Water Watch 2019

14 Oct 2019 10:21 #75378 by Riaang
Replied by Riaang on topic Water Watch 2019
Thanks Vivo101,

Sort of what I expected. Had the same in the Cathedral Peak area over the last 6 weeks. 
I see there is a bit of rain forecasted for this weekend, hopefully it will assist in alleviating the water shortage on the escarpment.

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17 Oct 2019 09:21 #75381 by Sabine
Replied by Sabine on topic Water Watch 2019
Hi,

Has anyone hiked up towards Cathderal Peak recently passing Shermans cave?  With such low water levels, I am wondering if the little stream just above Shermans cave is flowing?

Anyone know?

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21 Oct 2019 13:41 #75386 by WarrenM
Replied by WarrenM on topic Water Watch 2019
Hi Sabine

We came down from Cathedral Peak 10 days ago, there was water at the stream above Sherman's, enough that I would still rely on it being there until we get some good rainfall.

Regards

Warren
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23 Oct 2019 15:03 #75392 by Sabine
Replied by Sabine on topic Water Watch 2019
Thanks Warren, was there on the weekend and there was still sufficient flowing water

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28 Oct 2019 16:55 #75407 by supertramp
Replied by supertramp on topic Water Watch 2019
Hi guys,

Just some feedback on the water situation in the Cathedral Peak area:

We ascended Mlambonja and descended via Tseketseke over the weekend of 26 October. There is still sufficient water on the escarpment in the valley behind Mlambonja all the way to the saddle west of Elephant Gully summit (passing Xeni). Even though the water is not flowing there were ample pools with clear water (requiring purification). The escarpment valley between Tseketseke and Cockade was not so great as the only pools we could find were quite dirty (but still usable).
Ribbon Falls (top) still had a small trickle and is suitable for use.

It is evident that the Berg is very dry at the moment as it has deteriorated a large amount since my last visit at the end of September. Really hoping for some good rain soon.  
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28 Oct 2019 16:58 - 28 Oct 2019 17:11 #75408 by Riaang
Replied by Riaang on topic Water Watch 2019
We hiked in the Mnweni area this weekend, and while the lower reaches had lots of flowing streams, the escarpment was bone dry.

We found lots of running water at Chi-Chi bush camp on Friday, but the stream coming down from Pins pass was completely dry. We had some rain on Friday evening, which topped up one or two pools on the escarpment. 

Saturday was mostly cloudy and with a bit of a drizzle now and then, so the ascent of Pins was much easier than if we attempted it in full sunlight. We found no water anywhere from Chi-Chi, up Pins and around the cutback, except when we dropped down the final ridge to turn NE towards Mnweni pass after rounding the cutback. We topped up every container we had as it had to last us till the next morning when we descended via Ledges pass. These pools must have filled up with the rain from the previous evening, and with them on a level area the water didn't all drain out.

After filling up at this spot, we found zero water anywhere in the Mnweni passhead/Rockeries area.

Unless it rains soon, I would advise against camping in this area, unless you are prepared for a rather long walk into Lesotho for water.
Last edit: 28 Oct 2019 17:11 by Riaang.
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29 Oct 2019 07:27 #75410 by davidresink
Replied by davidresink on topic Water Watch 2019
This seems a bit of a bummer - a mate of mine and I set for a hike up Organs on Friday for two nights on the escarpment (Rolands then Twins).  Prepared to turn off the escarpment sooner depending on conditions and progress.  I see some rain foretasted from Thursday to Saturday, but not great to rely on something unpredictable.

Carrying tents for itinerary flexibility, but seems it might also be necessary to carry extra water... should be a fun first day.  Will give feedback.

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04 Nov 2019 10:23 #75427 by Divesh
Replied by Divesh on topic Water Watch 2019
Hiked a 4 day Mafadi Loop (Oct 30 - Nov 2), up via corner pass and down via Leslies pass.

- River all the way to the start of Heartbreak hill had plenty of water
- Did not find any sources of water near Centenary hut
- No water found near the bottom of corner pass
- On the approach to Injisuthi summit cave, there was water over in Lesotho (if you're willing to take the walk down into the valley)
- No water on escarpment on the way to Leslies pass
- Plenty of water in the river on the way back to Injisuthi campsite

We prepared from earlier reports of limited water on the escarpment and so we filled up as much water as we could collect in the river just before Heartbreak hill. We were also fortunate that it was pretty cloudy on days 2 and 3 of our hike, so we did not consume as much water as we would have normally expected.
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04 Nov 2019 18:57 #75431 by AndrewP
Replied by AndrewP on topic Water Watch 2019
It depends of course which route you follow on the escarpment. Ridges will always be dry and the valleys wet. 
I spent several days in the area in late October. 
The 2 rivers you cross on the Judges to Mafadi highway are not flowing at the crossings. The higher river though has several good pools at the path crossing. 
The river below Injasuti Summit Cave has several good pools and a few really dodgy ones as well. 
The river abover Red Wall has more water and is flowing in places. 
The river near the top of Hilton Pass is flowing rather steadily. 
The river directly below Leslies Pass summit is flowing well
When you come down Leslies your first water will be about the intersection with Ape Pass, so about half way between base of pass and Marble Baths

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05 Nov 2019 16:16 #75434 by davidresink
Replied by davidresink on topic Water Watch 2019
Cathedral Peak to Roland's Cave via the Camel was dry all the way after Ribbon Falls which is but a trickle.  Water far below Ndumeni Domes in Lesotho, but sporadic pools at that.  We skipped that trek as we had carried enough to get us over Cleft peak and through to pools behind either Xeni or Mlambonja.  Filled up on water which we purified at Xeni (dirty pools but a bird in the hand is better in none).  Mlambonja a better option when we got there, but no longer a need to fill up.  Sunday was a scorcher and with 1,5l each it was a tough day as we were both on empty from before Orange Peel Gap until what was a trickle above Sherman's cave. 

There's water but also a need to plan conservatively.  What are guys generally carrying on a typical trek in the area when water is more abundant?

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