22 May 2009 1,819 views
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photoblog image Reaching the top
Reaching the top|

Reaching the top

We are on the last stretch of the Sani Pass just before the Lesotho border post. The size of the white Toyota truck below provides an idea of the inclines it still has to cover in the short road distance to where we are.

The mountain range is called the Drakensberg (mountain of dragons). After crossing into Lesotho, there is a plateau and then some higher mountains which are known as the Moluti mountain ranges.

Enjoy your weekend, next week we will be stopping over at the SaniTop Chalets.

comments (28)

  • Ray
  • Thailand
  • 22 May 2009, 01:13
I am breathless...just looking at this astonishing image, Louis.
Louis: Thank you Ray - one would need some locomotive breath for this 'hill'
  • Chris
  • England
  • 22 May 2009, 01:44
That's big - I mean that truck looks so small!
Louis: These mountains are huge - nice for hiking trips as well smile
  • Ginnie
  • Atlanta, GA, United States
  • 22 May 2009, 02:00
Talk about scale, Louis. This is NOT what I think of when I think of Africa--North, South, East or West!
Louis: Hmmm, yes I think many people think of africa as a place with wild animals and jungles. But the variety is endless. From urban to very remote, etc. I find these associations that we as people make very interesting - to an extent it says a lot about what gets communicated in ads, tv-programs etc. Thanks for your comment Ginnie.
  • kay
  • Portland OR
  • 22 May 2009, 03:00
Very impressive, Louis. I love this series. Wow. smile
Louis: Thank you kay, more to come smile
  • Eliza
  • Tanzania
  • 22 May 2009, 06:11
amazing picture. the road coming up in front of the truck looks a tad steep, not sure my old car would get up there smile
Louis: We experienced something on this pass that I label as: "Only in Africa". Going up there was a mini-bus taxi with 16 passengers coming down, just amazing. From the Lesotho side there is no '4x4 only' rule. Endless braking of the fully loaded vehicle for 24 kms and they probably made it. All to say - if you know what you are doing, your old car may also make it smile
Sigh... what a flat country I live in.
Great landscape.
Louis: Flat can also be beautiful Frank, at least older people can also cycle around their country in the netherlands smile
So clever to have that vehicle in this photograph to lend scale. We now see the immensity of these mountains.
Louis: Thanks Chad. Next time you are over here, make time to see more smile
  • zed
  • Australia
  • 22 May 2009, 08:30
l can see why people have accidents on this road, not much room for error with the loose surface and the gradient
Louis: You are right about that zed
  • vintage
  • Australia
  • 22 May 2009, 08:56
Louis this has all of the right things happening for a landscape.I now know about from fellow s/c and reading about it Great photo mate
Louis: Thank you vintage, I think the cloudy skies of the day also helped a lot.
  • Philine
  • Germany
  • 22 May 2009, 12:24
Ginnie is right- a gorgeous view and we have just the feeling to have reached the top- but without any effort, sweat and fear - it is wonderful to follow -by the eyes- the snakelike, climbing up pathes that must be overcome! And the little car adds to the composition indeed!
Louis: Thank you Philine - going upwards by pictures - no sweat smile
A breathtaking view Louis! A likey for me.
A 4WD was a must there.
Louis: Thanks for the honour richard
Amazing landscape Louis and what a nerve tingling place to drive a vehicle.
Louis: You pay attention to this road when driving, that's for sure smile
  • Mroy
  • United States
  • 22 May 2009, 19:36
Wow, I need to have a steady supply of motion sickness pill before undertaking a road trip here.

Fabulous capture.
Louis: Thank you Mroy, that could be difficult smile
Awesome Louis! I'm so glad to see they haven't got around to tarring the route yet - good old africa time tongue
You been playing a bit of hdr there, Louis? Works great to show all the detail in the rock faces.
Louis: Thanks Hywel. According to the locals, they are a year behind schedule. The main reason is that there has been some misscalc when surveying the amount of work. There are some roadworks for about 5 kms from Himeville on the pass road. Apparently the tarring will also only go up to the SA border post.
I haven't done HDR tonemapping here, but a variation called exposure blending which you can also do on the Photomatix Pro software tool.
Top o' the world to you too. Rolling hills and endless worlds
Louis: Heh, about 30 years they still had an anual motorcar/-bike rally up this pass and accross Lesotho - it was called the Roof of Africa Rally - your top o' the world comment reminded me. Thanks jamoula
  • martie
  • United States
  • 23 May 2009, 01:30
Nice shot! That little van/bus looks so small!! Beautiful landscape.
Louis: Thank you martie, beautiful indeed.
This is a stunning image, wow what a view!
Louis: Thank you Clare - on a clear day you can see forever smile
Wonderful and a likey for me too !
Louis: Thank you Zebigleb. C'est un grand honneur pour moi.
  • Samarth
  • United Kingdom
  • 23 May 2009, 19:23
liking the texture and the light...
Louis: Thank you Samarth
I miss fresh green here...
Louis: Wrong season Chantal - this is autumn and almost winter.
  • Magnus
  • Norway
  • 24 May 2009, 20:16
Beautiful landscape, really like the sky. Looks like a very challenging road smile
Louis: Thank you Magnus. Challenging, but also fun.
  • Padraig
  • United Kingdom
  • 24 May 2009, 22:32
one word....stunning.
Louis: Yes it was worth the trip, thanks Padraig
what a stunning scene that is Louis and a fantastic shot of it too fellasmile
Louis: Thank you dear sir smile
I'm glad you added the car, enormous mole hillssmile
Louis: Thanks Nigel, you don't want to meet the moles smile
  • Mal
  • United Kingdom
  • 28 May 2009, 11:38
top top image Louis, the vehicle gives the perfect sense of scale, love the comp. mal
Louis: Thank you mal. I can imagine that you see cliff faces to scale.
love the subtlety of the colour Louis.
Louis: Thank you Darren
Kry sommer weer hoendervleis. Die plek is darem maar mooi. Jy'y hierdie scene baie beter vasgevang as wat ek kon. Seker weer daai oog van jou... Op 'n tegniese punt: wat het jy met die foto gedoen? Lyk na kontras verstelling en so bietjie "graininess"?
Louis: In Photomatix is daar 'n 'combine' funksie - ek het dit 'n slag uitprobeer. 'Combine: Highlights and shadows - Intensive'. Ek is self nie so tevrede met die resultaat nie, maar dit mag ook 'n geval wees dat ek nog die tool beter moet leer ken.
splendide, une vrai merveille
Louis: La nature est une chose merveilleuse. Merci Claude

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camera Canon EOS 400D DIGITAL
exposure mode shutter priority
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aperture f/8.0
sensitivity ISO400
focal length 18.0mm
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