Leopards are rare creatures. Trust me, I know. I spent 3 years as a guide tracking these elusive animals through some of the most remote areas of South Africa.
But perhaps the rarest of all the leopards in Africa sits ironically right on my doorstep here in Cape Town. Less than 100 kilometres from the city, the majestic Cederburg rises up into the sky, and it’s here in this mountain range where some of the last remaining Cape leopards reside.
I’ve always held a private fascination with Cape leopards, so when I received Justin Fox’s short story in the mail entitled: Unspotted: One Man’s Insane Search for Africa’s Most Elusive Leopard, my heart jumped a few beats. After reading the header the first thoughts that came to my mind were of Quinton Martins and The Cape Leopard Trust. I know of Quinton’s mad passion for Cape leopards through the conservation community, so I knew if there was going to be a book written about an ‘insane search’, it was bound to be about him.
My suspicions were confirmed.
Author Justin Fox tells a charming short story of his time with Quinton in the Cederburg mountains – helping track, monitor and even (possibly) spot one of these rare creatures. Being short and well-written, the book is so easy to consume and you can finish it within a matter of hours. He’s a travel writer by profession, so it’s no coincidence that Justin’s writing had me pining for the quiet serenity of the Cederburg wilderness.
I know I’ll probably never see a Cape leopard, but just knowing that they are there gives me such a peaceful feeling. Kudos to Justin for putting this great piece together, and of course to Quinton and his team for the great work they are doing defending and conserving these animals and the ecosystems that they need to survive.
You can get the book here. It’s also possible to download it as an e-book or directly to your tablet.
You’ll find more short books on the Mampoer Shorts website.
Source: Paul Steyn - africageographic.com