Tuesday, June 17th, 2014

I slept in after a long day and night at Mitchell’s yesterday.  I’m meeting Alejandro to see Table Mountain at 1pm.  It’s a beautiful sunny day today.  The mountain is only open when there’s good visibility and light winds.  Lydia and Oana were in Cape Town 5 days and never made it up to Table Mountain because of the weather.  I will be able on only my 2nd day.   It’s a 15 minute cab ride from the hotel to the base of Table Mountain.  I meet Alejandro at the ticket office.  It’s a short wheel to the elevator with a slight uphill grade.  The elevator takes us to the loading area of the cableway.  I’m able to wheel directly from the loading area to the cable car, the surface is flat.  During the 5 minute ride the cable car rotates 360 degrees for a view of the mountain, Cape Town and Table Bay.  Table Mountain is 3,563 feet above sea level.  The exit of the cable car surface is flat.  There are several steep hills once at the top.  The pavement is very rocky and uneven.  There are two hills I need pushed up by Alejandro.  Most people in manual wheelchairs would need help up these hills.  The area a top the mountain is much bigger than I thought, approximately 2 miles from side to side.  The view is spectacular.

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Alejandro and I have lunch at Table Mountain Café.  The café is accessible with one steep ramp to the eating area.  We spend about 3 hours a top the mountain.  There is an accessible bathroom located by the return cable car.  After we ride the cable car down, I get a cab back to my hotel.  I may meet up with Alejandro later.  I am meeting him tomorrow for the Robben Island tour.  I rest in the room for a few hours before going to the hotel bar to watch the early World Cup matches.  I watch Belgium beat Algeria 2-1 and Brazil tie Mexico 0-0.  I do meet a few people attending a conference to watch the games with.  I don’t hear from Alejandro so I head to bed at midnight.

It would be difficult to visit Table Mountain in a wheelchair by yourself.  The most difficult part will be wheeling around the top of the mountain.  Of the 2 miles, I was able to wheel 50 yards by myself, with Alejandro’s help I was able to wheel 100 yards.  There are also some steps in places making that area not accessible.  It was well worth the trip up for the view.  There’s not much, if anything to do to make this more accessible having to deal with the natural contour of the mountain.

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