The Premier comes to Town

The Premier comes to Town
With the exception of 2 elections, I have voted for the Democratic Alliance (in its various forms) since I turned 18 in 1956. In 1994, I changed my allegiance to the ANC for 2 elections. During the AIDS debacle I went hotfooting it back to the DA. I have never heard Helen Zille speak live and she was very low on my list of favourites. This changed at the SCLI seminar on Thursday. Firstly, she was dressed in dead ordinary clothes that hadn’t cost much and certainly hadn’t come from a renowned fashion designer. Here, I think of the rampant consumerism that created Black Friday. There were no blue lights or sirens. Despite reading a prepared speech, her innate sense of humour was very evident. She answered the questions she was asked in a straightforward manner and she was totally down to earth. Her knowledge of a wide range of topics was impressive. I am now a fan. But enough – Sandra will write the report on the first day of a highly successful seminar and Bill will cover the second day. I will send it out on Tuesday morning. Congratulations Cobus on a job very well done.

On Friday we went Orchid-hunting at Doringrivier. With climate patterns changing, it becomes more and more difficult to find the plants at the perfect time. I thought that we were late, but in fact, we were there too soon, with most of them in early bud. Last year they were in full flower on the 25th November. Nicky found 8 Eulophia platypetala (Vulnerable), which was our target plant, but none of them were in full flower. One Ceratandra atrata was open, but the magnificent Ceratandra grandiflora was nowhere to be seen. There were a couple of luminous-green Disa cylindrica and a couple of Disa inflexa, but nothing much else in the way of Orchids to shout about. We were pleased to see some Lobelia dichroma (Data Deficient) , although most of them were looking fairly dessicated and not at their best. Despite reasonable rains in the last couple of weeks, Doringrivier gives the impression of being dry.

But dry or not, the Proteaceae regeneration is massive. There were young plants and new growth all over the place. In a couple of years, they will start flowering and the true magnificence of this fabulous valley will return. Protea eximia, P. repens, P.neriifolia, P. lorifolia and P.aurea ssp aurea, Leucadendron eucalyptifolium, Ld. salignum, Ld. spissifolium, Ld. conicum (Near Threatened)and Ld. uliginosum, Serruria fasciflora , Paranomus dregei and Spatalla barbigera (Near Threatened) will all be back to their former glory. Further down the valley, Leucadendron olens (Near Threatened) and Ld. ericifolium are already close to flowering. I am just hoping that my “vrot” legs will last until then. If not, someone is going to have to carry me up there – dead or alive!! Young Phaenocoma prolifera plants have sent out their first flowers, the floriferous Aspalathus acanthes and ciliaris were just going over, Mimetes cucullatus was striking in scarlet and Leucadendron uliginosum ssp uliginosum was looking gorgeous in yellow. Two young professionals (Engineering and Geology) from the USA joined us for the day. Catherine is Nicky’s niece from Houston and Rebecca is a friend. We so enjoyed having them with us. They were hugely enthusiastic about our scenery, which is always gratifying. As is our wont after Doringrivier, we repaired to Bobby and Ria’s Famous Pizza Place for pizzas and a cool one after the field trip. This set the seal on a most enjoyable day with good friends in beautiful surroundings.
Di

Glentana coastal hike
This week HAT Evie joined in on 2 coastal walks. One of which is known as the ‘Glentana beach “walk. I am however suggesting a name change to “Glentana Coastal”. What an exciting hike this beach walk has now become. Very suitable for our South Cape MCSA outing on Sun 19 November. Recent storms, high seas and the erratic Indian Ocean have reclaimed the beach sand and moved it elsewhere. I previously walked this hike during both May and January 2017 – on those 2 occasions, plenty of sand and beach to meander along. On this Sunday the walk entailed numerous rocky cliff edges; as well as numerous “in and out and over the rock” manoeuvres!! We walked past the old dry dock wreck (stuck there since 1902 and a reminder of stormy seas) and we then continued as far as Cape Windlass, where there are a few caves at sea level. Now the delightful beach at the caves – no longer exists and a rock pool will have to suffice for swimming.
Lovely day out – on route - patches of yellow daisy heads; patches of purple Vygies; white Ornithogalum dubium here and there; as well as shady Lobelia pubescens . On the forest margins – a few stunning Bonatea speciosa in flower, and Agathosma ovata.
Evie

On Friday, we are hoping to head for the Swartberg to climb Waboomsberg to the west of the top of the Swartberg Pass. The weather looks fair for most of the day and there is a very light wind forecast at this stage. There have been many occasions when we have had to retreat off this mountain, because of gale-force winds. This, when it has been dead calm in the valley. I can remember clearly one occasion when the temperature in Oudtshoorn was 40 degrees and we nearly died of exposure on Waboomsberg. It was freezing. So we will see. I will be watching the weather forecast closely. With the good rains that have fallen recently, perhaps the vegetation would have had a much-needed boost. And if the mountain rejects us, there is always the alternative of the northern foothills on the Gamkaskloof Rd, Platbos or the jeep track leading to Bothas Hoek.
Hamba Kahle
Groete en dankie
Di Turner
Outramps CREW Group
Southern Cape

Abbreviations Glossary
MCSA – Mountain Club of South Africa
MSB - Millenium Seed Bank based at Kew in the UK
WIP – Work in Progress
HAT – High Altitude Team
LOT – Lowland Team
SIM – Somewhere in the Middle Team
WAGS – Wednesday Adventure Group
VB – Vlok Boekie “Plants of the Klein Karoo” and our Plant Bible
ITRTOL – Another thread “In The Rich Tapestry Of Life”(It describes a challenging situation, usually to do with the Buchu Bus)
ITFOT – In the fullness of time
WOESS – Fair Weather Hiker
FMC and JW – too vulgar to translate, but the equivalent is “Strike me Dead” An expression of surprise and delight on finding a new “Rare”
Kambro – same as above
Fossick – A meter per minute, scratching around looking for rares
SIDB – Skrop in die Bos – Another name for a field trip, this one coined by Prix
BAFFING – Running round like a blue-arsed fly
SYT – Sweet Young Thing - Anyone under the age of 40
TOMB – Get a move on
Mayhem - Needless or willful damage or violence
SESKRYNG – “Sit en staan kry niks gedaan” ,with thanks to Brian
SOS – Skelms on Scramblers
FW – Idiot
BOB – Another name for the Buchu Bus when she’s misbehaving.
CRAFT – A symptom of Old Age
DDD - Metalasia tricolor (Damned Diabolical Daisy)
VP – Vrekplek – Retirement Village
Qàq – Self-explanatory Inuit word describing some of our local problems
Mr Fab – Our Fabaceae specialist, Brian Du Preez – originally Boy 1
Muisvoel -The Mathematician or the Computer Helpline – Peter Thompson
Boy 2 – Kyle Underwood who works on Orchids and is still at school
Sharkie – Finn Rautenbach – Our latest SYT is a surfer in his spare time
Sicko – Someone who suffers from Car Sickness. With 4 in the Group, allocating seating in the Buchu Bus is tricky
VAG – Virgin Active Garage, which is our meeting place when we head north
MATMUE – Meet At The Mall Under E - Meeting place when we head West
WG – Waves Garage in Wilderness East. - Meeting place when we’re going east.
VU- Vulnerable
DDT – Data Deficient and Taxonomically ?
NT – Near Threatened
EN – Endangered
CR – Critically Endangered
PE – Presumed extinct
LC – Least Concern
TBC – To be Confirmed
TLC – Tender loving care
JMS – An expression of absolute disdain
FOMO – Fear of Missing Out
Milk – the fruit of the vine
Condensed Milk – Scotland’s finest export
Full Cream Milk or Fat Milk – Any product of Humulus lupulus eg. Milk Stout
Milk of the Gods – Rooibos and Brandy
Milk Shake - Sparkling Wine
NS – Species of conservation concern new to the Outramps
PS -Priority Species allocated to the Outramps by our CREW Cape Co-ordinator , Ismail Ebrahim
iNFD – iNaturalist for Dummies as compiled by Sally

Posted by outramps-tanniedi outramps-tanniedi, November 27, 2017 14:22

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