Due to recent attacks and muggings in and around the Table Mountain National Park, SANParks has provided the public, tourists and regular visitors to the mountains and national parks with 10 Safety Tips.
Safe Hiking in Table Mountain National Parks
When visiting any mountains or National Park in and around Cape Town, please follow the ten safety rules by SANParks as the mountain can be dangerous to those who are unprepared or inexperienced.
10 Rules To Stay Safe On The Mountain (by SANParks)
#1 Don’t hike alone; four is the ideal number.
#2 Choose your route carefully and stick to it. Allow yourself enough time – start early. Inform someone of your route and what time you’re expected back.
#3 Choose a hike leader and walk at the pace of the slowest member.
#4 If lost – don’t split up. Rather try to retrace your steps. Remember that climbing down is more difficult than climbing up.
#5 Always take waterproof clothing, even in mid-summer, and wear walking shoes or hiking boots. Wear a hat or cap and sun block in summer. Weather changes rapidly.
#6 If lost or forced to stop because of bad weather, stay together and remain in one place. Find the closest shelter from wind and rain.
#7 In case of injury, take time to assess the situation. Then send two people for help and let the third remain with the injured person. If possible, mark the position on a map and send it with those going for help.
#8 Stick to well-used paths, which will be indicated on the Park’s hiking map and read the warnings on this map. Don’t take shortcuts and especially don’t wander into ravines.
#9 Always take enough water, especially in summer, and food in case of a delay. Watch the weather and time, and turn back before you start running late or if bad weather threatens.
#10 Take a fully-charged cellphone. Some parts of the Park do not have cell phone reception, but you will always be able to reach a place where you can use a cell phone more quickly than you’ll get to a landline.
Register for the Never Go Alone Safety App
If you plan an outdoor activity such as a hike, run or walk please inform you closest circle about your whereabouts. Register, and login to the Never Go Alone Safety App and use the ‘Journey’ feature to invite your Emergency Contacts to follow you via GPS tracking. If you are in danger, you simply press the Emergency Button or shake the phone and the closest Armed Response vehicle will come to your exact location within minutes.
Crime Hot Spots on the Table Mountain Trails
SANParks has considered a lot of areas as ‘high-risk areas’ after the recent attacks and assaults of trail runners and hikes in the past months. It is advised to not hike in those areas anymore, or only in big groups (more than eight people).
The following areas have been labeled as ‘high-risk areas’:
- Newlands Forest in its entirety
- Newlands Ravine
- Saddle behind Devil’s Peak
- the slopes of Devil’s Peak,
- the Blockhouses and nearby mountain biking trails.
These areas have been considered ‘to pose a risk to safety’:
- Signal Hill
- Lion’s Head
- Noordhoek Beach
- Kommetjie Beach
- Sandy Bay
- Blackburn Ravin
- Elephant’s Eye (Silvermine Nature Reserve)
- Kleinplaas Dam area
- Black Hill
- Red Hill
- Peer’s Cave
- Sunrise Beach