To Cape Point from snow on the Groot Winterhoek

by Diana Studer
- gardening for biodiversity
in Cape Town, South Africa

Twice in June there was snow on our mountaintops and the weekend ahead promises more. I follow snowreport co za for snow forecasts, waiting for the reader's photos to come in. Something I miss from Porterville is living at the foot of the Groot Winterhoek Mountains. We had to drive a few minutes to actually see the snow, which was hidden by the foothills from our house in town. Now, we'd need to drive to where we can see the inland mountains behind the Strand stretching up Africa.

Leucadendron at Cape Point
Leucadendron at Cape Point


The axis of my autopilot has tipped. Cape Point was always a full day's round trip from our home in Camps Bay. To the far end of the Cape Peninsula. Now we live in the South Peninsula on False Bay it's about 45 minutes drive. Our Wild Card gets us free entry. Just because this new chapter in our life makes it possible - we went to have a first quick look. Lunch? WAY too expensive. Stopped at a promising path, in a stiff breeze. Next time ... we will bring a backpack, lunch, water, and warmer layers.

Yes! September we hiked the Shipwreck Trail 

Path with restios at Cape Point
Path with restios at Cape Point

We headed home via a new nursery. Good Hope Gardens which specialises in fynbos. I've already planted Cotyledon orbiculata with long finger leaves, and Searsia crenata dune crowberry. Four more added to the long queue waiting to be planted. Agathosma apiculata garlic buchu. Lobostemon montanus blue flowers. Syncarpha vestita white everlasting daisy. Phylica pubescens yellow feathery flowers. Perhaps next time I'll find that golden Leucadendron sunshine bush.

July 2008 Sentinel Peak 2060m near Worcester
July 2008 Sentinel Peak 2060m near Worcester

In July 2008 we went to the Karoo Desert NBG for red aloes blazing against snowy mountains.

August 2009 Sneeukop
August 2009 Sneeukop

Once we circled around behind the Groot Winterhoek thru the Koue Bokkeveld.

April 2011 Groot Winterhoek
April 2011 Groot Winterhoek

June 2011 Groot Winterhoek reflection
June 2011 Groot Winterhoek reflection

As we did that long 4 hour trip to Cape Town we would stop for blog photos of the snow.

August 2012 canola at Saron
August 2012 canola at Saron

August 2012 green fields
August 2012 green fields 

Sometimes with a searing flash of mustard fumes from fields of canola. Or the fresh green of cereal crops.

August 2013 ears of grain and snow
August 2013 ears of grain and snow

An incongruous contrast. Green fields and snow.

June 2014 Tulbagh mountains
June 2014 Tulbagh mountains

The mountains are at their most beautiful where the road divided between Tulbagh and home to Porterville.

Pictures by Jurg and Diana Studer
of Elephant's Eye on False Bay

(If you mouse over teal blue text, it turns seaweed red
Those are my links.
To read or leave comments, either click the word Comments below,
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Comments

  1. Your mountain photographs are wonderful Diana.
    This is the first time I noticed the red ball in the sea in your header photo. Was it always there? Or is it a new photograph?

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    1. I did change the header at the end of May. That red buoy is probably to do with the shark barrier when they use it in summer.

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  2. That autopilot is a tricky thing. In Denver where I grew up, the mountains are to the west; in Albuquerque they're to the east. I drove the wrong direction here for months. I've become a "real" Burquena this year, though--my dad in Denver was telling me about sunset over the mountains and I thought, "Surely he means sunrise."

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    1. hmm the mountains. Battling to attach names to a bunch of mountains that are both nameless (to me!) and is that ... no it must be ... or ...
      Our suburb is tucked in a long valley, so it remains hidden from sight, depending on where you look from. Confusing!

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  3. Thank you for sharing these photos with us. It is amazing how similar your part of the World and my part of the World look in term of landscape and flora.
    Summer is kind of on the extremely hot side of things at the moment here, so enjoy your sweet Winter and keep taking some beautiful pictures and informing us about your country through its plants, landscape ...
    Arlette

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  4. This is a very interesting post in terms of terrain and crops. It was incongruous to see the snow and the green valley. You have captured some beautiful closeups here with the majesty of the mountain ranges. I love seeing such a different part of the world. Oregon—where Patrick and I live—is very green on the western side of our Cascade Mountain range, and like a desert with prairies and cattle on the eastern side. I'm thinking just now of the majestic Columbia River Gorge...a place I bet you would love with your magnificent eye for beauty. Thanks for your post today.

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  5. such a beautiful contrast between the snow, the mountains and the green fields, it would make a lovely painting,,

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  6. I never get tired of seeing your mountains capped with snow and at their feet lovely golden colors.

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  7. It's refreshing to read of a chilly walk in June. Getting turned about is a challenge with moving though it always brings new adventures. We enjoy taking our lunch which makes for a more flexible day along with better choices for the price.

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  8. Wow - what gorgeous shots!

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  9. According to my records we had snow on the mountain near us last year on the 5th June and 5th July. Love it :)

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    1. I wonder, if you will get snow this weekend?!

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    2. Snowreport is predicting it for our area ;)

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    3. P.S. Left you some cost info in my reply to your last comnent on my blog. Yup, I am trying to encourage you ;)

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  10. Wow! I was just about to switch away from visiting blogs to a different project, and then I saw your post. I'm glad I stopped by today. Amazing photos, Diana! All of them, really. What a beautiful place!

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  11. Fantastic, as you know, snow on mountains are more than common here - but we don't see lush green fields and snow covered mountains here. I love this tension. So beautiful. Again I had a wonderful journey!
    All my best to the south - we're enjoying summer here!
    Elisabeth

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  12. The aerial perspective in these shots is absolutely stunning.

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  13. I can see how you might miss the ready access to views of snowy mountain tops -- but how nice to have new trails and new nurseries to explore. -Jean

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  14. The phrase "snow in June" usually doesn't mean good stuff around here, especially for us. While very rarely there might be a mild snowstorm in Alberta, I don't think we have had one here, and thank goodness for that. It's not going to be a good thing this time of year for us.

    I had no idea that you got that much snow...New Zealand had snow on the mountains also...it was a real eyeopener for me.

    Jen

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    1. We did once have freak snow, in December!
      New Zealand is even closer to Antarctica - they have a glacier.
      COLD here.

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  15. Nice seeing the beauty of the snow on the mountains - but for me - I need some of this summer warmth. It is your turn for the Winter season. Do Enjoy. Jack

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  16. Snow sounds so wonderful to me in the heat of our summer! Your photos are lovely. Snow-capped mountains are truly one of God's wonders.

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  17. At last we had three full days without rain, not too humid, and lots of sun! I am enjoying it, but still loved to see your amazing pictures of snow-capped mountains, Diana. Do you always have to drive to see snow, or does it snow at your house? P. x

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    1. Our snow is well behaved, and stays up there, where it is decorative, but not a nuisance.

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    2. Well behaved snow -- what a lovely thought!

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  18. The world is divided into many portions.
    No matter how many they are, every part of the world is always beautiful.

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  19. It must be quite an adjustment, settling in to your new area, learning what is an easy trip and what a trek. I love your mountain photos, particularly the shot of blue sky, snowy mountain tops and incongruously bright canola. We can't quite see the Snowdonia mountain range from where we live, but just a short walk along the cliff path rectifies that. You have me looking forward to the days ahead when they will be snow-capped, although next to your mountains they are ant hills!

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    1. names slide away from me, but we went to the garden of the man who designed Portmeirion ... and the clouds parted just for a moment ... so we could see Snowdon as he had framed it down an avenue of trees.

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