Table Mountain has experienced an influx of hikers since SANParks made the decision to open all national parks on 1 June 2020, in accordance with the Alert Level 3 regulations.
In response to the increased number of hikers accessing Table Mountain National Park, also in part due to the closure of Lion’s Head, the Table Mountain Aerial Cableway Company (TMACC) will open a service over weekends only to provide a safe descent for hikers from its Top Station.
The Cableway will be running trips every 5 – 10 minutes, depending on the number of hikers at the top station. The cable cars will run at a reduced capacity with social distancing. Strict health and safety protocols will be in place.
Here’s everything you need to know:
Buying your one-way down ticket
Tickets will only be available for purchase online at www.tablemountain.net or in the Wi-Fi lounge at the top station. Your one-way down ticket is valid for 7 days. The Lower Station ticket office will not be open during this time.
Health and safety
“In accordance with our strict Covid-19 health and safety protocols, we are only allowing a maximum of 26 people plus the cabin master per ride down in the cable car,” says Wahida Parker, Managing Director at TMACC.
“No person will be permitted to enter the cable car without a mask. To ensure the safety of hikers and our team, we will also sanitise the cable car after every ride.” Visit www.tablemountain.net for more information.
Hikers must abide by the Table Mountain National Park’s rules and regulations and wear a mask when hiking up.
Disposable masks will be available to purchase in the WiFi Lounge if you do not have one. Unfortunately, no one is allowed inside the cable car without wearing a mask.
“Hikers are urged not to hike alone, to dress warmly, carry water and save contact details for emergency services on their phone before embarking on their hike,” advises Parker.
The Cableway’s health and safety representatives will be on site to test the temperature of any passengers showing symptoms. Should someone have a high temperature, their contact with staff and other hikers will be contained.
The cable car will be sanitised and cleaned after each one-way trip down. A deep clean of the cable cars will be conducted daily.
Social distancing inside the car
Normal carrying capacity is 65 passengers, however in adherence to the lockdown regulations, TMACC will be loading 13 passengers up to a maximum of 26 passengers including the Cabin Master, to allow enough space for physical distancing. The floors of the cable car have been demarcated to provide for safe distancing.
They will also operate the cable cars with the windows removed. This is to ensure correct ventilation, as per the Alert Level 3 lockdown regulations.
Hours of operation
The cable car will be running as a service to hikers from 08:00 until 15:00 on weekends only (Saturday and Sunday).
If you miss the last cable car down, make use of the emergency phone at the Upper Cable Station. Emergency Rescue Services will advise on the next steps to get you down safely.
The WIFI lounge at the top station will be open for hot and cold beverages such as coffee and water. The kiosk at the lower station will also have snacks and takeaway meals such as sandwiches, salads and an assortment of cakes available.
The toilets at the top station will be open on the days the Cableway service is provided.
Please check the weather forecast and conditions before hiking up Table Mountain. Bad weather days are always risky for hiking and the Cableway cannot guarantee that they will be open.
If on the day of your hike you become aware of the poor weather conditions, it is recommended that you choose another day for your hike. Remember, if you purchased your ticket online, your ticket has a 7-day validity.
Should you be stranded, there is an emergency phone with which you could call rescue services. This is, however, still dependent on the weather conditions.