The Mt Aux Sources - Amphitheatre - Tugela thread

20 Aug 2008 20:16 #123 by JonWells
How hectic is the route up the chain ladders at the amphitheatre, I hear it is not recommended for those with a fear of heights? Is there an alternative route to to the summit and much longer will it take?

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

More
20 Aug 2008 20:44 #124 by domsmooth
The chain ladder is not hectic at all, in my experience, although I do not have a fear of heights. It is challenging, but a heck of a lot better than climbing up the rock face.

We are considering doing the chain ladder in a month or 2's time as a work function with ages ranging from 64 down to 19. One of my colleagues is 7 months pregnant, and while I am not sure she will climb the ladders, she probably will go with us up to them and wait for us to descend again. It is a very easy access to the summit for those who want to see the summit without doing the long schlep of a pass. I am considering taking my 7 yr old and my 5 yr old up early next year for a picnic at the falls and then back down. Then again, at 7 and 5yrs old, fear of heights is not really an issue, and one ladder is the same as any other. The key I suppose is just to focus on how many more rungs you have to summit.

There is another route to the top via the sentinel gulley, but it is quite steep at the top and although short can be quite exhausting. I know there is a race which Ezemvelo KZN Wildlife put on once a year going up the chain ladder and down the gulley... may be an option if you are okay going up the heights, but not coming down again. If you have hiking poles, take them along. They will be useful on your descent. Saves knees and ankles a whole lot of issues!

Lets all help maintain the values for which the Berg was proclaimed a World Heritage Site

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

More
22 Aug 2008 08:52 - 22 Aug 2008 08:52 #125 by intrepid
The gully takes around a half hour to an hour longer, depending on how out of breath you get and how much you stop to enjoy the views! It tops out near the summit of Beacon Buttress from where a trail descends down to the falls. At the top, a short detour to the left will give you a view of Sentinel that will leave you tingling.

Take nothing but litter, leave nothing but a cleaner Drakensberg.
Last edit: 22 Aug 2008 08:52 by intrepid.

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

More
24 Aug 2008 09:41 #126 by JonWells
Another question- Is there a hut that can be booked up top?

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

More
25 Aug 2008 08:31 #127 by intrepid
A hut has existed for many years on top but currently there is no booking system. You'd need to be prepared to share it with others. It is a bit grim and dirty but still good shelter and does offer protection from the Basutho provided the door is securly closed.

Take nothing but litter, leave nothing but a cleaner Drakensberg.

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

More
26 Aug 2008 15:35 #129 by Hennie
I just took most of those I work with up the chainladders (on Sat 23/8/2008). Everyone got to the top although some were nervous! There was quite a wind at the chainladder gully. I took up my children (then 8 and 11) last year and they thoroughly enjoyed it. The path is clear although a bit exposed in places. The chainladder hike must be one of the best day hikes this country has on offer.

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

More
28 Aug 2008 09:30 #131 by Errol
My first trip on to the top was via the ladders, initially they may look a bit daunting, but they not that bad. If you have height issues, take it one step at a time i guess... We came down in heavy mist (could see less than 4m)and drizzle, again, it was'nt as bad as i thaught it would be. As already mentioned, the hut aint 5stars, but will keep you out of the elements and more secure from wandering hands...

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

More
25 Nov 2009 02:09 #764 by memakda
Hello people

I'll be at the berg this weekend and I would like to hike up to the amphitheater with the wife.

Only problem is that she is absolutely against climbing up/down those ladders.

Is this even possible (to get up there in a day) and if so any details on the route would be most appreciated.

A GPS track map would be first prize if anyone has it.

Thanks
Mo

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

More
25 Nov 2009 02:52 #765 by intrepid
Hey Mo,

A day trip to the Amphitheatre is totally do-able even without the Chain Ladder. Go up Beacon Buttress Gully instead. It's steep but not exposed like the ladders. There are some scrambly bits, and even an old wooden ladder which is largely in pieces now. As long as you're OK with a bit of scrambling, you'll be fine.

See these threads for more detail:
www.vertical-endeavour.com/forum/11-drakensberg-passes/629-amphitheatre.html
www.vertical-endeavour.com/forum/8-drakensberg-hiking/123-chain-ladders.html

GPS data:
www.vertical-endeavour.com/downloads/doc_details/35-beacon-buttress-gully-gps-data.html

Have fun!

Take nothing but litter, leave nothing but a cleaner Drakensberg.

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

More
25 Nov 2009 23:08 #766 by memakda
Thanks for the Info, Exactly what I needed and wanted to hear.

Do you know if there is a shorter way to get to sentinel car park withouth having to drive through Harrysmith/Phuthaditjaba?
I'll be driving from Ladysmith and if possible would like a shorter route there?

Also is it possible to park my car somewhere from the Bergville side and complete the same hike.

We training for Kili so should be able to do about 16km in a day.

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

More
Powered by Kunena Forum