The Romance of the Cape Mountain Passes

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9780864865960: The Romance of the Cape Mountain Passes
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There are more than 490 mountain passes in the western, eastern and northern Cape, many of them more than a century old and the product of considerable engineering feats. They provide ways through and over the natural barriers in the region, giving access to regions and communities, and offering the infrastructure that makes for a thriving economic and social life. They also pass through spectacular natural scenery and are in themselves objects of great beauty and ingenuity. There have been books before about the passes - but all, even the most recent by Jose Burman, are long out of print. Now Graham Ross, a retired civil engineer and himself a distinguished padmaker, has written the story of 31 of the best-known or most significant mountain passes. Combining careful research with a readable style and nice sense of humour, this book tells some wonderful stories and makes one long to head for the mountains. But this is not old history warmed up: the author brings a lifetime's experience as an engineer and padmaker to bear on his subject, and has the knack of conveying, in easily understandable terms, the extent of the engineering problems and achievements which each pass involved. At the same time he not only is concerned with the original construction, often in the nineteenth century, but pursues their histories up to the present, describing the second and third waves of pass-building that occurred in the twentieth century, first in the 1940s and 50s and latterly in the 1970s and 80s. Illustrated throughout with colour and sepia photographs and accompanied by helpful maps, this book is for the reader with a love of the open road, an interest in history and a delight in the triumphs of human ingenuity and imagination.

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Ross, Graham
Published by New Africa Books (Pty) Ltd (2003)
ISBN 10: 0864865961 ISBN 13: 9780864865960
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Graham Ross
Published by New Africa Books (Pty) Ltd (2003)
ISBN 10: 0864865961 ISBN 13: 9780864865960
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