Wednesday, March 30, 2011
An African Adventure
In 1843 a group of Voortrekkers led by Andries Potgieter reached the edge of the Great Drakensburg Escarpment as they searched for a route to Delagoa Bay in Mozambique. There appeared to be no possible way down for 50 km in any direction. Leaving the women, children and a few men outspanned on the banks of a river just below the top of the escarpment (near what is now the town of Graskop) Potgeiter and the rest of the men set off on horseback to try to find a way down to the Lowveld. The group who stayed behind were given strict instructions to turn back if the scouting party hadn't returned in 2 months time. They remained a fortnight beyond the two months and then sadly they started the long journey back - the river they had camped by during those long anxious weeks they named Treurrivier - the River of Sorrow. This is the river where Kaitlyn and Lucy were so happily playing.
NB Outspanning means unharnessing the animals that are pulling the wagons and making camp.