Cecilia Forest

I love hiking so much that I hike twice a week. I love hiking so much, that I started a blog for it haha! I love hiking so much that I could literally spend a day on the mountains exploring (any volunteers wanting to join me?)

The longest day hike I’ve done was 11 hours. It was a spontaneous hike and I can’t recall the reason that I couldn’t hike the Sunday so we hiked the Saturday which is difficult for me as my daughter has classes. Back then it was dance but now it’s Karate. I think it was 2 years back when 4 of us decided to hike up Platties (Platteklip) through Echo Valley to Ash Valley and down to Constantia Nek where we took the contour path passing Cecilia Forest, Nursery Ravine, Skeleton Gorge, Newlands Ravine, Rhodes Memorial and finally Tafelberg Road pass Devil’s Peak back to Platties where the car was parked.

The plan was only to hike to Constantia Nek but we couldn’t arrange for someone to pick us up not knowing what time we will be done and Rikki charges a ridiculous price of R450…

Anyway back to today’s hike…Cecilia Forest is graded an A2 as there is no exposure to heights and a bit more strenuous than an easy stroll as it is uphill after all. Contour paths are easy strolls…

uphill
uphill

As my hiking buddy had a doctors appointment, we were limited to a 2 hour hike so decided on Cecilia which is the closest to home. I’ve done this hike several times already so felt for some variation and instead of taking the path from the car park to the waterfalls and down Rooikat, we took the path less travelled and went up Rooikat and down to the waterfall back to the car park. This made the hike even more enjoyable as we are saw things from a different angle.

Path less Travelled
Path less Traveled

I take my stun gun with when we do midweek hikes and I have to wonder how exactly am I going to stun a would be mugger? They jump at you unawares and it’s not like I will be able to take it out of my pocket, take it out of the pouch, arm it and stun the dinges out him/them before a weapon is used on us x_x

We arrived at the car park and noticed a lot of cars – almost as many as a Sunday. We checked in with Mountain Safety and Tracking at 9:10 and what I don’t like about the start of this route (same goes for Constantia Nek) is the stench of dog faeces! I don’t know why dog owners can’t be more considerate to other mountain users and pick up after their pets (makes me love cats even more) but we were swiftly distracted from the stench when we passed some models busy with a photoshoot :p probably for a winter catalogue J

Photoshoot
Photo shoot
DSC_2780
Misty mountain

The mountains were covered in mist but it was quite humid! I broke a sweat from the humidity and not the workout itself. It was only as we got higher up the mountain, an occasional much needed cool breeze would pass and I stopped, smiled and enjoyed the view each time J For so many cars at the car park, we didn’t pass any hikers…strange..but oh well, we got to experience the quiet of the mountains. The forest has a different sort of hush than higher up at the peaks, especially Sunday’s Kloof Corner Ridge where it was so quiet that I whispered as to not disturb the tranquility.

Tranquil forest
Tranquil forest

I took several photos of various flowers and as much as I know different paths on the mountain, I can only identify and name the King Protea and Disa. No Disa today but I have pics of it when we did Hiddingh Ascension (on Carol’s Ledge) few weeks ago. I’m not a flower loving type of girl. I think they are pretty to look at but I’m not fond of the smell. There are certain fauna on the mountains that has the most divine scent but I cannot name or identify them. When I do come across it, I will sniff as long as I can…

King Protea
King Protea
Unknown flower
Unknown flower

We reached the waterfall at 10:10 and snacks were koesiesters, cashews and grapes. The huge mudslide of 2 years back? Altered the area (Constantia Nek as well) and nature never ceases to amaze me. I was surprised to see there was actually still a waterfall considering it hasn’t really rained in a while. It was chilly at the waterfall so didn’t stay long. Coming out of the forest was like entering winter with the dark mist now covering the mountain.

Waterfall
Waterfall
snack
snack
thick mist
thick mist

Finally we met up with two other older hikers. I asked if I could take pics of them and asked their ages and was asked why. Said that I can show and tell people that when we reach the ages of 80-83, we still want to be hiking! We don’t want to suffer from ‘old people’ diseases namely high blood pressure, cholesterol and diabetes.   They felt very old at the time but should be proud of themselves as many teenagers can’t do what they do.

80 year old
80 year old
83 year old
83 year old

Close to the car park, I spot one of my old nemesis (cockroach) but these are the mountain kind and not as gross as the city kind. I was very nervous taking a pic of this thing as it’s the first time that I see its back? Up like that as though its ready to attack :/

Mountain Roach
Mountain Roach

There were still a lot of cars at the car park which is strange for 11am as we only got the 2 older men along the way.

I had errands to run after my hike and walked from Castletown Road. I do not frequent Wynberg Main road often but geez that place has become so dodge! I did pass a quaint little vintage store which I would love to go visit but today wasn’t the day. I go to the post office and as the escalators were being repaired, I had to take the lift. I don’t know which was worse – the fact that the lift had an ashtray or that the lift was that old that it had an ashtray! Next stop was a secure building and now I’m worried if I will be able to enter with my stun gun. I asked security and they ask me what is a stun gun -_- seriously? You are security and don’t know what a stun gun is? I had to leave it with them and when I get back, I find them playing with it! Fortunately the battery was flat so weren’t giving off electrical currents…So! How am I to use the darn thing on the mountain when the battery was dead anyway haha!

ashtray in the lift
ashtray in the lift

Quite a long piece for a short hike…until my next hike, ciao for now

PS…I got so wrapped up writing this blog post that I burnt supper :/ had to rush and go buy onion and tomato mix as there is not time to start from scratch as I have to go to a hike meeting tonight (I don’t like meetings)

Burnt food :/
Burnt food :/
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Cecilia Forest

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