A friend and I decided to hike a good few kilometres in the vegetation that remains wonderfully untouched in our hometown of Montagu, which lies roughly 200 km from Cape Town. In this post, I share some photo highlights from our Montagu hike.
Mountains All Around
Aside from being a popular tourist town found along the famous Route 62, this sleepy village offers some amazing natural vegetation (including the national Protea flower and varieties of fynbos) and breathtaking mountain views of the majestic Langeberg mountain range. As you can see from the photos, the mountains literally encircles this unique town.
Last year, I did a write-up on Montagu’s iconic Kogmans Kloof Pass. So it is quite fitting that, little under a year later, I head back to my roots, so to speak, and share some beautiful shots captured in and around my eternally beloved dorpie.
Growing up in Montagu, a Small Town with Plenty of Big Charms
I spent almost my entire childhood near Montagu. And, although there are so many places that I know off by heart, today’s hike was again a reminder of how much of Montagu and its natural beauty I have yet to explore. This is something I hope to amend in the coming years. For now though, I hope you enjoy the photos we captured on this particular hike.
Hiking in the Fynbos
Once we passed the town’s two municipal dams, which provide its drinking water, there was no set trail. This meant we had to ‘brave’ the bush to get as high as we did.
Sadly, we could not quite reach our intended destination (a lush cliff valley found in the classic ‘Cape fold’ mountains) – but we did manage to cover almost 7km there and back in roughly two-and-a-half to three hours.
As a bonus, we were blessed with gorgeous autumn weather, some amazing scenery of surrounding farms, the town itself and above all, the natural, untouched landscape.
Fauna were on the short side, although we saw and heard birds (including the hauntingly beautiful cry of a resident Fish Eagle, known as a ‘Bald Eagle’ in the States); came across a few lizards, a scurrying lime-green praying mantis; and some clear evidence of porcupines and buck, if the discarded quills and neat heaps of droppings were anything to go by.
I am a huge lover of South Africa’s national flower, the King Protea, and, although I bemoaned the obvious lack of field flowers and/or flowering shrubs (this made sense given the season), we were fortunate to see different proteas, both new and old. At one point of our hike, they hemmed us in like a mini-forest.
That’s a Nice Boulder
We also discovered some pretty amazing-looking, sizeable boulders. These are strangely unique to the Klein Karoo’s more hilly areas.
We even climbed up and rested on one or two to catch our breath or alternatively, take in the spectacular scenery before making our descent. 🙂
Climbing a koppie (small hill or knoll) was also something we ticked off. I think that’s probably the first and last time I will scale a koppie, especially as I only had sneakers to hike in! 🙂
Overall, it was a really fun and pleasant hike, which would have been far less strenuous if we had had a somewhat clearer path.
Still, therein lies the beauty of Montagu: the best things in life exist here unblemished. Much as they would have done hundreds of years ago. Long may it continue – for we are merely passing through! 🙂
About the author
Content writer by day and blogger by night, Tamlyn Ryan passionately runs her travel blog, called Tamlyn Amber Wanderlust - Travel Writing and Photography, from her home base of Cape Town, South Africa. Despite having a national diploma in Journalism and working as a content writer by day, Tamlyn's preferred niche remains travel writing.
Tamlyn is a hopeless wanderer, equipped with an endless passion for road trips, carefully planned, holiday itineraries and, above all else, an innate love for the great outdoors.