Tag Archives: dynamite

Things to See in South Africa: Old English Fort and the Cogmanskloof Tunnel to Montagu Photo Gallery | Travel Attractions 28 JUL 2015

The Cogmanskloof Pass connects the towns of Ashton and Montagu. Its entire 6.5 km stretch through a majestic landscape of towering rock formations. Renamed after Cape Colony secretary, John Montagu, the town’s original name of Cogmanskloof is where this pass took its name from.

IMG_20150708_135549 Cogmanskloof (R62) Tunnel to Montagu

The original route through the mountain included two fairly dangerous river crossings (Kingna River), and so following a few disasters, famed road and pass builder Thomas Bain was commissioned to build the pass through Cogmans Kloof in 1877.

Using a combination of dynamite and gunpowder (gunpowder because dynamite was apparently relatively new and they quickly ran out of supply), Bain and his team ‘dug’ (fine, blasted) through the Kalkoenkrans and opened the route in 1879.

IMG_20150708_135919 Cogmanskloof (R62) Tunnel to Montagu

The unlined tunnel is 16 metres long, and has a five metre high arched roof.

IMG_20150708_135452 Cogmanskloof (R62) Tunnel to Montagu

The tunnel is the oldest solid rock (unsupported by concrete) road tunnel in South Africa.

(Thomas Bain’s father Andrew Bain, actually built the very first tunnel along the western ascent of Bainskloof Pass near Wellington in 1835, but that collapsed during construction so it doesn’t count)

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At the top of the tunnel, blink and you will miss it, is the remains of a well camouflaged English fort (declared a monument in 1999), accessible via a short little hike starting to the right of the tunnel entrance, heading towards Ashton side.

old english fort cogmanskloof tunnel montagu 1

Taken from the Internet: “1899 heralded the Second Anglo Boer War and saw the construction of the English Fort above Cogmans Kloof. This was built by stonemason William Robertson at a site selected by Lieutenant Colonel Sidney, Commandant of the Royal Field Artillery. The fort was garrisoned by a company of the Gordon Highlanders who were survivors of the Magersfontein battle, commanded by a Lieutenant Forbes.

They were camped on the original road construction site below Kalkoenkrans (Turkey Crag) the site which is now the parking area below the fort on the Montagu side.

The fort measures 9,3 x 3,8 m on the outside. It has a simple entrance opening at the west end and 21 ‘waisted’ loopholes formed in the masonry without steel plates. The loopholes are 700-800 mm above the concrete floor and the 400 mm thick stone walls reach a height of about two metres inside the building.

Inside the fort, near the south-east corner, is a roughly circular mortared stone platform (400 mm high), together with a drainage channel and hole at the base of the adjacent east wall, which seems to indicate the presence of a water tank and hence a roof.”

old english fort cogmanskloof tunnel montagu 2

Related Link: Old English Fort | Cogmanskloof Pass

Review: The Ninjettes #2 (Mar. 2012) Comic Books | My Reviews 24 JUL 2012

Seeing as Garth Ennis’ vicious Jennifer Blood turned out to be such a good seller for the comic book company, it’s no wonder that Dynamite attempted the cash-in by bringing about a spin-off in the form of The Ninjettes, written by Al Ewing, the very man Garth had just brought in to continue Jennifer Blood story.

Issue 2 of the blood-soaked female hired killers yarn is very much a back story event, as Al gives us a little more background on the deadly Daisy Lynch and her involvement with the Blutes, from the perspective of one of the gang members she used to run with back in the day.

Not much else happens here other than the visually off-putting cutting up of a body and then dissolving the pieces in acid, following the murder of her good for nothing father (in the previous issue) by Kelly who is now seemingly being groomed by Varja for the role of future assassin for hire.

It’s an easy enough, if a tad boring, read with a fair bit of violence, but to be honest, I didn’t really get much out of it at all – never mind actually enjoy it.

Eman Casallos handles the interior work and while certainly adequate, his inking over his pencils is far too shallow and without depth or detail, meaning that the colors from Inlight Studio end up doing more harm than good – all of which results in a very average visual experience that looks like it has been colored using techniques from a good five or six years ago!

(The cover art by Admira Wijaya is a completely different story mind you. Absolutely stellar piece, as you can see for yourself below.)

Overall, The Ninjettes issue 2 is not a very enjoyable book, nor is it a very good looking book, meaning that you’ll probably be okay in skipping this one and waiting until the real action (and dismemberment) starts kicking in.

Alex Ross: Red Sonja #30 Cover (2008) Comic Book Art | Comic Books 03 SEP 2011

Dynamite has a penchant for publishing its comic books in as many variant forms as possible, making it impossible to be a true collector without spending a fair bit of money on just a single release! And to make it even worse, they do it with some fabulous cover artists on board, making it near impossible to not pick up everything they throw at us!

Red Sonja’s monthly Dynamite run started off in 2005, and in 2008 it was still going strong, with Ron Marz handling the writing gig and Lee Moder the art chores for issue 30, which saw Sonja begin her descent into the Underworld!

One of the more striking alternative covers to come from this issue is from none other than the legendary Alex Ross, as he presents a stunning monochromatic view of Red Sonja’s lesser seen side (because you are usually dead by the time she turns her back to you!)

Luke Ross: Red Sonja #30 Cover (2008) Comic Book Art | Comic Books 13 AUG 2011

Dynamite has a penchant for publishing its comic books in as many variant forms as possible, making it impossible to be a true collector without spending a fair bit of money on just a single release! And to make it even worse, they do it with some fabulous cover artists on board, making it near impossible to not pick up everything they throw at us!

Red Sonja’s monthly Dynamite run started off in 2005, and in 2008 it was still going strong, with Ron Marz handling the writing gig and Lee Moder the art chores for issue 30, which saw Sonja begin her descent into the Underworld!

Despite already having featured Alex Ross on an alternative cover for this issue, Dynamite went ahead and tasked Luke Ross with the same job as well, and he turned out a stunning image of Sonja leaving the scene of her latest killing, though keeping it clean by doing it in the bath. Clever.

Covered: Danger Girl and The Army of Darkness 1 (Abbey Chase) Comic Book Art | Comic Books 15 JAN 2011

Seeing as the now-in-Dynamite’s-hands Army of Darkness comics licence has crossed over with a number of interesting and well… questionable (in terms of storyline) other comic book franchises over the years, e.g. from Marvel Zombies all the way through to Xena: Warrior Princess, it would make sense that they keep flogging this fan favourite cult workhorse with another crossover this year around, making it the first official meeting between everyone’s favourite one-handed chainsaw wielding Ash… and sexy-girl-comic-book-artist-extraordinaire, J. Scott Campbell’s Danger Girl!

Since leaving the Image/DC/Wildstorm family and joining IDW, Danger Girl have been a little missing in action, truth be told, and so it is great to see the girls finally get some more, much needed print time.

As it goes, Danger Girl and The Army of Darkness will revolve around a race to track down the Necronomicon (between the girls and Ash), is scripted by Andy Hartnell (Danger Girl co-creator) and illustrated by Chris Bolson – and as with almost all Dynamite’s releases these days, it will come in a variety of covers, courtesy of J. Scott Campbell, Paul Renaud and Nick Bradshaw.

And because Paul Renaud’s cover is the by far the most striking of the lot, it makes perfectly sense to show it off as a Covered! pick of the week! (Just check out those guns…)

Related Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Danger_Girl