#SAHistory, Week 1: Retracing the steps of the Voortrekkers - Drakensberg


I recently discovered Retiefklip on a recent visit to Northern Drakensberg, I was driving up the Oliviershoek pass coming from Sterkfontein Dam and found a sign board for it, and wondered what it was all about. I paid no attention to the 4 x 4 only sign and figured my Toyota Yaris would handle as it hadn't done to bad before on rough terrain. People laugh at me all the time when I tell them what my car is capable of, and very seldom believe me.

As expected, my car effortlessly made it up the mountain pass after a 20 minute drive.


 

A moment in South African History

You all remember Piet Retief right?

For those that don't, he played a huge role in South African history. He was a Voortrekker leader and a governor during the Great Trek. The Retief pass is where some of Retief’s party of Voortrekkers descended the Drakensberg in their quest for freedom and to find land of their own.

This group of men consisted of 66 wagons and these were the first ever wheeled vehicles to enter Natal on the 14th December 1837. The trail carved by these wagons is known as Retief’s Pass and was declared a national monument in February 1977.


 

Retiefklip

I can't believe I have never been to this historical area before. With not a soul in site, I walked through a tunnel of rocks before accessing the monument. I was slightly distracted by these softly lit boulders glowing orange as the sun hit it. I was in awe of its beauty.