Sephton's Nek is a fairly ordinary mountain pass with one or two sharp bends, one steep sided and impressive cutting and a moderate altitude variance. It lies in the North-West Province just north of the town of Zeerust and this pass is frequently mentioned in the writings of one of South Africa's most famous novelists - Herman Charles Bosman, who wrote as the character Oom Schalk Lourens in a range of books and short stories.
Tales of the Bosveld (Bushveld) come to life in his stories and we explore his involvement in Sephton's Nek, Zeerust and Groot Marico in an extraordinary exploration of his short, inspired and troubled life. In a very short stay in the Bosveld of just 6 months, Bosman wrote prolifically and left a legacy of wonderfully, pure South African stories for generations to come.
His life included jail time on a murder charge and another stint in "tjoekie" for blasphemy. (I wonder if that law still exists!) We dig deep into the life of this author and link it all up within the intricate subject of a mountain pass.
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Sephton’s Nek appears to have been named after Thomas Sephton, a British immigrant that arrived in the Zeerust district in 1860. He worked as a prospector and after finding some traces of gold, was partly responsible for starting a sudden rush on what was to become the Malmani Goldfields, today called Ottoshoop. The pass is situated on the tarred R49 route between Zeerust and Kopfontein, which is the primary border post used by most South Africans when travelling by car to Gaborone, the capital of Botswana. Also located along this road is Madikwe, one of the largest game parks in South Africa.
Mountain Passes South Africa is a website dedicated to the research, documentation, photographing and filming of the mountain passes of South Africa.
Passes are classified according to provinces and feature a text description, Fact File including GPS data, a fully interactive dual-view map and a narrated YouTube video.
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