Stars at Vingerklip

Added 23 May 2012

We're at Vingerklip Lodge in the Damaraland region of Namibia. The location is quite special to say the least, we're surrounded by vast terraces of rock - a mini version of USA's Monument Valley is perhaps a reasonable description. After breakfast our guide Uanee leads a walk to the Finger of Rock. On route we learn how the bushmen lived, for instance how they used bark of the Mopani tree to make rope, and we also track zebra and giraffe foot prints. Most of us make it up to the base of Vingerklip and enjoy the magnificent views. Some of us spot baboon poo but regretfully no baboons. Returning to the lodge, guests enjoy a free afternoon. The waterhole attracts kudu, warthog and springbok. It turns out Kudu is also on the dinner menu tonight but we're assured it's not the same animal. After dinner we notice the sky is amazing. There is hardly any moonlight and the display of stars is incredible. Returning to their cottage, Richard and Dawn decide to try out a newly downloaded iPad programme called Star Walk (thank you for recommending this Peter!). Although we're sure it does lots more, basically the iPad screen shows the sky and identifies all the stars and planets. Richard and Dawn start to explore ... and are able to log the Southern Cross, Saturn and Mars amongst others. They even spot a satellite! Then Dawn thinks she's spotted another satellite and they spend sometime trying locate it on the ipad map. Finally they discover the bright light is coming from our lodge's honeymoon suite which is perched on top of the Eagle's Nest rock to the west. Perhaps they need more practice at this? The specialist worldwide star gazing tour programme is sadly put on hold for the time being.