The Skeleton Gorge Trail is a scenic hiking trail in Cape Town, South Africa, that leads to the summit of Table Mountain. It is one of the more challenging routes up the mountain, but it is also one of the most beautiful, passing through lush forests and stunning waterfalls.
The trail starts at the Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens and climbs up the eastern slopes of the mountain. The first part of the trail follows a steep and winding path up to the top of the ridge, where hikers are rewarded with spectacular views of False Bay and the Hottentots Holland Mountains.
From there, the trail continues through a dense forest of indigenous trees, including yellowwoods, wild olives, and stinkwoods. Along the way, hikers will encounter a series of cascading waterfalls and streams, which provide a refreshing break from the steep ascent.
As the trail approaches the summit, it becomes rockier and more exposed, requiring some scrambling and careful footwork. However, the views from the top are breathtaking, offering panoramic vistas of the city and the surrounding mountains.
The Skeleton Gorge Trail is approximately 6 kilometers long and takes around 4-6 hours to complete, depending on fitness levels and how often one stops to rest or take photos. Hikers are advised to be in the good physical condition and to wear appropriate clothing and footwear, as the terrain can be slippery and uneven in places.
It is also safely important to note that sometimes the trail can be closed in wet or dangerous conditions, so it is recommended to check the SA weather forecast and trail conditions before starting the hike. Hikers should also bring plenty of water, snacks, and sun protection, as the trail can be quite exposed to the sun in some areas.