17-Oct-2015 -- The Land Cruiser Club of Southern Africa has a membership of over 1100 members both nationally and internationally. As a Club it provides for members who have a common interest in Land Cruiser vehicles and who enjoy the outdoors, for whatever activities people pursue the adventures that are provided by nature.
Every two years a national gathering is held, known as a ‘Saamtrek’ (Afrikaans word for a gathering of like-minded people) and every other year a more local event is held, known as a ‘Saamkuier’ (Afrikaans word for a combined visit, to get to know each other, of like-minded people.)
In 2015, the task of arranging the ‘Saamkuier’ for the province of KwaZulu-Natal (KZN), a geographic entity in South Africa, was entrusted to Hennie Willemse who is the elected ’Custodian’ representing the province.
Hennie arranged for the ‘Saamkuier’ to be held at HighOver, a venue which provides for an outdoor escape, which is situated on the banks of the Umkomaas River northwest of the town of Richmond in KZN. HighOver is a beautiful spot nestled in the valley surrounded by indigenous trees and natural South African bush with secluded campsites and bungalows on the Umkomaas river.
And so it was, that over 20 Land Cruisers and their contents of husbands, wives, children, and girlfriends all arrived, on Friday 16 October, to participate in the bi-annual getting-to-know-each-other visit of provincial members, as well as the renewing of old friendships.
Campfire concluded that evening with a proposal from Guy Boardman to visit the confluence of 30S 30E on Saturday morning. To many the Degree Confluence Project was unknown, however following an explanation by Guy, there was an enthusiastic agreement by most that a visit to 30S 30E would be worthwhile, even though the Confluence had been already discovered and visited by Peter Tiedt many years previously.
At 10h00 on Saturday morning the convoy headed out from HighOver to turn up the pass known as Hella Hella, and to drive the some 30 km to the confluence point. Despite the Confluence having been visited before, there was still a buzz of excitement as the guys chatted over the 2-way radios between their vehicles as we drove up the pass, to enter the flats of lush green farmland, on the gravel road towards 30S 30E.
Upon arriving at the closest point to 30S 30E, which is not more than 100 metres from the main gravel road in a Blue Gum plantation, all persons alighted from their vehicles and proceeded in the bush, watching their GPR’s ticking off the figures as it slowly moved towards a Three followed by lots of Zeros. It was not difficult to find the spot which was marked by a small cairn of stones. Smiles all round as the group recorded their visit for posterity photographically, the appointed photographer being Serge Chevron, a long standing member, initially from Belgium, but who had now made Africa his home.
From a previous visit by myself together with Peter Tiedt, 30S 30E has not changed much. The spot is still surrounded by commercial Blue Gum plantation, although the trees are a bit taller. A 360° panorama shot would also not reveal much other than the growing trees.
All in all a successful revisit of 30S 30E and an induction of new members to the Degree Confluence Project.
With all Confluences in South Africa discovered, except for a couple of off-shore spots, the interest was far more for spots in Namibia, where 5 points remain undiscovered. Certainly some enthusiasm was generated by this visit to 30S 30E and I would imagine that the undiscovered spots in Namibia will shortly become discovered, gauging by the enthusiasm of the new knowledge of the DCP provided to members of the Land Cruiser Club of Southern Africa.
Coordinator's Note: This confluence visit is registered as "incomplete" because it doesn't comply with the DCP Photo Requirements.