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Snow in South Africa

@ Modderfontein ~~

@ Modderfontein ~~

In South Africa snow is not a common phenomenon

According to the South African Weather Service records, it has snowed in Johannesburg on only 23 days in the last 103 years, including the snow fall on August 7, 2012, which is considered by some elders to be the largest they have ever seen. At some places in Johannesburg the snow was lying up to 20cm (8 inches) deep, while in Bethlehem, a town in the eastern Free State Province, it was up to 70cm (28 inches).

Reported by the newspaper, Beeld and snow probably fell for the first time since the late 1960’s in all 9 provinces on the same day due to a vast cold front.

Best places to see snow in South Africa

Picture taken by André Smith @

Picture taken by André Smith @

According to Chris Davies at getaway, the six best places where snow could be seen in South Africa and even ski’d during winter months, however sporadically and unpredictable, are at Matroosberg, Cederberg, Cathedral Peak, Golden Gate National Park, Long Tom Pass, Underberg and Sani Pass.

Some people in South Africa saw on August 7, 2012 snow for the first time in their lives.

"Auw, it's raining pap!" could have easily been a thought in many minds, as 'pap' happens to be SA's main starch - a porridge-like dish of ground mealies, looking very much like snow when prepared in the most common way.

Me, looking at falling snow - I was totally amazed.

Me, looking at falling snow - I was totally amazed.

My personal experience of snow

As a young child in the winter of 1963 I've seen heavy snow in Bloemfontein. I remember participating in the building of a snowman with a carrot for a nose, quite upset because the warm jacket my mother forced me to wear - dug out of a trunk filled with inherited clothes - was too large for me.

In the winter of 1981 as an adult and mother of two, I experienced a memorable fall in Johannesburg. My husband and I were baking pancakes when the 15-year old daughter of our neighbor suddenly opened the back door to surprise my husband with a ball of snow against his head. The ball, hitting him out of the blue, landed in the pan with hot oil and almost caused a disaster.

On August 7, 2012, as a grandmother of four, I had the opportunity to enjoy a return trip per car from the North West Province via Gauteng Province to Polokwane, the biggest city in the Limpopo Province. (Polokwane means ‘Place of Safety’ and was previously known as Pietersburg. The town was established in 1886 by the Voortrekkers and named in honor of the Voortrekker leader Petrus Jacobus Joubert, but renamed after demolition of the Apartheid regime in 1994 to the name it was called by the tribes in the region.

In Randfontein my partner decided to pull off and take me for a walk in the snow. I was stunned with amazement. The snow reminded me of swarms of insects. The temperature was 0° Celsius (32° Fahrenheit), thought I could feel a significant difference between the cold caused by snow and the region’s normal dry cold in winter.

Clouds promising snow over Bela Bela, Limpopo Province, South Africa


In the Limpopo Province, only two hours north of Johannesburg (Gautang), clouds promised snow to Bela-Bela, previously known as Warmbad (Warm Baths)

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Composing haiku in the snow

At about midnight in the region of Randfontein and Westonaria, and according to our perception driving in a blizzard, my friend and I composed a couple of haiku. The word 'composed' should perhaps be 'committed'... just blame it on the snow....


White snowflakes floating

Purifying dirty soil -

Muddy footprints scream.


Cozy fire burns,

warming cold body and soul -

Deadly blizzard rage.


Long legs on high heels

molded in black, silk stockings -

Foot stuck in bear trap.



© Martie Coetser (August 2012)

Copyright :: All Rights Reserved
Registered :: 2012-08-09 01:35:54
Title :: Snow in South Africa
Category :: Article - hub
Fingerprint :: ca36f2463c9d976f50b73e4038405cf4840f30555a738cb8265a26c3332dd594


Martie Coetser (author) from South Africa on March 28, 2013:

@ epigramman - you rascal! The sound of 'ekam eepoohw' reminds me of you know what :) I hope you can see me blush. By now you must be fed-up with winter. May this spring bloom with lovely surprises for you.... Take care, you rascal!

@ midget - now why were I under the impression you were living in America? I hope to find something to read about Singapore in your hubs. Thanks for sharing this hub of mine. Take care :)

Michelle Liew from Singapore on March 27, 2013:

I remember the first time I'd ever played with snow...had fun hurling snowballs that I'd made with my bare hands. Not forgetting that it's perpetual summer here in Singapore! This was lovely....thanks for sharing, Martie!

epigramman on March 27, 2013:

Martie, you're so hot that you could melt all of the snow in Canada - and yes it's true - since the day I first saw you I've been wanting to

"ekam eepoohw" with you, lol.

Sending to you my sincere warmest wishes from Colin and his cats, Little Miss Tiffy and Mister Gabriel at lake erie time canada 5:34pm and spring has arrived, I think.

Martie Coetser (author) from South Africa on January 14, 2013:

DDE, I think it must be very hard for South Africans to acclimatize up there in the north. Australia has the same climates as SA, and I believe South America too. But up there where winters are extremely cold and summers are but only like our Springs and Falls, it must be difficult. Interesting, though, that the climates of some states in the USA, and in particular of Texas, are apparently the same as down here. Thanks for coming over for the read. (I must admit, I am on my way to ask Google where Croatia is.)

Devika Primić from Dubrovnik, Croatia on January 14, 2013:

Truly amazing to see snow in SA, I remember it very well, as a South African I was really excited about snow in such a warm country which I never experienced when I still living there, but living in Croatia now has made this experience a common one for me. I enjoy snowy days. Thanks for the Hub.

Martie Coetser (author) from South Africa on December 23, 2012:

Peggy, and I were under the impression that everybody in Europe and North America, etc., were having White Christmases! I just love all the knowledge I gain in HubPages thanks to friends like you. So glad to know that you know exactly what my emotions were while I was looking at that falling snow. I was speechless with amazement, like the time when I was 6, when I saw snow for the first time. Thanks for your lovely, informative comment :)

Peggy Woods from Houston, Texas on December 22, 2012:

Hi Martie,

When I was growing up as a child in Wisconsin and then the 4 years my husband and I lived there, snow was usual in the winters. But living here as we have done for most of our lives in Houston, Texas it is a I know the thrill you had at the rare occasion of it snowing in South Africa. For kids who have never seen must be SUCH a thrill! It does make things look so glistening white and transforms the usual landscape into something like that of fairy tales. It was fun seeing the photos. Thanks!

Martie Coetser (author) from South Africa on December 07, 2012:

Hi, Audra, good to have you in my corner. I have quite a few hubs about South Africa. Apart from political and social issues, SA is a paradise. That lion is a very happy chap in Johannesburg Zoo, living in a large area that looks like his real territory in the wilderness. And he has his own harem.... Go check the zoo's webpage :)

Thanks for your lovely comment. Thanks to HubPages and FB we learn so much from each other :)

AudraLeigh on December 07, 2012:

Oh no!!! A bear trap!

I loved your haikus! It was a wonderful read this morning! I also enjoyed hearing about your first experience with snow as a child and when you were a mother!

I hear Africa is a wonderful place! I really would love to hear more about it!

We take having snow for granted here in Rochester, NY (3 hours from Toronto). Well, we have lots of! A few years back, we had like 110" in one season...crazy!

It is really nice to be back on HP cuse I get to see people like you again! Great job!

Martie Coetser (author) from South Africa on October 11, 2012:

Docmo, now how romantic was that - We were on our way to a town in the far north, but B decided to stop and take me for a walk in the snow. What woman will not fall deeply in love with such a romantic? Thank you so much for reading this,,,, Oh, and thank you for being the one who inspired me to try out the haiku genre. I never realized that I would enjoy writing them.... and it is truly a fun game to play while driving around :)

Martie Coetser (author) from South Africa on October 11, 2012:

frogyfish, thank you for making me smile. Being vain, I am seldom if ever happy with a picture of myself - I wanted to look like Elizabeth Taylor, you know... :)) But that picture, revealing my sheer amazement and delight while looking at only a light fall of snow, certainly proves that snow is almost a miracle in SA. Thank you for coming over for the read :) Yep, love is like a bear trap...

Mohan Kumar from UK on October 11, 2012:

Martie.. what a beautifully expressed, written and illustrated hub. I love the idea of Snow in Africa and make me want to be there while it happens.. your Haikus are a perfect accompaniment..such grand vista with snowflakes will take my breath away. And take you for a walk in the snow . awesome!

frogyfish from Central United States of America on October 11, 2012:

Interesting, as I did not know Africa ever had snow except perhaps in the high mountains. You did look happy watching the snow fall.

And that hot oil/snowball incident was a near-disaster that thankfully did not occur. Enjoyed it all except your last line...foot stuck in bear trap. Yuk. Ouch!

Martie Coetser (author) from South Africa on October 10, 2012:

Hi Sunshine, I do agree, snow looks exotic and even romantic, but living in it and with it can certainly not be a pleasure. Driving in heavy snow must be a nightmare. To be honest, I was quite scared while we were driving in the snow. Late evening on our return home, we found only 4 other vehicles on the road and 3 of them were wrecks stranded at the side. We are not geared to drive in snow. The consequences of walking in snow could be fatal. Thanks for announcing me 'hubber of the day'. As you must have noticed, replying on all the comments is keeping me extremely busy on this Wednesday evening. I always-always appreciate your visits :))

Linda Bilyeu from Orlando, FL on October 10, 2012:

A snowball in hot oil, oh my!!! I could feel your snow-story excitement. I grew up with snowstorms in New York, until I moved to Orlando 26 years ago and I do not, I repeat do not miss it.

Martie Coetser (author) from South Africa on October 10, 2012:

whonunuwho, thank you for the visit and inspiring comment :)

Martie Coetser (author) from South Africa on October 10, 2012:

Mary, and here I was under the impression that everybody in North America and Europe are enjoying White Christmas'? The more I learn, the more I realize how little I know! Thanks for coming by :)

whonunuwho from United States on October 10, 2012:

A very interesting work and beautiful in its content. Thank you for sharing in your well appreciated article on South Africa, Martie.

Mary Hyatt from Florida on October 10, 2012:

Big surprise to me to read of snow in S. Africa. We had some snow once in S. Florida back in the 60's. What fun we had. We made snow ice cream!

I voted this Hub UP, etc. and will share.

Martie Coetser (author) from South Africa on October 10, 2012:

Jordanwalker, yes we miss a lot of fun with only 23 days snow per century. On the other hand, our winters are warm to hot in comparison with those freezing temperatures up North; we have outdoor fun through-out the year :)

Jordanwalker39 from NC on October 09, 2012:

Very interesting hub. I am kinda sad they only get 23 days of snow a century though...

Martie Coetser (author) from South Africa on October 09, 2012:

Deepak, so true! Snow is like a beach. Not everybody likes sand between their toes... :)

Martie Coetser (author) from South Africa on October 09, 2012:

Hi Daisy, so good to see you in my corner. The other day I had a look at a map of North America, really curious to know more about the country's geography. So many states! I've heard that the province I am living in (North West) is comparable with Texas, but I've seen pictures of Texas that remind me more of our Northern Cape Province. One day I will take time to go into this. Thank you for your visit. Much appreciated!

Deepak Chaturvedi from New Delhi, India on October 09, 2012:

Interesting and informative hub.Snow has different attraction.thanks to share.

Daisy Mariposa from Orange County (Southern California) on October 09, 2012:


I think you've seen more snow in South Africa than I've seen fall where I live in Southern California.

I very much enjoyed reading your Hub. Thanks for sharing your experience with us.

Martie Coetser (author) from South Africa on September 17, 2012:

tonymead, how interesting! Black snow? I would love to know more about this. Please write a hub about this :} (Notice my pretty, pleading smile?) Of course, snow down here is not a patch to the snow up there in the north. Thanks for the visit, Tony. Much appreciated :)

Tony Mead from Yorkshire on September 17, 2012:


what a surprise, I never knew you had snow down there. The wildlife must be quite confussed by it.

when I was young here in the industrial heartland of Yorkshire we used to get black snow, it was so full of soot that if you played out in it you came in filthy. After the snow had settled a day or two it would form a black crust that was horrible.

interesting vote and voted up.


Martie Coetser (author) from South Africa on September 16, 2012:

Mike Robbers, thank you for enjoying this unusual event with me. Thanks to this hub the snow is still fresh in my memory :)

Mike Robbers from London on September 16, 2012:

I read about this surprising new at CBC on August, feauturing some pictures with workers dancing as the snow fell :)

Thanks for this wonderful & unsusual hub.. The photos are priceless and loved your personal experience with snow in some of your life seasons, voted up!

Martie Coetser (author) from South Africa on September 15, 2012:

Eiddwen, now you know that snow is a rarity in my region. Here's to you for many more interactions to come :)

Eiddwen from Wales on September 15, 2012:

Wow Martie what a beautiufl and interesting hub.

Also so very inspiring and here's to so many more to come from you .

Take care and enjoy your weekend.


Martie Coetser (author) from South Africa on September 11, 2012:

KDuBarry, now you've got me all curious about New Jersey! Thanks for the visit :)

KDuBarry03 on September 10, 2012:

Wow, such a beautiful hub, Martie! The pictures are amazing and the information is definitely insightful. I gotta say, it snows more down there than it does up here in New Jersey!

Martie Coetser (author) from South Africa on September 09, 2012:

Hi again molometer, I am so glad I can fix your longing for South Africa from time to time. In between, enjoy your life up there :)

Micheal from United Kingdom on September 07, 2012:

Thanks Martie,

I would love to come home again but things are a little difficult at the moment. I will get my SA 'fix' from your lovely hubs.

Martie Coetser (author) from South Africa on September 07, 2012:

Jennzie, it was like Christmas. Lasted only ONE day and night, though in most regions not even one hour. In my hometown it was but only a bit of ice rain - but real snow one hour per car to the east. Thank you for sharing my excitement :)

Jenn from Pennsylvania on September 07, 2012:

Gorgeous pictures- particularly the one of the lion. That must have been a really cool (no pun intended lol) experience for you and everyone else in the area. Voted up and beautiful!

Martie Coetser (author) from South Africa on September 07, 2012:

DzyMsLizzy, yes, in winter the top of some mountains are covered with snow. I've named the mountains in my hub. We call those specific mountains, where skiing is possible, 'Little Switzerlands'. Oh yes, I remember, 'On the moody banks of the..... Limpopo.' The Limpopo River is one of the natural borders between South Africa and the rest of (dark) Africa. Of course, for many ages no longer 'dark'. Thanks for your lovely comment :)

Martie Coetser (author) from South Africa on September 07, 2012:

Your Cousins, thank you so much for clicking in for the read. Now you know, we in South-African get extremely excited about snow.... like children in a chocolate factory. At the same time it would take a lot of acclimatization for us to live in a country where snow is a sustaining annual occurrence. Nice to meet you! Take care :)

Martie Coetser (author) from South Africa on September 07, 2012:

Hi, rebecca, I am planning to do 'Traveling from Pretoria to Nelspruit' soon. Lovely bushveld region in the Limpopo Province.... Love it! Things have changed so much during the past two decades.... but things actually always change..... I was surprise to see all the changes since our frequent visits to 'Die Eiland' near Tsaneen during the '70's. Thanks for your comment and say 'hi fellow-SA'can' to your s.i.l. on my behalf.

Martie Coetser (author) from South Africa on September 07, 2012:

tillsontitan, taking our environment for granted and not appreciating its unique paradise-like qualities and longing to be on the other side of the fence, is such a common human behavior. There are beauty in everything, even in dry desert dunes. We live on an awesome planet! All glory and praise to the Creator, whatever/whoever He is...... And I always-always remember, "He is what He is."

Martie Coetser (author) from South Africa on September 07, 2012:

Happyboomernurse, the confusion in the mind of that lion is so clearly visible. "WTH are these white insects? Edible or dangerous?" I put my head on a block, this was his thoughts. You feel about snow the same way we feel about rain. We look so forward to it, but NOT on weekends to spoil our outdoor activities, and not to the occasional floods, hail storms and strong winds that damage our properties and infra-structure. Oh, are we humans not extremely arrogant, demanding only the best of Nature. I always enjoy your sincere comments, Gail. Take care!

Liz Elias from Oakley, CA on September 07, 2012:

I love your lion photo. The look on his face is priceless, as if he's saying, "What the heck....????!!!"

I've never been to Africa, south or otherwise. All I know of its climate comes from books and articles, and I must say, I've never heard snow mentioned before...but I expect there must be snow at the tops of some mountain peaks.

What a surprise, (and dare I suggest treat?) that must have been for you! Your place reference to 'Limpopo,' at once sent me reeling back through a time machine to my childhood, and mother reading me Kipling stories, one of which featured a line reading, "...on the muddy banks of the great gray green greasy Limpopo...."

Fascinating hub. Voted up, interesting, beautiful, awesome and shared.

Martie Coetser (author) from South Africa on September 07, 2012:

Molometer, I can FEEL your nostalgic longing for what was good in SA. SA certainly has some uniqueness we always appreciate and long to enjoy. Take care up there and come again. You know you are needed down here :)

Martie Coetser (author) from South Africa on September 07, 2012:

Hi poetvix, so good to see you! I love HubPages for the opportunity it gives us to expand our horizons and broaden our perspective on foreign countries and their people. Expect me in your corner before the end of the weekend :)

Your Cousins from Atlanta, GA on September 06, 2012:

I hope to visit South Africa one day, but didn't know that there could be snow there. The photograph of the lion in snowfall is awesome. Thanks for the hub and the haiku. Voted up and interesting!

Rebecca Mealey from Northeastern Georgia, USA on September 06, 2012:

Thanks for sharing these awesome photos. My son in law is from Nelsprit and has family there and in Cape Town. I will share this with him . The way you added the Haiku to this is truly inspirational!

Mary Craig from New York on September 06, 2012:

I never knew it ever snowed in Africa! What a learning experience for me but it must've been a joy for the children there. Your pictures were lovely and your haiku spot on! Thank you for sharing this with us. Snow is such a common thing for us in the Northeast we don't often remember others have never had snow.

Voted up, useful, awesome, and interesting.

Gail Sobotkin from South Carolina on September 06, 2012:

The stunning picture of the lion in snow drew me into this wonderful hub and I'm glad it did.

My childhood and most of my adult years were spent living in a part of the United States where snow was a common occurrence. Even so, it was always thrilling when the first snowfall of the winter would blanket the streets and trees. (By the end of the season we'd be weary of the hardships it created).

You did a great job expressing that child-like wonder in this hub and I loved the picture of you staring out at the snow with a look of amazement on your face.

I also loved the Haiku poems.

Voted up across the board and shared.

Hub Hugs,


Micheal from United Kingdom on September 06, 2012:

I loved the drive up to Ceres,as you say all that lovely fruit. And the smell on the air near harvest was incredible. I may be in the UK but my heart is in South Africa.


poetvix from Gone from Texas but still in the south. Surrounded by God's country. on September 06, 2012:

I never in my wildest dreams would have thought it snowed in South Africa. It's always portrayed as eternal summer when we see it on TV over here. That first picture of the lion and the snow was captivating. The personal relation of snow in each season of your life was simply poetic. Thank you for sharing something so special and rare.

Martie Coetser (author) from South Africa on September 06, 2012:

Hi Tammy, good to see you in here. One of my cousins immigrated to England a couple of years ago. In the beginning she was exited about the snow, but eventually she decided that no-snow is better than too-much-snow. Of course, when you grow up in it you will always miss it, and vice versa. For us down here it is pure excitement because it is so rare. Take care and thank you for the visit :)

Tammy from North Carolina on September 06, 2012:

Gorgeous hub! I didn't realize that snow was so uncommon in South Africa. I grew up in Colorado and Pennsylvania so I grew up in it. I am glad you got to spend some time in it. This is a very enjoyable read!

Martie Coetser (author) from South Africa on September 03, 2012:

Hi Moonlake, I love soup - thick vegetable soup, and pancakes with sugar and cinnamon for dessert. Thanks for clicking in for the read and for voting me up :)

moonlake from America on September 02, 2012:

Time for soup. We always eat soup when the snow comes. Enjoyed your hub and your Haiku. Voted uP. Congrats on Maria's Women of Hubpages.

Martie Coetser (author) from South Africa on August 31, 2012:

Lol, nighthag! This is what I like about Haiku - the unique images it create in our minds. So often we don't even 'catch' the connection between picture A and B. Good to know you've catch this one.... or what exactly were your conclusion? Thanks for the visit. I hope you are going to have a lovely weekend - the beginning of Spring down here.

K.A.E Grove from Australia on August 30, 2012:

I never knew it snowed in africa eaither, what simply wonderful pictures that you have shared, simply magical.

Loved your haiku at the end, the image of that high heeled foot stuck in a bear trap is going to stay with me all day :)

Martie Coetser (author) from South Africa on August 25, 2012:

Thelyricwriter, HubPages gives us the marvelous opportunity to learn something every day. It is so wonderful to have an idea what REALLY goes on in other countries. Thanks to the Internet, the Media is no longer able to manipulate populations with their reports of only (the bad and sensational) News. Now you know snow is at least once in a decade a highlight in SOUTH Africa. Only a few regions in SA get snow every year, causing the temperature in the entire country to fall below zero Celsius. Approximately/average lowest temperature in SA is -5 Celsius. We cannot even imagine the cold in countries such as Canada. Thanks for reading and commenting :)

Richard Ricky Hale from West Virginia on August 24, 2012:

Martie, great article! I love the snow, couldn't live without it ever now and then. I never knew it snowed in Africa, that blows my mind. Awesome picture with the lion. Wow, so so crazy. Learn something new everyday. Beautiful pictures Martie.

Martie Coetser (author) from South Africa on August 22, 2012:

Nell Rose, now that was indeed a very exiting day! I have to look at the photos in order to believe that it was not a dream :) I always appreciate your comments on my hubs :)

Nell Rose from England on August 21, 2012:

Hi Martie, that must have been magical! I know I always feel a childlike sense of wonder whenever I see snow, and we get it most years! lol! because we live in a valley the snow tends to only lay on the higher ground so its there in abundance in the next towns etc, but here we get it for about a day and then its gone, saying that we do get hard snow some years, what a great surprise for you!

Martie Coetser (author) from South Africa on August 18, 2012:

Hi molometer, you stranger! As far as I know Ceres is one of the coldest regions in the country, but such an ideal valley for producing all those delicious apples. Yes, the snow was a lovely-lovely treat. One day of sheer excitement for all of us, bonding us as a nation.... until the next negative event....

Always good to see you, Michael!

molometer on August 17, 2012:

Hi Martie,

How weird to have snow all over the country. That is very rare. I remember that we used to have snow every year in the mountains near Ceres but not much and not for long.

8 inches is a lot of snow. It must have been a treat for everyone.

Like the Haiku. High heels in snow. Very cool.


Martie Coetser (author) from South Africa on August 16, 2012:

Hi Rosemary, snow in SA is one of the highlights of a decade. Only a very small zone of the country gets snow in winter. While people living in that zone enjoy the wonder of it, the rest of us suffers the consequences - temperatures below zero. For us temperatures below zero are bitterly cold. Thanks for clicking in for the read and commenting :)

Rosemary Sadler from Hawkes Bay - NewZealand on August 15, 2012:

A beautil hub Martie. The lion looks a little bewidered :). What an awesome surprise for everyone, the young ones would have been so thrilled. Playing in the snow is as much fun for adults as the kids haha, but oh so cold

Martie Coetser (author) from South Africa on August 15, 2012:

My liefling, Mr B, that was a lovely trip, and so are all trips with you. I've always wondered what exactly is a soulmate, but at last I know it cannot be anything else but you. Thank you so much for enriching me in so many ways. Mwha!

Mr B on August 15, 2012:

Thank you MY SOULMATE for making that long unforgetable trip with me. MAHA

Martie Coetser (author) from South Africa on August 15, 2012:

Hi bravewarrior, and so we meet in various ways. Thank you for looking me up. I look forward to read your hubs :)

Shauna L Bowling from Central Florida on August 14, 2012:

Ok, now I know why Mickey and Maria love you so! I chose this hub because of the male lion featured. I love cats - especially wild cats. The haikus were a surprise. I love the first one: ... "purifying dirty soil, muddy footprints scream".

I'm looking forward to this friendship. Thank you Mickey and Maria!

Martie Coetser (author) from South Africa on August 10, 2012:

Hi, Always! I am learning every day stuff I never knew about other countries and their people. HubPages is like a college, providing daily knowledge (and wisdom). I am so glad you came over to share my excitement about snow :)

Ruby Jean Richert from Southern Illinois on August 10, 2012:

Wow Martie, I did not know it ever snowed in Africa, what a treat. I have heard some predictions that the climate is changing world-wide due to global warming. Who knows for sure? I am glad you had fun, your smiling picture portrays happiness..Thank you for the lovely photos and history..Hugs My Friend...

Martie Coetser (author) from South Africa on August 10, 2012:

Lucky Cats, it was a lovely and unforgettable day, spent with the most wonderful man. I feel blessed :) I am so glad you've clicked in to enjoy my thoughts and memories of this awesome day. I look forward to your next hub :)

Martie Coetser (author) from South Africa on August 10, 2012:

Alicia, is that lion not a story to be told? I bet he was thinking: "WTH, where do all these insects come from? Are they threatening my life or not?" Interesting to know your experience of snow, and thank you so much for sharing :)

Martie Coetser (author) from South Africa on August 10, 2012:

Cogerson, our time and season differences often boggle my mind, especially while it is hot down here and freezing cold on your side. Take care, and let's see if your prediction of snow in August 2017 turned out to be correct :)

Kathy from Independence, Kansas on August 09, 2012:

Martie..I heard about this on the Weather Channel...something that is very rare and is making everyone feel like kids in a candy shop! I love the pictures and I love your've filled in all the blanks when it comes to the historical significance of this weather event...and the story lines along...Martie plays in the snow!! I love the picture of you and the Haiku! nailed it! What an extraordinary event and day in the life of my wonderful friend! Just love it and the happiness shines through....

Linda Crampton from British Columbia, Canada on August 09, 2012:

It sounds like you had a lovely snow day, Martie. I like snow, as long as I don't have to drive in it! We don't get much snow in winter where I live, so it's usually a treat for us, unless it interferes with people's driving plans or causes accidents on the roads. We certainly get more snow than you do, though! Thanks for sharing your interesting experience. I loved the photo of the lion!

UltimateMovieRankings from Virginia on August 09, 2012:

Ok I guess it will have to be August of 2017.....where I live the best snow months are December through February. That is very interesting about the experience the kids got....snow and kids equals lots of excitement.

Martie Coetser (author) from South Africa on August 09, 2012:

Cogerson, January and February are hot summer down here, so the snow will be in July-August. Oh my gosh, will I still be here to see it? Honestly, it is a fantastic experience for all our children of all ages between 2 and 80.... I was out of my skin, distinguishing between snow and sleet as far as we traveled up to the north and back. We had some business to attend to in the north, so I've had the wonderful opportunity to see a heavy fall, but only for a short time as we were traveling quite fast on the highway. Thank you so much for reading and commenting.

Martie Coetser (author) from South Africa on August 09, 2012:

Thank you, Genna! I so appreciate your opinion about this fascinating event in my country. My eight-year-old granddaughter saw about only four flocks of snow and she was out of her skin with excitement. Lol! I can just imagine how exited she would have been if she could see the heavier falls in the town just half-an-hour per car east from our hometown :)

Martie Coetser (author) from South Africa on August 09, 2012:

MickeySr, now you have me all excited about 'Edward Scissorhands'. It is high time for me to enjoy a movie or three. I always enjoy Vincent Price's performance. What a brilliant actor! Thank you for putting some more pressure on me to watch this movie. I always chose writing and reading (and interacting with friends online) above watching movies and TV, missing in the process some real good movies and documentaries. Mickey, I hope you are fine and thank you again for your continuous support :)

Martie Coetser (author) from South Africa on August 09, 2012:

Hi my co-SA, Trinity M, your son will certainly never forget his 7th brithday. Yes, it was amazing, seeing the snowflakes swarming in the air between Potchefstroom and Krugersdorp, but melting the moment it fell on the ground. I've only seen the side of Johannesburg's (significant) snow on this specific road. At midnight the parked cars were covered with a layer of snow, but on the ground were only pools of water. I only saw pictures where snow actually covered the ground, and, of course, I can imagine how quickly our hot sun melted it. You will not believe me, but between 11:00pm and 1:00am we were most of the time the ONLY (crazy) people on the road between Krugersdorp and Potchefstroom. We've seen only about 8 other cars, and 4 of them were wrecks on the sides. Apparently the road was at a time quite slippery? Thank you for sharing your experience of this exciting day :)

UltimateMovieRankings from Virginia on August 09, 2012:

That is some amazing stats on your snow fall....I got the calculator out and figured out when Johannesburg would be due for the next snowfall....on average it will happen in late January or early February of is that for scary....2017.

I really enjoyed reading your hub and seeing how snow can be such a big event....I live very close to the Atlantic Ocean(14 miles away)...and we only get serious snow about every 3 or so years....but we always get a dusting of snow every year.....I can only imagine how kids would react to snow in South Africa...voted up and very interesting.

Genna East from Massachusetts, USA on August 09, 2012:

I never knew it snowed in South Africa. How you must have enjoyed this. :-) I love snow, but I can imagine how the locals who have never seen it or touched it before must have felt. The children must have been in awe.

The photos are priceless, as are your Haiku.

MickeySr from Hershey, Pa. on August 09, 2012:

marcoujor & MartieCoetser (the double sweet twins) ~ "Edward Scissorhands" is a favorite of mine. It was overall a fine film, very much a moving & touching fairytale, but it was especially glorious to see Vincent Price in such a charming last big screen appearance . . . I grew-up going to the Saturday matinée and often I would see Vincent Price portraying a altruistic but driven scientist, and no one could play a tragically virtuous man assaulted by some evil like Vincent Price - his sincere performance, and all the heritage of magical film making that he brought to the story, contributed much to the grand fantasy of a stunning new fairytale.

Trinity M on August 09, 2012:

My son turned 7 on Friday and the snow was a perfect 7th present for him as of course it was his 1st time to ever see it. We were dancing in the garden feeling the snowflakes fall on our heads for a very brief 15 minutes before the sun popped out and melted it all away. It was incredible and a wonderful experience for all of us sunny South Africans. Great hub and I love the pic from the Jhb zoo, it’s outstanding. Up and awesome.

Martie Coetser (author) from South Africa on August 09, 2012:

Hi Amy, so far I find this year's winter quite warm comparing to previous winters. I'm not even using my electric blanket. We had a couple of 'hot' days before the cold front with snow hit us out of the blue. Though I have a tendency to see a 'sign' in every other accidental event, when reviewing previous rare snowing, I have no choice but to confirm that it is not at all a 'sign' of any nature, but normal activity in nature with profound scientific explanations.

Bethlehem is but only one town in our country named after a town/city in another country. In the Free State Province we even have a Paris. So on a day one of my status-updates in FB might be: "Heading for Paris!" Just 2 hours per car from me!

Thank you so much, Amy, for your visit and comment. I always appreciate your visits!

Martie Coetser (author) from South Africa on August 09, 2012:

My dearest marcoujor, I've put "Edward Scissorhands' on my list 'Movies to be Watched', and already look forward to watch it with Mr. B. But can you believe it - he doesn't eat popcorn! (I am still trying to get over this shock... lol!) He surprised me with his poetic talents; besides one or two haiku's still to be published, all of them are the final products of our joined efforts in this exotic genre.

Oh, he stole that picture of us (cropped to only me for this hub) with his cell phone, as it was the first time he saw a grandmother of 4 getting so excited about an ordinary event in nature. (I thought he was taken photo's of the snow, meanwhile he was utilizing the front lens.)

Oh well....

Lots of hugs to you, my dear sista :)

Amy Becherer from St. Louis, MO on August 09, 2012:

I would imagine a heavy snowfall in August, where snow is rare, even in what are normally the winter months here, is looked at as a miracle or sign by some. I find it ironic that the city with the deepest accumulation of up to 28" is named Bethlehem. Your photographs are beautiful, Martie. The photo directly beneath the "Lion in Winter", looks like a gorgeous painting. Thank you for sharing a magnificently beautiful oddity of nature. Truly awesome!

Martie Coetser (author) from South Africa on August 09, 2012:

Interesting, Hyphenbird! As I've just mentioned to Joyce, I thought ALL countries in the N/hemisphere were covered with snow during winter. Duh!!! Thank you so much for enlightening me since the day I've met you.

Martie Coetser (author) from South Africa on August 09, 2012:

Hi writer20, another misconception of mine until my arrival in CyberSpace and especially in HubPages where sharing experiences is the order of the day, was that snow is a common phenomenon in ALL countries in the northern hemisphere. As always, thank you for your continuous support.

Martie Coetser (author) from South Africa on August 09, 2012:

Oh, mckbirdbks, all gone now, like a dream. I have to look at the pictures to believe I've actually saw snow. Some evidence are still in the mountains where roads had to be closed... but by now all opened again. 7 August 2012 was a fleeting day of pure excitement to be a memory forever and a day. I've tried to capture the memory with this hub. For me it was an awesome day, traveling through 3 provinces - a little snow, a lot of snow and no snow..... and all the way back, but then it was night and different.... Awesome! Thanks for understanding my intention and the ephemerality of the rare event.

Maria Jordan from Jeffersonville PA on August 09, 2012:


Magical and reminded me of a movie you would love...

Johnny Depp stars in "Edward Scissorhands"... check it out with Mr B and a nice bottle of wine...

Voted UP & Awesome and Beautiful... love that lion and your haiku especially... pretty shot of you too!

Hugs, Maria

Brenda Barnes from America-Broken But Still Beautiful on August 09, 2012:

Seeing a rare snowfall is a beautiful gift. We do not have much snowhere but can generally count on at least one good snow each winter. Alas, we did not get it last year. Thank you for the beautiful pictures and poems.

Joyce Haragsim from Southern Nevada on August 09, 2012:

Great hub Martie with wonderful photo's . The lion looked so peaceful.

I remember playing in snow in England, it was a lot of fun.

Voted across the except funny, Joyce.

mckbirdbks from Emerald Wells, Just off the crossroads,Texas on August 09, 2012:

Hello Martie. So you are reporting something rare and beautiful, that's wonderful. It probably was all gone in a wink.

Martie Coetser (author) from South Africa on August 09, 2012:

drbj, 'going bananas' - That is exactly what we are doing when we see snow down here. Lol! Good to know you are smiling in your beard for the last one.... You were supposed to.... Lol! Those bears in the snow... when they see food they see food and those food are often totally out of reach. But to be honest, I think Mr. B felt kind of trapped with his foot on the pedals and hands on the steering wheel, although the first two lines were his and the last one was mine... Maybe I could read his mind? Thanks a lot for your continuous support drbj. You are such a solid anchor for some of us in this 'plastic' world :)

drbj and sherry from south Florida on August 09, 2012:

What a treat, Martie, that you got to experience snow again. I believe it snowed ONE time in south Florida - the city of North Miami Beach, to be exact. It was such a rarity that the newspapers and TV went bananas with coverage. And it was just a very light snow - more like heavy hail - that lasted a very short time.

Thanks for the neat haiku, too, although I'm still grimacing at the 'bear trap' line.

Martie Coetser (author) from South Africa on August 09, 2012:

girishpuri, good to know you enjoyed this hub! Thanks for telling me :)

Martie Coetser (author) from South Africa on August 09, 2012:

satraveller, it was absolutely exciting, and I am still not over it! Still watching videos and enjoying pictures - :) The pictures taken by my eyes of snow swarming like insects in the headlights of our car and in the brightness of streetlights still fill me with an overwhelming feeling of wonder. Thank you so much for your comment.

Martie Coetser (author) from South Africa on August 09, 2012:

MelChi, you guys in Cape Town are a bit more fortunate than us up here in the central and northern provinces, seeing snow more often, even when it merely covers mountain peaks. Enjoying the snow at Ceres for the first time with your husband would be a marvelous and unforgettable experience. I hope you will be able to share it via a hub. Thanks for clicking in for the read and for confirming the spectacular show of snow in South Africa :)

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