Atrocious weather will not put an outdoor enthusiast off, but it might dampen their spirits a little!
This was the case with last week’s 4 day trail, starting at Die Dam we reluctantly left the warm dry support vehicle and trudged into Quoin Point Reserve, first few hours was a chance to see the damage from the recent fire, encouraging regrowth already starting indicates all is well in the land of fire and flowers, I’m looking forward to keeping a close eye on what sprouts up from the ashes. Sadly we lost the old wooden building which used to house the lookouts during world war 2.
By the time we reached the shoreline the rain had turned from a light drizzle into a steady downpour, heads down we barely stopped to see the seal colony and headed along the shore towards the little hamlet of Quoin Point passing hundreds of cape cormorants glaring at us from the safety of their island rocks, nearing the houses we collected some tinder and scraps of driftwood to make a small fire in the braai place of one of the house stoops, I must remember to thank the owners for our unauthorized refuge but as the hamlet first arose from the good natured people from Elim providing aid to many survivors of shipwrecks off this coast we were probably welcome guests. The most influential shipwreck triggered the donation of land to Elim which was the Jessie in 1829 after which the 3 km pristine beach before us was named.
A break in the clouds with a hint of blue encouraged us to slip on our damp socks and boots and venture onwards. With low tide the beach crossing was spectacular, hard white sand and a backdrop of wind carved sandstone, locally known as the wall, things were looking up as we wound our way around the coastal path through jagged quartzite rocks formations up to the village of Bufflesjagsbaai, greeted by yapping dogs but friendly waves from the local fishermen waiting in doorways for calmer seas. The end of the days trail is at the most beautiful sheltered blue water bay where fishing boats are launched in calmer weather.
Our backup vehicle arrived on time and we climbed in relieved but very satisfied to be on our way back to Pearly Beach for a hot bath and the warm strandveld hospitality of the local restaurant to plan the next day’s trail.