[caption id="attachment_15950" align="aligncenter" width="551"] Swartberg Pass winding down towards Prince Albert[/caption]
North of the Cango valley is the Swartberg Pass. Prior to the building of this pass there were only two unreliable passes through the Swartberg,connecting the Little Karoo and Big Karoo, that were often impassable.
This lower road through the Swartberg between Prince Albert and Oudsthorn was pioneered by P.J. Meiring who farmed in the pass .
The first road was built in 1857 by A.G.De Smit and the 16 km pass opened in 1858. The road crossed the river 21 times which made it impassable during wet conditions. An upgraded tar road with causeways, shortening the road but now with 30 river crossings.
Cecil John Rhodes (1853 - 1902), a controversial individual in South Africa, was born in England, and came out to Natal, before moving up to the newly discovered diamond fields. In his short life he managed to accumulate significant wealth, and enter into politics, becoming the Prime Minister of the Cape Province. He also went on to found Rhodesia (now Zimbabwe).