Monday/ snow in South Africa

There is widespread snow in South Africa – always a novelty in a country with a sunny climate, sunny even in winter.

I never saw snow up close while growing up in South Africa. Yes, one would see it far away on the mountains some winters, and my mom told would tell me that when I was 5 years old, there was snow at my grandparents’ home in Johannesburg.

The coldest town in South Africa (and in Africa) is Sutherland*. It is situated in the south of the semi-desert area called the Great Karoo, and some 250 mi (400 km) northeast of Cape Town.  *Average annual high/ low temp 52/ 37 ºF (11/ 2.8 ºC). Not very cold! one could say, but keep in mind South Africans generally consider 50ºF (10 ºC) weather to be already ‘very cold’.
The landscape around the Southern African Large Telescope (SALT) near Sutherland looks like dunes of salt (pun intended).  The SALT has a hexagonal primary mirror array 36 ft (11 m) across, made of 91 individual 3 ft (1m) hexagonal mirrors. It is the largest optical telescope in the Southern Hemisphere, and started operating in 2011.

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