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Notes on the Geography of Sri Lanka: Hantane

Hantane is the peak south of Kandy; for generations it's been in plantations--first coffee; then, after the 1880s, tea; now, a mix of tea and abandoned tea plantations.

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Sri Lanka: Hantane picture 1

We're climbing above Kandy.

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And looking south to Hantane.

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Many of the slopes are covered by tea.

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Many formerly in tea are now abandoned.

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A closeup of this grassland.

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Tea invites erosion; here, the ravines have been paved to reduce it.

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Well cared for, these tea gardens still suffer erosion.

Sri Lanka: Hantane picture 8

One outcome: scattered bushes among the bedrock outcrops.

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Heavy pruning.

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Firewood for the local market.

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Old plantation roads are everywhere.

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This one's still in heavy use.

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The roads were built to serve the plantations and the tea factories, like this one, now an excellent industry museum.

Sri Lanka: Hantane picture 14

The roof, walls, and framing are English steel; the floor and windows, surprisingly, are English pine.

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This factory is ot quite so spiffy, but it is still in operation.  The women are lined up to have their pickings weighed.

Sri Lanka: Hantane picture 16

Closeup.

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Coming home after hours.

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Traffic jam.  What's the problem?

Sri Lanka: Hantane picture 19

Flat tire.  No jack.  No problem.  A dozen guys lift.

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The van is propped up temporarily.

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Next door: plantation worksheds.

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Lines for the plantation workers, mostly Tamils imported from India when the British found that the local Sinhalese population refused to work on the plantations.

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Front stoops.

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At the upper end of the scale: a swimming pool for a bungalow.

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Another bungalow.



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