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 Puzzled!!!!

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warrior3



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PostSubject: Puzzled!!!!   Mon Nov 28, 2011 11:33 am

Hi everyone.
Has anybody out there in forum land have in their collection a photogragh of Fugitive's Drift with the river in full flood? I've been lucky enough to have been to the drift four times now, but my visits have been in the dry season. Considering the extreme difficulty that the Fugitive's experienced in crossing that river on the 22nd January, 1879, I'm amazed that no author has actually given us a perspective, in a photo, of what the drift would have looked like back then! Can someone help out please?
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PostSubject: Re: Puzzled!!!!   Mon Nov 28, 2011 1:01 pm

W3, I've seen a black-and-white photo in a book, showing the Buffalo river in full flood, the image itself focussing on the rock Melvill clung to, just breaking the surface of the water. I'll try to locate it.
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barry

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PostSubject: Mzinyathi in spate   Mon Nov 28, 2011 1:05 pm


Hi warrior3,

I have seen it in spate.
Iimagine a river level 1.5-2.5m higher than in the winter months, and with a very strong current.This will mean that in some places the banks will overflow and width will increase 4-5 X.
I have seen a picture of this somewhere recently and will post it shortly.


barry
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Frank Allewell

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PostSubject: Re: Puzzled!!!!   Mon Nov 28, 2011 1:26 pm

Ive seen the river in flood. The plain on the Natal side was flooded up to the beginning of the slope on the road. Only a couple of feet deep but strong with lots of eddies. The 'Dry Spruit" was backed up for around 200 meters. The width the fugitives would have crossed was at least 75 metres. Thats why the 'Coffin Rock' story doesnt work. Its far to close to the Zulu bank.

Regards
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PostSubject: Re: Puzzled!!!!   Mon Nov 28, 2011 3:35 pm

W3, page 241 in the book 'The Zulu War: Then And Now.' by Ian Knight, Ian Castle. On this page it shows two newspaper engravings - one showing Melvill at the rock with the Colour, the second is of the large boulder midstream. In the bottom right corner of the page is a b&w photo showing the river high with the top of the rock just visible above the surface of the water.
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warrior3



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PostSubject: Re: Puzzled!!!!   Mon Nov 28, 2011 4:08 pm

Colin J.
Thanks, but that's not a very good picture . I've been told that the river rises above the shrubs that line the the bank on the opposite side.
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PostSubject: Re: Puzzled!!!!   Mon Nov 28, 2011 5:02 pm

"With help of my revolver and a wild jump down the rocks I found myself in the Buffalo River, which was in flood and eighty yards broad. I was carried away, but luckily got hold of the tail of a loose horse, which towed me across to the other bank,"

Smith- Dorrient puts it at 80 Yards.
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runner2



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PostSubject: Re: Puzzled!!!!   Fri Dec 02, 2011 12:06 pm

Hi
I'm also very interested in seeing a photogragh of the river in spate at the drift. Like, Warrior3, I've been there a few times, but, again, in the winter months. Yes, it is puzzling as to why there's not one picture of the river showing us what it would've been like on the day of the battle. Very strange.
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PostSubject: mZinyathi in flood   Fri Dec 02, 2011 4:22 pm


Hi runner2,

Maybe the partial answer to the dearth of flood pictures of the mZinyathi at Fugitives Drift is because of the bad conditions in the wet season many people avoid going there.

barry
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PostSubject: Depth of flood water at Fugitives Drift   Sat Dec 03, 2011 1:13 pm


Hi All,

We have been hearing some personal eyewitness accounts of a flooded mZinyathi at Fugitives Drift being 75 -80m wide. Now, allowing for storm surge, lets assume it goes to 150m wide, even momentarily.
Simple measurement across the contours there will show that the rise in the river level in that extreme case will be about 3-4m above the normal level.
This rise in water level and flood pressure would no doubt have drastically reshaped the banks of that river, and any low lying ground adjacent to the banks, hence the apparent shift in the location of Coffin Rock vis-a-vis the two banks.

So, in view of this, summer storms would not have had serious consequences for graves and monuments above the 6m mark., other than the normal flow of storm water off the surrounding slopes damaging and misplacing some surface markings.

barry

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runner2



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PostSubject: Re: Puzzled!!!!   Sat Dec 03, 2011 3:59 pm

Hi Barry
Yeah, I take your point about the weather conditions at that time of the year, but, there must be someone out there who has a photo!
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