True to the theme, the trail led us to a spectacular viewpoint of Paarl on the rock on a chilly Saturday morning of the 12th. The prospect of a wine tasting and lunch at the Fairview Wine Estate was enough motivation for us to summit and return within the allotted time of 3hours.
Since this was a new trail for Bantu Hikers, none of us knew what Paarl had in store. It came as no surprise why the rocks are a key feature in the reserve. Besides the elevation they provide for incredible viewing, the distinct potholes dotted all over the boulders like pimples or mirrors after rain, are a work of natural art.
For the most part, the hike is easy until you get to the rock offering the highest view point. In all the years that we have explored the mountains and traversed different trails, we have learnt that you have to work and give up something to enjoy the reward of the best view. To some it may be giving up a few calories (which in this case is a perfect deal) and for others it is giving up the fear of heights and letting go, a cathartic experience of sorts.
The beauty of hiking is that you may be part of a team but one also has their individual experience of the journey. There are moments when one walks in silence in the presence of others lost in their thoughts, or in surrender to the the overwhelming expanse and beauty of the outdoors that welcomes you as if you are part of the landscape.
Paarl completely rocked our socks and left a lasting impression. The Bantus have requested a “phinda mzala” repeat hike along this route. Now, this is a space we loved to occupy.
To all our new friends and familiar faces that we have not seen in a while, it was a pleasure occupying new spaces with you. Let us do it again on the 2nd of June at Jonkershoek Nature Reserve.
Easy to moderate hike
Reserve Fee: R52per car plus R17 per person. If you park at the reserve picnic area and hike up to the viewing point then entry is free… A WIN-WIN for outdoor keen beans without a doubt.