As I had things do and places to go, I opted for a solo hike and my go-to route is of course Platties ^_^ After the much needed rains we’ve had the last few days, doing the Waterfalls hike (contour path along Tafelberg Road to each waterfall) with the club would’ve been amazing though but I needed to get home ASAP.
With Platteklip being one of the most popular hiking routes in Cape Town, imagine my utter surprise pulling into the car park just before 7:30am with no other car in sight! O_O like whaaaaaaaa?! Where is everyone else??? What now? Do I hike the route alone? Wth am I thinking?! I’m a woman alone, this is a mugging hotspot! Should I turn around and join the club at Kloof Corner?! But they are going to take too long sigh Argh whatevz, I’m hiking and will just update Mountain Tracking and Safety regularly with my whereabouts and that I’m still safe. I left the house with my rain-jacket on so put the rain-cover over my backpack as its drizzling. On with my gloves as well as its cold and I check in at 7:30am with an ETA of 9:30am and notify them that no-one else is there and as I’m typing out this long message, another vehicle pulls up and with a sigh of relief, I know this hiker! 😀 \o/
For the first time ever! This route is empty! Even doing a midweek solo hike while everyone else is working, hoping I was going to have the mountain to myself, I pull up to a car park with busses full of tourists
Anyway, we start the route at 7:35am and Nazeem tells me that it’s his first time hiking in 2 months. Just a note, that it seems that he only does Platties. He will do Platties every Sunday training for hiking challenges but he will throw in variety here and there…like doing Lion’s Head, Devil’s Peak and Platties in one day hehe (3 Peaks Challenge) so there’s no hope of me keeping up with him but at least I’m not sole alone hey!
Anyway, so ok you haven’t hiked in 2 months but let’s see what your muscle memory says and off we go up a very tranquil Platties hike (Still amazed by this fact that there was no-one else on this route) and I’m already taking photos as though I haven’t done this route a dozen times already hehe but the difference was all the water! With gushing waterfalls and streams and spring flowers starting to bloom. I stopped to take a lot of photos with Nazeem ahead now and trying to catch up with him until I started breathing like someone having a panic attack (without the wheezing) and my thighs protesting out of exertion. The last time I did Platties, I thought my legs would be sore a few days later but wasn’t hehe
Before the halfway mark, I gave up trying to catch up to him as I had to drink water, blow my nose, get my heartrate and breathing back to normal and take more pics. I was crouching to take a pic when I fell over backward on my buttocks and as my touchscreen is too slippery when wet, I didn’t even get a photo of the puddle. Sigh but moving on, Nazeem is nowhere to be seen now and upwards I trudge with the wind becoming stronger and chillier and it’s still a steady rain. My yoga pants is soaked and the wind feels like ice on my legs and my fingers are paining from the cold (even though I am wearing albeit, now wet gloves).
Closer to the top, gusts of wind threatens to throw me over and water is now running down into my boots soaking my 2 pairs of socks lolz. I finally reach the peak and Nazeem tells me to hurry up as I’m still taking photos hehe
We have a quick coffee, koesiester and photo break when the call of nature called. Like really?! Now?! In the rain! Fortunately no-one else was about so quick I went to find a tree uhm…ohkay I’ll leave the wording as is hehe
We make our way down and it’s all squishy in my boots and I’m still taking pics. Finally! We see a father and son and warn them about conditions further up with another 2 of their party still coming up. Just below the contour path, we encounter tourists in jeans and tommy takkies and they do not look at all prepared for conditions to come when Nazeem advised them rather not to go up but follow the contour path back to the Cable car.
We are both soaked so didn’t even avoid crossing this stream but walked through it. T’was fun!
We check out at 9:45am and actually did a good time.
Hiking in the rain is so much fun though! No matter how many times a route is repeated, each experience is different (just check my previous Solo Platties hikes hehe)
Take one turn on Tafelberg road and the tar is dry! That’s Platteklip for you. Cannot rain anywhere else on the mountain but just a bit of thick cloud over Platties and rain there shall be.
Until my next hike, ciao for now.