Climbing Table Mountain India Venster route


Table Mountain is a flat topped mountain that forms the backdrop of Capetown, South Africa. Most people take the cable car up but wanting a unique adventure, we decided to hike instead. India Venster route is a challenging route that leads up directly under the cables of the cable car before skirting around to the back of the mountain. With 6 fatalities in 5 years on this route alone, we read that it was not well marked and many had veered offpath with devastating consequences. We joined guide Riaan Vorster along with another 2 couples to tackle this.

The start of the route provided a good warm up with big rocky steps. Our guide explained the geological formation of the mountain and pointed out various plants and the ticks that were starting to become active. Seeing the ticks made me recall a lecture about tick bite fevers. Everybody worries about malaria while in Africa but I was very surprised to hear that African tick bite fever is much more common than malaria in South Africa. They say that the ticks are active from November to April but we saw quite a few on our hike in September - small inconspicuous black dots on grass.

A protea on the side of the mountain

Anyway, I digressed. We continued our climb and soon we came to a sign that warned us of the dangers ahead.


Because of the fatalities, the authority had installed chains and staples along the way. I did feel quite safe with these extra supports. There were some places though where we had to watch our steps while walking along the exposed cliff edges. The route was not very clearly marked and there were many side paths (used by rock climbers to access rock climbing routes at the base of a cliff) that were easy to stray onto. We were glad that we had a guide with us.

Chains installed along the climb

We made it to the top but unfortunately it was covered by fog. Nevertheless, this is the sort of place that is more about the journey rather than the destination. The climb itself was spectacular, and had I just caught the cable car up the mountain, I don't think I would have appreciated it as much.


It took us about 2 1/2 hours to reach the top including rest and photo stops, after a brief stay at the top we took the cable car back to town.

Apparently there are more than 900 rockclimbing routes to summit the mountain. I've decided if I ever get back here, that's what I would like to try!


2 comments :

  1. Hi! :) Thx you for your awesome posts!

    I have a question: Can I share some of your posts (parts of posts with direct link to the original post on your blog) on www.curiousbee.info?

    The idea is to collect interesting posts from personal blogs on one place and make "real news from real people". So I thought you might to be there:)))

    You can find more info here: http://www.curiousbee.info/to-bloggers/letter-to-bloggers/

    or check short video on youtube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v1vF_docxis

    for personal chat or questions you can find me on facebook: https://www.facebook.com/linda.mensik

    Best regards,

    Linda

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    1. Hi Linda, sorry I didn't see your comment until now as it was hidden. You're welcome to share some of my posts on your website. Just let me know which one you would like to share. :)

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