The Rock Formations of Augrabies…(7)

I wish I knew more about geology… as these different types of rocks and the formations they make are really fascinating… Moon rock I know is granite and weathers very slowly…. cracking off layers like an onion peel…

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And the black range…

The Swart Rante is an intrusive dyke complex: volcanic rock which solidified in a dyke formation deep under ground. Later, the dyke was subjected to intense heat and pressure which changed the mineral composition to form metamorphic rock. Due to the fact that both volcanic and metamorphic rock erode at a
slower rate than other rock types, the dyke still remains intact with the portion above ground being 8,2km long and 900m wide. The rocks you see today consist of the minerals pyroxene, amphibole, and feldspar. The shiny black, glazed surface is created iron, manganese, and titanium oxides are leached from the rocks by the sun and deposited on the surface in a thin layer known as “desert varnish”.

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But the rest, I have no idea about.. it appears as a type of sandstone that would weather faster than any of the other rocks in the area… but their balancing acts are outstandingly unbelievable….

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Here is a perfect example of the very slow rate of decomposition.

This is a dead Kokerboom tree that has probably been dead as long as I’ve been alive…



A Trip to the Augrabies Falls..

An early morning start took us through the grape lands that just never seemed to stop till just short of the Augrabies National Park.. and then the site to see…

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A welcome sight as the short distance just seemed to get longer with every passing kilometre…

A few details about the Falls….

The Khoi people called it ‘Aukoerebis’, or place of Great Noise, as this powerful flow of water is unleashed from rocky surroundings characterised by the 18km abyss of the Orange River Gorge.

Few sights are as awesome, or a sound as deafening, as water thundering down the 56m Augrabies Waterfall when the Orange River is in full flood.

The Falls: As the Orange River approaches Augrabies Falls it divides itself into numerous channels before cascading down the 56 meter high waterfall. The river then continues its path through an 18 kilometre gorge. The sight and sound of the power of the water will not be easily forgotten.

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The Orange river is susceptible to flooding and when one looks at the channels it flows through, it is an awesome sight when full as all that water is channelled into a single gorge… below is a snap shot using Google earth showing the falls area…..

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I took a few photos of photos that show what it looks like in flood…

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