Seasons of Tswalu
Tswalu is, as we tell people, “big country” with boundaries beyond horizons. It provides a stunning backdrop to the dramatic changes that accompany each new season.
In the freeze of winter, the stars are bright diamonds in the sky! The springtime holds hope for rain and new life waiting to burst forth. The trees show off their yellow and white blossoms. Migratory birds start returning, reptiles emerge from their slumbers.
The rolling clouds, rumbles of thunder, fireworks displays of lightning and strong winds bring refreshing summer rains. Late afternoon clouds stretch high up into the skies, with the sun on the horizon and the rain falling purple and orange-pink to the horizon.
Tribulus zeyheri burst into flower, covering calcareous areas like a carpet. The iron-rich red roads reach over the dunes to the east where maroon mountains give direction, set against blue skies. Lions roar in the distance, barking geckos begin their cacophony as the evening unfolds and eastern clapper larks call from the road verges. Bushman silky grass shimmers in the evening skies.
It is here at Tswalu where guests find themselves at home in another place. Lafelola boikethlo – pleasant places!
Text and images by field guide Barry Peiser
Bruce Backhouse at Tswalu Kalahari
Landscape artist Bruce Backhouse described his experience of being an artist in residence at Tswalu Kalahari as a ‘once-in-a-lifetime’ opportunity. It was a chance to paint for days on end without interruption. ‘For an artist, the most amazing gift is to have big chunks of concentrated time. This is what artists thrive on,’ explained Bruce.
Aardvarks are strange animals. They look like a bizarre hybrid between a kangaroo, pig and vacuum cleaner. They are mostly active at night, smell odd, and live most of their lives in solitude.