Saturday, 21 November 2015

Table Mountain hiking

This was a good friend and not myself.

The view towards Hout Bay

He was up on Table Mountain just yesterday.

Looking the other direction, the view towards Camps Bay

Camps Bay and Lions Head peak.

For the first time in some ten years I spent yesterday hiking on Table Mountain. During my high-school years we used to do it quite often – usually camping out under the stars in sleeping bags and keeping warm around a fire. Sadly none of that is permitted today – probably just as well. Nevertheless, on the route we took yesterday, no evidence of litter or desecration of the natural vegetation was evident, and it seemed that the mountain remains well cared for by Cape Nature / Parks Board.

The route we took was from Kloof Nek along the pipe-track to the Diagonal Path above Camps Bay. This route is described as a “strenuous ramble” and ascends in a series of zig-zags steeply up to the rock face, then crosses the three Apostles’ buttresses of Porcupine, Jubille and Barrier, before making the final steep ascent up the well-vegetated Valken gorge onto the section of the plateau called “Valley of the Red Gods”. We swung left onto the path headed for the cable station. 

This traverses beautiful Ark and Echo valleys and steep buttresses at the heads of Blinkwater-, Grotto and Fountain ravines, where steel ladders are provided at the rock faces. The natural beauty up there is remarkable. The previous night’s good rainfall had resulted in us encountering many waterfalls, streams and generally dripping ferns and bushes. Lots of colourful natural plants were also in bloom including Protea and Watsonias. We descended by cableway.

My thanks to Rob for the pictures and words.

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