Excursion Day Two: Afromontane Forest

Day two had much in store for the unsuspecting third years. Our first stop for the day was at Compton Herbarium, founded in 1937 and the second largest herbarium in the country. Here, students toured the large plant ‘library’ – walking in the footsteps of South Africa’s early botanists, while discovering more about their methods of plant collection, documentation and preservation.

Next, Kirstenbosch National Botanical Garden, nestled at the foot of Table Mountain, awaited the arrival of our Super Botanists. Guided by the ever-enthusiastic Andrew, the team enjoyed a fast-paced 10km walk around one of the world’s “Magnificent Seven” botanical gardens. While pausing to catch our breath, we continued to build our botanical knowledge of the Afromontane Forest vegetation. The walk left many of our soldiers in need of a nap!

The staff of Franschhoek Traveller’s Lodge greeted us warmly upon our arrival. In pyjamas and ready for bed, our third years, much to their surprise and subsequent horror, were treated to a surprise test. With comfortable beds still calling, we had an early night.