Wednesday, 9 January 2008

Maclear's Beacon

Now this has to count as a pretty big trig pillar! Walked up Table Mountain last week with my family. It was a beautiful and steep walk up but by the time we reached 1000m we were in mist with a stiff wind. We literally didn't see Maclear's Beacon until we stumbled over it.

The plaque beneath it states
"This beacon was built as a triangulation station in December 1844 by Sir Thomas Maclear (1794-1879) in his survey for the verification and extension of the Abbe de la Caille's Arc of the Meridian. It was restored to commemorate the centenary on 14 July 1979 of Maclear's death. As Astronomer at the Royal Observatory he initiated the Geodetic Survey of South Africa."

A pretty impressive guy. More on him in my next post.

On the way across the top of the mountain came across another trig pillar. Or not.

Considering it was in a valley it made a fun signpost but a lousy trig pillar!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

"Trig pillars in the mist". Good film title for surveying afficcionados. GPS sounded the death knell of traditional surveying, which is how the need to spend days on end camped on a mountain top waiting for some visibility was seen by many. Cost efficient (GPS), maybe - but not nearly so much fun!