Thursday, February 22, 2007

I lift up my eyes to the hills

Psalm 121 tells of the futility of looking for help in the hills. Well the Psalmist is right – because I was in the hills this past weekend and I had to help myself.
The family left Cape Town on Saturday morning for Greyton, a small village at the foot of the Riviersonderend Mountains. We planned to walk the 14km Boesmanskloof trail to McGregor on the opposite side of the mountain range. The trail is the only direct connection between these two villages. The other alternative is a 200km road trip. (A friend of mine suggested that this was a more logical alternative to the one we proposed).

We set off on the steep 400m climb to breakfast rock, where we were rewarded by a panoramic view of the village below. At this stage only Jenny and I appreciated the view. My daughters were seriously reconsidering their commitment to the walk. I lied to them that the worst was over, and they cheered up. After two hours of trailing through the high mountain valley we were rewarded by a series of pools and waterfalls known as Oakes falls. A very relaxing hour in and around the water gave us the courage to finish the day’s walk. The girls found out my lie as we toiled up the steep ascent to the gate at the trail’s end. A phone call to Fanie of Whipstock farm, and we were transported to our night’s accommodation. A hot shower, Amanda’s farm food, and a comfortable bed were the just reward for the day’s walking.

The walk back to Greyton on Sunday was brightened by Jenny skinny-dipping in the waterfall, and pancakes under the cool oak trees in Greyton.

Oh yes – the bit about looking to the hills for help?
Well, there is no help going uphill. But the view from the top is great.
And two days spent in the mountains is a great way to remember that “my help comes from the Lord who has made heaven and earth”.

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