Monks cowl hike report back

25 Jun 2012 08:55 - 25 Jun 2012 08:57 #54520 by Scag
This last weekend, I was in a hiking party of four that was going for Stable cave.

Due to a series of unfortunate circumstances, we didnt end up making it.

With mist, and unmarked roads to houses in the lower berg, we couldnt accurately orientate the map. We ended up walking along an unmarked path. We reached a waterfall which had wooden ladders to help hikers get up the slope on the other side (we guessed this could be Jacobs ladder, the double backing of the path after the ladder appeared consistent with the map. It didnt turn out to be Jacobs ladder).

So anyhow, we walked along the path at the top of the ridge and eventually decided to setup bivys for the night. Soon after setting them up, a moerse storm came through (with hail). After sitting it out, we decided to hike back to a waterfall near false jacobs ladder (+- 3km), where we had seen a small shelter big enough for the four of us to sleep in. Ended up getting there at 9pm and had a good night sleep.

With the story aside, I would like to make the following comments:
There was a hell of a lot of litter, everywhere we went. It is a pity (firstly) that houses are encroaching on the drakensberg as they are, and (secondly) that the roads to these houses are not reflected on the map.

This picture shows the cave, highlighted with the path we were on, and where we set up bivys(A), and where we decided to start looking for a wind sheltered area for bivys (B ). The blue line looks like either a path or a fire break on google maps, but it goes straight to the cave. The path we were on curves off to the right (not going to the cave).

[img]http://2share.co.za/Files/stable cave.JPG
Last edit: 25 Jun 2012 08:57 by Scag.

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25 Jun 2012 09:25 #54521 by Captain
I led a hike to Stable cave last year and the maps can be confusing especially since that development is not clearly indicated. The path itself is overgrown as you enter the forest with a number of downed trees blocking the path. The cave itself was great and we were pretty warm through the night. Great cave - no water nearby though :thumbsdown:










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27 Jun 2012 06:02 #54534 by Serious tribe
Unmarked paths :angry: I know the feeling. From the Cathedral Peak hotel there are numerous paths, and hiking out from the hotel it is easy to get onto the wrong one. Night hiking is far worse though, really double the problem.

These houses have been here a while i think.

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11 Jul 2012 13:13 #54609 by Balthazar1



we were at a cottage where the path passes by (from where you would have come) The cottage is above Sterkspruit falls and has been there since 1994. We have used it as a base and many folk walk to Stable cave to overnight and return. The path leading through the "second forest" as we call it, is confusing and ill defined, but the grass/vegetation is just overgrown.- but once at the wooden ladders, near some nice Drakensberg Cycards, Geliinki's,it is a scramble up the slopes towards the contour path. Awesome vistas of the central and northern berg from there!

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