A rock-climb and a Platteklip hike

This time not on the same day!  I’ve learnt my lesson hiking Platties and then going rock-climbing lol.  On Saturday I went for quickie rock climb at Lakeside Pinnacle and on Sunday I got this idea into my head to summit Platteklip Gorge twice!

In the week Heinrich asked if I would you like to go climbing on Saturday at Lakeside?  I first had to check who this message came from.  Saw that we are in Llewellyn’s climbing group chat.  Said that my time is limited on Saturday’s and he was ok with that.  We are to meet at 11am at Lakeside Pinnacle.  Also Informed Heinrich that I do not have any climbing gear besides shoes and a harness and that he should bring spares.

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Now, as I wasn’t planning on becoming a statistic, (no offence Heinrich!) I’ve never met Heinrich so had to make sure with Llewellyn that my life is not as risk :D.  As a woman in South Africa, the threat is very real unfortunately.  Llewellyn said that he might also join us J  and posted it the chat.  Others I haven’t met either said they would join too.

Saturday came and we meet at the parking and Heinrich and I take that short but hard hike up to the Pinnacle and as the 15 on the Asterix Wall was occupied, Heinrich decided to do Donald’s Crack on Disney Wall.  Note, that it was cold and windy around the corner!

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Heinrich leads and I belay and no-one else around to take photos.  I had to wait until he was on safety and then snap away.  Down he comes and I climb next.  My gawd!  But I struggled up that 16!  The 18 of the week prior was much easier!   I had to rest my arms quite a few times!  It seriously wasn’t that hard of climb that I struggled that much!  To the point!  That I didn’t know that I was climbing past the anchors hahahahahahahhah!

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Anyway, down I go and nature called!  How inconvenient!  The area is very open with no privacy but we do what we must sigh

We then go back to Asterix wall and as I’m putting my harness back on, I noticed that I stepped in doggy poo!  I was thoroughly annoyed!  To clean that out of trail shoes is a pain sigh.  I don’t mind dogs on mountain though.  They are friendly and happy creatures but please doggy owners, pick up their poo please?  I think by law they need to be on leashes but let’s not get into that.   As I said, dogs are a pleasure to have around for their gees hehe

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Anyhoo! Linith comes over and introduces herself ^_^ It’s great meeting those of the climbing community.  Makes it easier for me to ask them to belay me sometime hehe.  As I’m belaying Heinrich on the 15 the rope is all tangled and told him to hold up.  I had to keep one hand on the rope while trying to untangle the rope with the other and that was rather awkward!  When Linith saw my predicament, she kindly untangled that rope!  Thank you!

Eventually gave Heinrich the go ahead to continue climbing just as Llewellyn arrived J  When he was done climbing, Llewellyn belayed me and asked Heinrich to take photos.  But my goodness gracious was that not the easiest climb ever!  I think it took me less than 5 minutes up and down.  Progress people!  Even Llewellyn said it was nice fluid movements J

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Unfortunately, it was time to leave and as I was about to leave, someone approaches Llewellyn and ask if he remembers him.  Llewellyn looked unsure until the man said he was Errol Flint.  THE Errol Flint to Llewellyn!  He only spoke about Errol in reverence and it was an honour to meet him! Llewellyn was so much in awe that he could not even smile for a pic hehe.  Also Zain Van Der Schyff.  Veterans in the climbing community J

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Thank you guys!  Thoroughly enjoyed that quickie!

Platteklip Gorge

One simply does not wake up one morning and decide to summit Platties twice!  I was mentally prepared!  Or so I thought!  I was physically prepared!  Or so I thought! Certainly humbled my ambitious intentions!

So!  There I was on Sunday checking in with Mountain Safety and Tracking at 7:13am with an ETA of 11am.  I had 4 hours to summit Platties twice.  I figured that I would do the first lap in just under 2 hours and the second lap in 2 hours.

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I started out just behind a group and didn’t feel my usual initial fear hiking solo and appreciated others on the mountain that early.  I soon passed them though and thought I was doing a good pace.  Didn’t tire myself and only took break at the half way mark.  Passed a few people along the way.  The only irritation was my runny nose and had to use tissues sparingly sigh.

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The higher I went, the quieter it became from human chatter BUT the crows were circling and squawking quite loudly!  I looked at them and asked them to please be quiet or are they notifying others that I am breakfast.

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The sun was also now out in full force and started to feel the heat and the burn on my skin.  I had to take more and more breaks until eventually I reached the peak at 8:22.  I just realised I did the first lap way too fast! Had some coffee and a granola bar.  Slow burning fuel.  I was just about to put my phone camera on timer when someone came up and I asked him to take a photo of me J

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Back down I ago at 8:30 and not to exert myself, I slowed down my pace.  Some I passed still going up and can’t believe I’m going down already.  About a ¼ down, I get AJ and chat with him a bit.  We eventually part ways and was impressed that there was no litter to speak of thanks to the huge clean up Love our Trails had 2 weeks ago J

It was really hot as well and sipping more water.  Oh yes! I started out without my sunglasses and peak cap but before I went back down, I put them on.  I did however forget my sunblock.  *rolling my eyes*  Was a perfect SWinter’s day but we don’t need swinters!  We need rainy winters! Swinter being summer/winter ofcoz.

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When I was past the half way mark a guy told the rest of his group that they were halfway and I said nope, you are not even half way. Another group asked confirmation and I said again, nope, you are not even halfway yet.  He did not appreciate my honesty lol.  Told him sorry, I’m a realist haha.

At 9:25am I reached the bottom and had a shock!  I took way too long!  That was way too much strain on my thigh muscles!  How did I take that long anyway?!  I was thinking I would take 45 minutes down!  O_O

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This is turning out to be an utter failure of a mission!

I sit on a rock, freshening up and drink more coffee.  Re-apply moisturizer and check if I had enough water.  At start my way up again at 9:30.  I had 1.5h to go up and down and I know there was no way I would be able to do it.  I was going to be late and had to be home by 12pm and I still had to run some errands before that!

I was already not in the right head-space but as I am not a quitter, upwards I trudged.  I struggled on onset!  I had to take breaks before I even reached the contour path!  Negative thoughts running through my mind with each step.  I can’t do this.  I will not be able to reach the top in the limited time that I had.  SIGH!  People I passed on my first lap coming down and congratulating me for coming up again.  If only they knew!  I even had to sit a few times and with the sun rays beating down on me, sweating like crazy and feeling uncomfortable in my clothes, mild waves of nausea, I decided then that I would turn around at the half way mark T_T

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That feeling of defeat is not one that I have often and it must have shown in the way I was sitting that others asked if I was ok.  If I needed something to eat so said thank you but I just had a koesiester lol.

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Upwards still I trudged still taking breaks and when I finally reached the halfway mark at 10:15, I notified Tracking that I was to turn around at 10:30am.  Noticed that I was low on water anyway and would certainly not last me to the top and felt slight relief with my decision.

Sigh

Asked another lady to take a photo of me and headed down again.  I checked out of Tracking at 11am.  It took me 30 minutes to descend from the halfway mark sigh!!!!

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Sigh

3 days later and I still feel the lactic acid in my thighs….even my calves!

It is what what it is.  Platteklip I shall see you again soon and I shall summit you twice before this year is out!  I promise you 😀

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Until my next mountain adventure, ciao for now and thank you for reading J

 

 

 

 

 

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