Left Face/Mystery B

This hike is known by any of the two above names…or both. It’s to the left of Platteklip and a Mystery as not many know of this route which is graded as B2 but felt like a 3!

Platteklip Gorge looking gorgeous
Platteklip Gorge looking gorgeous

Grading System Refresher:

1:   An easy stroll

2:   Moderate

 3:   Strenuous exercise

 4:   Only for the very fit

 The letter represents how exposed hikers are to heights during the hike.

 A:   No exposure to heights

 B:   Mild exposure to heights

 C:   Moderate exposure to heights

 D:   Very exposed to heights

The reason it felt like a 3 instead of a 2 is because I’ve been very tired lately…besides now working a full time job (which I’m loving!) is that my cat has been disturbing my sleep with rather strange noises during the night…

my cat is not fat, she's just fluffy
my cat is not fat, she’s just fluffy

my Saturdays starts with morning prayers, take kids to karate, go shopping, pick them up, do the laundry, clean my room, making lunch, making koesiesters, making Sunday lunch…by the time I’m done with this, It’s time to make supper…

Moving on…

We started later than originally planned this morn at around 8am so missed sunrise pics.. I won’t get into the delays because at this stage, it doesn’t matter J  We were 19 in the group today and I only bring 12 koesiesters with me on Sundays…

The route starts up Platteklip Gorge, a few bends past the contour path and you really have to know the route to find it.  Hundreds hike up and down Platteklip on a weekly basis but never see the path to Mystery B.

I started out strong, mostly in front until the distractingly mesmerizing views forced me to stop and take photos!  About 160 of them 😀

the Sun!
the Sun!
Devil's Peak in the background
Devil’s Peak in the background

I also took a video but that is 491megs so not about to upload that.  Not even on Facebook..The last time I did this hike with the club it was cold, wet and rainy with absolutely no views to speak of.  The cloud was so thick that day that we could barely see how far the sheer drops was but today we saw!

Platties path
Platties path
yah, not a good idea to walk off from here
yah, not a good idea to walk off from here

Going up through the fynbos was another wet experience (soaking our pants) from the mist but the higher we went, the drier it was and soon we were above the clouds! We took a different route to the Gulley from the last time so were hiking unfamiliar territory and I absolutely love exploring new paths.

Lion's head peaking
Lion’s head peaking

I really struggled going up a particular scramble as it was quite awkward with my helper wanting me to hold onto a bush but I don’t do that!  Vegetation can come loose and I’m not about to risk that!  I did eventually make it up with his help 😀  Thank you John!

Photo cred to Anne Schady John helping me up
Photo cred to Anne Schady
John helping me up

Oi! But the Gulley is steep and felt like one looooooooooong scramble as we had to go up using all fours anyway (feet and hands)  climbing up and up with an energy bar in my mouth (Thank you Fareed!) and a runny nose.  I don’t have a cold but high mountain air opens up my glands.

check the shadows going up the Gulley hehe
check the shadows going up the Gulley hehe

We had to pass the overhang where we would’ve had breakfast but the faster hikers were way ahead of us and we had to catch up with them.  Not that much of in a hurry though as we were still taking lots of photos.

Overhang
Overhang

We cross the ledge and GEEZ!  It was a loooooooooong sheer drop!  About 100 meters I think.  The mist came and went at this point.  We get to the scramble I struggled up last time but it as easy for me this time.  Last time, my rain jacket restricted my climbing so had to take it off.  This is also where I took the 4min video of the others climbing up.

Scrambling
Scrambling

We reached some of the other hikers, took more photos and carried on until we met up with the rest of the group on top.  The hike ends on the alternate route to Mc Clears Beacon.  The Beast trail run was this morning so cheered runners as they passed by.  We had a superb breakfast with the magnificent view of the city, Lion’s Head and part of the harbor.  The ocean was still covered with mist but could see the mountain ranges on the other side.  The faster group waited a long time for us so they made their way down shortly after we arrived.

Our breakfast view
Our breakfast view

We eventually make our way to Platteklip but not before taking a little detour to the edge where more photos ensued of course.

Platties zigzag path
Platties zigzag path

At 11:42 we go down Platties and I can’t go down slow as I will feel it in my knees and legs as its extra strain on the muscles so I solo down at my own (fast) pace.  It was cold on top but the lower I go, the hotter it becomes and I’m sweating.  No time to chat to the hikers still going up but do greet and say thank you when they allow me to pass.  I am so thirsty but I’m not going to stop as I also wanted to see how ‘fit’ I am now after my easy paced hikes of late.

I am down 35min later (not beating my previous time – sucky) and I get an old hiking buddy!  We had a nice fat chat until the rest came down in bits and drabs and the last 3 coming down 25min later!

old hiking buddy
old hiking buddy

I planned to take a nap today but that didn’t happen as uploading my photos and writing this blog took precedence hehe.

Until my next hike, ciao for now.

PS. I wasn’t going to hike with the club today as my brother had other commitments but it all worked out as it should.

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Left Face/Mystery B

One thought on “Left Face/Mystery B

  1. […] Up, up and up we go and some sights are familiar and other’s not but do know what to look out for.  Taahir and I help each other out when we are unsure which way to go.  The cairns helped too.  Up the first tiny scramble and then it’s onto the next tricky one.  Seriously tricky dangerous scramble.  It’s short one but oh so awkward. Taahir attempts to go up first but assists Steven/Richard to go up ahead and then pull him up.  I’m next and I struggle!  Geez, I remember struggling the last time as well!  .left Face/Mystery B in 2015) […]

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