25 June 2009

Plett: Robberg

Date: 15 June 2009

Location: Robberg Nature Reserve, Plettenberg Bay

Walkers: Helen, Michele, Richard and Claudia

**** Route plotted here ****

We elected to do the Point Nature Trail, the circular route around the whole Robberg peninsula. This set off on the northern side, with a view out over Plett.

We walked down the rocky slope, and then along the side of the headland.

There was plenty of conglomerate around, and an info board explaining what this is and other items of geological interest in the area. We found many fascinating rock formations throughout the whole walk.

At the Gap the peninsula narrowed and our path converged with the one on the other side. We kept going straight, following the signboards to Point.

There was a great view of the first section of the headland behind us.

The path climbed steadily until we got on top of the hill. Up here it was quite bushy and we kept a look out for blue duiker, but were not lucky enough to see one.

There was, however, plenty of lovely flora to admire.

The view out was lovely, even though it was still a bit cloudy. The sky looked moody. Robberg reminded me a lot of Cape Point. Doesn't this look like False Bay?

We then crossed Witsand, a sandy section.

The last leg on this northern side took us along the edge of the cliff for quite a way. It was bleak and open and wild - I loved it! The only detraction was the smell of seal. There is a large colony of Cape fur seals living around Robberg (rob = seal) and they were frolicking in the waves and sunning themselves on the rocks below. Fun to see, but very smelly!

At last we came to the Point, the rocky end of the peninsula.

We made our way down the slope. It was sad to see that the old fisherman's shack at the bottom lay in ruins. It had been fine when I last visited Robberg a few years ago. I presume it fell victim to severe weather as there were bits of debris spread far and wide.

We took a break here at the Point and had a bite to eat.

Seals were playing in the waves, a lone whale swam past (quite far out, so no pictures were possible) and there were many sea gulls and cormorants about. The rocks were white with their guano.

We then continued on, now walking along the southern side of Robberg. The route took us below the cliff, clambering over the rocks. It was high-concentration walking, but the scenery was dramatic and spectacular.

The rocks were covered in bright orange and other lichens and had weathered in extraordinary ways.

We saw a family of dassies.

There were several caves.

Further on the vegetation became more lush, and tucked away, we found the Fountain cottage. This adorable little get-away is available for rent from CapeNature.

We got a great view of the Island, another headland, accessible via the wide sandy beach.

We made our way towards it, and up onto the circular board-walk.

From the Island we got a great view back to the section of Robberg we'd just walked.

It was an easy stroll around the Island.

There was some gorgeous cliff scenery on the far side.

It was then down onto the beach once more, and back across to Robberg. We were heading towards the Gap.

We had to climb again, and hop over rocks, to get across the slope. We passed a large old strandloper cave on the way.

Before long Gap Beach was on our left, and we made our way to the convergence of the paths we'd passed much earlier in the day.

From here we peeked across to the northern side again. The view now in the sunny mid-afternoon was much nicer than it had been in the cloudy morning earlier.

Back on our path we had another short but steep climb to get up the hill.

The views from the top were worth the effort!

We could see down to Gap Beach and the Island.

And from here it was an easy stroll along the top to the car park.

(Photos by Michele, Helen and Richard)

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