Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Dinosaur Footprints in Lesotho

We were in Lesotho just before the new year, mostly to get away from the usual humdrum of suburban life, but also to take in magnificent mountain scenery, geology, the spectacular Maletsunyane Falls, and look for dinosaur footprints. We met with success in all departments, and had a laugh too. The Land Rover behaved itself - in fact went like a dream up those impossibly long, steep mountain passes which was a relief to say the least. I had given her a stern talking to a few months back - any more breakdowns and trouble from you and you are out on your ear - new owners, perhaps even the scrap yard for you if you don't buck up your ideas. So she seems to have taken note and with any luck the truculence of the last 18 months has come to an end. But on to more serious things - mostly dinosaur footprints. With a bit of help from the Lonely Planet guide, the GPS, and the local Basotho lads we found the most magnificent dinosaur footprints under a rock overhang. It is perhaps a bit of an indictment on the geological community that one has to find out information on such significant things as dinosaur fossil tracks from an Australian published travel guide. Well done to Lonely Planet, Nil points to the geologists. But now we hope to rectify this, so if you want to go see them, here are the co-ordinates: S28 54.151 E27 59.864 or if you prefer: S28.90252 E27.99774 or S28 54 09.1 E27 59 51.9.

They must be at least 10 metres up and under the overhang, and the ones at the entrance to the cave are closer and more impressive. That said, they are very well preserved and it looks as if there was a whole herd of them galloping around in the sediments. We are considering ways of jugging up and taking casts at the moment - will need to revisit my rope access skills.

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