Last week People Like Us Safaris set out on an exploration through some unique caves in the Table Mountain range. They are unusual in the sense that they were not formed in limestone but in sandstone and quartzite. These caves and particularly the tunnels that we entered are not widely used or even known about due to the tight squeezes necessary to get to them so this was definitely not a tour for the faint-hearted.
With 2 French travellers, 1 Italian, a young man from the Eastern Cape and 2 Capetonians we set out to conquer what is aptly known as the “Narrows” a crack often only about 25cm wide and about 200m long which courses through the mountain to an opening on the other side.
Each adventurer was equipped with a torch, matches or a lighter and some candles, the reason we had all of these is that with the convoluted make up of these caves and numerous dead-ends there would literally be no chance of finding ones way out without light. The descending entrance was tight, damp, dark and vertical, an easy introduction for what was to come. After squeezing through the entrance the caves open up considerably into spacious caverns. Here we rested, had a snack and planned our strategy for the narrows.
The entrance to the narrows in nearly unnoticeable and once you’ve found it, it’s hard to believe that you can actually get into it. We plucked up our courage, prepped all our torches and began to squeeze one by one into the 20cm wide vertical crack. By pushing your bag through in front of you, then pulling yourself forwards and so on we gradually made progress. After about 2 hours of squeezing, pushing and pulling ourselves through a pitch black crack hundreds of feet inside a mountain we emerged at the other side! Filthy with torn clothing and raw knees we descended the mountain absolutely elated.
This adventure is not for the faint-of-heart but it certainly is one hell of an experience.