Monthly Archives May 2013

Hiking Table Mountain in the rain – 27 May 2013

Yes, hiking Table Mountain in the rain is possible, but not very pleasant. Depends on the type of rain; depends on the quality, and quantity, of your rain gear; depends on your hiking experience and your expectations and the climate you live in. For example, for a Londoner (used to atrocious weather!) with some hiking experience, dressed in a waterproof rain-jacket (most rain-jackets are NOT
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Photo of the week – May week #4: Nursery Buttress

The buttress just to the left of the popular Skeleton Gorge route is called Nursery Buttress (after the adjacent Nursery Ravine, named after the erstwhile tree nursery at its head dating back to 1892) and it offers a fine way to the top of the southern segment of Table Mountain’s Eastern Buttresses. Viewed from the Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens, Nursery Buttress can be recognized by the
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The old mountain and the sea – 22 May 2013

Known as Hoerikwaggo, mountain in the sea, by the indigenous Khoi-khoi inhabitants of the Cape, and once an island separated 20 miles from the mainland, Table Mountain rises almost sheer from the Atlantic. Mountain- and seascapes combine to make hiking up Table Mountain an unforgettable experience. While the hum of city traffic drifts up from below on routes up the front / north side of
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Photo of the week – May week #3: A convergence of fog banks

Never in all my years of hiking Table Mountain have I seen something like this! Coming along Fountain Ledge on the west side of the mountain, overlooking Camps Bay, a singular atmospheric phenomenon was playing out: a fog bank were rolling down the Twelve Apostles on a collision course with a stationary fog bank suspended over the ocean. Both banks dissipated before they could converge,
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Photo of the week – May week #2: Woody Buttress

If you know enough routes, hiking Table Mountain offer decades of outdoor fun and adventure. I was reminded of this the other day when doing the Woody Buttress route on the Twelve Apostles, a lesser-known route that involves lots of B-grade scrambling  and  a few bits of exposure to heights. Starting out from the Pipe Track, I was hailed by another Table Mountain guide who
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Skeleton Gorge in winter – 13 May 2013

Skeleton Gorge – once referred to as ‘Skeletal George’ by a German hiker – is a popular and fairly challenging route up Table Mountain. Technically, only the first half (time-wise) of the route leads up Skeleton Gorge, a forested ravine on the lush eastern side of Table Mountain; from the top of the ravine – almost two thirds the way up the mountain, the way
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Photo of the week – May week #1: Caveman's Overhang

Hiking Table Mountain is not only about getting to the summit and enjoying the views, but also to indulge in the many topographical features and geological formations scattered around the mountain. The Table Mountain massif covers an area of 57 square kilometers, and the table top summit takes up only around 2% of that area. Behind the ‘Table’, the mountain undulates down to sort of
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Photo of the week – May week #1: Caveman’s Overhang

Hiking Table Mountain is not only about getting to the summit and enjoying the views, but also to indulge in the many topographical features and geological formations scattered around the mountain. The Table Mountain massif covers an area of 57 square kilometers, and the table top summit takes up only around 2% of that area. Behind the ‘Table’, the mountain undulates down to sort of
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Quote of the week – May week #1: Fountain Ravine Original

“I boldly lay down flat and wriggled along the upper shelf of rock until I could drop on to the narrow ledge below. Along this six inch ledge I cautiously went crab-fashion.” – Extract from an article by Annie Wilson in the 1900 Journal of the Mountain Club of South Africa, describing her climb up the Fountain Ravine Original route, Table Mountain – In her article,
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