It had long been a dream to visit Port Nolloth. Many years ago, I heard stories about sea-diamond mining and the breed of men who risked life and limb diving in inhospitable waters in search of their fortunes; men who worked hard and played harder. We were lucky to visit this small marine town a few years ago.
The small vessel you see here is a marine diamond boat pulled up onto the shore for maintenance. Under suitable weather conditions, it may be at sea for periods of up to three weeks carrying a crew of, perhaps, ten men. In addition to the usual sea-crew the boat would carry the mining crew, the most brave of which are the divers. They dive down to depths of between five and twenty-five metres, manually operating the suction hose (you can see it on the stern of the vessel). The hose acts like a big vacuum cleaner sucking the diamond-baring gravels that are trapped in rocky crevices. Once on board, the gravels pass over a sceer and large shells and fine muds are discarded. The "diamond concentrate" is bagged and transported to a processing plant on shore.
Port Nolloth was founded in 1854. The government of the Cape sent Captain M.S. Nolloth to survey the Namaqualand coast and to look for possible sites for a new harbour to serve the copper mines in the Springbok region. His recommendation fell upon Robbebaai. In 1855 the Governor of the Cape renamed the town "Port Nolloth" in honour of Commander Nolloth. Soon the copper was brought to the coast along a 96-mile long narrow gauge railway, drawn by mules. Within two years Port Nolloth flourished until, in the beginning of the 20th century, the copper transport was taken over by trucks. For a while fishing was the only industry in Port Nolloth. Later, the discovery of diamonds offshore added another dimension to Port Nolloth's economic livelihood
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lousat (64053) 2011-06-15 3:03
Hi Rosemary,very interesting situation and very nice view,i like a lot your choice of point of view to take at the best what happen's and the beautiful composition full of elements,details and colors.Thanks for share,have a nice day,Luciano
Budapestman (82620) 2011-06-15 3:04
a spectacular photo with beautiful lights and superb details, the car emphasized the size very well, impressive shot, Tfs! Have a nice day! Kellemes napot kívánok!
annjackman (15481) 2011-06-15 3:07
The picture and the note are very interesting indeed. The vehicle in the FG helps to give scale. The colours are lovely and the the sky particularly beautiful. Nice work - well done.
Best wishes, Ann
digbymerry (3998) 2011-06-15 3:25
I like the colours and textures here. The format works well. The old land rover contributes a lot to the scene and composition.
RhodieIke (9247) 2011-06-15 4:43
Hi Rosemary,Super photo of this scene,amazing scle of the land rover boat and building's,TFS, Cheers Iain
timecapturer (36972) 2011-06-15 5:10
this is a great everyday slice of life shot with such an intriguing story in your notes. I love it! So much character and you have captured the essence of the place with wonderful clarity. Beautifully executed and composed perfectly. Excellent work!
Regards - Brian
sandpiper (6560) 2011-06-15 5:52
Great story, glad you got to see your dream. Good composition and colours.
corjan3 (1935) 2011-06-15 8:40
Yes it is an interesting little town with a very informative image and note from you. The diamonds were moved up the coast from the estuary of the Orange River by the Benguela Current. The west coast of South Africa and the Namib Desert of Namibia is a very interesting and beautiful area. It seems the whole of the Namibian coastline has been declared a conservation area which is a very welcome decision and, in my opinion, is overdue.
tyro (15675) 2011-06-15 12:40
What a fabulously interesting note you have written for this picture!
And what a beautifully colourful and descriptive picture it is too. Very well (though not overly) saturated colours, good contrasts and lighting and exceptional detail and sharpness. The composition is very fine too and, as Ann says, the inclusion of the Land Rover in the foreground does help to give an accurate sense of scale.
A very interesting and informative picture and accompanying note!
ines8 (5986) 2011-06-16 2:08
A very interesting and beautiful scene, perfect clarity and fine details.
delpeoples (48568) 2011-06-17 16:48
A very colourful and dynamic image. I like how the truck in the foreground is dwarfed by the boat. Excellent framing, sharpness and composition. Thanks for sharing and I wish you a lovely weekend.