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We entered country 22 on the 18th of August 2004. Nelly had the most inquisitive search she has had so far. The Policeman looked in 3 boxes, the vegetable bag and the cutlery tub. The firewood on the roof was confiscated aswell.
First stop was Springbok where we did some laundry and shopping, Nelly got some ‘dynamic petrol’, 97RON we were told, which she seemed to like despite their efforts to direct us to the diesel pump. Then we moved on south off the motorway to the Atlantic coast again and to Strandfontein for lunch, a town with a very deserted feel to it, definitely out of season again.

     

Then we went to Lambert’s Bay and the Cape gannets and Jackass penguins on Bird Island. There were hundreds and hundreds of gannets, all quite smelly but spectacular to see.

Photo 2840
We spent the night just outside Eland’s Bay before our drive into Cape Town. We stopped in Blougerstrand to watch the kite surfers and see the classic view of Cape Town with table mountain in the background. Unfortunately the mountain was partly in cloud but we were happy anyway.

 

We reached Cape Town on Friday the 20th of August 2004. We drove down to the Victoria and Albert waterfront and wandered around the shopping centre thinking we could be anywhere in the world and had an ice cream. We tried a few places to stay and ended up at Deco Lodge as they were about the only place that had secure parking and would let us sleep in Nelly.
We decided to stay in Cape Town a few weeks before flying home to give us time for some climbing and sight seeing. First on the list was Cape Point and the Cape of Good Hope which is the most south-westerly point of Africa. Lots of other tourists there. On the way there we went to the penguin colony at Boulders Beach, you can see them really close up.
We waited for a clear day before taking a ride in the cable car up Table Mountain and walked down to fountain ledge to climb back up under the cable car. Great views from the top all the way across Cape Town.
Next trip out of town was to Hermanus, the Whale town and we sat in the sunshine watching across Walkers Bay. There were a couple of groups of Southern Right Whales playing in the bay, they are very impressive when the breach. From there we went up to Montague for the weekend and met up with lots of other climbers. Most of the lines have been bolted, even the ones that could be done with trad gear which was quite strange for us Brits but seamed to work for them. The routes were generally quite steep and it got very warm in the sunshine but we enjoyed it.
Then back to Cape Town, we got some air assiter springs fitted to Nelly. The springs were starting to look sad again and hopefully this will be a long term fix.
We spent our penultimate week away in the Cederburg mountains, climbing. First stop was up in Rocklands which is an amazing place. The rock just goes on and on in all directions. It is perfect for bouldering. There are also some bolted routes which we played on. We met a group of students from Stellenbosch and climbed with them for a day. From there we moved south a bit to Krom River where we did loads of great routes but no idea what they were called as they weren't in the guide book. Great rock, a bit less like sand paper than the rock at rocklands, but still quite stenuous.
We went for a walk up the Wolfberg cracks before visiting the observatory at Sanddrif and looking at the many many stars in the very black sky at night.
Back in Cape Town we spent some time sorting our the shipping of Nelly but still when we came to load Nelly she didn't want to go. The container was too small, very annoying as we'd been to the docks to get her measured specially. So the morning before our flight we loaded Nelly into a bigger container and waved her good-bye. All being well she will arrrive in Briston soon.
 

 

 
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