Winter in southern Africa is the dry season – several months of cloudless blue-grey hazy skies stretched over vast expanses of veldt, all shades of textured browns and golds, dusty roads winding into forever and thick, burnt-orange sunsets seeing dusk turn to night.
< ...heavy stuff, I know, but bear with me... >
But the Western Cape is not that same Africa. It’s very much its own Africa – still wild, still harsh, but completely different from the rest of the continent. In winter the Western Cape blossoms – it glows in soft, wet abundance in as many shades of green and gold as the rest of the continent has ochres and browns.
Winter officially arrived in the Western Cape in May. At least that’s what the newspapers told us. But winter really arrived this past weekend, and in no half measures. An icy cold front moved across the peninsula on Saturday, tearing temperatures down to single figures and sending our World Cup tourists shivering for their waterproofs.
But while roadies run for cover when winter hits, trail runners welcome trail season! Sure, we run trails all year round, but for Kaapies true trail happens in winter. For us real trail means mist and rain, sloshing through puddles, slipping on moss-covered rocks, and picking our way carefully up what the rains have made into rivers.
It’s wet, it’s wild and it’s true Cape trail.
Here’re a few photos I took on my run this afternoon - the mountain is gushing waterfalls where just last week there wasn't even water :-)
Labels: trail, Western Cape