From Seru Gracia to Savonet

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Seru Gracia naar Savonet 20140807 022 smallOn Thursday, August 7, 2014, the archaeology sleuths went once again to the Christoffel park. We had planned for a one-directional hike from Seru Gracia back to the entrance of the park. Christoffelpark management supported us in this plan by allowing one of the rangers to drop us off at the top of the Seru Gracia, so that we could leave our cars at the parking lot of the park. To be prepared for the worst, François parked his car in the park on the parking lot at the foot of the Christoffel mountain. In this way we had a choice either to complete the whole hike on foot or drive the last part.

We descended from the top of the Seru Gracia at 8:30 AM in the direction of the roi. But already after a few meters our descent stagnated, because we saw the first blooming Banana shimaron, the purple orchid. These orchids look a bit like a thick banana and they develop a long flowering stem with purple flowers at the end. And long means indeed long! Carel found one with a flowering stem of close to 2 meters. We found a lot of these orchids with flowers during the first part of our descent but strangely enough not a single one with flowers when we came lower.

Hetty and I were at the back of the group and we were rewarded for that. Behind us we saw a deer. It watched us for a short time before continuing its journey. As always a very nice encounter.

The vegetation in the roi was at times very dense. In that case we had two options: one is to continue through the roi and the second option is to get higher on the side of the roi. Sometimes there was no second option because also the sides were overgrown. Luckily we encountered almost no Wabis but unfortunately there were other plants with thorns that kept our progress low.
At one place we could not continue in the roi because of a steep drop of the roi over rocks. Most of the participants continued on the left side of the roi. At that side was also a high rock and of course Fred could not withstand that rock and climbed it. I went along the right side of the roi and was able to descend in the roi close after the steep rocks. This drop in the roi will probably result in a very impressive waterfall during heavy rains.
At that time it was already 12 PM and we had done only 1 kilometer of the total of 4.7 km. The second kilometer through the roi to the parking lot for the Christoffel mountain took us another hour. Along the way we went under a wooden bridge and found a freswater well in the roi.

At the parking lot François, Eddy and Carel decided to do the last part with the car that François had parked there. Hetty, Fred and I continued on foot partly through the roi partly over a path. We had to take the shortcut via the path because of the vegetation in the roi and because our watersupply was almost completely used up.
We found the well that was marked as a brackish water well on the Werbata map but that turned out to be freshwater at the moment. The last part, Roi Beru, was extra easy because this roi is used as the path from Savonet to the Christoffel mountain. All in all the second half of the hike took us only 1 hour while the first half had taken us 4.5 hours, We arrived at Savonet close to 2 PM.

A long hike through the beautiful nature of the Christoffel park.

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