Tuesday, December 21, 1993


Whose idea was it in the first place? I can't tell a lie, it was Robs. The big question was whether we were up to it. All three of us had extensive experience with hiking in the Drakensberg as well as overseas but climbing is a different kettle of fish; our Drakensberg climbing experience was limited to climbing the Sentinel which was really pretty easy. The route which we were planning to take was quite an easy one and we had done several climbs of equivalent or more in difficulty in the Magaliesburg but never one which involved more than 3 or 4 pitches. Were we up to it? One never knows until one gets out there and does it.

A view of Mponjwane from the Mponjwane cave side.

The party consisted of Rob Dalgleish, Tim Keegan, Roland Elferink, Anne Hugo and Vivette Coltman. Vivette and Anne were coming along to stay in Mponjwane cave while the three of us climbed Mponjwane peak. All of us had been to the cave before and looked across the chasm to the peak a mere two hundred metres away as the crow flies but that 200m has to be seen first hand; no photograph even vaguely does it justice.

Map of the area. The route we followed was along the dirt road from the Police Station (just off the map) and past Scramble Kop then a left turn up the iNtonyelana river to Makhawela's kraal then continue up the iNtonyelana Entshopalanga river and finally up Rockeries pass to Mponjwane cave a distance of approximately 23km and gaining a height of approximately 1800m.

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