Although I am not a typical athlete, and I certainly do not have an athlete’s body, I do love to exercise. I love running, I love weight-lifting, I love being outdoors and doing long healthy walks. I love cycling – when I lived in Helsingborg I used to do 60 kilometre evening tours to stay in shape. Twice I have completed the Vätternrundan, a 300 kilometre bike challenge around Lake Vättern, Sweden’s second largest lake. Second time under 13 hours… Recently I have picked up golfing again, after twenty years of “wilderness wandering.” The plan this summer is to push my handicap below 20.
Firstly, I started googling for marked trails on Signal Hill and around that area. Some good routes came up, but I was not clear on how well they were marked once there. And I was not that keen on running by myself. However, reoccurring among my googlings, there was this company called Run Cape Town that seemed to be appearing almost top in every search. But I was not interested in sightseeing! I was looking for a good run!
But slowly and steadily, I started looking more and more at this company and their trail runs. Maybe this was what I was looking for? A good run, with guide, for just 500 Rands? In the end, I knew – this was it! Among all the runs that they had, their Table Mountain run seemed the most interesting one. So it had to be that one. But when? Since I was going to The Pot Luck Club on Thursday, and the organized wine tour started on Saturday, it had to be on Friday. Preferably in the morning, before it got too hot and so I had time to do other things during the day. Therefore, I booked Friday, and 8 o’clock! I got a confirmation e-mail directly and a few days before the run. So everything was organized before my arrival.
On the morning of the run, I was feeling surprisingly fresh, considering I had been to the Pot Luck Club the night before. A few minutes before 8 o’clock I was picked up by my guide, Philippa, at my hotel, and we drove off to a place just prior to the cable car station on the Table Mountain. The weather was fairly moisturish, a light drizzle had just passed away. But temperatures were climbing. We had a lovely chat on the way up, this was going to be great!
The run started on the north-western point of the Table Mountain, not on top of the mountain but just below. The mountain is flat at the top, then it makes a vertical drop, then just where the vertical part stops, there is a contour path. On that, we ran. So from the north-western part, all the way east, passing under the cable car lines, passing Patterklip Gorge, and almost to Devils’ Peak. Then down to the road, passing the cable car station, and back to the car.
This was definitely one of the highlights of my WINE tour to South Africa. Running on this natural wonder, with a magnificent view of the city and the beautiful nature surrounding it, it was really a profound experience. It was so quiet, so peaceful, and the smell – it reminded me of hiking in the northern Swedish mountains!
So, if you are in Cape Town and looking for a good run, I am really recommending a run with Run Cape Town, especially the Table Mountain Run! Enough talk, here are some more pictures:
Many thanks!!! When I go back, I'm doing more runs!
Pictures no. 1-3 and 11-15, copyright Run Cape Town, used with permission.