So yesterday myself and some friends decided to head for Thumb Pass in the Central Drakensberg, South Africa – a route opened 16 years ago and never repeated. The guy who opened it doesn’t have a GPS track, photos or even remember where it tops out, so my investigations and research has been off assumptions and searching for the route. I have tried to get to it twice before – the first time I couldn’t find the top of the pass in the mist, the second time we turned around in bad weather.
The goal was to head up the easy Langalibalele Pass – the sight of a skirmish that is very important to our local history. Thumb Pass tops out near the pass.
So we headed up Langies Pass (as we call it) – we made good time, but with thick mist and rain our hopes of success where not great.
The clearest view we had all day. We had about 100m visibility at this point.
Any way – on reaching the top we sat in thick mist waiting for lunch. The one member in the group was feeling sick, and the weather wasn’t getting any better, so we decided to head back down Langies. I soon realised the sick member of our group had hypothermia. We got part of the way down the pass, put every item of clothing we could spare on him, and soon he bounced back and was feeling fine.
A good day – but very cold and wet, no views.