Single grains of sand
Nature’s monuments that reach to the sky
Trees outlasting lifetimes
Strokes of dark brown against a vibrant background of color
Trying to conquer what nature has created
Languages of the world
Still failing to capture indescribable beauty
Footprints in the sand
All evidence we were here
Memories of moments
Surrounded by monuments built of single grains of sand.
This was one of the reasons I came to Namibia, to stand in the pan of Deadvlei and see the beauty of the dunes and the trees.
We began by climbing a portion of Big Daddy, one of the largest dunes in the area.
While I only climbed a short way, it was still an amazing experience. I climbed to the section just above the travelers in the below photo.
Looking down to the right, it seemed as though the side was straight down.
Toni, our guide, was with me and asked if I was ready to head down.
“You mean straight down?”
I thought maybe I’d be walking back the way I came.
“Yes, put your camera inside your shirt and grab my hand.”
I was very hesitant, but trusted Toni. So I grabbed her hand, leaned back and took my first step. My foot slid down and I took another step. It was a hot day but the sand was delightfully cool as my feet sunk down. Then finally I sat down and slid the rest of the way. It was so much fun. I laughed the whole way.
Then we walked over a small hill, and there it was.
It’s hard to describe what a beautiful place it is. The pan is made up of cream colored dried clay. The trees died after the dunes blocked the water source hundreds of years ago. They are estimated to be 900+ years old.
Here is a photo of people walking across the pan and people coming down the side of Big Daddy. The mirage created by the heat reflecting off the sand is amazing. Yes…this captures some of the vastness of the area.
I had time to sit down beside one of the trees and to take in the beauty and spirit of this unique place on Earth. Seeing, listening, feeling…I will never forget.
There are some grasses and short bushes that have sprung up in a few places- survivors in an area where most things cannot live. It was hot, but the slight breeze helped cool me down a bit.
Because it is such a large space, it’s easy to find solitude. It was a spiritual experience that touched my heart.
Once again, the shadows and textures helped set the stage.
Deadvlei Namibia called and I’m so glad I answered.