Photo of the week – July week #3: Kloof Corner

Jul 18, 2013

Kloof Corner follows a prominent ridge the forms the right skyline of Table Mountain when viewed from the north – the iconic and best-known view of Table Mountain. The ridge terminates about 150 meters below the summit at the foot of sheer cliffs, from where you latch onto the India Venster route to gain the summit via a lengthy  traverse to the back of the Table. As far as Table Mountain hiking goes, Kloof Corner is one of the more challenging routes. The route contains 3 chains to assist hikers up tricky rock bands; these should not be underestimated. A variation exists along the middle section, known as Kloof Corner Pinnacle and strictly adhering to the crest of the ridge to rejoin the original line further up. Great to do if you have time and want more scrambling and adventure.

A unique feature of the route is that it offers views towards the north (over the city) and the west (Camps Bay / Atlantic coast) at the same time at several points along the way. The ridge, known as Kloof Corner Ridge (a route name consisting of 3 nouns!) forms the great northwestern corner of the mountain, where the north and west sides meet. It’s one of the most conspicuous features on Table Mountain.

You need a good head for heights and some experience in scrambling to enjoy Kloof Corner. The route is not obvious, so you want to go with someone who knows it well and who knows how to use a rope to provide safety on exposed sections; or make use of a Table Mountain guide. The route offers some unique rock-formations, views and positions. The scrambling is clean and on sound rock. An escape route (onto India Venster) can be found just under halfway up the route.

Hiking Table Mountain via Kloof Corner is an exhilarating experience that would appeal to the adventurous and those looking for a challenge. The C-grade scrambling is tricky and a rope is recommended, especially at the chains. The middle chain offers an exciting variation: more intimidating and exposed, but less easier on the arms / less strenuous.


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