With an early 4 am wakeup call this morning, January 18, its not surprising that our energy level was as dim as the light outside. Despite this, we set out on our first step of the expedition on a bus that brought us to the starting point of our hike. Once we arrived, people were much more lively after recognizing just what it was they were doing and were quite excited. At the start of our climb the light was still low and the path barely visible but some crafty students brought along their headlamps to help guide them until the sun began to rise about 30 minutes into our hike. On the way up, some students began with a slow and steady pace, taking their time with many breaks in between and others moved more briskly, eager to reach the top. The higher we went up the mountain the more breathtaking the view of Cape Town.
With so much stunning scenery, plenty of camera storage was used up during the hike from all the photos and videos taken but it was well worth it. Eventually we came upon a crevice in the mountain and decided to take a break and eat our breakfast. Some however were not comfortable with simply sitting around and set out and explore by taking new paths, climbing small ridges and literally ‘hanging’ out with friends. It is truly an incredible thing to see the sunrise from atop a mountain while sitting with your legs dangling above a gorge, dropping many meters below.
When we finally reached the top of Table Mountain, we got involved in some group activities such as building structures for each watch by stacking rocks upon each other without having them fall. Watch three was the first to start building and they created an incredible structure. This kicked off a playful challenge to take over the previous group’s creation and best it to build even more impressive towers. After this, we had a bit of free time to chat and explore the mountaintop for more photo opportunities.
We made our way to the gondola for our final descent down. But before doing so, we had just enough time to stop at the cafe for some refreshments and rest after our gruelling hike. The Gondola ride down was short but quite intimidating for some. However, just like the fear of going aloft, you quickly get over it once you’re there. This was also the last leg of our expedition and it was now time to make our way back to the ship. Our group was very satisfied with the experience but most of all tired and it was no surprise that our first instinct was to return to bed.