Looking for some peace and quiet? Look for Tranquility Cracks
Table Mountain’s ‘tabletop’ isn’t as flat as it looks. Many of us have learnt the hard way that walking on the mountain involves a surprising amount of undulation over buttresses, through ravines and over many a rocky mound.
But that’s not all, once you’re up there and you think you know all there is to know about the topography, there’s a whole other layer of features that require an adventurous spirit to be found. From hidden caves to underground water wells, secret rock formations and concealed ledges, our mountain is just bursting with secret spots to search for, and Tranquility Cracks is one of them.
Looking across the landscape, you would never imagine they are there. These deep, granite fissures stretch down below the thick fynbos scrub, making their overgrown entrances and exits very tricky to find. Once inside, the cool rock walls stretch up at least 5 meters above your head, some offering a little peep of sky at the top, others completely sealed. But perhaps the most spectacular part of it all is the spindly Yellowwood trees that grow up from the bottom and create shady umbrellas in between the rocks. Some of the cracks stretch right to the edge of the mountainside, so your view, when you peep out the front, legs scrambling after you, is Lions Head, the beautiful city of Cape Town and miles and miles of Atlantic Ocean.
It’s not called Tranquility Cracks for nothing: when you’re in this warren of rocky corridors – high up above the city, out of the wind, hidden from other hikers – it really is peaceful.
Pack a picnic and make the mission
The spot is best accessed via Corridor Ravine above Camps Bay. Walk along the infamous Pipe Track, past Kasteelpoort, Woody Ravine and Slangolie Ravine – the next ravine is Corridor.
Take the steep climb up the ravine slowly (there are plenty of views to admire and a few ‘catch-your-breath’ stops will definitely be in order). Once you reach the top, turn left onto the main path that leads up the hill, and after about 5 minutes when the path is leveling out, keep an eye open for a small but well-worn path to your left. Follow this for tranquility.