May 27, 2015

In the garden today

I have been neglecting this blog for months...... 
It has been summer, it has been hot, it has been humid, it has been................ everything.......... I have barely existed! 
Finally 'winter' is here - I'm living again! 

The worst growth of summer is over and it's finally possible to do yard work in the middle of the day without being roasted in the sun. 
I brought my camera yesterday and captured a few things in the area of the garden where I was working. 

Out of Africa - almost - LOL. Yes, it's coffee beans. We have a few coffee plants in our garden and they have berries now.  Actually coffee beans are not beans at all, they are berries. The coffee 'bean' inside the berry is the seed of the coffee plant and is also the 'beans' we roast for coffee. These beans are soon ready to be harvested. 

Coffee plants in our garden.

This 'little' fellow is one of the inhabitants in our garden. They are 'outside-spiders', never seen them inside. I had definitely freaked out if I had seen one inside! As far as I know they are harmless. They spin their web and stay there. The web is big, strong and glue-ish. 

Passion fruit, or purple granadilla as it is called in South Africa. 

... and bananas of course! 
When I lived in Norway, I thought a banana was a banana.... I was wrong! There are several varieties and the tastes are different. We have two varieties in our garden; one that has a slight sour taste (which we both love) and one we just call 'normal' bananas (not sure which variety these are). 

November 27, 2014

Mare Aux Joncs - Black River Gorges - Part 2

...continue from part 1
(Photos heavy)

The easiest access to Mare aux Joncs is from Black River Royal Road.

Junction to the Black River Gorges from Black River (Tamarind) junction.

If you are in for a good walk; walk the 5 km / 3.1 miles to the Visitor's Center in the park.

We have done this road several times, but most of the time the opposite direction; from the Visitor's Center to the Royal Road junction. It looks different...

Black River Peak - the highest mountain in Mauritius - 828 meters / 2717 feet above sea level.

The Black River

Entrance to the Visitor's Center

Park information

A nice picnic area. 
We had a short rest here before we continued to the waterfall. 

One of the many river crossings in the park.

The first junction; to Mare aux Joncs and the Pilgrim trail.
There's another junction further up that is marked 'Pilgrim Trail' to the right. Take the left fork, which continues to the waterfall.

The first 3+ km is easy walking...

Several river crossings...

The last part of the trail - after the first river crossing - is rather rocky and keep your eyes open to see where it goes! 

... deep in the Gorges...

Finally! We have reached Mare aux Joncs!
The strenuous walk is all worth it for the beauty of the waterfall!  

Yep! A 'wall'! 

After a long and strenuous hike, it is possible to cool down under the refreshing river water.  

On the return to the Visitor Center

The last piece is a bit wet and rocky as well. 

The picnic area at the visitor center

A wonderful hike that allows for a repeat! 

For more trekking and hiking info, click here.

October 24, 2014

Macchabee Trail - Mare aux Joncs - Black River Gorges National Park - Part 1

This year we have done two different hikes to Mare aux Joncs waterfall in Black River Gorges National Park.

For me, the best way to celebrate my birthday is a hike together with friends. We decided on the Petrin to Mare Longue hike, but approximately halfway we saw the sign 'Macchabee Forest Trail'. We let our friends decide since Mr.X was carrying an 8 kilos baby on the back! Mr. X likes challenges and off we went on the new trail - at least new to us. 

What we didn't know is how steep it actually is! Fortunate it was dry, it had been more difficult to do the trail if it had been wet and slippery.

Not very steep here, but this is just the beginning. 

Yep! We came from up there! 

Mare aux Joncs waterfall - from the top.
We had lunch here at the river / waterfall. It was perfect; dear friends, the food tastes better out in the nature, the sound from the forest, the river and waterfall, birds, smell of nature, pristine, solitude, balsam for the soul.... 

The climbing from the river to the Macchabee trail.
Yes, it is that steep! 

Yes, very important! 

We are back on the main trail; the Macchabee Trail back to Petrin.

Back to civilization! :) 

To continue Part 2.