22 September 2012 – Round Trip to Caledon

067 Dassiesfontein

#67 DASSIESFONTEIN (GC23EV8)
Dassiesfontein Farm Stall along the N2 near Caledon, South Africa

S34°13.504 E19°17.788

Dassiesfontein is one of those traditional old-school farm stalls, where you are likely to find everything – from a West Coast bokkom to a leather belt; home-made jam to a wicker basket, not to mention home-baked pies, warm-out-of-the-oven farm bread and freshly brewed coffee.

We started our quick road trip with an ample serving of pepper-steak pie and coffee, before spending most of the morning browsing around the store’s many nooks and crannies.

The cache was a quick grab before setting off to the next.

Visit Dassiesfontein at www.geocaching.com

068 Take a Bath

#68 TAKE A BATH (GC10V2B)
Bath River in Caledon, South Africa

S34°13.845 E19°26.224

The next cache took us to a national monument located in the Overberg town of Caledon – a bridge dating from 1866 and built over the Baths River.

Way before the Europeans settled in this region, the local Khoi-Khoi had discovered the hot springs (or baths) in the area, Caledon is know for today.

Development started in 1710 when Ferdinand Appel secured farmland in the area, on condition that he erects a bath building allowing visitors access to the hot springs.

Like other natural springs in South Africa, the thermal springs in Caledon are not related to volcanic activity.  The water is warmed due to its flow over pressure-heated rocks deep within the earth crust and remains at a steady temperature of about 50°C.

Visit Take a Bath at www.geocaching.com

069 Hemel en Aarde

#69 HEMEL EN AARDE (GCKZBJ)
Shaw’s Pass in the Hemel-en-Aarde Valley between Caledon and Hermanus, South Africa

S34°18.708 E19°24.985

This cache is located within Shaw’s Pass on the R320.  As the pass, and in fact most of the R320, is currently undergoing construction work, it took quite a bit of off-roading with the A4 to reach it.

Due to the ongoing roadworks, the cache has since been temporarily disabled.

The ‘Bossies are certainly looking forward to the completion of this scenic route through the Hemel-en-Aarde Valley and short cut to Caledon!

Visit Hemel en Aarde at www.geocaching.com

070 Take a Break Overberg View

#70 TAKE A BREAK – OVERBERG VIEW (GC32BAE)
At a roadside stop along the N2 near Caledon, South Africa

S34°13.283 E19°18.417

Our last cache for the day was a quick park-and-grab at a scenic roadside stop along the N2.

This spot allows for panoramic views of the surrounding green wheat and yellow canola fields.  Beautiful!

Visit Take a Break – Overberg View at www.geocaching.com

This was day 28 of 30 consecutive caching days.

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21 September 2012 – Whale Tale

#65 WHALE TALE (GC35G8N)
Coastal path in Kleinmond, South Africa

S34°20.714 E19°00.265

This cache took us to a beautiful spot along the Kleinmond Coastal Path… twice!

We could not find it first time around and had to return later during the day.  Problem was that the cache was hidden by a stone lodge so tightly, we could not move it.  Having had some spinach for lunch, we eventually managed to dislodge the culprit and sign the log.

Visit Whale Tale at www.geocaching.com

#66 BETTY’S SECRET BAY (GC3AW3M)
Jock’s Bay in Betty’s Bay, South Africa

S34°21.317 E18°55.999

This cache is located in a beautiful, almost hidden little stretch of beach, known as Jock’s Bay – perfect for sundowners!

It is also the start of a coastal path dedicated to environmentalist Denys Heeson who was first to initiate regular “Hack Sundays” during which residents would gather, their goal to clear alien vegetation in favour of the natural fynbos.  The first hacking was held in 1963 and has continued ever since with Hack #500 begin held on Sunday, 5 August 2004, making it the oldest continuous hack group in the Western Cape.

Visit Betty’s Secret Bay at www.geocaching.com

This was day 27 of 30 consecutive caching days.

20 September 2012 – Zwelihle View

#64 ZWELIHLE VIEW (GC1GQHT)
Up Rotary Way near Hermanus, South Africa

S34°24.925 E19°13.111

Finding this close-to-home cache located on the mountain slope behind Mount Pleasant, has been on our list for quite awhile, however continuous roadworks along the R43 have been enough reason to delay.

We eventually managed to get onto Rotary Way, from where we followed the contour path over the neck and all along the mountain slope.

The view from the cache site was remarkable and we promptly decided this was the ideal spot to part with Clancy, the tea-drinking Swagman that have been sharing our travels since we grabbed him at the Hiddingh Security TB Hotel in Cape Town.

Visit Zwelihle View at www.geocaching.com

This was day 26 of 30 consecutive caching days.

19 September 2012 – Gustav Adolph

#63 SS: GUSTAV ADOLPH (GC2AVC1)
Coastal path in Kleinmond, South Africa

S34°20.602 E19°00.094

This quick cache along the Kleinmond coastal walk near the mouth of the Palmiet River is another fine one from the Shipwreck Series.

The Gustav Adolph was a Norwegian wooden barque of 757 tons.  She was built in 1879 and was on her way from Fremantle to Cape Town with a load of timber, when she was wrecked on 28 June 1902 just south of the Palmiet River mouth.

The Captain and three crewmen drowned.  Two crosses made from parts of the wreck was put up in their honour and can be seen along the path.

Visit SS: Gustav Adolph at www.geocaching.com

This was day 25 of 30 consecutive caching days.

18 September 2012 – The Elephant and the Rhino

#62 ELEPHANT AND RHINO (GC2RMKD)
Kogelberg Nature Reserve near Kleinmond, South Africa

S34°20.844 E18°58.544

This quick park-and-grab roadside cache is located near a well-known rock formation located in the Kogelberg Mountains between Kleinmond and Betty’s Bay.  Find the correct spot and you will see an elephant trailing a larger rhinoceros.

Rhino poaching in South Africa has taken a turn for the worse with a dramatic increase in kills over the past few years.

All Rhinoceroses are endangered as they are being poached and killed for their horns.  Rhino horns are much sought after on the black market as result of some CRAZY notion that it has medicinal qualities.  The horns are made of keratin, the same type of protein found in hair and nails, and therefore in truth, not worth anything more than your own toenail cuttings…

The latest South African rhino poaching statistics as in November 2012, indicate that a total of 588 rhinos have been killed since the beginning of 2012, of which 362 were killed in the Kruger National Park.

This compares to 333 animals killed in 2010 and 448 in 2011.

Visit Elephant and Rhino at www.geocaching.com

Suikerbossies support all anti-Rhino Poaching campaigns.  To create awareness and in support of the cause, Suikerbossies have created and since launched Petrus, the Endangered Rhino Travel Bug.  Visit our TB’s profile page at www.geocaching.com.

This was day 24 of 30 consecutive caching days.

17 September 2012 – A Tribute to Grandmothers

#61 NANA’S CACHE #1 (GC1MJE6)
Spanish Farm in Somerset West, South Africa

S34°03.375 E18°51.115

This cache was placed to commemorate a special grandmother and brought back fond memories of the Suikerbossies’ own grandmothers – Ouma Stoffie (1919-2009), Ouma ‘Tatie (1920-1986) and Ouma Baby (1929-2002) who have all passed and Ouma Martie that is still with us.

Brunette Suikerbos recently started her own genealogy project – documenting her family tree and ancestral lines all the way back to the first South African arrivals in the sixteen and seventeen-hundreds.

Her research led to several interesting and unexpected finds – one such find being that her paternal grandmother was the youngest of seven children and not three as was always believed.

She also discovered that her ancestral lines lead back to celebrated farms such as Spier, Meerust and Rustenburg…

Grandparents are our link to who we are and where we come from.  Cherish, love and respect them before it is too late!

Visit Nana’s Cache at www.geocaching.com

This was day 23 of 30 consecutive caching days.

16 September 2012 – The Other Alabama

#60 HISTORY LESSONS: “HIER KOM DIE ALABAMA” (GCYCMW)
Near Saldanha Bay, South Africa

S32°58.339 E17°56.935

We managed to grab this cache just before sunset.  It is located within an old family farm graveyard near Saldanha Bay along the R45.

The cache tells the interesting story of the CSS Alabama – a US Confederate commerce raider built in England.  She set sail in the guise of a merchant ship and was then outfitted at sea as a combatant after she rendezvoused with supply ships.  The Alabama was placed in commission on 24 August 1862 and spent her time in the North Atlantic intercepting and burning Union merchant ships bound for Europe.

Her journey then moved into the South Atlantic in 1863, during which she stopped at Cape Town in August, before continuing her course for the East Indies, where her crew seized nearly 40 more merchantmen during the year.

While anchored in South African waters at Saldanha Bay, the crew had rowed ashore to do some hunting.  On their way back, Lt Simeon Cummings accidentally shot himself and was buried in Saldanha.

Many years later, a South African lady was watching an American program about a “lost” confederate soldier of the civil war.  Low and behold, that soldier was the same one buried on their family farm near Saldanha.

The remains of Lt Cummings was exhumed and today he lays buried in Tennessee.

As for the Alabama, she came to her demise on 19 June 1864 outside the port of Cherbourg, from the guns of the Union ship, the USS Kearsage.  Her wreck was located by the French Navy in 1980.

Visit History Lessions at www.geocaching.com

This was day 22 of 30 consecutive caching days.