Didima-Rolands Cave-Cathedral Peak Hotel advice

05 Apr 2017 12:28 #71266 by Redshift3
I am planning a hike with a group of six mates in early May. I’ve done the Camel’s pass up to Roland’s Cave before. On this occasion because of time constraints I’m considering doinig it slightly differently.

Suggested Route: Day 1- Didima to Fire look Out, Day 2 - Fire look out to Roland’s Cave,via Organs Pipe Pass & Windy Gap, Day 3 - Roland’s Cave down to the top of Ribbon falls via the Camel’s pass, lastly Day 4 - Top of Ribbon Falls to Cathedral Peak Hotel.
Advice please:
• Up the Camel’s Back was hectic, is down a good idea?The problem is the last day we need to back at the vehicles by latest 15H00 in order to motor home Sunday night.
• Mikes pass, who and how do we get transport from Didima to the gate at the end of Mikes Pass, either on day one or the last day? Is there someone we can pay/hire to pick up or drop off? We can slog it from Didima to Fire lookout but it’s also a travel day so we can only hit the trail by 12H00?
• If I do the route the other way round (I prefer) the last day will be 9km from Fire lookout to Didima, once at Didima our vehicles will still be at the Cathedral Peak Hotel?

Any advice or solutions will be much appreciated,
Kind Regards,

“There is no such thing as bad weather, only inappropriate clothing.”
Sir Rannulph Fiennes

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

More
05 Apr 2017 14:44 - 05 Apr 2017 14:50 #71270 by Dave
I may be wrong, but I believe Mike's Pass is closed to vehicles indefinitely (see here ). I can't help you with The Camel; I myself am planning on going down for the first time over Easter. My impression is that it is exposed but not dangerous in good weather. As for the last day of the suggested route (coming down The Camel), I've seen a group come down The Camel and walk out by 11am, and I don't think they started super early, so I can't imagine that getting back to CPH/Didima from Ribbon Falls should take you more than two hours, or three at the very most. If you go the other way, you will probably be able to get a lift to CPH on the road below Didima. I've got lifts to CPH from the Hiker's Parking and back a couple of times, and people seem happy to oblige, though in the off season it can sometimes just be dead.
Last Edit: 05 Apr 2017 14:50 by Dave. Reason: More info
The following user(s) said Thank You: Redshift3

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

More
05 Apr 2017 15:34 #71271 by ghaznavid

Redshift3 wrote: via Organs Pipe Pass & Windy Gap


I assume you mean Thuthumi Ridge and Organ Pipes Pass - Windy Gap is on the Camel Route. The trails join just above that.

Redshift3 wrote: • Up the Camel’s Back was hectic, is down a good idea?The problem is the last day we need to back at the vehicles by latest 15H00 in order to motor home Sunday night.


If you have done the route before, why not consider Thuthumi Pass or Smugglers Pass? These routes are usually avoided due to the slog to get over Ndumeni Dome, but Rolands Cave is above Thuthumi Pass, and you are basically over to get to Smugglers. Both can be connected up to the Thuthumi Ridge/Old Fire Lookout route via a connecting trail. I haven't done the bit from the connecting trail down to the Nek (the more obvious line for Thuthumi Pass), but I believe you hit the contour path above Philip's Folly - so it would also be an option.

Also - the Thuthumi Ridge route on Organ Pipes vs the Camel means you start and finish at different places. You can do Camel via Tryme Hill (as far as I know, I haven't done this myself), but you will still have to walk quite a bit of tarred road at the start or end of the hike.

Redshift3 wrote: • Mikes pass, who and how do we get transport from Didima to the gate at the end of Mikes Pass, either on day one or the last day? Is there someone we can pay/hire to pick up or drop off? We can slog it from Didima to Fire lookout but it’s also a travel day so we can only hit the trail by 12H00?


If you find the right person in the office - let me know! I have asked many times with no luck.

"The economy is a wholly owned subsidiary of the environment, not the reverse." Herman Daly
The following user(s) said Thank You: Redshift3

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

More
05 Apr 2017 17:21 #71272 by andrew r
@Redshift3
Also be aware that the campsite (& ablutions) at Didima are closed indefinitely for renovations, see VE discussion here .

'Mountains are not fair or unfair. They are just dangerous.' Reinhold Messner
The following user(s) said Thank You: Redshift3

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

More
06 Apr 2017 12:27 #71297 by WarrenM
@Redshift3

The one section on the Camel route that is "fairly exposed" you need to take care on regardless of whether you are heading up or down
I headed up and down that route to the organ pipes pass in Dec with a light pack, and it was very manageable.
We will be there again before May and I can confirm again what it is like then, just remind me.
The following user(s) said Thank You: Redshift3

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

More
12 Apr 2017 11:24 #71359 by petroengel
Hello everybody
Can anyone tell me in what condition the Old Fire Lookout really is? I know it is all broken down, but is the roof totally gone? And is the Jojo still there?
Much appreciated!

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

More
12 Apr 2017 11:57 - 12 Apr 2017 11:58 #71360 by Smurfatefrog
What's left of the holey JoJo tank on the left, the picture will tell you the rest

Please login or register to view the image attached to this post.

Last Edit: 12 Apr 2017 11:58 by Smurfatefrog.
The following user(s) said Thank You: petroengel

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

More
18 Apr 2017 10:38 #71374 by Riaang
it really is only a shell. Might help a bit against strong wind (but the windows are broken as well) but when I was there end of last year the floor was full of bird poop and quite dirty

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

More
18 Apr 2017 16:45 - 18 Apr 2017 17:01 #71381 by Redshift3
@ Riaang, thats good news. Ill be up with a few guys on the first weekend in May. Straight up the Camel into Rolands and down past the fire lookout to Didima.Quick question where do I find water on my way back from Rolands past the firelookout?
Thanx Riaang your input is always appreciated.
Regards,
Redshift3

“There is no such thing as bad weather, only inappropriate clothing.”
Sir Rannulph Fiennes
Last Edit: 18 Apr 2017 17:01 by Redshift3. Reason: correction

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

More
18 Apr 2017 19:06 #71385 by Smurfatefrog
Depends which way you're heading after the ridge, but if down Mike's Pass then there is a small stream that should be running at the bottom of the ridge, just before the old staff buildings,if not then you'd have to head to the Ndumeni river just to the north. Otherwise hang on until Cambalala Hut.

If heading north along contour path then the Ndumeni river is not far from the base of the ridge

Not sure if you're not aware of the spring on the pass around 2500m, if not then fill up there
The following user(s) said Thank You: Redshift3

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

More
Powered by Kunena Forum