Table Mountain is not one to be trifled with, standing tall at 1087 m above sea level, with its large rocks, vertical cliffs, cutting edges and sudden drops, you need to give this mountain respect and approach it with caution. More people die on Table Mountain than Mount Everest and hikers have been rescued on many popular routes due to lack of knowledge and Table Mountain hiking experience.
It’s been reported that it is not the most technical routes or difficult rock climbs that most incidents occur, but more so the popular and regular hiked routes and it is important for the public to be aware of the hazards involved – be careful, don’t let down your guard, always be on alert and don’t take the mountain for granted. Experience is key when hiking Table Mountain, some routes are easier to navigate than others, Table Mountain hiking routes are not always clearly marked and you do not want to make a wrong turn and get lost.
Hiking Table Mountain in extreme weather conditions is dangerous, Table Mountain is notorious for its unpredictable weather changing throughout the day and you need to be prepared for it. Too many hikers chance it on Table Mountain, the point we like to highlight here is you need to be prepared for if you get stuck. You could be stuck in the cold in the winter or in direct sunlight during the summer. It’s one thing when you moving but it’s another thing when aren’t. If you lost you may have to stay where you are for long periods of time. Don’t take chances, these are the times we must plan and be prepared for, play it safe.
There are 52 rangers patrolling the Table Mountain National Park. While Hike addicts does everything in their power to make your hike to the summit a safe one, the Table Mountain National Park takes every possible action within their power to ensure safety around the mountain.
Hike Addicts has never had an incident on Table Mountain and we don’t like to alarm hikers but we do feel it is our responsibility to highlight our safety concerns and advise accordingly.
Hike Addicts safety tips for safety on Table Mountain hikes
Never hike alone
Check in and check out – tell somebody where you are going and how long you expect to be.
Stick to the route you have researched and planned to hike
Never hike a route you are unfamiliar with
Hike according to the fitness level and experience of the slowest and most inexperienced hiker in the group
If you get lost – retrace your steps, do not venture off into the unknown.
Expect the unexpected – always prepare for the worse and always take clothing for unexpected weather conditions, even in the hot summer months.
If you run into bad unforeseen weather conditions, stay together , find shelter and wait.
Always take enough food and water and plan for emergencies
Always leave yourself enough time, don’t get stuck in the dark. Turn back if you are not going to make it in time.
Never rely on the cable car to come back down – always be prepared to walk down.
Wear the correct gear
Stay together, never split up – leave in pairs if you have an emergency and don’t leave anyone alone.
Always take a mobile phone, know who to call. There are areas that have no reception but there are areas that do too so keep going till you find it.