression and rebound adjustment (& decent valve shim damping instead of fixed holes) and also remote preload adjustment.

Front forks have custom made cartridge emulators by Martin.  I had wanted to fit my Dakar forks but decided against it when i realised I would have less steering trail (wheel further forward) which reduces the steering stability.  I have fallen off this bike badly & don’t want to reduce the trail at all.  Anybody got forks from Yamaha YX 125 or YZ259?  I had a pair from a YZ85 but the axle holes were 12mm & the TW needs 15mm & the bosses were too small to safely enlarge in my judgement.  The forks were a terrific improvement.

New mudguard at back so I could fit the top box on.  The case is the same one i use on the Dakar.  It is a dust & waterproof Storm case.

Throttle rocker.  I blessed that simple little thing.

Zumo mount.  I needed the music on some of the days.

Sodium coloured glasses as you see in the photo.  They don’t make things dark but they cut the glare.  I much prefer them to the grey shaded ones i have because these let you see the road surface better than plain glasses.

Extension to the headlight cowl – to put the Zumo in a bit of shade.

Raised handlebars.

I also bought an oil cooler but did not have time to make the changes to fit it.

I have the Dakar still but this bike suits me better as it matches my riding abilities much better.  I like the Dakar but I have real affection for the TW.


(https://i.imgur.com/KILdI48.jpg)


(https://i.imgur.com/t1oxhsb.jpg)
In the Franschhoek Pass.  I have ridden past this several times but got off to take a look this time.

I called in on Ektoknbike for a short chat on my way past his farm as I took the gravel road to Robertson.  Then on to Montague.


(https://i.imgur.com/70OU351.jpg)
Ouberg Pass between Montague & Ladismith.


(https://i.imgur.com/toWvinm.jpg)
Further down the road.  I took a picture just here of my Dakar on my trip to the 2007 WD Bash in Hogg’s Back.  I think I am going to extend the side stand.


(https://i.imgur.com/HOfJjKq.jpg)
Ladismith, Lutheran Mission church.

(https://i.imgur.com/X9txhHZ.jpg)
Went to Zoar and Amalienstein.  This is the Lutheran Mission church in Amalienstein – with two bell towers.

(https://i.imgur.com/n8V8036.jpg)
Spent the night in Calitzdorp (http://www.calitzdorp.co.za/history.htm).  I like Calitzdorp as it has not been over restored.  I really dislike Franschhoek where all the buildings just scream money.

'----------------------------------------------------

EDIT November 2018  All the pictures had been uploaded to Flikr.  I have had to upload them to Imgur & change all the links.  Yahoo owns Fickr.  They have just changed the rules.  You are given 1TB of space & I used about 1% of that.  I had 2256 pictures uploaded but all were about 800x600 pixels ready for inclusion in threads like this.  Now Flickr is bringing in a new rule - a maximum of 1000 images.  So I have had to move these images away from Flickr.  Been quite a job.  And there is a problem at Imgur - if an image is not viewed in 3 months it gets dumped. Currently this thread averages about 2,5 hits per day.  Hence why I wanted to preserve it.
Title: Re: Sak River
Post by: Trailrider on October 15, 2009, 07:18:16 pm
Finally! This is going to be good. I REALLY REALLY like that TW. Small bikes and small bike trips have a honesty about them that I cant explain and not everybody gets. But it has a huge appeal to me.

Subscribed!!!
Title: Re: Sak River
Post by: eikeboom on October 15, 2009, 07:25:20 pm
You really have a love for detail and history! ;D
Following this closely
 :thumleft:
Title: Re: Sak River
Post by: Trokkie on October 15, 2009, 07:26:57 pm
I love the Karoo!!
Title: Re: Sak River
Post by: Hondsekierie on October 15, 2009, 07:38:28 pm
Finally! This is going to be good. I REALLY REALLY like that TW. Small bikes and small bike trips have a honesty about them that I cant explain and not everybody gets. But it has a huge appeal to me.

Subscribed!!!

Agree :thumleft:
Title: Re: Sak River
Post by: tok-tokkie on October 15, 2009, 08:40:56 pm
Days 2,3 & 4   Calitzdorp to Prince Albert    090924  Thursday to 090926  Saturday  98km  3h 30min

(https://i.imgur.com/O6snA4V.jpg)
Notice the lichen & red colour.  This is on the gravel road from Carlitzdorp to the Swartberg Pass via Kruisrivier.  But looking it up on Mapsource as I write this I see there is another exceedingly interesting road that starts directly from Calitzdorp also going via Kruisrivier.  I went up the R62 for a bit before turning off. 

This is called  Red Stone Hills  (http://www.redstone.co.za/index-2.html#views)

(https://i.imgur.com/opJeb2i.jpg)
A bit past the Red Hills.  I have seen a colour slide presentation of  Gamkaskloof (‘Die Hel’ but I don’t like that name as it is insulting to the previous occupants) before the road was built and this is very similar to that.  Gamkaskloof was intensely farmed using animal drawn ploughs (and manual ploughs also) so the fields were small with the sides of the mountains very close.  Now it is just a thorn tree wasteland – nothing like it used to be unless you get to the last farm in the valley.

(https://i.imgur.com/0MCTtFX.jpg)
I adore scenes like this.  A simple humble Cape building in a Cape setting.

(https://i.imgur.com/PSJ9j52.jpg)
A bit grander.  A very simple gable over the door and a nice green corrugated iron roof in place of the original thatch roof.

(https://i.imgur.com/wJiMdGe.jpg)
Closer to the Swartberg.

(https://i.imgur.com/hejOQGJ.jpg)
Swartberg pass going up the south side.

(https://i.imgur.com/gqAxYVP.jpg)
Swartberg pass along the top.

(https://i.imgur.com/OQplpex.jpg)
Swartberg pass snaking down the northern side.  I prefer the northern side.

(https://i.imgur.com/v1Z1DMT.jpg)

(https://i.imgur.com/2mQ1H3Z.jpg)
The Swartberg pass is sedimentary rock.  Here, what were originally horizontal layers have been so folded by continental plate movements (plate tectonics (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Plate_tectonics) ) that they are now vertical.  Much folding to the left background.

I had to be in Prince Albert by 2 o’clock to join the Vernacular Architecture Society of South Africa (http://www.vassa.org.za/index.html) (Volksboukundige Vereeniging van Suid-Afrika ) who had organised a four day excursion in the area.  What follows are just some pictures from that excursion.  My wife is a member and we went by car with another couple.

I have made a separate post about the * geology of the Karoo *  (http://www.wilddog.za.net/forum/index.php?topic=39072.msg759570;topicseen#new).  Later in the day I was shown this:

(http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2427/4013803153_416ea6e794_o.jpg)

(http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2051/3543198994_f6e97163e3_o.jpg)
The grey is the rock flour made by the glacier as it slid down the mountain (labelled fine rock flour in the diagram) and included are the stones and pebbles – all those white specs are not lichen; they are the ‘boulders dropped from melting iceberg’ in the diagram.  Known as Dwyka rocks.

(https://i.imgur.com/i074ctn.jpg)
There are 18 gabled houses in Prince Albert built between 1840 & 1860.  It appears that one man, Carl Lotz,  built most of them as they all have a distinctive feature; the horizontal moulding across the middle above the window.  This style is known as the Prince Albert style as is unique to the town.  All the gables are different but 8 of them have that feature.  This is 88 Kerkstraat. 1857

(https://i.imgur.com/ENLQ53x.jpg)
Number 1 Kerkstraat.  1856.  Tall slim Prince Albert gable.

(https://i.imgur.com/5jp0g01.jpg)
This is Welgeleegen (previously Baviaanskloof) outside Prince Albert.  It was built in 1837 (before the gabled houses in town) by G. S. Gouws.  It is still in the Gouws family but the property has been subdivided over the years to distribute it amongst the children and now it is too small to generate a good income.  Especially as much of the soil on the arable land was washed away in floods these last few years.

(https://i.imgur.com/tTdadi2.jpg)
Mr Gouws, the present owner.  Very friendly person.

(https://i.imgur.com/hjewF8P.jpg)
This is particularly interesting – a hedge of pomegranates.  There was no bathroom or lavatory in this house until recently; women went through that hedge to do their ablutions and the men walked down towards the river (behind me where I was taking this photograph).  Some years ago (late 1980s or early 1990s) the present owner added on a bathroom & was forced to demolish it by the National Monuments Council (or South African Heritage Resources Agency (SAHRA)) as they had not approved the plans.  Very recently they have built a bathroom inside the house.  Mr Gouws told us his children got quite a shock when they went to boarding school and had to wash themselves in hot water – they were quite used to cold water all their lives up until then – Prince Albert is COLD in winter.  Tough girls.

(https://i.imgur.com/pzboxCh.jpg)
Zeekoegat near Meiringspoort.  That is a private church on the left built by Frederick Oosthuizen at his own expense for the 100 church members in the district.  I am a fan of corrugated iron buildings so photographed the church hall next door.  Beautiful in its simplicity, built in 1929.

(https://i.imgur.com/aNPHfSD.jpg)
Tierberg, now unoccupied.  One of the features of this trip through the Karoo is the large number of buildings that have been abandoned.  This is unoccupied but still cared for but many have been abandoned completely.

(https://i.imgur.com/SSxoDps.jpg)
This is the road to the Gamkapoort dam from the Prince Albert side.  There is a proper ride report about it  *here*.  (http://www.wilddog.za.net/forum/index.php?topic=38927.0)  Originally it linked up with Bosluiskloof (what a great name) but the road was flooded by the dam.

(https://i.imgur.com/NhEkBWx.jpg)
Same road looking back the way we came in.
Title: Re: Sak River
Post by: edgy on October 15, 2009, 09:09:33 pm
Awesome!
I`m in! :thumleft:
Title: Re: Sak River
Post by: ChrisL - DUSTRIDERS on October 15, 2009, 09:09:59 pm
Some beautiful photos there Tok-tokkie.
Title: Re: Sak River
Post by: Sakkie on October 15, 2009, 09:21:00 pm
Absolutely Stunning !   :thumleft:  :thumleft:  :thumleft:
Title: Re: Sak River
Post by: Big H on October 15, 2009, 09:36:32 pm
This is great!

Keep 'em coming!  :thumleft:
Title: Re: Sak River
Post by: Crossed-up on October 15, 2009, 09:46:29 pm
Really great photos, TT and such an interesting report.  I look forward to the next episode.
Title: Re: Sak River
Post by: BMWPE on October 15, 2009, 10:04:48 pm
Absolutely Stunning !   :thumleft:  :thumleft:  :thumleft:

+1
Title: Re: Sak River
Post by: Kykdaar on October 16, 2009, 08:06:11 am
A trip on a TW through the Karoo  :drif: - I am in.

Great report thus far Toktokkie and I love the look of the TW - espescially the tank. Seems that I was under the mistaken impression that no one made large tanks for the TW.

Great photo's and interesting narrative. Waiting for the rest.
Title: Re: Sak River
Post by: Spore on October 16, 2009, 10:31:38 am
Fantasties - pragtige fotos! Baie dankie tok-tokkie!! :thumleft:
Title: Re: Sak River
Post by: roxenz on October 16, 2009, 03:10:47 pm
Thanks, toktokkie!  Well written, beautiful photos, great attention to esoteric detail, which brings it all alive!  :thumleft:
Title: Re: Sak River
Post by: tok-tokkie on October 16, 2009, 04:51:27 pm
Day 5  Prince Albert to Sakrivierpoort    090927 Sunday     301 km  7hrs

The Sak river starts in the Karoo National Park in the Nuweveldberge behind Beaufort West.  I had my laptop with me and set a route taking me between the N1 and the N12 (Beaufort West to Oudtshoorn road).


(https://i.imgur.com/HdwDg1V.jpg)
It is a flat plain; here I went right on the road less travelled.

A bit later I missed my turning.  I did not have my earphones in.  My Zumo was set to \Navigation\Recalculation Mode\Off  but the software has a bug and it does recalculate the route when you miss a turn.  Next time you check it shows you the purple track making you think you are still on course.  I was led to the damned N1 – exactly where I did not want to be.  Come on Garmin we are really getting unhappy with your products.  I want that map to show me my planned route no matter where I go when I have Recalculation set to off.  The roads I had chosen were shown on Tracks4Africa – but once you are in the Great Karoo T4A is worthless as it shows absolutely nothing that is not on the ordinary Streetmaps – well certainly in all the bits i went through.

(https://i.imgur.com/xYZ3avs.jpg)
On the way to Leeu-Gamka.  This flat plain was a San stronghold; known as the Koup then (still is on the 1:250 000 maps).  The mountains of the Escarpment to the Great Karoo are the Nuweveldberge and those too were a San stronghold.

I wrote a summary of the book The Forgotten Frontier but it ran to 8 pages in Word which would make a very dry posting here so I will just put in bits from it here and there.  The trekboere were required by the VOC (Dutch East India Company) to provide the meat needed by the ships calling at the Cape for food.  I wondered how the sheep and cattle were got from the frontier to the Cape – obviously they were driven but how did it work?  In the book there is a brief account of what happened to one of the drive parties right here at Leeu-Gamka.

I need to set the storey in context so here follows a very brief history.  I am not going to discuss the reason for the San raids on the trekboere in this – there are two sides to the story but that is not what I want to do here now.

(https://i.imgur.com/ctRBzQo.jpg)
This is a map I marked up for the aborted history post.  I have left it oversize so you can read the labels put on (they should have been bigger).

1739 commando

The conflict between the KhoiSan (a compound work that covers both the Khoikhoi (Hottentots) and the San (Bushmen)) and the trekboere started with the settlement of the Tulbagh valley in 1700.  The commando system was established to deal with the Khoisan.  In 1739 a large commando was raised which shattered the Khoisan resistance from the coast of the Sandveld right through to the Koue & Warm Bokkeveld.  After that the trekboere could safely expand into the Hantam and Roggeveld but the San in the Nuweveld and Koup were too numerous and offered such great resistance to incursions by the trekboere that these areas were left largely unexploited.   The Laingsburg area is known as the Moordenaars Karoo from those times.

1774 General Commando

The San resistance resumed and became so serious and widespread (right along the length of the border from the Hantam to the Sneeuberg ) that the General Commando was raised in 1774.  Over 500 San were killed and about 250 women and children were captured (no men); one commando member was killed.  The trekboere had the advantage of guns and horses and the San were operating in their traditional small family groups of between 6 and 30 with the average being 13 whereas the commando groups (there were three) were 60 or more strong.  The San were quelled following this but it was only temporary and soon their resistance resumed.

There was a bad drought in 1786 and that combined with the increasing San attacks led to the Nieuweveld (old spelling) and Koup being abandoned by the trekboere.  After 10 years of commando activity the frontier was in retreat in most places.  There was still no decisive victory for the authorities (does this remind you of Afghanistan both for the Russians & the Americans?).

Here is the story I have been leading to.  The authorities needed the trekboere as they depended on their meat supplies.   In June 1792 at Leeu Gamka two butchers in the employ of van Reenen (who had the contract to supply meat to the VOC) were driving 12 000 sheep and 368 cattle towards Cape Town. (Interesting that no mention is made of the slaves and Khoikhoi in this party.) They were attacked by 300 San with many muskets who took 6 000 sheep and 253 cattle.  A commando was raised which tracked the stolen cattle and killed 300 and captured 15 San and recaptured  860 sheep and 30 cattle.  They then found the other part of the San party and killed 231, recovering 325 sheep and 15 cows.  The San had realised that they were vulnerable when in their traditional small parties so here they had formed a large group of 300.  They had also started using guns.  But note that the commando made no attempt to capture the males. They were seen as ‘vermin’ and killed as such.  They could not be made to work so they were of no use.  These were genocidal atrocities but, if the opposition is viewed as vermin, it was not seen as such.

(https://i.imgur.com/JRJWR4w.jpg)
The escarpment at Beaufort West which is part of the Karoo Park.  The origin of the Sak River is up there.  These are the slopes the San chose to be able to observe the animals below.  I went up the Molteno Pass.

(https://i.imgur.com/Avk4Iea.jpg)
At the top I turned onto the road to the Mountain View chalet in the park as that is where the Sak starts.

(https://i.imgur.com/q30BMRQ.jpg)
The gate to the park so I could not find the actual start of the Sak.

(https://i.imgur.com/uHvLPGR.jpg)
But let’s call this the start of the Sak.  That is a small watercourse very close to the gate.  In Mapsource with the Topo maps at a scale of 700m or less you will see this ‘stream’ marked  It is just one of several shown and is no different from the rest.

(https://i.imgur.com/ZlRTSl3.jpg)
The map of my track showing the stream I photographed, the edge of the Karoo national park and the Sak river label.  The next photo was taken just where the R381 label is (notice the streams running in opposite directions) and the photos after that were taken just above the top of this map.

(https://i.imgur.com/cfA2YpM.jpg)
This is the continental divide.  It is just after the side road to the gate and is the highest point on the tar road.  Rain falling this side of the skyline runs south into the Indian Ocean.  Rain falling on the far side of the skyline runs north to flow into the Gariep (Orange) and westwards into the South Atlantic Ocean.
Title: Re: Sak River
Post by: tok-tokkie on October 16, 2009, 04:53:27 pm
(https://i.imgur.com/TJz8HvW.jpg)
The first time the road crosses the Sak.  Looking south = upstream. The land is very flat here and that is a marshy area behind with water draining from the top of the Nuweveldberge in the background.  The Sak runs under the road here but it is just a culvert with large corrugated iron pipes under the road.  This is about 3 km from my ‘start of the river picture’

(https://i.imgur.com/PJP8wIx.jpg)
The same first culvert looking downstream.  Those are poplar trees.  Trees are very scarce in the Karoo & the farmers plant poplars alongside the reliable water as they need the wood for fencing & building and fuel.  These are probably White  Poplars  (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Poplar_tree) originating in southern Europe.  When we were in Klaarstroom two days previously we saw where ‘Working for Water’ had cut down the communities poplar grove.  No consultation had taken place & that was a resource that served the community.  Poplars are invasive and need control, but they are also a valuable resource in many instances.  To simply remove them without considering the social implications is irresponsible.  ‘Working for Water’ are being forced to replace them – but it is going to be with an indigenous tree.

Similarly with the Australian Eucalyptus.  It was a tree I had little time for as they capture all the water close to them.  Behind my house on the slope of Signal Hill the City Council planted a wide band of Eucalyptus trees 80 years ago to serve as a fire break.  Twice the hill has been ablaze in the last 10 years but it stops before the eucalyptus trees because nothing grows close to them (it is another thing once they do catch alight as has been seen in the serious fires in Australia the last few years).  In the Karoo it is noticeable how the farmers choose to plant eucalyptus around their farmstead as it is one of the few trees that can grow here and it provides valuable good poles and firewood.  I have come to appreciate what a big contribution they have made to this country.  They are also very important to the bee industry – later in this trip I saw the bees working  excitedly on the eucalyptus trees in flower in Nieuwoudtville.  The eucalyptus trees provide food for the bees at times when nothing else is available and the bee industry has become dependent on them.  If they are eliminated then the bee industry will be severely affected which will have a drastic repercussion for the fruit industry which relies on bees for pollination.


(https://i.imgur.com/MjckWD9.jpg)
The same poplars, the culvert is at the curve of the road in the background & that is the top of the escarpment behind Beaufort West in the background – the actual start of the Sak is further to the left though rain falling on those hills will run into the Sak also.

(https://i.imgur.com/cChMBPQ.jpg)
This is just a few hundred meters further on.  It shows how much water is standing here and the size of the poplars and the fluitriete.

(https://i.imgur.com/cuyKceU.jpg)
A little further on showing the poort that has dammed up the Sak.

(https://i.imgur.com/y4at9pf.jpg)
Here it has escaped the poort and we are in typical Great Karoo scenery.  The Sak is to the left.

(https://i.imgur.com/wnewwWD.jpg)
Same scene zooming in a bit to show the water in the Sak.
Title: Re: Sak River
Post by: tok-tokkie on October 16, 2009, 04:55:48 pm
(https://i.imgur.com/sZxd0Xt.jpg)
 And now it has a wide bed but no water.  This is about 20km from the start.

(https://i.imgur.com/Hb7dLyO.jpg)
The first (low level) bridge on the Sak.  This is just to the left on the previous picture.

(https://i.imgur.com/KXGe01d.jpg)
The rocks at the bridge showing the sedimentary rocks at the front right (Beaufort group) & the igneous capping (Dolerite) above with the dark colour and rounded shape clearly to be seen at the top left.    More about geology as a separate post.  (http://www.wilddog.za.net/forum/index.php?topic=39072.msg759570;topicseen#new) If you are interested there is a lot about the Dolerite in that post.

(https://i.imgur.com/2X2mydg.jpg)
The first tributary.  The Sak flows in from the left of the picture and out on the right.  That is the first real tributary flowing in from the middle of the picture.

(https://i.imgur.com/3k8YTt4.jpg)
The first pan on the Sak, about 25 km from the start.  So now it is really starting to lose water to evaporation.  Life is hard for a river in a hot flat land.

(https://i.imgur.com/R1DY5XQ.jpg)
I had to ride on towards Loxton a bit taking me away from the Sak to get to the farm Sakrivierpoort where I was to spend the night.

(https://i.imgur.com/8dexyr4.jpg)
Here I am crossing a side stream of the Sak.  Notice the rocks.  The large thick layer of harder sedimentary rock visible both in the foreground and as a thick band in the background.

(http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2256/3543200274_9edb4b9e6d_o.jpg)
The rocks are named from where they are best seen.  These are most likely part of the Beaufort Group since they are close to Beaufort West and the Beaufort Group covers most of the Great Karoo.  Notice how similar those rivers are to the Sak.  The Sak is really the last vestige of those ancient river systems that created the Karoo.
 *the Karoo Geology thread* (http://www.wilddog.za.net/forum/index.php?topic=39072.msg759570;topicseen#new)
Title: Re: Sak River
Post by: Operator on October 16, 2009, 04:59:56 pm
< Subscribe >
Title: Re: Sak River
Post by: eikeboom on October 16, 2009, 07:31:07 pm
Very interesting Tok-tokkie, you are a great analyst :deal: and explorer :thumleft:
Title: Re: Sak River
Post by: RobC on October 16, 2009, 11:20:32 pm
Great RR TT! I love the history/geology commentary as well. :thumleft:
Title: Re: Sak River
Post by: Trailrider on October 16, 2009, 11:36:02 pm
Great stuff!!!
Title: Re: Sak River
Post by: michnus on October 17, 2009, 12:57:24 am
Absolutely bloody faantastic TokTok!  :thumleft:

You look a bit like you riding a mini-bike  ;)
Title: Re: Sak River
Post by: fat b on October 17, 2009, 08:08:19 am
Great RR ! Keep it coming!
Title: Re: Sak River
Post by: ratrap on October 17, 2009, 11:15:46 am
Wonderfull reading!!!
Title: Re: Sak River
Post by: madmike999 on October 17, 2009, 11:47:43 am
 :happy1:
Title: Re: Sak River
Post by: 2 Stroke Dan on October 17, 2009, 12:05:23 pm
A smallbike ride with a [fun] purpose! Fanbloodytastic!
Title: Re: Sak River
Post by: tok-tokkie on October 17, 2009, 06:25:34 pm
EDIT: I increased the size of my photo sizing tool to 1000 pixels across for the map as my labels were a bit small.  I forgot to reset it to 800 before converting these photos so they are all too wide for the page.  I apologise for that.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Day 6   Sakrivierpoort to Williston     090928  Monday    247 km  8h 15m

One of the VERNAC (Vernacular Architectural Society) members comes from Loxton.  Her brothers have farms in the area; I stayed with Martin and Mariaan Scholtz of Sakrivierpoortplaas for the night.  I had brought the 1:250 000 maps of the Sak river with me and Martin marked them up with his recommended route; basically the red dashed roads closest to the river.

Had a few beers, nice supper and wine before bed and was shown part of the farm.  One interesting thing is martin keeps a few Nguni cattle (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nguni_cattle) which are the only ones that will eat fluitriet.  There are now two types of fluitriet; the smaller local variety and the larger, introduced, Spanish variety but both spread where ever there is shallow water but these cattle keep them in check.  Besides merino sheep martin also grows garlic; large amounts have been imported from China completely disrupting the local market to the extent that the local farmers no longer hire seasonal part-time workers.  In other words locals have lost their income because of these imports.  Martin says the Chinese garlic is not at all bad but they imported so much and flooded the market with it that it stayed on the shelves for far too long and it has a limited shelf life so, in the end, it was very inferior garlic that was being sold.

Stupidly I have no photos of them or their nice farm.  Lesson learned!

(https://i.imgur.com/RWRxgPd.jpg)
This is looking downstream from the poort soon after leaving Martin’s farm.  This is, to me, the prettiest stretch of the Sak river.  Later I will post a picture of the Vis river (a tributary of the Sak) valley which is, to me, really picturesque.

(https://i.imgur.com/zdSFkCP.jpg)
First real watercrossing on the Sak; right in the poort.

(https://i.imgur.com/TjIi9sg.jpg)
The Sak as it exits the poort. 

Some more history

I recounted how there had been almost continuous commando activity for 10 years yet the trekboers were having to retreat under the continual raids by the San.  In 1795 the Cape was taken over by the British (it continued until 1803 then the Dutch regained control until 1806 and then the British invaded & finally took control).  With the new British authorities came a different approach to the border conflict problem.  They sent John Barrow to assess the frontier problems (there were even bigger problems on the frontier with the Xhosa and that was the economically more important area).  Barrow was accompanied by the landrost of Graaf-Reinet when he went to negotiate with the San to the north.  The went as far as the Gariep (Orange) and the Tarka rivers but the San avoided them except for one small party the crept up on.  Despite strict instructions from Barrow they were attacked and one was killed in cold blood; the landrost claiming that a shower of arrows had been fired at the party (Barrow was right there and knew it to be a lie).  The actions of this (unrepresentative?) group of colonists greatly influenced the perceptions of the British of what the cause of the tension on the border was.  I quote from the book:

Quote
It is no exaggeration to state that the British policy towards the San, on both the eastern and northern frontiers, was shaped by Barrow’s experiences on this occasion.  Barrow’s impression of the San was that they were ‘mild and manageable in the highest degree.’  In his opinion, they were far more sinned against than sinning, forced to retaliate as best they could against ‘the brutality and gross depravity of the boors’, who habitually enslaved their women and children while ceaselessly trying to drive them from their land.  Though Barrow acknowledged that the loose political structures of the San made it difficult to negotiate a far-reaching peace, he became convinced that the prime cause of the hostilities existing between them and the colonists was the commando system.

Please note that that one brutal event shaped the British policy.  There was a long and bitter sequence of events leading up to the ‘boor’ behaviour towards the San but Barrow formed his opinion on just this single event largley.  The British policy was to partition the country with a definite border and each group should stick to their side of it – no exceptions whatsoever.  This policy had been suggested by the veldwachtmeester of the Roggeveld, Floris Visser and it fitted in with what Barrow suggested to the Governor, MacCartney . Furthermore they decided to use missionaries to work amongst the San to convert them to a  pastoral existence (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pastoralists) (in other words make them change from being San into being Khoikhoi; change from being hunter/gatherers to become pastoralists).

(https://i.imgur.com/3mbTQgG.jpg)
This is a map from the book.  It shows the boundary following the Sak river as it flows across to where it joins the Riet (and Vis) rivers between present Willeston and Brandvlei (same level as Calvinia).  To the right of the river was San territory, to the left was trekboer territory. 

Sakrivierpoort where I spent the night is just at the first kink in the river.  I followed it all the way up to the Gariep (Orange) river, though it changes its name to Hartbees along the way.
Title: Re: Sak River
Post by: tok-tokkie on October 17, 2009, 06:29:44 pm
Only one mission station was established in the San area east of the Sak river by Kicherer of the LMS in Blydevooruitzig (near Canarvon probably) 1799 about 1 days journey north of the Sak river.  In 1800 it was moved southwards to be on the Sak river.  In 1806 it was abandoned as it had been dry between 1800 & 1806 – a serious drought period. The Sak river mission station is marked on one of the maps in the book as being slightly east of Fraserberg.  I stumbled upon a drawing of it on the internet  (& had huge trouble finding the source again).

(https://i.imgur.com/g6rqPgj.jpg)
Look at the shape of those hills and compare them to the hills in the last two photos – just about the same except my hills are much bigger but did the artist reduce the size to fit the picture & look at the name ‘Sak-river’s gate’ = Sakrivierpoort.  *source* (http://www.geocities.com/Athens/Atlantis/4364/f5.htm)  I have ridden right down the river and, although this is a bit further east than the position shown in the book, I wonder if the mission was not right here.

'-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
EDIT May 2017
My wife, Antonia, is an occasional outside lecturer at the Archaeology dept at UCT.  They have been examining the Sak River Mission Station so from them we learned where it is and gained permission to access it as it is on private land & quite far from the road.  We went there in my Terios in 2015.

When I planned the original bike trip I knew approximately where the mission station was and noticed on the 1:250 000 map a farm named Kerkplaas which I guessed got its name from the mission.  It is there but the farm has since been subdivided and Kerkplaas no longer contains it.

(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4175/33770214714_0b9fd64e17_o.jpg)
It was a blazing hot day and we were there at noon.  You can recognise the shape of the hills from the drawing but this is actually looking from the west side.  The mission is on the opposite (east) side of the hills.  We went through but did not see the actual ruins – it was too hot to want to bash around much looking for them.

'---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

The Mission policy did not work out.  The San had an extremely rich and entrenched belief system so Christianity had no appeal or attraction for them.  The missionaries could not speak their language which hardly helped.  But the concept of converting an ancient society based on hunting and collecting veldkos who followed the game and veld through the seasons to be sedentary keepers of sheep and cattle was just a delusion by the authorities.  One does not simply abandon your lifestyle.

(https://i.imgur.com/LbUFQsz.jpg)
Quite a bit further along at Robertskraal farm.  I had got lost & had to turn back to get back on course.  My version of the Garmin Topo maps is not the latest and is not routable.  The topo maps are an utter disgrace as far as cartography goes.  The background colour mari biscuit, the contours are thick dark brown lines but the secondary roads that are shown as red-dashed lines on a 1:250 000 map are tiny grey dashed lines on the Zumo – absolutely invisible when you are riding.  If they reversed the contour & secondary road symbols it would be a huge improvement (& they could then make the grey lines a bit thicker to make them visible).  I ride with the scale set to 200m.  I used the 1:250 000 maps from here on until I went back to bigger roads on the way home.  The topo maps are useless, T4A shows absolutely nothing & streetmaps never claimed to be any use in these conditions.  Thank goodness i brought the 1:250 000 with.
Lots of water here.


(https://i.imgur.com/OFfWiE4.jpg)
The red dashed road I was riding.

(https://i.imgur.com/KdecwPj.jpg)
I think that was the only river sign I saw saying Sak.  A better bridge ahead.

(https://i.imgur.com/z5kJZaz.jpg)
The bridge with what I originally thought were Karee trees but now I wonder if they are not escaped poplars.  Just about flowing still – that is a puddle under the bridge.  That is a eucalyptus tree on the left – I wrote a little about them yesterday.

(https://i.imgur.com/Twqn8PZ.jpg)
Looking downstream at the bridge.

(https://i.imgur.com/Qgdem3S.jpg)
The Sak is on my left.  The nice road I was riding along. I am now riding in the Nieuweberge (old spelling) region.  This was one of the two areas where the San were very strongly established (the other was Sneeuberg north of Graaf-Reinet).  All the way to Williston that day I was in prime San territory.  That is why the mission was built in this area.
Title: Re: Sak River
Post by: tok-tokkie on October 17, 2009, 06:33:31 pm
(https://i.imgur.com/3vQ9lkR.jpg)
The first dam.  That is the earth dam wall on the right at the top of the picture.  This is the track I went down to get right up to it.

(https://i.imgur.com/ONzpjQC.jpg)
The concrete spillway for the dam with the earth wall behind.  Notice the slabs of rock.  There were a few ducks and coots on the dam.

(https://i.imgur.com/0bJZ78O.jpg)
Leaving.  There is still water in the river below the dam.

(https://i.imgur.com/BuVhT5J.jpg)
There was this drift on my road though that is not the actual Sak river.  I like the picture as it was just the sort of thing I was looking for on this trip; all by myself far away from anybody.

(https://i.imgur.com/xzC1rDQ.jpg)
I went past this corbelled building and took a photo of it and the co-ordinates on my GPS.  What first got me to the area was these buildings.  A friend of ours, Pat, is doing a masters degree about the corbelled buildings of the Karoo now that she is retired.  There are quite a few of them  but not much is known about them.  She came on an exploratory trip and my wife Antonia, who is an archaeologist, went along to help her & I went along for the ride (not in the ‘on the bike’ sense of the word).  I wrote up about them on another site so will post that here and give you a link about them instead of expanding this thread.   *linky*  (http://www.wilddog.za.net/forum/index.php?topic=39484.0) The photo was just intended for Pat as a record so is not composed in any way.

The thing about a corbelled building it has a roof but no wood is used at all in its construction – except the doors if it has one & for some of the windows.  I posted about poplar trees having been introduced into the Karoo; well this is what was sometimes done before those trees were available.  Not much is known about them but Pat hopes to learn a lot and then we will know.
Notice the eucalyptus trees at this farmhouse.  Also Peruvian pepper trees – the trees that are planted as shade trees at so many roadside lay-byes in the Karoo.  They are good tough trees for this tough environment.  Lots of wood at this place now but they are all introduced trees.  Now there is timber to build with.
Title: Re: Sak River
Post by: tok-tokkie on October 17, 2009, 06:34:35 pm
(https://i.imgur.com/iRSySt0.jpg)
About an hour later at Maanhartskraal.  Notice the white salt (?) deposit. Such a peaceful river here. It must be very brak but I did not taste it.

(https://i.imgur.com/dUdgTci.jpg)
The bridge I took the photo from.  Is it just this high to keep the road level or does the Sak come down in serious flood?  The first I would think.

(https://i.imgur.com/6yZaYGp.jpg)
Turn off the R356 back onto red dashed road. You have it all to yourself out here.

(https://i.imgur.com/B8grbUb.jpg)
Further along.  The whole Karoo is peaceful.  I really liked being here and I appreciate why the San cared for it so deeply.

(https://i.imgur.com/Pr8tAnH.jpg)
Upstream.

(https://i.imgur.com/VYDCPy3.jpg)
Downstream.  I crossed the Sak here at Weltevrede on a 1959 bridge but came back as that road leads away from the river and wanted to stay on my red-dashed route which keeps closer to the Sak.  It would seem the farmer was just as weltevrede as the San used to be.  People brought up in the Karoo are always happy when they get back.  But it was noticeable on this trip how many farmhouses are no longer lived in.  I don’t know the full story – partly many farmers now own more than one farm.  A string of farms stretching from Loxton to Canarvon are all now owned by the same farmer.

(https://i.imgur.com/Y6Pj4yi.jpg)
My red dashed road went through this little drift but it is not the Sak.

(https://i.imgur.com/CJx5EsT.jpg)
Getting towards Williston.  The Sak is now flowing through very level ground – it is where the line of green trees is to be seen on the left.  Nice Karoo koppies in the background.  Prime San territory I would think as they could live on the side of the koppies and check the game on the veld below

(https://i.imgur.com/3zNQEHI.jpg)
Sak river at Walkraal just outside Williston.  The last of the water.  There is a dam just upriver of here that I could not get to.  I stayed in a B&B in Williston.
Title: Re: Sak River
Post by: tok-tokkie on October 17, 2009, 06:55:11 pm
This is an old post of mine from another board.  This San water storage hole is very close to where I was on this trip.

----------------------------------------------------------

San (Bushman) watergat


(http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3361/3624085289_9039f27a7a_o.jpg)
On the road from Fraserburg to Loxton there is a road turning south at a farm called Brandfontein (with a very smart sign at the T junction).  This road runs down to the Sak river with a farm called Sakrivierpoort nearby belonging to Celeste’s brother.  There is this interesting San (Bushman) ‘watergat’ along the road.

(http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3569/3511245642_c94efcd114_b.jpg)

(http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3401/3511245662_fab61b0a6a_b.jpg)
This is it.  They chiselled the crack in the rock surface wider so that the water trickled down to a bowl in the rock.  When we were there the spring was dry and the bowl was empty.  

(http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3376/3511245670_28577ff357_b.jpg)
But even at this dry time there was still water when you lifted the covering stone off the deepest part of the bowl.
Title: Re: Sak River
Post by: Grunt on October 17, 2009, 07:37:39 pm
nearly missed this report ..... thanks to a reference in another thread by trailrider i saw it

it's fantastic

 ....... no petrol station pics, no bling, no bravado

just the real meaning of 'have a bike and nothing will stop me'  in a nutshell.

lately. this is refreshing

Thanks Toktokkie
Title: Re: Sak River
Post by: Trokkie on October 18, 2009, 11:14:47 am
Toktokkie when the Sak do come down it does with meaning. I hane a friend who farmed on the Sak and he tells me there can be a lot of water for a short time. Nice report!! :thumleft:
Title: Re: Sak River
Post by: tok-tokkie on October 18, 2009, 05:04:59 pm
Sak River Day 7     Williston to Verneukpan    090929  Tuesday    320km  8h 44m

I stayed in the B&B of Elsa van Schalkwyk.  She told me that there was a nice restaurant in the village.  Had I not been told I think I would have hesitated before ordering food.  What was off putting was the decor.  There were hand made posters on the wall for gospel singers and a rugby club outing, things like that.  The floor was yellow and white Marley tiles as wide diagonal bands across the place with pine tables and chairs.  The bar counter was in the corner behind the door with a not very interested overweight barman watching WWF wrestling.  There was an opening without a door to the room next door that seemed to be an old hairdressing salon as there appeared to be fittings for about 5 of those hair washing basin things – surely not!  The best bit was the hanging ‘bamboo’ curtain in the window behind the bar – it was made of pieces of braai wood joined together with cup hooks screwed into the ends of each.  Taking Elsa’s word I ordered beer & food & wine when the food arrived.  It was great.  I kick myself for not going back to get my camera to record the place.  These sort of places are becoming scarce as they are being replaced by franchise chains like Spur, Steer, Wimpy and MacDonalds.  I avoid those places as they are all exactly the same with the decor devised by some ‘designer’ in the pay of the corporation and are completely characterless.  I have yet to eat anything in a MacDonalds & it is one of my ambitions to never do so.  One of the best road reports I have read is on Adventure Rider; it is about a trip from Hong Kong to Tibet and it records the villages passed through and also the suppers they had.  There is a tremendous variety of food in China as you move from place to place & this guy lovingly recorded it.  We don’t have those local variations but I want to record these sort of places when I next go there as they will be gone soon.   That Chinese ride report is  *here*  (http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=329234)

After a nice breakfast cooked by Elsa I was off.  She is the  dowager (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dowager) of a farm just as I entered the village the previous day.  She has great interest and pride in the farm and the area and has written 13 typed page guide for a walking tour of the farm; she gave me a copy – I will post a OCR scan of the first part of it as the next post on this thread; it is in Afrikaans which will suit many here and it amplifies some of what I have written.
Title: Re: Sak River
Post by: tok-tokkie on October 18, 2009, 05:05:59 pm
ZAKRIVIER

Die Zakrivier ontspring in die Nuweveldsberge, en vloei slegs na goeie reen – ongeveer 300 min per jaar. By Groot Vloer tussen Brandvlei en Kenhardt soeei die rivier oor 'n afstand van 450 km
.
Voor Desember 1847 was die Zakrivier die Noordelike grens van die Kaapkolonie.
Williston (voorheen Amandelboom), net sons die plase Walkraal, Kqffirskjoor en Bokwater wat u gaan besoek, was toe buite die koloniale gebied gelee. Die streek,wat gedurende die 19de eeu in die wandel bekencligestaan het as die Achterveld, Achterw8reld of doodgewoon Kareeberge, was op daardie tydstip die gedwonge toevlugsoord vir talle nomadiese veeherdersgroepe en enkele groepies Boesmans. Die Boesmans het verwoed teenstand gebied teen die indringing van veeherders in die gebied wat die wild in hulle jaggebiede uitgeroei het en die alters skaars waterbronne In die Kareeberge beset het.

Narrate die Boesmanweerstand in die streek gedurende die eerste helfte van die 19de eeu dear middel van meedoenlose kommando-aarivalle verbreek is, het steeds meer veeboere uit (lie aanliggende Nuweveld, Roggeveld en Hantam seisoenaal met hul vee in die gebied rondgetrek. Aan die voorpunt van hierdie veeboermigrasies het'n groot aantal!Basters asook verarmdes uit die blanks sektor gestaan. Die meeste van hierdie mense was nie opgewasse teen die korlipetisie vir grond in die digbevolkte omliggende distrikte rile. Gevolglik is hulle oor die noordelike grens van die kolonie gedruk en het hulle'n meer permanente swerwersbestaan in die Achterveld'gevoer. Teen 1845 het honderde Basters met hul vee in die Achterveld rondgeswerf en die handjievol permanente waterbronne van die streek beset. 'Tussen die seisoenale intrekkers A die aanliggende distrikte en die Bastergemeenskapr' het dikwels groot wrywing geheers oor toegang tot die beperkte water en welding van die streek. Veral tydens droogtes het gemoedere tussen die kompeterende groepe dikwels hoog geloop.

In die loop van 1843 het die Rynse Send inggenootska p op uitnodiging van die Kareebergbasters 'n kommissie van ondersoek na die gebied gestuur om die wenslikheid van 'n sendingstasie in die Kareeberge te ondersoek. Dit het uitgeloop op die stigting van die Amandelboom sendingstasie in Desember 1845 toe twee Dube sendelinge, eerwaardes Lutz en Beinecke, op Amandelboom gevestig het. Die doel van die sendingstasie was om 'n gevestigde Christelike gerneente onder die Basters te vestig.

Om in die geestelike behoeftes van 'n nomadiese gemeenskap te,voldoen was een van die g'footscte problems waarmee die sendelinge van meet ;if aan opgesaal was. Dit sou irnmers bale moeilik wees om mense wat voortdurend op trek was, suksesvol te bearbei en gedurig onder streng kerklike toesig te hou., Gevolglik het die Rynse sendelinge vanuit die staanspoor planne beraam om die nomadiese veeboere meer permanent te probeervestig. Die moontlikheid om hulle gemeente van-nomadiese veeboere tot gevestigde landboOers te verander, het in die Zakrivier gels. In hulle voortvarende inisiatief en met alle goei& bedoelinge het die sendelinge egter dikwels projekte aangepak wat direk in konflik was met die bards werklikhede van 'n semi woestyn. Toe die Zakrivier die eerste keer na hulle vestiging sy walle oorstroom het, het die sendelinge opgewonde dit in die vdoruitsig gestel om groot landerye vir graanverbouing op die vloedvlaktes van die rivier aan te 16. As daarin geslaag kon word om groot hoeveelhede koring te verbou, is in sendinggeledere geredeneer, sou dit 'n gevestigde gemeenskap in die hand werk en die alewige rondtrekkery agter vee uitskakel. Op inisiatief van eerwaarde Beinecke is mettertyd sells slulswerke en'n leidamstelsel aangel8 om water uit die Zakrivier te keer. Hierdie metode wat op presies dieselfde beginsel werk as wat deur die antieke Egiptenare langs die Nyl toegepas is, is steeds in gebruik.

Helaas het die Eurosentriese sendelinge nooit heeltemal daarmee rekening gehou dat in die Kareebergstreek in die reel Meer slegte as, goeie rednseisoene voorkom, en dat slags periodiek voldoende neerslag vat wat die Zakrivier laat stroom. Hoewel groot hoeveelhede koring sours langs die Zakrivier verbou is, kon die sendelinge nie daarin slaag om hul nomadiese veeherders¬gerneente in gevestigde landbouers te verander nie. Daarvoor was die reenval in die streak in die eerste plek net te wisselvallig. Daarbenewens was die 19de-eeuse veeboere ook te verknog aan hulle'vetstertskape,wat in feitlik al hulle daaglikse behoeftes voorsien het. Vir die meeste 19de-eeuse veeboere was vleis doodgewoon stapelvoedsel en brood 'n luukse waarsonder vir maande lank klaargekom kon word. Gevolglik het die sendelinge se tuinmaakidees, ten koste van veeboerdery, nie geredelik ingang gevind nie. By geleentheid het eerwaarde Beinecke byvoorbeeld geskok in sy dagboek k van 'n man vermeld wat so verknog was aan sy vleisdie6t dat hy dit prontuit gestel het dat hy sy mond nie aan brood sou sit nie omdat dit vir hum net soos klei gesmaak het. Vir hierdie man het eerwaarde Lutz se gereelde preke tydens droogtes dat "die liewe God dit weer goad geag het om die Easters se broodmandfle ietwat hoer te hang"' kennelik min indruk gemaak!

Totdat die Bastergemeenskap gedurende die 1860's uit die gebied weggetrek het, het die Zakrivier nietemin 'n belangrike rot in die leavens van die sendinggemeente gespeel. In die "boom- en waterlose woestyn", soos die sendelinge telkens die gebied getipeer het, was vioeiende water altycl 'n groot bron van vreugde. Wanneer die Zakrivier na droogtesiklusse weer stark gevloei het en sy walle oorstroom het, het die hale sendinggemeenteby die eerste berigte datdie rivier aan,die "afkom" was, afgesit rivier toe om die skouspel te aanskou. Normaalweg het eerwaarde Lutz 'n Idanksegglngscliens gehou waarna die toehoorders hulle in die oorvloed water kon verlustig. Inwoners van Amandelboom het ook nooit die geleentheid laat glip om, uitgedos in hulle kiskiere, belangrike besoekers aan Amandelboom by die Zakrivier in te wag en under psalmgesang te verwelkom nie. Spoggerige perderuiters en baldadige skoolkinders het clan die uitgeputte reisigers tot by die kerk vergesel
Title: Re: Sak River
Post by: tok-tokkie on October 18, 2009, 05:07:50 pm
(https://i.imgur.com/feUkDr8.jpg)
The museum was the Mission church.  In 1768 Johan Abraham Nel planted an almond tree in honour of his son’s birth. (That date shows he was up here pretty early on.) This tree eventually became enormous, and was an oasis in the dry treeless area of the Sak river.   Later in 1845 Johann Heinrich Lutz established a mission station named Amandelboom (almond tree) at this spot.  When white farmers later moved in they had no church of their own so the mission congregation invited them to use their church. Elsa told me that this is the only congregation in South Africa where the white congregation were originally members of a mixed congregation.  In 1883 the name changed to Williston but the coloured part of town is still known as Amandelboom.

(https://i.imgur.com/PWZRCDV.jpg)
I really liked this fence at the museum.  Those are the heads of drilling machines.  Much bigger than water  boreholes, I have no idea what they would have been used for in this area.  Anybody with something to say about them?


(https://i.imgur.com/Ap1XKDL.jpg)
Elsa told me that the museum curator ran a project for children of the coloured township of Amandlesfontein to paint the vibracrete wall of the sports ground in 2008.  They had to demonstrate on paper what they were going to paint so only those with some ability were chosen to paint.  The community is very proud of the wall and when someone put graffiti on the wall the community tracked him down & had the police deal with him.  By getting the community involved the curator ensured that they identified with and took possession of the project so they now look after it.  If you just give or impose something on a community they never identify with and cherish that thing.

(https://i.imgur.com/CQVgaxD.jpg)
But look over the fence at the state of the soccer field.  SAFA has done nothing to promote soccer at grass roots level & should be hauled before the sports committee at Parliament to answer why & be held accountable.  To get a good national team you have to start by training school children, then club players and on to provincial level.  SAFA has done nothing to assist and improve soccer at a local level – if you don’t water the roots there will be no crop to reap.
‘--------------------------
EDIT Nov 2018.  I wrote that in 2009.  I am now having to update all the pictures because of the 1000 picture limit at Flickr.  I just want to say – look at the consequences of SAFA having not watered the soccer seedlings – there is no crop to reap.  They keep firing the Bafana Bafana coaches but they have no real talent at their disposal. It is a management problem
'---------------------------

(https://i.imgur.com/EgFAYy9.jpg)
Outside Williston I took this red-dashed road – the Sak is over the brow of the slope.

(https://i.imgur.com/dlsWivh.jpg)
The Sak at Bruinskop.  Wide, shallow and sandy without surface water.

(https://i.imgur.com/JAa6Ztf.jpg)
A bit further on.  That is the ‘valley’ of the Sak behind.  If you want to ride nice verlate roads then go to the Groot Karoo.

(https://i.imgur.com/40SMyVS.jpg)
This photo shows the beginning of the massive floodplain of the Sak river.  Later on it becomes the Grootvloer (north of Brandvlei) then the river’s name changes to Hartbeesrivier before Kenhardt. (Mapsource uses Grondvloer instead of Grootvloer.) 

(https://i.imgur.com/GN4RHO1.jpg)
I come out of the red dashed road to join the R353

(https://i.imgur.com/nBwh2jb.jpg)
A bit further on the R353 does a T junction where the left road leads to Sakrivier rail terminus (long since unused).  That road crosses the Sak where it looks like this and a little further on it joins with the Vis river which has come down from Sutherland.

(https://i.imgur.com/UskLwrZ.jpg)
Sakrivier rail terminus.  The last train came here a long time ago.

(https://i.imgur.com/YfiC64O.jpg)
This is the Sak river just outside Brandvlei.  It has now gained water from the Vis river which joined it a bit further upstream.

(https://i.imgur.com/4Mpb2Sz.jpg)
The Vis river.  This picture was taken on another trip.  There is much more rain along the western side of the Great Karoo plain which collects in the Vis river.  It runs in a wide and deep valley.  The rain that falls along the western escarpment but not further east is what limited how far east the trekboere went.  In summer they came up here and grazed their animals but in winter they went down to the Onder Karoo (Tankwa Karoo) where they had legplaats.  A legplaats was their farm down in the lowlands where they spent the winter but in summer they drove their animals up the Gannaga, Ouberg or Verlaatekloof passes up the Roggeberg to be in the Groot Karoo.  They could not drive their animals much past the Sak river because of the lack of water and good grazing.
Title: Re: Sak River
Post by: tok-tokkie on October 18, 2009, 05:12:35 pm
Here is a little information about the three groups, the Khoikhoi, San & trekboers.

Khoikhoi

Firstly the Khoikhoi.  Currently it is politically correct to refer to Hottentots as Khokhoi (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Khoikhoi).  The Khoikhoi were  pastoralist  (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pastoralists) herders with flocks of sheep and herds of cattle.  They were migratory, moving about with the seasons following the best available grazing.  Their living shelters were made of reed mats  on a framework of sticks stuck into the ground.

(https://i.imgur.com/NyKNleS.jpg)
That is a modern reconstruction so is in pristine condition.

(http://wpcontent.answers.com/wikipedia/commons/thumb/0/0e/Nama_huts.JPG/400px-Nama_huts.JPG)
These are recent scruffy ones where modern materials are replacing the traditional reed mats.


San

The next group  are the San (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bushmen); formally known as the bushmen (http://www.south-african-homeschool-curriculum.com/san-bushmen.html). The San were  hunter gatherers (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hunter-gatherers) – they hunted game and collected veldkos; they did not plant crops or keep any animals. The San were an  egalitarian (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Egalitarian) society – they had no hierarchy; everyone was equal.  They lived in small groups of between 6 and 30 people with 13 been about average.  They had very few possessions; being migratory their shelters were made of a reed covered framework that could easily be carried along as they moved.

(https://i.imgur.com/fU0TRfT.jpg)
This is a modern San building (check the clothes) in Botswana.  The ones drawn in the Karoo often were flat sided simple pitched roof style.

(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4216/35131537421_4dfbde61ae_o.jpg)
This picture is of one in the Kalahari.
They often used rock overhangs as shelters.


Khoisan

The Khoisan is a collective name covering both the Khoikhoi and the San used when it is either not certain which were involved, or when both were involved or when talking about both communities as a single group.  Both groups were  migratory; the Khoikhoi taking their animals to where the grazing was as the seasons changed and the San following the game as they moved around in response to the changing seasons.  They lived in the same areas amicably most of the time as they were not competing for the same resources – except water at times.


Trekboers

The Trekboers  (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Trekboer) were similar to the Khoikhoi in that they too were herders but they were largely of European origin.  The big difference was they had horses, wagons and some guns (ammunition in short supply).

(https://i.imgur.com/eDxkDOE.jpg)
The matjieshuis in the lower photograph is no different to what the Khoikhoi used.  It was simply a home made tent really.

(https://i.imgur.com/MyFOz9J.jpg)
The wagon was the basis of home life.

(https://i.imgur.com/z8tfd4i.jpg)
This is interesting because it is one of the corbelled buildings I showed yesterday.

-------------------------

If you look back at the picture of the Sak River Mission in yesterday’s post you will see that there are several matjieshuise in it.  They could be used by any of the three groups discussed here.
Title: Re: Sak River
Post by: tok-tokkie on October 18, 2009, 05:14:54 pm
(https://i.imgur.com/fFQbcsP.jpg)
That is the beginning of the Grootvloer in the background before Brandvlei.  In flood the Sak gets lost in the Grootvloer.  Think back to that geology picture of the flood plains.  When that was taking place this place teemed with animals, there was some huge catastrophy 251 million years ago when 96% of all species became extinct – including plants.  This is long before the dinosaurs developed – they died in a later (much smaller) mass extinction.   Slowly vegetation recovered, but it takes millions of years for new plants to evolve to replace the extinct ones and the sedimentation changes slowly to record this.

(https://i.imgur.com/8XNMsw3.jpg)
From Brandvlei I decided to go to Verneukpan.  It is a place I have wanted to see since I was at junior school and read about Malcolm Campbell’s land speed record attempt (his son Donald was setting water speed records at the time which led me to know about his father’s attempt at Verneukpan).  That is a small pan on the way there from Brandvlei.

(https://i.imgur.com/MgxLqis.jpg)
That is the beginning of the pan in the distance.

(https://i.imgur.com/1ayda42.jpg)
When you come in from the Brandvlei side there is a notice board about the Camp.  I had read posts on WD & knew to ignore that as the half of the pan this side is exploited by the landowner but on the other half you have free access.  But that is the pan right there – this photo was taken close to the fence between the farms around the middle of the pan looking back the way I had come.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Verneukpan

(https://i.imgur.com/1gx3Ajg.jpg)
That is a notice board giving details of Campbell’s record (he did not beat the world absolute speed record but did create a new 8km record).

(https://i.imgur.com/sWr7Xsv.jpg)
The speed track is behind the locked gate with my sporty machine in front.

(https://i.imgur.com/aLbOetv.jpg)
On the opposite side of the road to the 1929 speed track there is no fence & you can ride onto the pan.

(https://i.imgur.com/H7bc6Sh.jpg)
Showing what the surface is like.

(https://i.imgur.com/wl040ud.jpg)
I got a puncture soon after I left Verneukpan.  My topbox is now the center stand (the black thing in front of it is the seat).

(https://i.imgur.com/P2n5aLX.jpg)
After fitting the spare tube I moved a bit away from the road & pitched tent.  That topbox case is now my stool.  Later I sat on the seat leaning back against the warm bike as the air cooled after sunset.

(https://i.imgur.com/EB69Apt.jpg)
If I zoom in i can show that I had nice John West tuna salad, La Motte Millenium 2003 in a proper wine glass for supper.  Wind got up in the night but I put my riding jacket over the sleeping bag and was soon as warm as ever.

I will write a separate post about my various tyre problems.  This was the second flat I had had so far this trip.
Title: Re: Sak River
Post by: Lootch67 on October 18, 2009, 07:37:35 pm
Very interesting report. Thanks for posting.
Title: Re: Sak River
Post by: Pistonpete on October 18, 2009, 08:03:07 pm
Nice report & thanks for sharing...more pls!! :thumleft:
Title: Re: Sak River
Post by: eikeboom on October 18, 2009, 10:46:01 pm
Thanks for all this - it is inspirational.
Title: Re: Sak River
Post by: bradleys on October 19, 2009, 09:22:15 am
Wow ,great report and pics ,some really interesting history.I worked with a few San when Iwas in 32 battalion many years ago ,very humble yet proud people, they were great trackers.Sad to see them disepering.
Title: Re: Sak River
Post by: Bernoulli on October 19, 2009, 10:47:59 am
Hi Toktokkie

Thanks for this - riveting reading :thumleft: :thumleft:

You asked this question:

I really liked this fence at the museum.  Those are the heads of drilling machines.  Much bigger than water  boreholes, I have no idea what they would have been used for in this area.  Anybody with something to say about them?

In the late sixties/early seventies there was a fairly extensive search for oil in the area. One of the test sites was about 10 km out of Williston on the road to Sutherland. Could the heads be from that? (I have no knowledge of the equipment used in drilling for oil)

 
Title: Re: Sak River
Post by: tok-tokkie on October 19, 2009, 03:15:59 pm
Sak river day 8      Verneukpan to Kenhardt      090930  Wednesday  245km + 15km

(https://i.imgur.com/joT7QSm.jpg)
This is the Hartbees river just before Kenhardt.  The Sak river disappears into the Grootvloer but if there is a lot of rain the water flows out of the Grootvloer as the Hartbees river so it is the continuation of the Sak.  Notice that the sand is red coloured. The colour comes from iron oxide (rust) in the sand. It is no coincidence that the Sishen iron mines are in land of this colour.  The dolerite rocks are rich in iron so they ‘rust’ to the dark colour they are and break down into this red sand.

(https://i.imgur.com/ZBcxgSh.jpg)
Social weaver nests.

(https://i.imgur.com/z66TNZW.jpg)
And kokerboome.  When the Sak becomes the Hartbees you also find the first of the social weaver nests and kokerboome.

(https://i.imgur.com/4C01SXd.jpg)
I went into Kenhardt for fuel , melktert & rooibos tea then returned towards Brandvlei because I wanted to see what the Grootvloer looked like.  I went south on the tar R27 then turned east on a gravel road that eventually joined up with the road I had ridden earlier in the day on my way from Verneukpan to Kenhardt.  This picture is the start of the Grootvloer.

(https://i.imgur.com/a6CGEpV.jpg)
It is big and impressive.

(http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2005/3543199642_825dd5f050_o.jpg)
From the geology thread (http://www.wilddog.za.net/forum/index.php?topic=39072.msg759570;topicseen#new); this is how the Grootvloer was formed.

(http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2045/3543202796_5d38b9c396_o.jpg)
And this is what grew there as it formed. These are the swamp forests that created the Highveld coal deposits.  Plants had developed (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Evolution_of_plants) as the Cape Supergroup was being laid down 450 million years ago and were now well established.   Big  animals only appeared 290 million years ago (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Evolution_of_animals)  so the plants had it pretty well their own way initially.  I had those pictures in my mind as I cruised through the Grootvloer.  I don’t understand why there is no coal in the Karoo if it looked like this – I may well be mistaken but it was a nice picture to have in mind.

(https://i.imgur.com/guGHxV1.jpg)
Close to where I turned onto the gravel road were these outcrops dolerite with the dark colour I mentioned earlier.

(https://i.imgur.com/NBgXPXg.jpg)
Dolerite koppies on the vlaktes.  I am wanting to emphasize the open space I was riding through.  It was not very hot.  I have a  Cool Vest from Bikegear (http://www.bikegear.co.za/c4ad6d07-c494-4c98-aa5b-c226a9f9e1c0-9.html) but was not wearing it as I rode through here.

(https://i.imgur.com/ZM73K9Y.jpg)
Back onto the road I was on earlier with the Grootvloer ahead. I am now running back the opposite way (northwards) returning to Kenhardt.
Title: Re: Sak River
Post by: Eisbein on October 19, 2009, 03:20:35 pm
I've just started to read this (waay too slow at my work - photo sites are throttled) so I'll wait for tonight to check it out.


Finally! This is going to be good. I REALLY REALLY like that TW. Small bikes and small bike trips have a honesty about them that I cant explain and not everybody gets. But it has a huge appeal to me.

Subscribed!!!

Us dishonest bikers likes all the types of rides and reports...


:D
Title: Re: Sak River
Post by: Eisbein on October 19, 2009, 03:23:03 pm
TT - I really like what you've done to the TW.

Like I said the other day - If I had the choice between a bigger bike that I'm not comfortable on or a smaller bike that I end up seeing more of the world on, then I'll choose the smaller bike.

I love what you've done with it (yeah - it surely isn't a looker, but it is a bike that make you want to get on it and ride into the sunset)

;D

Looking forward to reading this report properly.

Title: Re: Sak River
Post by: the_BOBNOB on October 19, 2009, 03:26:28 pm
nice one tok-tokkie  :thumleft:
Title: Re: Sak River
Post by: tok-tokkie on October 19, 2009, 03:46:16 pm
Last bit of Trekboer & San History

In the extract from the pamphlet Elsa van Schalkwyk gave me there is this:

Quote
Vir die meeste 19de-eeuse veeboere was vleis doodgewoon stapelvoedsel en brood 'n luukse waarsonder vir maande lank klaargekom kon word. Gevolglik het die sendelinge se tuinmaakidees, ten koste van veeboerdery, nie geredelik ingang gevind nie. By geleentheid het eerwaarde Beinecke byvoorbeeld geskok in sy dagboek k van 'n man vermeld wat so verknog was aan sy vleisdie6t dat hy dit prontuit gestel het dat hy sy mond nie aan brood sou sit nie omdat dit vir hum net soos klei gesmaak het. Vir hierdie man het eerwaarde Lutz se gereelde preke tydens droogtes dat "die liewe God dit weer goad geag het om die Easters se broodmandfle ietwat hoer te hang"' kennelik min indruk gemaak!

The mission was aimed at Khoikhoi and ‘Basters’ but what the quote says about meat being the staple diet of the pastoralists (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pastoralist) applies equally to the trekboers since they too were pastoralists.  They were carnivores (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carnivore) rather than omnivores (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Omnivore) and certainly not vegetarians (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vegetarian).  The difference between the Khoikhoi and the trekboere was that the Khoikhoi used their animals for their own needs only whereas the trekboere were supplying the VOC with animals so that they could buy goods such as clothes, liquour, ammunition and wagons etc.  If they slaughtered their animals to provide food for themselves they had less to sell to the VOC.  The obvious thing to do use the ‘abundant’ wild game as their food source.  This brought them into direct competition with the San as they too were exploiting that same resource.  But further to that the flocks and herds of the trekboer were competing with the game for the veld and this was exacerbated by the fact that the trekboers drove their animals following the best grazing thus largely excluding the game from the best veld.

The trekboers had three great advantages over the San in this competition – they had horses, guns and wagons.  The eland was the preferred animal of the trekboers to make biltong; they had been shot out of the land west of the Sak river by the 1790s. Once the trekboers were established in the Roggeveld they penetrated deep past the Sak river in search of game to provide their food.  The trekboers and San had been competing for the same resource – the wild game but the trekboers had been more successful because of their horses, guns & wagons (game cut up dried as biltong & taken out by the wagon load). The San could not provide for themselves because there was simply not enough game available to them.  They had three options, move away, exploit the sheep and cattle as substitutes or starve to death.  They elected to exploit the trekboer’s animals.

In response to the San raids on their sheep & cattle the trekboers raised commandos to recapture the animals and eliminate the ‘vermin’.  It was a contest for resources – water, grazing and wild animals.  The British tried to break the cycle by creating a no-crossing border along the Sak river but it was not successful because 1. The game available to the San was too sparse & 2. The trekboers continued to go after the wild animals across the Sak river.  The San were largely exterminated by the commando raids and hunting raids.  The survivors were forced to flee to the Kalahari.  The San had exploited the game in a sustainable manner but the trekboers almost exterminated them – they did in the case of the blaubok (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bluebuck) (1800) and the quagga (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Quagga) (1870s).

The Khoikhoi were, like the trekboers,  pastoralists but they did not have the same hunting imperative as the trekboers because their animals satisfied their needs largely.  The Khoikhoi and San were able to coexist amicably.  The San were the original occupants of the territory; the Khoikhoi arrived in the Upington area about 500AD and continued to expand southwards wherever their sheep and cattle could go.

(https://i.imgur.com/ZVLooj9.jpg)
From the van Rensburg source (page d1).  A drawing by Lichtenstein of the Kareeberg (Canarvon) area in 1803.  Besides the ostriches there is other game to be seen there still.  I include this drawing here simply because I like it & found it while looking for info to put here.

'----------------------

EDIT 2017/12/03.  In 2015 we went to the Kareeberg in my Terios.  I was looking for that view of Lichtenstei's.  I found that it was looking at the mountains from the northern side.  We went to Canarvon then took the road to Brandvlei past the SKA.  We turned south from that road to get back to Williston and found this view, which is typical of what the Kareeberg look like from the northern side.

(https://i.imgur.com/7BVyFHl.jpg)

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

(https://i.imgur.com/NrokYJc.jpg)
I got another puncture when I stopped to take a picture of this house.  There is a thorn tree just off the picture on the right where I re-fitted yesterday’s tube (which I had repaired before I started this day so the patch had plenty of time for the chemical reaction to complete – more about my puncture problems in a separate thread sometime).

(https://i.imgur.com/tenZBDN.jpg)
The powerline running across the Grootvloer is just where the Sak becomes the Hartbees.

(https://i.imgur.com/iB415tL.jpg)
This is a  Prosopis   (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Prosopis).  I thought it looked pretty good growing by the roadside.

(https://i.imgur.com/bWQhrhZ.jpg)
But I was given the very informative pamphlet written by my landlady in Williston from which I learn that they are invasive trees from the USA.  Here is what she wrote:

Quote
Hoewel geen borne, in die Zakrivier voorkom nie, was die groot hoeveelhede riete in die rivier vroe & onontbeerlik vir die bou van mabieshuise en om dakke te dek. Ongelukkig is die indringerboom, die Prosopis, vandag 'n groot probleem. Vanwee die peule se hoe voedings-waarde vir there is hierdie indringerboom, wat afkomstig is uit die VSA, op aanbeveling van die destydse Department van Landbou aangeplant. Ongelukkig vernietig dit die natuurlike habitat in die rivier.

Die Algarobius prosopis kewer is vrygestel om met die bestryding van die borne te help.

(https://i.imgur.com/EPm1gmB.jpg)
The bridge over the Hartbees as you enter Kenhardt.

I went to the KLK (farmers co-op) to get a new tube but they did not have any.  They said I would be able to get one in Kakamas which is 100km away & where I was headed.  Off I went but the patch on the tube came off 7 km out of town.  I was going to pump the tyre & return to town (or fit the tube I had changed & patched earlier that afternoon but I had no confidence in that because it was a slippery Chinese tube which are known to be unpatchable).  They were working on the road right there & their truck had an airline so he pumped my tire.  It was leaking badly so I packed everything back on the bike, re-inflated the tyre & I took off as fast as possible back to Kenhardt.  I got there but as soon as I stopped outside the hotel my tyre was flat.  I had realised on the way that the centrifugal force was holding the tyre in shape so I kept it between 80 & 90 kph but even when I was in town the tyre kept its shape.  My gps shows that I was still riding it at 22 kph as I got to the hotel.  As soon as I stopped it was absolutely flat.
Title: Re: Sak River
Post by: ChrisL - DUSTRIDERS on October 19, 2009, 04:06:09 pm
Really enjoyed this RR. Any more?
Title: Re: Sak River
Post by: tok-tokkie on October 19, 2009, 10:44:05 pm
Sak river day 9         Kenhardt to Kakamas        091001  Thursday      124km

(https://i.imgur.com/pYNbr0C.jpg)
I was really rescued by Eeton & Suzette Wickens of the Kenhardt Hotel.  The chaps who helped me when I got the flat said I should go to the hotel as it is the bike place.  As I rode in with a flat tyre Eeton came walking up and offered his help.  I explained that I wanted two new tubes as both had patches on & I did not trust them.  He helped me strip the back tube &, sure enough, the patch was peeling off.  I had ridden 69 km on that patch from where I had fitted it (from my GPS track).  Eeton phoned some locals he knew were in Upington but it was too late – they were on their way back already.  He did manage to find someone who was going in early the next day who would not be there very long and would pick up some tubes for me.  He then phoned the Yamaha agents & organised that two tubes would be collected next morning.  So all I had to do was wait until the next day & I was rescued.  Had some beers, a nice supper (fantastic salad Suzette – where do you get such nice feta cheese?) with local wine.  After breakfast I sorted through my photos (I had my computer with me so could match the time on the Garmin tracks to the time of the photos to see exactly where the photo was taken).

(https://i.imgur.com/BX6XV3C.jpg)
I really liked the logo on the crockery.  Black faced Dorper & kookerboom.  Is he well hung? In the bar there is a wall that only bikers can write their names on.  I saw Lucky Striker, Pistonpete & Newguy as Wild Dogs there.  I am extremely grateful to Eeton (who only speaks Afrikaans despite his Irish name; Eeton is actually a contraction of his given names of Henry Teeton).  My room was great with shower etc  attached and I had nice food there.  A biker friendly place and I would much appreciate it if you used it or at least had a drink on your way past.  Eeton has an immaculate FJR1300 and a recently bought KLR.  Since he got the KLR the FJR has just stood there as he finds the KLR much more fun.

(https://i.imgur.com/jvSR8rt.jpg)
I took the tyre to the co-op to have a gaiter fitted over the cut that had caused the original flat.  Soon afterwards the tubes were there & I put the bike together and was on my way again.

(https://i.imgur.com/FOceYOY.jpg)
That is the wheel lift that Eeton made for himself just the day before I arrived.  It works really well – just turn the pipe & the foot screws out (the head also swivels) and it lifts the bike against the side stand.  What is very nice is you can adjust the height when fitting the wheel back so the axle lines up while the tyre is on the ground so you don’t need to hold the wheel in the air while trying to get the axle in.  (At Verneukpan I had to dig a hole to get the wheel back in.) .  Brilliant.  It can be used under my toolbox to raise the front wheel too.  I am going to make myself one.  If anyone else follows the idea I would be pleased if you call it a Kenhardt lift so it becomes known where it came from and that there is a bike friendly bar in town.  Calling it an Eeton lift would not have the same effect.

(https://i.imgur.com/HOMYic2.jpg)

(https://i.imgur.com/kZHAR7k.jpg)
On my way again to Kakamas.  That is the Hartbees with the trees all along it.  I suspect many are the invasive Prosopis

(https://i.imgur.com/fWTe24P.jpg)
This tree with two full sized social weaver nests.  No telegraph poles nearby?

(https://i.imgur.com/vzZXWpb.jpg)
Front doors.

(https://i.imgur.com/qRzHPyb.jpg)
Saw this windpump along the way.  It is HUGE.  Those two windpumps are very close together.  A normal windpump is 2,4m (8ft) in diameter; I reckon that one is 7,5m (24 ft).   Unfortunately there was no visible name on the double tail.  Notice how many blades it has on the fan.

(https://i.imgur.com/kwDeeOP.jpg)
The road to Loeriesfontein branches off just before Kakamas so I went to get this photo of the river there.  That is definitely a flowering Prosopis on the left.

(https://i.imgur.com/HfVhLKq.jpg)
This is actually in the drift & would be flooded when the river is flowing.  Eeton said it had been flowing quite well between March & May this year.  Notice that I have a gaiter on only one side of the front forks.  Martin Praetzold had made cartridge emulators and I wanted to see how much fork travel I was using so took one gaiter off and fitted a zip tie on the fork which gets pushed up marking the most the forks get compressed.  I did bottom the forks out twice but I think I will lower the fork oil level a bit to make them slightly softer.
Title: Re: Sak River
Post by: tok-tokkie on October 19, 2009, 10:47:59 pm
(https://i.imgur.com/4CSIwY7.jpg)
These are known as Norias  (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Noria).  The water flowing in the canal turns the paddle wheel.  On each side of the paddle wheel are buckets that dip into the water and tip it out at the top into the gutter leading to the drum then through pipes and channels to the vineyards.

I went straight through Kakamas as the Hartbees joins the Gariep (Orange) a little past the town at Alheit.

(https://i.imgur.com/glpWpvu.jpg)

(https://i.imgur.com/tWzXaI1.jpg)
There is quite a long bridge in two parts with massive reedbeds each side where the Hartbees passes through to join the Gariep

(https://i.imgur.com/ZHsjvO1.jpg)
Hartebees Kontant Winkel (note the conventional spelling) at the end of the bridge.

(https://i.imgur.com/HpL2JTw.jpg)
I asked around but no one could tell me where the Hartbees joined the Gariep so I rode into the vineyards and looked for it myself.  I  got to this (end of top left track):

(https://i.imgur.com/9ma5IOG.jpg)
That is the Gariep and the Hartbees is just to my left. Bakgat.  The correct word is confluence = where two rivers meet – somehow that seems somewhat inappropriate here.

(https://i.imgur.com/ccl7y1G.jpg)
The Gariep has more than one channel here so there is more to it than just this.

(https://i.imgur.com/fsEf7QQ.jpg)
Looking for the confluence.

(https://i.imgur.com/PnXClVS.jpg)
I had a real good try to photo where they actually joined but it is overgrown with reeds and the mud is deep black stuff up to the top of my boots.

(https://i.imgur.com/5InhlG6.jpg)
The Hartbees is joined by one of those irrigation canals and the excess water from the canal runs down back into the Gariep.  This is the combined canalised flow through the vineyard.

Job done; I went back to Kakamas & checked in at the self catering part of the hotel although I did have supper there.
Title: Re: Sak River
Post by: Bernoulli on October 20, 2009, 09:03:47 am
Thanks Toktokkie - that was excellent :thumleft: :thumleft:
Title: Re: Sak River
Post by: Laban on October 20, 2009, 11:11:00 am
Thanks for sharing TT!!
Title: Re: Sak River
Post by: tok-tokkie on October 20, 2009, 02:36:12 pm
Sak river day10       Kakamas to Nieuwoudtville      091002  Friday     390km

I had supper in the hotel.  I was surprised to find a proper sushi  bar with caterpillar track there (not food that I care for).  It is quite popular; that night 20 people had supper there, some coming from as far as Upington for the food.  I would never have thought sushi would be available in Brackenfell, let alone Kakamas.  After supper I had a look at the 1:250 000 maps.  The Hartbees splits into two before joining the Gariep, hence the two bridges at Alheit.  I decided to look for the second confluence in the morning.  I am pleased I did because it is the more significant one.

(https://i.imgur.com/0FmGbhc.jpg)
On this Google track I parked at the end of the leftwards track because the donga there was too steep & walked across and down to the Gariep on the left bank of the Hartbees (I think this is the more important of the two bits of it here).

(https://i.imgur.com/XLEepvF.jpg)
There is this pumpstation there (just visible in Google) with the Hartbees behind the reeds.

(https://i.imgur.com/Lwhxtn5.jpg)
There was a small path through the reeds which I forced my way through.

(https://i.imgur.com/00Cwwa1.jpg)
Here is the Hartbees coming in from the right joining up with the Gariep coming down from the top.  So the real confluence.

(https://i.imgur.com/E7ef96M.jpg)
Panorama of the whole scene.

(https://i.imgur.com/M3D4ZCm.jpg)
Looking upstream undistorted.

(https://i.imgur.com/x6dNyVG.jpg)
Looking downstream undistorted (but the Hartbees is obscured).

(https://i.imgur.com/sHJqs7x.jpg)
Then I turned south & set off back home.  Next dorp is Loeriesfontein.  282km away without  a turn in between.  I know the Ceres Calvinia road is the longest gravel road between two towns but this is in the same league. 

(https://i.imgur.com/Iy0QAmk.jpg)
I had come to ride long flat straight roads so this was ok.

(https://i.imgur.com/EFy3cp0.jpg)
More of the same.  I did not wear my cool vest although I had the previous day.

(https://i.imgur.com/lsr4oWx.jpg)
Well there was a crossroads along the way.

(https://i.imgur.com/ohNGKXR.jpg)
This is dolerite reduced to pebble size, well on its way to becoming sand – the rich red sand of the Karoo & Northern Cape.  A whole field of stretching to the horizon and hardly a big piece to be seen

(https://i.imgur.com/eR5CiAP.jpg)
I was interested to see the Sishen Saldanha railway line at Loeriesfontein.  When it was being built my sister used to drive up here from Cape Town to visit her boyfriend who was working there having graduated as a Civil Engineer the year before.  They got married some time later. It was his 60th birthday recently and a story was told by Guy Louw about this embankment:

Quote
Martin Burger, the Railway Engineer

The year was 1971, Martin's third year at UCT studying Civil Engineering.

A compulsory course was Railway Engineering, lectured by Prof DC Robertson, the legendry railway engineer of years gone by. DC was well into his seventies, but his sense of humour had retired a few years previously.

One particular lecture was about Long Chains and Short Chains. For over an hour, DC lectured passionately about how Long and Short Chains occurred when a deviation was made to a railway track route. About 15 minutes before the end of the lecture, DC looked up, removed his glasses and asked "Any questions?"

From the back of the lecture theatre, a voice was heard "Please Sir, could you explain what a Long Chain is?"

DC's face turned red as he spluttered "Who said that?"

Silence.

DC then demanded "Will the student who asked that question please stand up!" At the back of the lecture theatre, Martin Burger rose to his feet.

DC "Get out of my lecture theatre!"

As Martin made his way down the aisle steps, DC was further enraged as he said "What is more, you have the audacity to attend my lecture barefoot! You are a disgrace to this University. Get out and never return to my lectures."

Little did Martin know that Long and Short Chains were to plague his working career. After graduating in 1972, Martin, a Clifford Harris bursary student, was sent to work on the Sishen - Saldanha Railway Line. Being over 800 km long, the railway line was riddled with Long and Short Chains.

Many years later, 2009 in fact, Guy Louw came across evidence of Martin's knowledge, or lack thereof, of Long and Short Chains. Whilst working on the upgrade of the Sishen - Saldanha railway line, Guy found the "As Built" drawings for the section of railway line near Loeriesfontein that Martin was involved with. Long and Short Chains abound.

On one particular section, it is evident that there was a variation in the track route. Martin had done his calculations (rumour has it that there was beer involved) and presented his
calculations to the Resident Engineer in order for the "As Built" drawings to be prepared.

There was ambiguity as to whether it should be a Long Chain or Short Chain. Eventually, to solve the dilemma, it was indicated as a Burger Chain. (See attached "As Built" drawing).


(http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3507/4029120414_d6b0ed018f_o.jpg)
Title: Re: Sak River
Post by: tok-tokkie on October 20, 2009, 02:38:55 pm
(https://i.imgur.com/UBhJ2U8.jpg)
I went to the Fred Turner Windpump museum as I am a great admirer of them for what they contributed towards the development of this country.  It was not open but there is a list of people to phone who will come and open it.  I photographed the list and went to the pub for a beer. The very helpful barman phoned the person on duty and soon he was there to let me in. I pointed out earlier that the trekboers[/] were prevented from taking their sheep further east than the Sak river because the rainfall was too scarce.  Once windpumps were introduced and it was found that there was plenty of fossil water under the Karoo the land was opened up to sheep farming.

I had with me this t-shirt:

(http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3318/3179508958_3a56ca9c78_o.jpg)
There is a post about this t-shirt (http://www.wilddog.za.net/forum/index.php?topic=26447.msg472531#msg472531) where I thank Plore for giving it to me.  I showed it to the man at the museum who had not seen one before so I gave it to the museum.  They were amused and pleased to have it.  There are 28 different windpumps there.  I asked about the huge one I had seen on the way to Kakamas but they did not know about it.  I had also mentioned it to the barman & he said it was a 24 foot windpump & suggested who made it.

I have no idea who sponsers the museum and, like most other museums, I am sure it operates on a shoestring budget.  The windpumps are all freshly painted and well looked after.  The museum building is an old Baptist church (no wonder it closed down – how many Baptists could there be up there?).  There is a photocopy list of the windpumps with pertinent information about each.  So many ‘museums’ just attach a name plate to each exhibit.  If you know about the thing that you are looking at that is fine but for the new items you come away from a museum like that having gained nothing.  Displays like that are really just reference collections for the informed.  Here is an example of a board in the London Science Museum.

(http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3032/3022287274_b2715c9cf2_o.jpg)
This is the label attached to the Jumo engine.  It points out the additional merit of the engine; its simplicity of construction.  Every exhibit in the Science Museum has a label or board with information like this.  It identifies the object then it always puts it into perspective telling you what is significant about it or how it compared to others or affected the development of the product.  Most museums just put items on display and identify them; that is absolutely wrong as a museum is not a collection, it is a source of information and knowledge.  The Science Museum is an excellent example of how it should be done.

(https://i.imgur.com/z7KyjQy.jpg)
All the signs to Nieuwoudtville are like this.  Apparently they wrote Nieuwoudtsville and fixed it by just obliterating the ‘s’; is it any better like this as both a blank & s are wrong?

(https://i.imgur.com/A2GzEvI.jpg)
Here is the start of the edge of the Karoo plateau as it drops down to the Atlantic coastal plain.  The bushes are quite a bit bigger here; probably get more rain but I also suspect that nothing is eating them just here so the veld is slowly recovering.

I am interested in old buildings.  Nieuwoudtville has some good stone buildings.  I will show some of them.

(https://i.imgur.com/rEgtKC3.jpg)
The DR Church in Nieuwoudtville.  It has a rather nice spire.  Made out of local stone – as are quite a few houses in the town.

(https://i.imgur.com/r1Ukccy.jpg)
A Victorian house nearby.  Nice ogee curved  corrugated iron roof on the stoep.  The advantage of these roofs, besides being elegant, is there is no wooden support required under it (which is required if the sheets are left flat)

(https://i.imgur.com/663Qw64.jpg)
This building is used by several professional societies as their local base when they come to work in the area (botany, entomology,  geology, environment etc).

(https://i.imgur.com/cCV1C3d.jpg)
A Cape Dutch gable in stone.  Avery peculiarly shaped gable.  The upper inward curving part is called the hol, the lower outwardly curving bit is called the bol.  Usually the hol and the bol are about the same size.  I am not complaining; just saying why it looks peculiar to me.

(https://i.imgur.com/qurvbFR.jpg)
More Cape Dutch stone gables.  I find these very pretty.  This only has hols.  It has the more usual as high as it is wide proportion.

(https://i.imgur.com/JQNTExp.jpg)
The bedroom of the cottage I stayed in.  There was a book of photos showing the restoration of this building.  The whole right hand end (as in this picture) was dismantled and the stones laid in their correct position on the ground, then it was re-built with each stone going back where it belonged (the wall had been about to fall down).  That is how proper restoration should be done.  The house has also been renovated (it was a garage or shed) so changes have been made but it has stayed faithful to the original style.


(https://i.imgur.com/uDAxOkp.jpg)
The table in the beer garden at Smidswinkel restaurant (http://www.nieuwoudtville.co.za/information2.html) where I had a very nice supper.  I think this is white sandstone (the pulpit in the church is white sandstone but I did not see it) but it might be marble as there is a marble mine near Vanrhynsdorp (though the marble I have seen from there is light grey).
Title: Re: Sak River
Post by: growweblaar on October 20, 2009, 06:54:12 pm
Awesome, Tokkie, I just had time to read it now  :thumleft:

A book you might also enjoy, with lots of detail on early Cape life, the frontier conflicts, etc. is: Die Afrikaners (also available in Eng: The Afrikaners) by Hermann Giliomee.

I'm also fascinated by the pre-colonial San: if I remember correctly, the most recent excavations suggest that they have been in Southern Africa for as long as 40,000 years. But they were no match, militarily, for the Europeans from the south, nor the Black tribes from the north. Jarred Diamond's Guns, Germs and Steel comes to mind.

Thanks again for the great read :)
Title: Re: Sak River
Post by: BMWPE on October 20, 2009, 06:58:19 pm
Awesome  :thumleft:

A big THANKYOU for posting
Title: Re: Sak River
Post by: eikeboom on October 20, 2009, 09:07:06 pm
This is excellent! (You should get your own museum tok-tokkie, I suspect you have enough interests and energy for research to keep it well stocked - and labelled  :mwink:)

I see your bike has the same bad habbit of eating your number plate.
Title: Re: Sak River
Post by: Doringboom on October 20, 2009, 09:25:55 pm
tok-tokkie, congratulations! This is one of the very best forensic, romantic, historic and epic ride reports I have read since the great swamps of the central Karoo dried up. When it comes to your mode of transport, you have now decisively underlined the fact that size, speed, noise and bling do not count - not at all!! Your photos are first class and your eye for detail, science and method can only be admired. Well done :thumleft:
Title: Re: Sak River
Post by: Andy660 on October 20, 2009, 10:38:21 pm
Well . TT , this is  definitely one of your best reports ever.
Strange , I was never interested in History at school , but having joined the WD and having met such interesting people and gone to such inspiring places , I must say , I feel quite privilege to have met someone like you , Ant. and not forgetting , my good friend Crossed-up , (whom you introduced me to.)

Thoroughly enjoyed reading your report and looking at all you great pics.
Must admit , I had to try and stop clicking all your reference links as I was getting more sidetracked and it was already taking me so long to get your to the end of your RR.

I think I`ll read it again tomorrow again.

Wish I had the time on my hands , to just close shop and ride with you someday.

Title: Re: Sak River
Post by: growweblaar on October 21, 2009, 09:24:24 am
I nominate this RR for the Hall of Fame  :thumleft:
Title: Re: Sak River
Post by: tok-tokkie on October 21, 2009, 03:36:57 pm
Sak river day11     Nieuwoudtville to Green Point      091003  Saturday   436km


(https://i.imgur.com/SE1tCCk.jpg)

(https://i.imgur.com/Mcx8IzX.jpg)
Van Rhyn’s pass with the escarpment of the Bokkeveld and the Atlantic coastal plain.

(https://i.imgur.com/P1kEp7C.jpg)
The interesting brick steeple of the DR Church in Vanrhynsdorp.

(https://i.imgur.com/BLsRb6b.jpg)
The road to Brand se Berg.  I have not been up there – looks very interesting.

(https://i.imgur.com/LUth58I.jpg)
Bridge over the Doring river.  I have been down the Doring in a blow job – pretty cold in winter.  Those steel girder bridges are usually for trains.

(https://i.imgur.com/4KtOCQ9.jpg)
The Doring upstream from the bridge.

(https://i.imgur.com/GCSGtjE.jpg)
Doring downstream from the bridge.  It soon joins the Olifants.  The Doring is mentioned quite a bit in The Forgotten Frontier as the Doorn.

(https://i.imgur.com/ldMQ0be.jpg)
I rode up the gravel road on the eastern side of the Olifants river.  It was a road that Crossed-Up mentioned in a report which made me want to come this way.  You can see the tar N7 on the other side of the Olifants.

(https://i.imgur.com/KNwavg5.jpg)
Very picturesque is the Olifants here.

(https://i.imgur.com/HdP7qNs.jpg)
Then you come to this.  Called the Bulshoek Dam (http://www.clanwilliam.info/info/infodams.htm) (Barrage in Mapsource).  It supplies a canal 83 km long down to Vredendal and Lutzville. Built in 1924.  To me it is particularly attractive, it is built of dressed stone like a cathedral.

In Clanwilliam I had a late breakfast/early lunch.

(https://i.imgur.com/luvSShd.jpg)
I have now left Clanwilliam after having a late breakfast there.  That old bridge over the Olifants interested me.  It is a road bridge.  I wrote a thread about some bridges in France (http://www.wilddog.za.net/forum/index.php?topic=29244.0).  In it I pointed out that the span between the piers can be much greater if the bridge is ‘boxed’.  Notice that the span of the centre two sections is double that of the outer portions thanks to the ‘boxing’.

(https://i.imgur.com/RRIpRIq.jpg)
I then cut over the Olifantsrivierberge to Paleisheuwel.  This is on the way up.  It was White Stripes who alerted me to the Paleisheuwel  road in a recent report of his.

(https://i.imgur.com/xzUEBCz.jpg)
On top you have a nice view over the Olifants river valley of the Cederberge. 

(https://i.imgur.com/ByauErk.jpg)
From Paleisheuwel over the Kapteinskloof road at the back of Piketberg, on to Darling on gravel roads (not beside the railway from Hopefield) and home.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Title: Re: Sak River
Post by: KTM BIGGER on October 21, 2009, 09:11:12 pm

(http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2677/4022490502_d1ca20f76e_o.jpg)
I really liked this fence at the museum.  Those are the heads of drilling machines.  Much bigger than water  boreholes, I have no idea what they would have been used for in this area.  Anybody with something to say about them?

Those are offshore drilling bits which gets used for drilling oil wells. You get all different sizes, shapes and and which get used for the different formations.

We use them offshore on our rig when drilling new wells.
Title: Re: Sak River
Post by: tok-tokkie on October 22, 2009, 05:24:42 pm

(http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2677/4022490502_d1ca20f76e_o.jpg)
I really liked this fence at the museum.  Those are the heads of drilling machines.  Much bigger than water  boreholes, I have no idea what they would have been used for in this area.  Anybody with something to say about them?

Those are offshore drilling bits which gets used for drilling oil wells. You get all different sizes, shapes and and which get used for the different formations.

We use them offshore on our rig when drilling new wells.
So what do you think they are doing in Williston?  Check the map, it is decidedly onshore.

Do you think they are from the early days of SOEKOR when they were drilling on land?  Did they drill in the Williston area?  How long do those things last?  Would they use up quite a few drilling a test hole?  can't they replace the actual drilling gear like things in those heads?
Title: Re: Sak River
Post by: KTM BIGGER on October 22, 2009, 05:51:11 pm

(http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2677/4022490502_d1ca20f76e_o.jpg)
I really liked this fence at the museum.  Those are the heads of drilling machines.  Much bigger than water  boreholes, I have no idea what they would have been used for in this area.  Anybody with something to say about them?

Those are offshore drilling bits which gets used for drilling oil wells. You get all different sizes, shapes and and which get used for the different formations.

We use them offshore on our rig when drilling new wells.
So what do you think they are doing in Williston?  Check the map, it is decidedly onshore.

Do you think they are from the early days of SOEKOR when they were drilling on land?  Did they drill in the Williston area?  How long do those things last?  Would they use up quite a few drilling a test hole?  can't they replace the actual drilling gear like things in those heads?


I know where Williston is, my history is just very poor Tok Tokkie.... but i will try and help you as much as i can so you can get to your final answer.

The bit is what we call a TRICONE Bit which gets used for rocky formations. They can only replace the nozzles of the bit which gets inserted in the black hole. Nozzles have different size holes to create different size mud ( is the drilling fluid used to cool the bit, allow betterdrilling in different formation and keep certain gasses down hole with a heavy mud weight) pressure/speed and to allow faster or slower cooling effect on the bit.

To answer your question on the duration they last, that all depends on the depth they wanted to reach. Drilling normally starts with a 26" bit and drill to aprox 500FT and then set casing to prevent loss of fluid to the formation and blow outs. They then pick up a 17 1/2" bit and drill to about 2000FT and set casing in the ground. Then drill with a smaller bit 12 1/4" which looks like the above one in the picture and drill to about 5-6000FT. Set casing again to go further until they get to a 2-3"tubing which they will use to flow the well with inside the last casing which gets cemented.

http://www.smith.com/Datasheets/ProductInfo.aspx?ID=20&page=8dddeb1d-4566-4320-a017-4b129465ca88

I hope i have helped here....

Let me know if i can assist further.
Title: Re: Sak River
Post by: Kamanya on October 22, 2009, 07:04:22 pm
Wonderful report TT, I love the Karoo and history.

Thanks!

Andrew
Title: Re: Sak River
Post by: ratrap on October 22, 2009, 09:14:07 pm
I nominate this RR for the Hall of Fame  :thumleft:


+10000
Title: Re: Sak River
Post by: bradleys on October 23, 2009, 08:45:30 am
A very nice and informative report ,thanks Tok tokkie :thumleft:
Title: Re: Sak River
Post by: Spore on October 23, 2009, 10:08:00 am
Thank you very much for such a well-researched, informative and attractively presented RR & pictures!! You prove beyond any doubt that its the YOURNEY that matters - hats off to you!! Groetnis  :thumleft:
Title: Re: Sak River
Post by: Bernoulli on October 23, 2009, 04:46:46 pm

(http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2677/4022490502_d1ca20f76e_o.jpg)
I really liked this fence at the museum.  Those are the heads of drilling machines.  Much bigger than water  boreholes, I have no idea what they would have been used for in this area.  Anybody with something to say about them?

Those are offshore drilling bits which gets used for drilling oil wells. You get all different sizes, shapes and and which get used for the different formations.

We use them offshore on our rig when drilling new wells.
So what do you think they are doing in Williston?  Check the map, it is decidedly onshore.

Do you think they are from the early days of SOEKOR when they were drilling on land?  Did they drill in the Williston area?  How long do those things last?  Would they use up quite a few drilling a test hole?  can't they replace the actual drilling gear like things in those heads?


I know where Williston is, my history is just very poor Tok Tokkie.... but i will try and help you as much as i can so you can get to your final answer.

The bit is what we call a TRICONE Bit which gets used for rocky formations. They can only replace the nozzles of the bit which gets inserted in the black hole. Nozzles have different size holes to create different size mud ( is the drilling fluid used to cool the bit, allow betterdrilling in different formation and keep certain gasses down hole with a heavy mud weight) pressure/speed and to allow faster or slower cooling effect on the bit.

To answer your question on the duration they last, that all depends on the depth they wanted to reach. Drilling normally starts with a 26" bit and drill to aprox 500FT and then set casing to prevent loss of fluid to the formation and blow outs. They then pick up a 17 1/2" bit and drill to about 2000FT and set casing in the ground. Then drill with a smaller bit 12 1/4" which looks like the above one in the picture and drill to about 5-6000FT. Set casing again to go further until they get to a 2-3"tubing which they will use to flow the well with inside the last casing which gets cemented.

http://www.smith.com/Datasheets/ProductInfo.aspx?ID=20&page=8dddeb1d-4566-4320-a017-4b129465ca88

I hope i have helped here....

Let me know if i can assist further.

See my earlier post... :deal:

Soekor was in the area in the early seventies - and the site closest to Williston was about 10 km out of town on the road to Sutherland, looking for oil.

Found nothing, so after a brief period of huge excitement, life reverted back to farming with sheep...
Title: Re: Sak River
Post by: ThomTom on October 24, 2009, 06:43:53 am
Thanks Toktokie to put it all together, I just love the Karoo, its history and the people;

- windpompe, the karoo boere se moto: "hou die windpompe en ramme aan die werk", I was looking for a specific pomp but found this one in the meantime:

"Titel: Windpomp
Deur: Andre Mouton
 
Een dag op ‘n agterpad na Victoria-Wes
moet ek stop want my tjor het ‘n dors om te les.
In die verte blink sien ek ‘n windpomp wink
en dit is toe net daar waar ek ‘n sinkdam vind
En vir die eerste keer in my lewe let ek wel
op die absolute wonder van die windpompspel.

Wind pomp water uit die aarde uit
Wind pomp water uit die aarde uit
Stang beweeg op en af
Stang hyg in en uit
Wiel draai water uit die aarde uit"

Die Karooson bak so dat die sweet van my lyf af stroom
Net daar trek ek my klere uit sonder om te skroom.
Toe van die wal met ‘n kreet en ‘n knal
breek ek die water in en daar spat ek lekker rond
in die water uit die grond.
En vir die eerste keer in my lewe let ek wel
op die absolute wonder van die windpompspel.

(refrein) Wind pomp water uit die aarde uit

Met al die lekker gespat let ek nie op dat
die son het na die horison gestap.
In die vonkelskemer verlaat ek die hemelbad
om die pad terug na my kar te vat.
En my hart is swaar van die pomp wat ek moet agterlaat
En vir die eerste keer in my lewe let ek wel
op die absolute wonder van die windpompspel.

(refrein) Wind pomp water uit die aarde uit x2
Stang beweeg op en af
Stanb hyg op en af
Wiel draai water uit die aarde uit.

(Kopiereg voorbehou
3 Januarie 2007)