In early September 2009 I joined a group of 26 plus 4 guides on a remarkable 18 day hike thought the mountains of the Eastern Cape. The Eden to Addo journey started in Knysna and ended after 460 kms in the Addo National Park.
Whilst trying to juggle how much more weight I would endure – full frame DSLR plus lenses, etc etc. – I changed tack and decided to buy a “compact” for the trip. This being Cape Town in 2009 there was little to choose from. As a 40 year Canon man the decision settled on the Canon G10 compact. I was told by Galeo Saintz – the expedition leader – there would be no time for protracted photographic interludes that landscape photographers such as me, are apt to indulge themselves in, so a small tripod and ball-head plus a remote shutter release and the digital compact was to be it.
Galeo’s advice about time was an understatement. Most days started at 6:00 am and finished on average at 7:00 pm. Breaks were for food and rest; hanging around to take photographs, or waiting for the light to change during the daily trek found one far behind the pack being tired and hungry to boot. To elaborate my memories of that walk and the experience of those 18 days is perhaps for another time. For me the photographer, it was both inspiring and frustrating, to reach such remote beautiful places and be shackled by the lack of time and equipment needed to capture the wonder before me; it was a constant irritation. When I got back and inspected the images the G10 lasted about another two weeks, just enough time to advertise and sell it.
I recently recounted the Eden to Addo adventure to some friends who have an interest in doing the hike. Looking at of my images again after nearly 3 years, it seems I dont have the same contempt for the image quality as I did back then. They will never be part of my Limited Edition Print portfolio and I doubt they will ever be printed, however they now give me pleasure and remind me of that amazing trek.
Not for the faint-hearted. Anyone interested in wild remote places visit the following:
Twenty-Five Images – Eden to Addo 5th – 23rd September 2009