Cape City is certainly one of my favorite cities on this planet.
See more: Lion’s head (cape town)
I can’t get sufficient of it.
Partly, that is because of the many spectacular hikes you possibly can sort out from the town’s outskirts. Sure, Cape City has been blessed with an abundance of climbable mountains and I tried to scale as lots of them as potential whereas I used to be on the town.
Nicely, it turned out I saved the most effective for, um, first, as a result of Lion’s Head ended up being my absolute favorite hike. I’m not alone both, because it’s certainly one of Cape City’s hottest mountains for walkers. It’s one of many best routes to trek and is a two-hour spherical journey for most individuals.
In case you’re going to be spending time in Cape City, I extremely suggest including Lion’s Head to your climbing to-do checklist. Right here’s how our expertise went.
We took an Uber from our lodge on Buitenkant Avenue to the beginning of the path, then started to stroll.
The 5 kilometre hike climbs 500 metres because it encircles Lion’s Head, which meant that half of our stroll was within the scorching Cape City warmth and the opposite half was shaded. In starting, no less than, the trail was large, clean, and flat.
And from the second we began strolling, the views had been spectacular.
Enjoyable-but-not-altogether-surprising reality about me: I’m actually awkward in relation to ladders.
I don’t know learn how to climb them.
I imply, I can climb them. However I additionally spend the whole thing of that point terrified I’m going to slide via the gaps and die. It might have one thing to do with my lifelong lack of coordination.
It was to my nice dismay, then, when after thirty minutes of simple strolling, I discovered myself face-to-face with a ladder.
This was not what I’d anticipated.
“It’s okay, you go on,” I mentioned to each single one that was behind me, whereas I stood to 1 aspect and prayed for the crowds to subside.
After they did, I ascended these rungs like a grandma who was significantly faint hearted.
And it’s at this level after I’ll inform you that this ladder was not more than two metres excessive.
With the hardest problem I’ve confronted this yr now overcome, I felt as if I might sort out something.
Clambering over uneven rocks? Not an issue.
Marching alongside a sheer drop with no handrails to carry onto? Simple peasy.
Pulling myself up over rocks that had been greater than the size of my legs? I might do it with my eyes closed.
Taking the fork within the highway that pointed to the troublesome route? The one which concerned utilizing chains to climb up the vertical face of the rock, form of like a reverse abseil?
Yeah, no thanks.
‘Trigger, , individuals really die falling off Lion’s Head.
We took the simple manner up, which felt like something however, and I ended up panting in disbelief as I repeatedly requested Dave if he was certain this was presupposed to be a simple hike.
The ultimate 5 minutes was the hardest a part of the climb, with all its uneven rocks and slippery sand, which mixed had me stumbling all around the mountain till we made it to the highest.
After which we had been on the high.
And the views of Cape City had been breathtaking.
I took a seat on a close-by rock, ate a banana, and gawped on the small animals that had been working round me.
My new favorite animal is the hyrax.
I assumed it was some form of big rodent, however after I set about researching what it was, I realized it was most carefully associated to elephants and manatees.
Both manner, it was cute and I wished to be their pal.
I climbed Desk Mountain in a while within the week (extra on that quickly, however oh my god, it was the toughest factor I’ve ever performed) and I really most popular the view from Lion’s Head.
In spite of everything, you possibly can’t see Desk Mountain when you’re on high of it.
And it positively wasn’t troublesome to get some kickass pictures, both.
Because of my earlier climbing expertise, I knew the approaching down was prone to be more durable than the ascent, and on this case I used to be appropriate.
It seems that climbing up rocks that had been half of the dimensions of me is way simpler than trying to scramble down them. Particularly when there’s a layer of mud all over the place that makes every thing super-slippery.
After which, being me, I could have taken a flawed flip and all of a sudden discovered myself gripping on to a series as I tried to descend with out throwing myself off the mountain.
After which, being me, I could have then climbed again up the chain and wandered round in circles looking for the simpler route.
It additionally seems that I’m much more scared of ladders when I’ve to go down them.
It took us round an hour to hike to the highest of Lion’s Head, and the descent got here in at 45 minutes.
And after we reached the underside, I instantly introduced that I wasn’t certain how the rest in Cape City might high that have.
And it didn’t. I beloved climbing Lion’s Head, and it was one of many highlights of my ten days I spent in Cape City.
It was a problem — it wasn’t the simple stroll alongside a clean floor I’d been anticipating — however the most effective form of problem. One which concerned nice views, even higher firm, after which a well-deserved reward at Jerry’s Burger Bar on the finish of it.
Heading to Cape City and need to take a look at Lion’s Head? Right here’s what it’s essential know.
How you can Get From the Centre of Cape City to the Lion’s Head Hike
If in case you have your individual automobile, it’s simple to search out your approach to the beginning of the hike. Head in direction of Desk Mountain, take the turn-off for Lion’s Head — there are indicators all over the place — after which comply with the indicators to the automobile park. In case you seek for Lion’s Head in Google Maps, it directs you to the beginning of the hike, making it exceptionally simple to search out your manner.
In case you don’t have your individual transport, Uber is a super-cheap (we paid 70 rand [5 USD] for the 15-minute drive) and protected manner of getting across the metropolis. We took an Uber to the beginning of the path and again, and didn’t have to attend quite a lot of minutes for a experience for both leg of the journey.
When’s the Finest Time to Sort out Lion’s Head?
You’re going to need to go early. Particularly if you happen to’re in Cape City through the summer season months. We began our hike at 10 a.m. and received hit by absolutely the worst of the noon solar, which made the climb tougher. We should always have began at round 8 as a substitute.
Do You Need to Pay to Hike Lion’s Head?
Nope. Under no circumstances. It’s completely free to climb this mountain. No entrance charges, and also you gained’t must pay to park your automobile both.
How Lengthy Does it Take to Hike Lion’s Head?
It took us two hours in whole: an hour to succeed in the highest, then 45 minutes to get again down once more.
The stroll is probably going going to be more durable than you’re anticipating. I discovered it to be difficult however not troublesome.
However the guides on-line saying it’s tremendous simple are, in my view, taking part in it down. There’s fairly a little bit of climbing over massive rocks with uneven surfaces, and the mud on the rocks made it surprisingly slippery. Each Dave and I virtually fell over a handful of occasions on the way in which down, and positively misplaced our stability extra occasions than I can rely.
Convey sneakers with good grip.
What’s the prettiest hike you’ve ever performed?
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