Christopher Farai Charamba
It is often whispered that there is not much to do for recreation, particularly in the capital, save for imbibing in some open area where one can feast on flame grilled meat and listen to music from the back of a car.
Those with the penchant for adventure tend to find themselves at homes over the weekend lacking suitable options to quench their particular thirsts.
One has, however, found that if you search just a little bit you’re likely to find something incredible
In the tiny mining town of Mutorashanga, some 98km from Harare is a mysterious yet lovely green hued pool that is perfect for cliff diving.
One discovered this place after a friend had circulated a picture in a WhatsApp group. Without wasting any time, we made plans for the weekend and on Saturday morning we hopped in or vehicles stacked with provisions and made our way to discover the green pool.
There are two routes to Mutorashanga, the one we took was on the road to Chinhoyi, at Mapinga, just after the shops on the right, you turn right and travel a good 50 odd kilometres before reaching Mutorashanga.
The road to the pool on the left, a few kilometres from the primary school. We had to ask the locals for directions once we were in Mutorashanga town because there is no clear marking.
What you will find is that pool is in quite a secluded area surrounded by think green foliage, large trees and a relatively high cliff edge encasing it in a quarry of sorts.
The pool is located in a village called Ethel, which was named after the old mine. According to one’s understanding it now belongs to Zimasco.
The water, interestingly, cannot be used for irrigating crops as it is so mineral rich that it kills plants.
When we arrived to this glorious location we found ourselves to be the only group of people there, save for a couple of locals who joined us later.
At the bottom of the steps leading to the pool is a small platform where we set up our braai stand and left our belongings.
There where we stood at the bottom of the cliff was also a small cave open on two ends and with another tunnel that we suspected led to the far end of the pool.
Without wasting much time, we dipped into the cool waters for a refreshing swim. The water was pleasantly revitalising one what was a rather hot day.
Spurred on by the spirit of adventure those of us who were more daring decided to scale back to the top of the encasing cliffs and dive off into the pool.
For those with acrophobia, or the fear of heights, one wouldn’t prescribe they attempt this activity. The jump isn’t too high, anywhere between 5m- 10m, but it is an exceedingly exhilarating experience.
On the first attempt one landed in the water with a loud smack, the pain from the impact rendered the left leg numb for a few moments. The swim back to shore was extended and by the time I reached terra firma I had to take a few months to recuperate before attempting another dive.
Before long I was back at it again, this time with an Olympic performance splash. Those who I was with, who happened to be more daring than I was jumped for higher distance, the locals from what looked to be 20m high or more.
We spent the rest of the afternoon eating, drinking, laughing, swimming and bathing in the sun. Enclosed by nature and isolated from the hustle and bustle of the city, the day trip to Mutorashanga was fun and relaxing experience.
Our drive back to Harare saw us take the route through Mazowe, it was a slighter faster way back and by the time we arrived, the whole crew was well spent and ready for home.
The green pool in Mutorashanga is a great day outing for those in Harare looking for something to do with their Saturday. It is cost effective as one only has to ensure they have fuel to travel 200km and can bring whatever provisions they so choose.
A few days after my adventure I saw a YouTube video where a couple of brave individuals were cycling off the cliff and back-flipping into the green pool. I was quite amazed to see the extent of some people’s risk-taking for having been to the place, I can safely say there are limits to how much adventure I would undertake.