17-Jun-2009 -- A high impact hunt - 50% of the Confluence Points of Swaziland visited in one afternoon
Swaziland is a tiny country as indicated by barely having two confluence points. One located north within very near the border with Mozambique, and another one located south close to the border to South Africa.
With one free afternoon to boot, it was a toss up to decide which one to visit. From the hotel in Ezulwini valley, the southern point was closer by 20 km, about 64 km GPS distance away.
The nice lady at the front desk of the hotel arranged a friend named Stanley with a car as my hunting partner. We met up at 1 p.m., and I told Stanley I wished to go to a town called Gege, and he knew exactly where to go. This confluence point is located a little bit south of Gege.
The drive south over hilly terrain was very pleasant. The only stop was to take photo of an interesting plant with bright orange flowers on top. About 16 km before Gege we switched to a dirt road. We reached Gege in 30 minutes and crossed a paved road and continued south on the dirt road. About 3 km further down the road, we turned off the main road with the confluence point 240 meters to the East. We parked the car on a road between two small farms with 180 meters further to go.
This confluence point is located within the fenced-in area of a small farm, and just about 20 meters in front of the house. Unfortunately, there was nobody home, so we couldn't visit with the true owners of this point. I always found visiting with the folks living near the confluence point the highlight of the hunt.
The previous visit was done about 5 years ago. Comparing the photos, there are now a couple additions to the small household - a water storage tank and a round hut. There is also a new building under construction toward the back. The confluence point is located on a post-harvest corn field.
We stopped in a shop in Gege for some refreshment than headed back. The entire trip took about 4 and a half hours. A nice afternoon out after 24 hours of flying and airport time.
Rating of this hunt:
Degree of Challenge: 1 – A drive up (1= very easy - drive to the point; to 5= a death march – glad it is over)
Scenery: 2 – The drive covered more than half of the length of the country, and the confluence point is located on a small-plot farm (Scale: 1= not interesting at all; 5= take your breath away)
Culture-social factors: 3 – Rural Swaziland and a sense of a small community life. (Scale: 1=dull; 5= most stimulating)