Silvermine Panorama Route

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Also known as the Skyline Route, the unique aspect of this circular route, is the views it provides, of both False Bay on the one side and Hout Bay on the other. This combined with extensive stands of proteas, one or other of which seem to be flowering at most times of the year. Much of the lower part of the area was once covered by pine plantation, with the natural fynbos being re-established after the extensive fires of 1999 & 2000.

 

IMG_4306I have done the path twice recently, once in the anti-clockwise direction and once clockwise. Both are equally spectacular, but for some reason the clockwise route seems to be faster. Ideal hiking for a warm winters day.IMG_4308

The trail starts at the Silvermine Dam, at the end of the tarred road that leads in to the reserve, with the first part of the walk along the edge of the dam, before a short winding path leads off a jeep track to the plateaux above. The path meets and follows the jeep track in few places and one has to be careful of mountain bikers who also use this route. Eventually the path leads to the viewing platform at the top of Blackburn Ravine, with a much photographed view over Hout Bay. IMG_4321The circular route branches off shortly before the platform, leading up to the ridge above. It is a walk of about an hour from here to the highest point at Noordhoek Peak. The views over the Atlantic coast are quite spectacular and include a designated viewing sight of the nesting place of a pair of black eagles (the nest can only be seen, not reached).

IMG_4311From Noordhoek Peak the path follows the jeep track for while before the path branches to Silvermine Ridge and back to the dam and car park. The hike takes about 3½ to 4 hours.IMG_4310

 

 

 

 

Cableway Closed 28 July – 10 August

A reminder that the Table Mountain Aerial Cableway will be closed from 28th July to 10th August. The only way up is to walk it. While we always think that this is the best way up it means you also have to walk down. For more information or guided walks CONTACT US.

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Red Disa hike with Meridian Hiking Club

Meridian - Red Disa hike - Jan 2014_0007 Meridian - Red Disa hike - Jan 2014_0012 Meridian - Red Disa hike - Jan 2014_0014 Meridian - Red Disa hike - Jan 2014_0018 Meridian - Red Disa hike - Jan 2014_0023 Meridian - Red Disa hike - Jan 2014_0025 Meridian - Red Disa hike - Jan 2014_0026Perfect day to hike up Skeleton Gorge to see the red disas. All in full bloom at the moment, it is a magnificent site in a maginficent setting. We are so priviledged to live where we do and be able to experience the flora of this great place. The disas are out in Window Stream, the Aquaduct Path and a few in Nursery Ravine. Great day, great group and nice picnic in the shade in Nursery Valley.

Meridian – Red Disa hike – Jan 2014

South African Trekking and Catered, Guided Multi-Day Hiking Trails

Skeleton Gorge and the Aquaduct – Red & Blue Disas and more

Saturday was a perfect Cape Town day for a hike up the southern side of Table Mountain, in search of the Red disa (Disa uniflora). These magnificent flowers only show themselves towards the end of January and usually fade away around the end of February. How quickly time flies when one wants to do something like this, before you know what has happened they have disappeared for another year. This year I have been lucky to see them in two different places, Myburgh and Disa Ravine, but they are always most prolific in the Window Gorge Stream and Aquaduct areas.

The weather was a bit cooler than it has been lately, with a little bit of cloud around to bring the temperatures down. From Cecelia Forest we headed up to the Contour Path and on to Skeleton Gorge…

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South African Trekking and Catered, Guided Multi-Day Hiking Trails

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Walking in the rain is ok as long as you start in the dry. Saturday was different. Karen had organised a permit for Orangekloof – limited to 12 people per day and very much in demand at this time of the year, with the Red disas in bloom. It was raining as we started – not too heavily but clearly not likely to lift any time soon. But with permits in short supply and looking like a hardy group we put on our waterproofs and set out anyway.

At the start it was not too bad, just a few drips and plenty of mist, with more moisture generated from inside the rain gear than from outside. It certainly was not cold. We had planned to do Hell’s Gate and climb up to the Woodhead Tunnel, but with the wet it was going to be too slippery, so we turned off…

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South African Trekking and Catered, Guided Multi-Day Hiking Trails

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Myburgh Ravine Family Hike, a set on Flickr.

With my sister out from Canada and Lindsay about to start a new job on Friday, we decided to take the opportunity on Wednesday to hike up Myburgh Ravine to see the red disas (Disa uniflora). These beautiful flowers are only seen between the end of January and the first few weeks of February and only in few locations on Table Mountain and some of the surrounding mountains. Inevitably unless you make a plan and get out and see them, the time passes quickly and they fade and are gone before you get there.

It was a misty morning, but cool and beautiful for walking. I had not done the route for quite a while and was pleased that Peter, who had done it the week before, had decided to join us. Starting in Hout Bay we had initially planned to…

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South African Trekking and Catered, Guided Multi-Day Hiking Trails

The red disas (Disa uniflora) have started to make their annual appearance on Table Mountain. Although I have not seen them myself as yet, a friend was up in Myburgh Ravine yesterday and confirmed that they are already out there. The red disa is the largest of the South African orchids and only flower for approximately three to four week during late January and early February.

 There are a only few locations around Table Mountain and a few places close by, such as the Kogelberg Biosphere Reserve (Betty’s Bay), where they can be seen. I will be doing a number of hikes over the next few days to have a look at the various locations. Once I know that they are in full bloom, anyone wishing to join day hikes to view these striking flowers can contact me on hostnet@mweb.co.za or complete the TRAIL ENQUIRY FORM .

 

For DAY HIKE RATES click…

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