I’ve been in the hiking spirit lately, and thankfully Cape Town does not fall short of options.
One of my most recent conquests were the Silvermine to Kalk bay hike. The hike is supposedly a 7,5km hike, but because of my stellar talent in map reading and my pure love of over exhausting myself I challenged this distance and ended up doing a 15km hike.
In a short voice note from an “experienced” Silvermine hiker, I was told that there would be plenty of signs and maps telling you where to go – so I didn’t do much research beforehand. Unfortunately, I seemed to end up on all the paths without any signs.
So if you’ve come here for a detailed route article, then you’ll be surprised that you’ll receive more tips on what not to do.
The actual hike:
The Silvermine to Kalk bay option is a low-effort, high-reward hike – if you do it right.
The Silvermine Nature Reserve forms part of the Table Mountain National Park and spreads from the Cape Peninsula mountain range to the Kalk Bay mountains through to Constantiaberg.
The hike has the most beautiful views of False Bay as well as being covered in stunning flora.
Duration: 3-4 hours
Start at Gate 2
Follow the BIG JEEP TRACK until you find the turn off to the Amphitheatre (a large open space between the rockies).
You’ll end at Boyes Drive in Kalk Bay.
Sounds easy enough right?
Learn from my mistake:
My GPS took us to the wrong gate. So make double sure you are at Gate 2! How would you know? If you are asked to pay an entrance fee then you are at the wrong gate.
Gate 2 is opposite the road and just a bit further on (if coming from Muizenberg side). My friend and I walked for a good hour until we realized we were heading into Noordhoek and not Kalk Bay.
Familiarize yourself with your surroundings. I might be wrong but most of the maps were upside down. And I’m pretty sure it was my lack of direction that caused us to take every possible wrong turn. So, make sure you are aware of where Kalk Bay is and where the Ou Kaapse Weg is in relation to you.
Luckily, Silvermine is quite a popular hike and there will be at least one other hiker on the trails. So if you feel like you’re lost you can just ask. Personal note: Do pay attention to what they say and try not to forget in the first 3 minutes if they said right or left.
There are a few peaks that you can hike, but rest assured I hiked all of them in the one day. You won’t necessarily get lost, but maybe just pack an extra snack in for when your exploring takes a bit too long!
But with all that could go wrong, I still had an amazing time and got to take in some of the most breathtaking views.
A Tessa Top Tip: Spoil yourself with a beer, or three, and some fish and chips at Kalky’s afterwards. You’ll have deserved it.