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On Saturday the 29th of April 2017 the Hikers Network Hiking Club embarked on a walk to view the five reservoirs of Table Mountain.

The group of 73 was led by Johan Stapelberg, and Anwaaz Bent shared his knowledge about the history of the Table Mountain waterworks along the way as well. The route led from Constantia Nek via the Bridle Path to the Back Table (the white route). The hike returned via the same way.

After an hour’s trek, they crossed the Spilhaus Bridge above Cecilia Forest,

before making a sharp left hand turn at a bend called “Skielike Dood”. Here in the past, many a horse drawn cart unfortunately left the road on this blind bend, as they tried to negotiate it on their way down the mountain.

From there they walked to a spot opposite the de Villiers reservoir, where they enjoyed a well deserved water break.

Once the group was recharged and all accounted for, they proceeded to the museum at the Back Table, passing the Alexandra and Victoria reservoirs.

Inside the museum, which sits between the Hely Hutchinson and the Woodhead reservoirs,  are many interesting tools and implements from the time of the construction of these dams. The old steam engine is housed inside as well.

dam

Woodhead reservoir

 

Unfortunately for the group, the building was closed, however, they get to peep through the windows and see the displays outside too.

From here Johan led them to the summit of the Kasteelspoort Gorge route, where the ruins of the old cableway are still to be found.

group

Group photo with ‘diving board’ in the background.
A section of the ruins can be seen, bottom right.

Anwaaz spoke about the many caves in the area, and about the old railway track as well.

The return leg back to the start was easier going, and the group was very chirpy as they spoke about the views, the history that was learnt, and the experience in general.

Thank you to the organizers, the leaders, and to the Medic Adiel who attended to a minor ankle injury experienced by one of the Junior Club members. Thank you to Ubuntu Hiking Club for joining the walk, and especially to the volunteers of SafetyMountain Tracking as well.

Until the next excursion.

Gamida Soeker

 

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