Fitness required for hiking Table Mountain – 14 July 2013

How much fitness is required to hike up Table Mountain? The short answer: not much – at least not via the easiest and shortest route. It’s worth remembering that what you lack in fitness or stamina, you would have to make up for with perseverance and determination. Better unfit and determined than of average fitness and unmotivated or apathetic. If you’re not prepared to break a sweat and feel tired, then you better be fit – and vice versa. Hiking Table Mountain is more about stamina than fitness: getting out of breath quickly has no bearing on stamina. Stamina can be defined as the capacity for sustained mental or physical exertion. Some people are born with it; others acquire it through sustained exercise and sport. Stamina bolstered by determination makes up for a lot.

Hiking Table Mountain requires uphill walking over rugged terrain (most of the time), often in hot conditions. UPHILL, RUGGED TERRAIN, HEAT… and sometimes strong wind, exposure to heights, lose rock, bush. An ability to walk for miles along a level road means little when it comes to hiking Table Mountain. Another factor that plays a role in how well or poorly you fare on a Table Mountain hike is your expectations: if you expect it to be easy and straightforward, then it’s bound to be tougher; but if you expect it to be a strenuous hike, then chances are you will find it easier or at least less of a rude awakening.

Few people are so unfit and weak that they are unable to at least hike up the easiest route up Table Mountain at a leisurely pace. Often, it is people’s minds that stand in the way of them reaching the summit.

(c) www.hiketablemountain.co.za