Gossamer Tapestry

Reflections on conservation, butterflies, and ecology in the nation's heartland

Sunday, April 27, 2014

Cape Peninsula


I have been woefully inadequate in my postings about my trip to South Africa last November.  Unfortunate, because I left off  my story on the day before an especially enjoyable excursion.  I have been online friends for a while now with David from Salt Spring Island in Canada.  We had never met in person, however David is South African originally and was going to be in Cape Town visiting at the same time we were there.  It was too good of an opportunity to pass up, so we agreed to meet up and drive around the Cape Peninsula together.


David

It was cloudy when we started out, and even sprinkled a bit on our way to pick David up, but it cleared up nicely as we got out onto the Cape.  We drove for a while and enjoyed the sights, stopping briefly to photograph some colorful beach cabins and a nice view of the peninsula extending out before us.


One of our big goals of this trip was to see penguins in the wild.  There is a nice colony of the at Boulders Beach.  A lot of the penguins were molting and looking rather scruffy- but it was wonderful to see them.



David took a photo that I really like of me with the penguins in the background.  I've been using it as my Facebook profile photo.


After lunch it was on to the nature reserve at Peninsula Point.  As we drove into the preserve, we started getting good views of the kinds of animals that I traditionally associate with Africa.



When we got out onto the peninsula proper, I was surprised at how much it reminded me of Cape Flattery in Washington, which I had visited several months before.  In both cases, the sheer cliffs plunging into the ocean offered lots of drama.


There were lots of nesting seabirds, particularly cormorants.  The stacked cliff shelves gave the place the effect of an avian high-rise condominium.


We capped off the day by returning to Cape Town and having drinks at a lovely rooftop bar that offered beautiful views of the city skyline, Table Mountain, and the coastline.  We really enjoyed meeting David and hope that we can get together again without traveling halfway around the world.


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