Lines of Least Resistance

Vignettes on Table Mountain’s 101 Hiking and Scrambling Routes

A singular souvenir of your Table Mountain hike. A special gift for a family member, friend or colleague.

Lines of Least Resistance

“By the late 1880s, after more than two centuries of European presence at the Cape, only seven routes led up Table Mountain. Thousands had climbed to the summit, the majority via the gash in the face of the mountain known as Platteklip Gorge, yet vast tracts remained unexplored. Only with the advent of mountaineering in the early 1890s did climbers begin a systematic exploration in their quest for new routes.

Lines of Least Resistance tells the story of Table Mountain through its hiking and scrambling routes. Drawing on his intimate knowledge of the mountain, Riaan Vorster pays tribute to the early pioneers by examining their routes, clearing the sands of time from those which have slipped into oblivion.

No two routes are alike; each possesses unique qualities that reveal something of the mountain’s character. Written from a personal as well as historical perspective, the book takes the reader on a journey of discovery along the highways and byways of Table Mountain.”

Cost: R500

  • Non-fiction
  • Available in hardcover with dust jacket, 446 pages
  • A singular souvenir of your Table Mountain hike
  • A special gift for a family member, friend or colleague
  • The book is the first of its kind

Review by legendary SA mountaineer and foremost Table Mountain expert, Mike Scott:

“…thoroughly enjoyable and fascinating book.”

“This is a delightful book of amusing anecdotes and fascinating historical facts.”

“Great book, well written with excellent research…”

“…a marvelous piece of historical detective work and shatters lots of myths and mystery around first ascents.”

Review by Tony Lourens, Cape Town’s most prominent mountaineer and author of hiking and climbing guide books as well as editor and publisher of SA’s only climbing magazine.

“Lines of Least Resistance is an extraordinary book. A companion that will take you on an unforgettable voyage of discovery. A journey that captures the burning spirit of Table Mountain and all its quirky moods, and also gives you an insight into the lives and courage of those early pioneers. Riaan must’ve had the time of his life exploring all these routes and documenting them in meticulous style, to eventually produce this impeccable body of work. It is beautifully written and the attention to detail is evidence that Riaan spent many research hours poring over journals, books and papers, leaving no moss covered stone unturned. Lines of Least Resistance looks and feels like a book infused with history and wonderful tales. The layout and binding does the book proud and the cover image exudes the very essence as a ‘mountain for all seasons’! Any person who has even the slightest interest in Table Mountain should own this book.”

Beyond the Ranges

“The moon had passed its zenith and was now inching its way down towards the west. I was dog-tired, yet didn’t expect sleep to come easily. Nothing comes easily in the jungle – only suffering. And death.”

Beyond the Ranges

A journey into the unknown

Cape Town, 1924: Mathew Travis, a discontented boat repairman caught up in a dull and aimless existence, sets out on a quest to realise his boyhood dream of exploring the Amazon. Along with a brazen American bent on fulfilling his long-dead father’s ambition, and an obsessive German historian searching for an emerald mine, he ventures deep into the vast Brazilian rainforest.

Day and night of hardship erodes Travis’ romantic sentiments about the Amazon and exposes his shortcomings as an explorer. But this pales before the events that befall him when he crosses the frontiers of the known world into the territory of bloodthirsty cannibals. In the savage heart of an uncharted wilderness, his fight for survival takes on epic proportions and leads him to a discovery, as he puts it, ‘unimagined by man’.

Cost: R400

  • Fiction
  • Genre: adventure 
  • Available in softcover, 335 pages

Review by CAPE TIMES (national newspaper)

“Riaan Vorster has a swashbuckling streak which makes this book a pleasure to read.”

“Vorster’s imagery is vivid.”

“You’ll find yourself glued to the pages as the novel barrels full-tilt towards its climax.”

Review by SA MOUNTAIN (national hiking and climbing magazine)

“…this book belongs on the shelves next to the best adventure writers of this decade.”

“Vorster has produced a nail-biting, bowel-wrenching masterpiece that makes Indiana Jones look like a Sunday school teacher.”

“Virtually impossible to put down once started, the book is well written, with interesting characters and a well-sewn plot with twists and turns that keep you guessing till the last page.”

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