“Kid, you’ll move mountains” – Dr Seuss
I have always wanted to start a blog to document all my mountaineering missions, but I didn’t know where to start. I still don’t, but I’m less of a coward now, and I guess the natural thing to do is to first write about how I got into hiking and why I like it so much.
So first of all, I didn’t “get” into hiking, I was kind of born into it. Both my parents were born and raised in the Mountain Kingdom of Lesotho, so I have mountaineering in my blood! Growing up in the mountainous Eastern Free State, there was never a shortage of mountain stoke. Whether it was hiking up to find firewood with my brother, or sneaking off to play in the natural water slides in the springs in the mountain, I have always been fortunate enough to have had unpoliced access to the mountains.
The village I grew up in is nestled in multiple valleys along the SA-Lesotho bordering part of the mighty Drakensberg mountain range. Also, it didn’t help that I was born into a family of globetrotters who absolutely love the outdoors.
So a little bit about myself:
My name is Amanda Mokoena, I am a masters student at the University of Cape Town(UCT), South Africa, and I am a keen hiker passing off as an academic. I have been a member of the UCT Mountain and Ski Club for the past two years and have been missioning in the Western Cape for a while now. I moved here in 2014 and have done almost all the peaks in the Cape Town area, and have missioned further into the WP. I was born in Johannesburg and still have a home there, even though I kind of live in QwaQwa in the Free State.
Back home (both JHB and FS), I drag my siblings on small missions whenever I get bored and have a lot of fun! I don’t know if they’d agree. I have decided to document my mountaineering missions to share my journey towards finding my place in the hiking community as a black female, and how to survive a 5-day trail with an afro!
I will not be posting frequently because THESIS!, but I will definitely be following a structure so it’s all easy and fun to engage with. I AM a political entity just by being, and will not attempt to escape that in my posts. So if talking about racial and class segregation in extreme sports isn’t your thing, this is where I leave you!
Thanks so much for reading and please come back😭