San paintings

Today (31st) we were priveledged to walk to some San paintings which are believed to be over 10,000 years old.

We needed to skirt the plain where we had previously seen the giraffe but rhinos were blocking our path. So we fast tracked it over the plain, stopping at a couple of trees en route, glancing over at the rhinos to check if they were still at ease.

Climbing up the cliff edge we were definitely entering leopard and black mamba territory.

Research into the paintings suggest that not only the San used the area but also the Koi-San. The San paintings were of people, suggesting that this was a place where they came for the summer months, when berries were plentiful and the overhanging rocks provided a cool shelter. As the paintings were of people, and not of animals, it is thought that they probably came here for tribal gatherings. Various artefacts have been found including a bone needle, face mask and pottery shards.

The Koi-San paintings consist of a hand print and a foot print.

We then went to a rocky outcrop where I took tons of photos as it’s the best place to show this reserve off to its best. There we had a close encounter with a spitting cobra and rapidly chose a different route down the outcrop.

Underneath the outcrop was another San painting but this time it was of a man, painted in white, with something leaving the top of his head.

It is thought that this place was a spiritual place. Various artefacts – pottery shards, glass beads, stones from other regions all show that in the past, this place has been important. Excavations in the past have also uncovered weapons cache from the Boer war.