Key to attracting more visitors into the Southern Drakensberg area is listening to what folk ask for or enquire about.
Well, the SDCTO members and committee do indeed pay attention to our actual and prospective visitors, resulting in this proud milestone, a somewhat unique offering in electronic communication :-
Why the need ? Southern Berg locals will tell you that snowfalls can arrive in any month of the year; similarly melt away in half a day or linger for a few. Weather forecasts/reports on TV, radio or the internet simply just don't cut it for the ardent 'snow chasers'.
The challenge was to provide potential visitors with an easy method of ascertaining what actual snow conditions (or lack thereof) is prevailing in our Southern Berg whenever they choose, so as to enable them to decide on their plan of action and destination.
As much as some people cannot tolerate the often freezing temperatures experienced in the Southern Drakensberg, causing burst or frozen water pipes & even loo's, etc, are many others magically attracted to any appearance of a white blanket of snow that often graces our mountains and country-side even most unexpectedly at odd times.
This is not at all surprising considering that the average annual highs in KZN hovers in excess of 20deg C, and having a true "Alpine-like Experience" presenting itself right on one's doorstep, as it were, is for many definitely an opportunity not to be missed. Ski's, toboggans, snowboards, inner-tubes and anything that could in any way be used to traverse a snowy surface is quickly commandeered to the task. Not even a defunct satellite-dish escapes being put to 'good use' on a snowy slope!
The SDCTO does not condone the sending of 'pervasive content', a euphemism for 'unsolicited e-mail', potentially deemed spam/junk e-mail with its own very negative connotation. Thus a method whereby interested persons can willingly trigger delivery of an e-mail message that will inform them of the prevailing conditions at the time, was chosen. And so "SnowMail" was born !!
This message can be triggered maximum once every hour from the same email address, but for as many times as anyone wishes, without the sender's e-mail address suffering any undesired long-term consequences of being added to some database pouring a flood of pervasive marketing e-mail in future. There is however an option available to folk who wishes to be informed automatically when prevailing conditions change. This will entail a subscription to such a service (and is still being finalised)