How the Hole was Made in the Aasvogelberg

Just behind the town of Zastron, near the border of Lesotho, a rocky outcrop dominates the landscape; this is Aasvoelberg, so named for the vultures that circle it. Just below the pinnacle of the outcrop is a large hole that bores straight through the rock, surveying the landscape like an immense eye. But how did the eye get there?

The tale goes that Reiner de Winnaar, Zastron’s local storyteller and the man on whose farm the town was founded, was hunting in the area. As he rounded a corner of the mountain he came across a peculiar man lounging on the rocks. Surrounded by baboon companions, dressed in filthy rags and sporting small horns and cloven hooves, Reiner recognised him immediately as the devil himself.

“Morning,” said the devil, his baboon companions taking offence to the presence of de Winnaar’s hound.

Reiner nodded at him.


“What, pray tell, is that?” the devil asked, pointing at the old rifle slung over Renier’s shoulder.

The rifle was an ancient thing, requiring equally generous loads of gunpowder and nerve to fire it. It was his pride and joy and his constant companion.

I must be careful, thought Renier. He wasn’t all too pleased that the devil was in town.

“It’s my pipe,” Renier answered the devil. “I enjoy a good smoke, but my wife detests the smell, so I come up here for a puff.”

“Well,” said the devil “let’s light it up and take a draw!” For the devil enjoyed a good pipe too.

Renier loaded up the gun with three charges of powder, lead pellets and old rusty nails.

“Here” Renier handed the devil the old rifle. “ Put it to your mouth and take a good long draw while I strike a match.”

The devil put the muzzle to his mouth while Renier lit the fuse.

Suddenly there was an enormous explosion, and through the clouds of smoke Renire could see the devil’s head, freshly blown off, traveling through the air. It hit the Aasvogelberg with an almighty crash, tearing a hole straight through the rock and hurtling out of sight.

Through all of the commotion Renier could hear the faint cries of the devil’s head: “Wraggies, jong! Daaride twak was darem sterk!”

That’s how the eye of Aasvogelberg was formed.