Favorite Places: Kloof Gorge and the Nkutu Falls

 Heading down into the silent and ominous gorge was always an unnerving trip since getting out if injured (most likely a twisted ankle on the slippery paths, or  falling off the edge of one of the many waterfalls ) or the threat of crime always lurked in my mind.  However these trips, often with  my  son  loaded into  my  back pack were always memorable.  The gorge is  huge and deep and there was always something new to see.  As a recommendation perhaps one of the weekly guided tours would have been safer however the guides were unlikely to  wait around for an avid trigger happy photographer that wanted to photography every piece of rock ,water or moss.   One of the most memorable times was  the  extremely close up viewing of a narina trogon, a  bird with bright read  breast and  emerald green  feathers with some white trimming.  Stunning until  your camera  runs out of batteries as was the case on this particular day.  They are hard to see as they blend into the dense green canopy and frequently have their backs to  you and sit motionless.  I was lucky to see them on no less than 3 occasions and only when it flies off, do you see a fleeting red flash.  The  bird life  generally in the the gorge is   superb from resident  crowned eagles, which regulalrly use an inaccessible nest  skirting the cliffs to the various falcons and  turacos.  But me for me,  photographing the various waterfalls using a  slow exposure  and an ND filter was  the most  fun and challenging form of  photography.  Not sure when I will be there again.


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