The Cederberg mountains and nature reserve are located near Clanwilliam, approximately 300 km north of Cape Town. he mountain range is named after the endangered Clanwilliam Cedar (Widdringtonia cedarbergensis), which is a tree endemic to the area. The mountains are noted for dramatic rock formations and San rock art.
The Cederberg mountains are bordered on the west by the Sandveld, the north by the Pakhuis Mountains, the East by the Springbok flats and the south by the Kouebokkeveld mountains and the Skurweberge. The nearest towns are Citrusdal to the southwest and Clanwilliam to the north. There are several notable mountains in the range, including Sneeuberg (2026 m) and Tafelberg (1969 m).
The dominating characteristic of the area is sharply defined sandstone rock formations, often reddish in colour. This group of rocks contains bands of shale and in recent years a few important fossils have been discovered in these layers. The fossils are of primitive fish and date back 450 million years to the Ordovician Period.
The summers are very hot and dry, while the winters are wetter and cold with typical annual rainfall in the low lying areas of less than 700 mm. The higher peaks receive a dusting of snow in winter. Summer days are typically clear and cloudless. Due to the clear skies most of the year, it makes an excellent site for sky watching and has its own amateur observatory.
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