The afternoon at Jonkershoek

The afternoon at Jonkershoek
The reason that I'm posting this photo is because of the sheer effort that I went to to snap it. I took it at Tweede Waterval (Second Waterfall), a few kilometres along a hiking trail in Jonkershoek Nature Reserve. Precariously balancing my camera on a ledge with water dripping just past the front of the lens, I stood perched below the camera over a body of beautifully clear water. We ran out of time and didn't actually reach the waterfall so I had to settle for this smaller specimen.

The 9800ha Jonkershoek Nature Reserve is located just outside of Stellenbosch and forms part of the Boland mountain range. One thing that we noticed while walking along the hiking trail was the diversity of the vegetation. While walking the trail, with fynbos pressing in all around, it was apparent how many different species of plants there were within an arm's length. In fact, I've just learned that there are more than 1100 plant species in the reserve.

Even though this reserve is home to the leopard, honey badger, klipspringer, and mongoose - we never saw a single large animal. What we did see was a rather strange and scared lizard (looking much like a dinosaur) and a little water snake.

Incidentally, after reading an article on Cape Nature's website, I discovered that the reserve is home to the Mountain Adder, Puff Adder, Tree Snake and Cape Cobra. I guess I'll have to take more care next time when rushing along the winding paths.

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