20 April 2010

Table Mountain Circuit

Date: 18 April 2010

Location: Table Mountain

Walkers: Helen and Ian

*** Route plotted here ***

I was all set to take my brother up Oppelskop, but our plans were scuppered when we found Tafelberg Road closed for the day.

When I found out he hadn't ever walked up Kloof Corner or along the contour path on the face of Table Mountain that was our obvious alternative route. So we parked our car on the Kloof Corner bend and up the steps we went!

As we climbed higher we stopped a few times to admire the wonderful views of Lions Head, Camps Bay and the city below.

Growing on the side of the path we saw a few little autumn-flowering pypies, Gladiolus manticola. So delicate and pretty!

Also spotted on the slope: pink Erepsia anceps, and blue Roella ciliata.

Restios too!

The last section is a stepped path straight up to the rock face. Plod, plod.

It was here on the steps we saw a grasshopper perfectly camouflaged for its brown-grey surroundings. When he hopped... bright red wings!

At the top we passed a blue Salvia africana-caerulea, and a large shrub with cream flowers which I can't identify. It has fleshy leaves, so some sort of succulent perhaps?

After water and a little snack we set off along the contour.

I noticed how dry it was... not a waterfall in sight! Ian checked out the rocky caves along the way.

My brother is a keen walker and was really enjoying being on the mountain!

As we got further along we got a good view down to the marquee of the Table of Peace & Unity charity event. This was the reason Tafelberg Road was closed for the day.

Close to Platteklip Gorge we passed several proteas beside the path.

Such lovely soft grey leaves!

We walked round into Platteklip and picnicked beside the stream.

Then we back-tracked a little and took the path down on the west side of Platteklip Gorge. It was a pleasant zig-zag down a stepped path.

A few flowers spotted on the way down: Oxalis (possibly Oxalis polyphylla... there so many pink varieties and they all look the same!), Lobelia (no idea which variety... there are so many and they all look the same!!!) and Erica abietina (phew, an easy one ;-)).

It wasn't long til we reached Tafelberg Road.

We returned to the start via the road, having a peek at the Table of Peace and Unity tents as we passed by.

(Photos by Helen)

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