Why hike Table Mountain? Table Mountain arguably ranks as the most-climbed mountain in the world. Located next to a bustling city makes it about as accessible as your local pub. The fancy cableway obviates the dreaded hike-down. Small surprise then that thousands take up the challenge and leg it to the summit. But easy access and easy descent aside, there are many compelling reasons to hike Table Mountain, and not merely “because it’s there.”
We at Hike Table Mountain take pride in sharing the mountain with others. If you decide to hike Table Mountain, you will be rewarded with a much more satisfying and exciting experience than if you join the masses who simply take the cable car up the mountain. Conquering the mountain on foot is the only way to get a true sense of its size, height, grandeur and wildness. Topping this are the intangibles: the exhilaration of scaling a mountain, the thrill of discovery, a sense of achievement and the invigoration of immersing yourself in nature.
REASONS TO HIKE TABLE MOUNTAIN
People hike Table Mountain for reasons as varied and numerous as her trails. Some do it for exercise; some for adventure; still others see it as a challenge and regard the rugged terrain as a proving ground. There are those who crave the peace and solitude of the high summits; who want to find beauty in lonely places; to explore and experience nature; to escape the daily grind. Whatever your reason, this is one mountain you want to climb.
Let’s start with the views. If you hike Table Mountain, you will take in the best views: different angles, different settings, different light and different heights. Hiking allows you to cover more ground, so it follows that you will get more views. The cable car ride is just 5 minutes long, so your views will be limited. Also, you will enjoy the views without the detraction of jostling crowds. Most important, you will have earned your views, which will make you appreciate them far more.
Second, Table Mountain covers diverse landscapes. The only way to experience the variety of terrain — the rocks, plants, streams, birds and other wildlife – is to hike Table Mountain. These things constitute the soul of the mountain. The flora alone is world-famous: Table Mountain contains about as many plant species as the entire UK, many of them endemic. The sculpted rock-formations offer a sense of surrealism to the surroundings. The dramatic topography emanates grandeur. Hiking grounds you to the mountain. Scents, bird calls, the trickle of a stream, clicking frogs, atmospheric cloud – all combine to beguile the senses.
Third: adventure! Table Mountain offers lots of challenging hikes that involves scrambling and exposure to heights (narrow ledges). No experience required, only a good head for heights, a sense of adventure and a reasonable fitness level. Wild routes exist up Table Mountain, leading up lush ravines and craggy buttresses far off-the-beaten track, some traversing areas of the mountain very few people ever set foot. Table Mountain packs a lot of wilderness, and a lot of rough terrain, offering legion opportunities for adventures and exploration.
But for many, it’s simply the prospect of connecting with nature that induces them to hike Table Mountain. Large tracts of the mountain remain pristine, offering ample opportunity to commune with Mother Nature and to soak up the peace and quiet. Despite the proximity of a city, parts of Table Mountain surprisingly offer much solitude. Hiking takes you to places where you feel a thousand miles from civilization. Hike Table Mountain for a respite from the hustle and bustle of the city and to get off-the-beaten-track. Many Table Mountain hikes lead past hidden gems: caves or spectacular vantage points or rock-formations or rare plant species that are easy to miss if hiking without a guide.
Finally, what better way to get some exercise than to climb a mountain? What better workout than scrambling up the imposing sides of Table Mountain? And then to enjoy the sense of achievement gained from your efforts and, in some cases, courage.
Having said all that, the decision to hike Table Mountain is not for all. Some are better off taking the cable car to the summit, and there’s nothing wrong with that. But if you love nature, or you have an inquisitive mind, or you’re adventurous, or you’re keen to experience more of Table Mountain (and, in the company of our guides, learn more), or you prefer a more authentic experience of the mountain and enjoy getting off the tourist trail, or you crave a solid workout, then come hike Table Mountain with us for a once-in-a-lifetime experience.