Explorers 7. Wahlberg

Johan August Wahlberg (1810 – 1856) was another Swedish naturalist and explorer. He traveled in southern Africa between 1838 and 1856, especially in Natal and South West Africa, sending thousands of natural history specimens back to Sweden. The journals of his travels are generally brief and objective (and I haven’t been able to find themContinue reading “Explorers 7. Wahlberg”

R.I.P Linda Grewar

Linda Grewar was a Kingfisher paddler from back around 1990. She and Bernie Garcin paddled really well – a number of mixed doubles podium finishes on the Dusi, Fish and Umzimkulu. Then she buzzed off ‘overseas’. In May 2016 Bernie gave me Linda’s address, so I wrote  to her: Hey Linda! – LONG time noContinue reading “R.I.P Linda Grewar”

Floods in KwaZulu Natal 1987

September 1987 floods Between 28 and 30 September 1987, the central and southern part of Natal were ravaged by floods that were amongst the most devastating to have occurred in South Africa. The main cause was an intense “cut-off” low pressure system off-shore which co-incided with a Spring high tide. Destruction of property was catastrophic,Continue reading “Floods in KwaZulu Natal 1987”

Writing A Book

I think people should write down their stories. In particular I thought Charles Mason should write his as he has paddled one particular crazy-ass canoe marathon every summer for fifty years in a row! Insanity like that should be noted and recorded for posterity. Psychologists should be looking into it. I mean he won theContinue reading “Writing A Book”

As Good Books Go

Talking about ‘fuck’ – I read a wonderful book ‘Duzi Fever’ by an entertaining old bugger Rob Gouldie who did the 1955 Dusi. I once heard him give a hilarious talk at Kingfisher. He told a lo-ong story of hardship, paddling, dragging canoes, breaking boats, chopping one up and stuffing it into the other, lunchContinue reading “As Good Books Go”

Hella Hella weekend

On the banks of the beautiful Umkomaas river at what the Porters used to call ‘The A-frame’ campsite. The A-frame washed away in the 1987 floods, heading downstream and maybe out the mouth, into the Indian Ocean and off to Australia. Leopard and otter footprints; A tiny little dead shrew – what kind? dwarf?; AContinue reading “Hella Hella weekend”

Paddling the Umkomaas

I only paddled the actual race once (1983 Hella Hella to Goodenough’s) but I was lazy and slow and the long days with cut-off times didn’t suit! Getting-a-move-on is not my forte. So I used my tripping excuse to volunteer for sweep duties. We would paddle ahead of the start at Hella Hella bridge inContinue reading “Paddling the Umkomaas”

An Idea Was Born

From: pete swanepoel home Sent: 16 December 2014 To: Allie Peter; Greg Bennett; Doug Retief; Subject: Deepdale – Hella Hella Hey Allie, Greg & DougI just posted this story about an Umko trip with Bernie Jamludi The Jet.Thought you might like to check it out: Cheers – PetePS: I’m licenced to scribble: ~~~oo0oo~~~ Hi PeteContinue reading “An Idea Was Born”

River trip Deepdale – Hella Hella

We left Bernie’s white Ford Escort at Hella Hella with the Porters, and drove round to Deepdale in my white Ford Cortina. Linda Grewar (who became a notable paddler herself – she later won the Fish river marathon mixed doubles with Bernie!) then drove my car back to Durban. ‘Seconds’! ‘Helpers’ ‘Chauffeurs’! What would weContinue reading “River trip Deepdale – Hella Hella”